This week in Australia, we’re celebrating NAIDOC week and the theme of that is “Always Was, Always Will Be.”
Always Was, Always Will Be. recognises that First Nations people have occupied and cared for this continent for over 65,000 years.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were Australia’s first explorers, first navigators, first engineers, first farmers, first botanists, first scientists, first diplomats, first astronomers and first artists.
As we’re in the run up to a season where many will be buying gifts for loved ones, friends, or themselves, I’ve put together a guide to inspire you to shop from indigenous businesses in Australia.
Many post worldwide too – and I encourage you to spend time checking out each of these businesses below.
To find out more about NAIDOC week, and the theme “Always Was, Always Will Be”, click here.
8 Gift Ideas from Australian Indigenous Businesses
1. K-Rae Designs
I WANT EVERYTHING.
Kimberly is the Creative Director at K-Rae Designs and she’s a proud Bundjalung and South Sea Islander woman, living on Yuggera country in Brisbane – Queensland.
She also started her business initially as a creative outlet as a stay-at-home mum.
Kimberly does it all! She’s a one-woman band – doing everything from drawing, lettering, designing, replying to DM’s and emails, picking up printing, packaging, writing personalised thank you notes, postie runs…you name it!
Literally want it all. But I narrowed down my shopping to a diary, notepad, print and card – not telling you which are for friends and which are for ME!
I’m really excited about the Women Empowerment Print that is a collection of the women illustrations that Kimberly has done this year.
2. Yarli Creative
Madison is the founder of Yarli Creative and is a proud and strong Yorta Yorta, Dja Dja Wurrung and Gamilaroi woman.
Her captivating artwork is stunning! Madison says she’s been drawing, painting, and being creative since before she can remember and that being creative provides a sense of healing for her.
I relate to this so much.
I’ve treated myself to a beautiful Yindi print. Yindi is a common Aboriginal girl’s name, and is believed to mean sun. The word Yindi is also used by Yolngu people and translates to ‘mother’. I felt it spoke to me.
I’ve also purchased some beautiful greeting cards to send to my family in the UK.
3. Modern Aboriginal Art by Jodie Freeman
Jodie Freeman is a proud Gamilaroi woman, originally from Narrabri, NSW. Her artwork is a modern style, combining her Aboriginal heritage with her spiritual beliefs. Each piece tells a story and has a heartfelt meaning behind it.
The range of stunning art includes canvas and paper prints, colouring pages, wooden toys, symbols and framed art.
I’ve purchased two beautiful canvas prints called Dragonfly Dreaming 1 and 2 to hang in my children’s bedrooms.
I loved reading about how the dragonfly gives us guidance and clarity with difficult choices and it will be a reminder to me, and my two little ones, to be strong.
Click here to see the full range at Modern Aboriginal Art.
4. Chocolate on Purpose
Chocolate On Purpose® is a 100% Indigenous Australian owned business and their expert training, integrity and sustainability is the strength that flavours their creations!
They seek to educate the world on the health-giving power of Australian Indigenous plants & wisdom of the Elders in their use.
Chocolate on Purpose® actively supports Aboriginal Sustainable Farming by sourcing Indigenous Australian fruit and nuts – Bush Foods – from First Nations Communities around Australia.
I’ve ordered these stocking fillers for the kids and the hubs:
- Chocolicious Sprinkles® (for on top of their yogurt or ice cream!)
- White Chocolate with Illawarra Plum (Daalgaal)
- Milk Chocolate with Quandong (Guwandang) & Macadamia Nut (Boombera)
5. Sobah Beverages
One of my favourite finds! Sobah is breaking down the stigma of socialising sober – and as you know, I am ALL for this mission.
It’s their aim to raise cultural awareness and promote Aboriginal arts, language and history through the Sobah range. They recognise First Nations Peoples of Australia, language groups, origins and the Dreaming. They also ethically source our ingredients and knowledge.
Sobah is Aboriginal owned and led, and Australia’s first non-alcoholic craft beer company run by husband-wife team Clinton and Lozen Schultz. They’re based on Yugambeh country known as the Gold Coast, Queensland.
Founder, Clinton Schultz, is a Gamilaroi man and psychologist and Sobah is leading a conversation surrounding Australian societal issues with alcohol consumption and breaking down the stigma of socialising sober.
I’ve been looking for new drinks to celebrate the holidays and so I’ve ordered the Combo pack to see which me and the hubs love the most!
It includes a pack of Lemon Aspen Pilsner, Pepperberry IPA and Finger Lime Cerveza.
They’re vegan too, hurrah!
6. Jarin Street
From yoga mats to zippered cases to apparel, Jarin Street has a beautiful range where you’re bound to find something beautiful to treat your best friend or active child!
Owner, Jarin Baigent, is a Wiradjuri woman and mother. She has spent her life working in and for community and began Jarin Street after seeing too many family and friends not being honoured or respected appropriately for their art.
Jarin has always felt that Aboriginal people were seen as just the person to produce the art, not to run the business side. So she decided to be that instead as well as a safe person for artists to work with.
I’ve treated my daughter to this “Follow Your Dreams Zippered case by Liz Maloney” for her (hundreds of) coloured pencils. She loves to draw and create art, just like her dad, and I love that this pencil case will inspire her inside and out!
7. Dilkara Hair & Skin Range
Dilkara means “Rainbow” in Aboriginal.
Owner, Julie, sourced the ingredients for Dilkara Australia – Original Formula from local Indigenous communities. Julie chose to work with these groups to assist them to achieve authenticity behind her supply chain, and because she knows of the integrity and care that has been taken to grow and harvest these native elements.
Some of the native ingredients used in the Dilkara range include: Kakadu Plum extract, Lilly Pilly Berry, Quandong, Lemon Myrtle, Tea Tree Oil, Eucalytpus Blue Gum Oil and Native Peppermint Oil.
Julie is a very proud Kamilaroi woman and was born in Coonabarabran NSW. She is a Canberra based Mum of two, and loves her bush capital home and her fluffy puppies.
I’ve treated myself to the Dilkara Desert Lime Oil for hair!
Since lightening my hair, it’s become so dry and tangled and this products promises a lightweight texture that smoothes and nourishes the hair without weighing it down – so I’m in!
Click here to see the full range at Dilkara.
8. Kakadu Tots
Kakadu Tiny Tots creates authentic aboriginal clothing, accessories and artwork. Their designs originate and are uniquely handcrafted in remote indigenous communities in the Northern Territory of Australia.
The company was founded on a joint idea to incorporate the gap in the market of quality indigenous based children’s clothing and to recognise and acknowledge the aboriginal people of Australia.
Owner and mother, Kylie-Lee Bradford, was inspirated from her mother Sheril Cahill, who is a traditional owner and well-respected elder for their region. She grew up in a small aboriginal community called Patonga which is situated in the middle of the picturesque Kakadu National Park.
We’re treating a friend’s new baby to this gorgeous, oh-so-cute, organic onesie and bib bundle!
If you’re looking for some beautiful and captivating ideas for gifts, I highly recommend you check out the above.