Culture & Entertainment
Gifts that Keep Giving: Small-Batch Subscriptions
Whether it’s fruit-of-the-month or fruitcake-of-the-month, subscription presents have become a veritable holiday tradition. Today, small artisans and curators across North America apply this age-old concept to the slow living movement, offering small-batch gifts that keep giving long after the caroling has stopped.
In June 2013, Mouth Foods launched mouth.com, an online indie food store. “Indie food is like indie film or music–an interesting, relevant alternative to the big and mass-produced,” explains Craig Kanarick, Mouth Foods CEO. The company offers popular monthly subscriptions that appeal to foodies of all tastes. With the Pickles Every Month package, for example, recipients get jars of goodies from artisanal pickle purveyors like Rick’s Picks, Uncommon Pickles and The Real Dill. If the loved one on your list has a sweet tooth, consider Cookies Every Night, where giftees get a box of 30 cookies each month, one to satisfy every post-dinner sugar craving.
While Sonoma County, CA is best known as Wine Country, this area boasts more olive groves than any other county in the state. The Olive Press grows and presses its oils locally and operates retail outlets in Sonoma and nearby Napa, In addition, subscriptions make the award-winning, house-made products accessible to home cooks not soon traveling to the Golden State. Members of the Press Club receive two hand-chosen bottles of oil and/or vinegar each quarter, while Amphora Club members receive two shipments a year.
Why limit subscription gifts to solely food? Since 2008, Toronto-based Papirmass has sold a unique concept: art-of-the-month. Twelve times a year, members receive a creation from a different up-and-coming artist around the world. While most deliveries include prints, unexpected media like temporary tattoos, greeting cards, small paper sculptures and coasters also make up the mix. “Our mandate is to create a new generation of art collectors by making art accessible to all,” says Kristen McCrea, Papirmass founder and art subscription director. “This is art that comes to you, whoever and wherever you are.”