It’s that time of the year again when we all take a pause and say, “I can’t believe it’s December already!” And if you’re like me, then it’s also that time when you scramble for gift ideas. Thankfully, the people in my life are relatively easy to shop for. But still, I still needed some ideas.
Search for “gift ideas” and the results can be quite daunting. But fear not, I’ve narrowed those results down a tiny bit to keep for future reference and hopefully this will help you too. If you’re celebrating Christmas, most of these can be ordered right up to Dec. 21.
1.Minted.com. Choose from hundreds (maybe even thousands) of independent artists and designers at several size/framing options with reasonable prices.
2.Beautiful hardcover books. Juniper Books have different jacket styles for the Harry Potter series – Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Slytherin and Hufflepuff. There are also the usual classics covered in beautiful designs. Speaking of classics, Rifle Paper & Co. has the 150th anniversary edition of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, with a beautiful cover and full-color interior illustrations.
4.Custom portrait. Send in some photos for a custom portrait illustration that you can use for notes and calling cards.
5.Metallic silhouette. Also from Minted comes custom silhouette foil art in different sizes and frames.
6.Custom shoes. Gift these for women who obsess over those shoes that got away or love styles that may no longer be available.
7&8.Personalized style. The Trunk Club is a premium service where you get to connect with a stylist, preview a handpicked selection and pay for clothes that you keep. It’s available for men and women. Stitch Fix is similar but it’s more automated in that you only answer a style quiz. Right now, it’s only available for women. Start your loved-one off with gift cards.
9.Philz Coffee. I don’t think that you can fully recreate the drip coffee at Philz cafes in San Francisco but this is probably a good start. I still fantasize about that coffee, by the way.
10.Beauty box subscription. Available for men and women, a monthly box features a range of grooming and beauty samples for those who love to try new products but don’t want the commitment of full-sized products.
11.Floral arrangements. Make it weekly, monthly or reserve it for special occasions. It’s a way to ensure you don’t forget future special dates.
12.Cashmere-lined leather smartphone gloves. Cashmere, leather and you can use your smartphone without freezing.
13.Cozy slippers. I live in perpetual summer Florida so winter-y stuff are not in my radar but these would have been amazing living in Boston or Montreal.
Just because you can
14.Travel with a personal photographer. Pick from curated travel experiences to South America with a personal photographer. Because, you know, you need to ‘gram it and still enjoy the moment.
15.Hermés Apple Watch. Or is it the Apple Hermés Watch? Anyway, it’s available only in certain Apple and Hermés stores starting at $1,100.
Tech Gifts (of course)
16.Pencil by FiftyThree digital stylus. If you’re one of many still waiting for the Apple Pencil for the iPad Pro, this works just as well at half the price without the waiting list.
17.Amazon Echo. This is Amazon’s answer to Siri and Google Now, except it lives in your home, can play your music and can even control some home automation devices.
18.RIF6 Cube. It’s a 2-inch high resolution mobile projector that works with smartphones, tablets or laptops and projects a 120” inch display on any wall or ceiling.
19.Google Cardboard. No, this is not a joke. It’s the least expensive way to experience virtual reality. It’s compatible with thousands of VR apps on Android and iOS and can support screens up to 6 inches.
20.Samsung Gear VR. But if you’re willing to spend the dollars and the lucky recipient happen to have a Galaxy smartphone, then this VR headset powered by Oculus Rift would be quite a treat.
Kids (or the kid in you)
And since I’ve been thinking of this a lot, I can’t really leave this post without doing a (quick) gift guide for kids as well.
1.Ruby’s Sky-high cable car (Ages 6+). From Goldie Blox, the company that sets out to introduce engineering to girls at a young age, one toy at a time.
2.Personalized book from Lost My Name (Ages 0+). This London-based company just received $9M in Series A round led by Google Ventures. But forget about that, the book is beautifully illustrated and the company delivers in less than a week.
3.Electronics Discovery Kit (Ages 8+) – This has 3,300 customer reviews (as of this writing) and has a 5 star rating at Amazon. I’m completely sold.
4.BB-8 Droid by Sphero (Ages 8+). Just in time for the new Star Wars to be released on December 8, it can listen, recognize and respond to you or your child’s voice and you can even record/view holographic videos.
5.Puzzlets Starter Pack (Ages 6+). Puzzlets is a game that can teach a child think like a programmer through hands-on-play and interactive gaming.