2012 Holiday Gift Guide
Our 2012 Holiday Gift Guide features items for everyone on your list. No really, everyone. We hope you find our 2012 Holiday Gift Guide helpful as you being searching for the perfect gifts for your loved ones.
Looking for more gift ideas? Be sure to check out our list of 100+ Stocking Stuffers for Men and 100+ Stocking Stuffers for Women! That’s more than 200 stocking stuffers and every last item on each list costs less than $10!
Happy Holidays, everyone!
Gifts for Women
When I spotted the Crock Pot Lunch Warmer ($24.99) on Pinterest I just had to snag one for myself. It is undoubtedly one of the best things I’ve ever purchased for myself. While you can’t cook a meal in it, you can use it to reheat soups and stews and pastas right at your desk. Honestly, I can’t think of one woman (and maybe many men) who wouldn’t benefit from the Crock Pot Lunch Warmer. (No worries if you don’t like pink. There are a few color options.)
Horne has the world’s prettiest Bicycle Basket ($79) from Design House Stockholm. The design is inspired by traditional crocheted tablecloths.
This Melinda Maria Nailhead Stone Ring ($50) is just incredibly chic. It’ll look great alone or stacked with other rings.
One of the most unique pieces of jewelry I’ve ever seen is this Brooklyn Bridge Cuff ($74) from Betsy & Iya. This is a gorgeous piece of brass jewelry that’s designed so well that you can actually make the Brooklyn Bridge out of it … but on the other hand, people wouldn’t necessarily guess that was the inspiration for the design.
Make her day with an entire new nail polish collection! Specifically, pick up this Ciaté ‘Mini Mani’ Set ($58) that includes 17 best selling colors, 4 caviar mixes, and 3 exclusive glitter shades.
With this Rainbow Cake Food Coloring Set ($15) she’ll have all the colors necessary to make cakes equally as beautiful – or perhaps more so – than those found all over Pinterest.
A Memorial Pendant ($120) is one of the best ideas I’ve ever seen. I love the idea of carrying a small note from a loved one with you forever. The signature above reminded me of my dads, but you could also do something similar with your child’s signature or with a special note from your significant other.
The San Juan Matea Weekender ($298) is my dream bag. It is hand-woven in black and white, and has leather and brass accents. This item will ship November 23, 2012.
For seriously incredible smelling and feeling hair, this Bio Supplements’ Mocha Cappuccino Set ($60) is a must-try splurge. These products were chose as an Allure editors pick in 2011 and having tried the products myself it’s easy to see why. My hair blew in front of my face one windy day recently and I was truly taken aback at just how wonderful my hair smelled.
Ash & Dan’s Metallic Cutout Wrap ($165) is a real stunner that will dress up a casual outfit and complete a dressier look. Wait till you see it in our video gift guide (coming soon!).
Like everyone else I’ve been eyeing this Stardust Camera Strap ($130) on Pinterest. It’s not the most frugal gift option out there, but it’s so sparkly wonderful. For a cheaper alternative, I’ve seen a couple DIY options popping up on the internet.
Blinc mascara is releasing a new version of their popular tube mascara later this month: blinc mascara amplified ($26). In addition to blinc’s tube-forming technology, this mascara is designed to increase volume and length.
For the gal who has a hard time shaping her own eyebrows comes the Brow Buddy Shaping Tool ($19.95). With the use of this tool eyebrow waxing appointments will become a thing of the past.
I took a brief calligraphy class when I was in the sixth grade and I’ve always wanted to follow up with a class as an adult. While I cannot commit to spending time in a classroom right now, this Calligraphy Starter Kit ($35) includes all of the tools necessary to learning the art of beautiful decorative handwriting.
Obviously I love my subscription boxes, but For The Makers ($29 per month) is one of the few that would make a fantastic gift option. Inside each box you’ll receive all the materials necessary to make a few trendy DIY projects.
For some incredibly delicious smelling bath treats check out Bidwell Botanicals. Particularly for the holiday season we’re digging their Gingerbread Latté Shea Butter Sugar Scrub ($20). It smells like a dream and will make your skin feel incredible!
We previously wrote about the Nars Warhol Collaboration, and now that we’ve seen the Nars Warhol Flowers Eyeshadow Palette ($55) I can personally attest that this is an item many women would love to have in their makeup collections. What I wasn’t sure about before but have since confirmed is that this palette really has five different eyeshadow colors included in it. The portions of the palette that are silver-ish and black are also eyeshadow, and not just a decorative container component.
People who enjoy spending time in their gardens will love this Grow-a-Garden Plantable Seed Calendar ($24.95). Months come back-to-back, so every two months you’ll receive new seeds to plant. The calendar includes seeds for tomatoes, lettuce, carrots, dill, basil, and parsley.
When I went off to college my dad picked me up a small tool kit and it’s still one of the best gifts I’ve ever received. I pull it out anytime I have to do something mildly handy, and it included all the tools I needed so I’ve never had to purchase any additional tools. My tool set isn’t as cute as this DIYVA by Barbara K Ultimate Tool Kit ($39.99) though. This isn’t the world’s sexiest gift, but I highly recommend it as something every gal needs. (This item will be available for purchase any day. Sandy has delayed its availability.)
Ger her a Customized iPhone Case ($39.95) with a photo of her favorite person on it. You can add photos and even some text/monogramming if you like. All iPhone sizes are available.
This Jewelry Station ($49.95) will keep all of her jewelry as neat as can be without taking up a ton of space. There are pegs for holding necklaces and rings, a container at the bottom for holding small items, like bangles, that don’t fit elsewhere, and a pull-out door that has holes for all of her earrings. It can be mounted on the wall, or left on a shelf/dresser
Another super cute pair of earrings that cost decidedly less are these Fuchsia Stud Earrings ($12.99) that are currently only available in Target stores.
The Tote Buddy ($25) provides an easy way to keep all of your reusable grocery bags stacked up in one place. Considering I’m horrible about bringing my bags to the grocery store, this colorful pouch that keeps all of the bags together could make my bag use skyrocket!
The Casemate Cally Crossbody ($36) offers a chic way to carry your cell phone and other necessities with you for a night on the town. This item will be available at Gilt once their holiday sales begin November 11, 2012.
The bracelets from Gracelettes ($150) are some of the cutest I’ve seen. I love the juxtaposition of the string with the gold plated chain.
This Glitz and Glam Party Sampler ($45) from Sephora has all of the beauty products she’ll need in terms of ultimate party makeup.
Fashionistas will love The Little Dictionary of Fashion ($19.95), which was written by Christian Dior. It contains tips on what to wear weddings and other events, as well as other information such as how to act at parties.
I received a sample of Sprout Exfolliant ($28) a few months ago and I absolutely love it. It’s about as natural as can be as it is made out of almods, oats, and sea salt, and it does a great job smoothing out your skin.
I couldn’t resist including Clare Vivier’s Large Flat Clutch ($164) in this gift guide for women because the pewter color is just so fantastic. The clutch is made out of Italian leather and has gold accents.
When you really don’t know what to purchase a gift card is always an acceptable option since it gives her the opportunity to go shopping for herself in the future.
This Alexandra Beth Designs Gold Druzy Wrap Bracelet ($138) might be one of the prettiest bracelets I’ve ever seen. I love the combination of the gold leather wrap with the natural druzy quartz stone.
Splurge Alert: J. Hadley’s Bow Ring ($1200) is out of the budgets of many people, but it was too gorgeous and sparkly to not include it. If I had an extra grand available for a splurge purchase there’s a great chance this ring would be mine.
Desserts from The Loveless Cafe ($16.47) contains 100 dessert recipes from The Loveless Cafe, which is where you’ll find some of the country’s best comfort food.
The Alicia Klein Two-Bottle Wine Carrier ($135) is a must for any woman who enjoys frequenting BYOB establishments. This wine carrier is as classy as can be and is downright plush on the inside. There’s no chance your bottles will bump together. The bag includes an adjustable strap so it can be carried by hand or over the shoulder.
For more fun, use the Wine Carrier as you head to a night out with the girls where you’ll all enjoy The Wine Tasting Party Kit ($19.99). The kit includes everything you’ll need to be well on your way to becoming a wine aficionado, including glass markers, a cheat sheet, and a 64-page book describing the wines of the world and the ins and outs of wine tasting.
Gifts for Men
One of the most anticipated games of the season – Halo 4 ($59) – will be released in just a couple of days. Pre-order it now and get a $10 Amazon Instant Video Credit.
This Batman configuration has come to an end and now you can purchase The Dark Knight Trilogy ($29.96) and get all three movies in one giftset. This item is available for pre-order and will ship December 4, 2012.
This Growler on Board ($29.95) made me think of one of our friends who enjoys going to new breweries and picking up growlers of beer to take home. This contraption fits and protects three growlers so you don’t just have to put them in your backseat where they could roll around.
Of course, no growler holder would be complete without a Moleskine Passions Beer Journal ($19.95). You’ve got to keep track of your beer tasting adventures somewhere!
One of my favorite items from the upcoming Target and Neiman Marcus Collaboration were these Rag & Bone Shot Glasses ($19.99 for 4). They will be available for purchase beginning December 1.
Thus concluding the alcoholic beverages portion of our gifts for men guide is this Breweries of the United States print ($32). This would be a fab addition to any man cave.
It’s not uncommon for men to receive a new wallet as a gift, but never before have I seen wallets as fantastic as these Necktie Wallets ($58) from Keelan Rogue. Keelan repurposes colorful neckties to create gorgeous wallets that come in all sorts of patterns and colors. The outside of the wallet is a decorative wallet and the inside is made of leather, which means that in addition to being fun to look at these wallets are going to last.
If he travels often for work a Storage and Organization Tie Case ($11) is a necessity. This gift may not be particularly fun to open on its own, so perhaps you could also purchase a couple of ties to have already in the case when he opens it up.
Every year I ask for my husband’s input for what book he thinks men would like to receive as a holiday gift, and this year his selection is Dream Team ($17.07) by Jack McCallum. If he’s a basketball fan, this is the book he will want to read as it tells the behind-the-scene stories of the 1992 U.S. Olympic Men’s Basketball Team.
I’ve yet to meet any man that doesn’t love Tarantino. If the man you’re buying counts himself as a Tarantino fan you’ll want to check out the Tarantino XX Collection ($89.99), which includes eight Tarantino films (Reservoir Dogs, True Romance, Pulp Fiction, Jackie Brown, Kill Bill Vol. 1, Kill Bill Vol. 2, Death Proof and Inglourious Basterds), as well as tons of bonus footage and interviews. This item is currently available for pre-order and will ship November 20, 2012.
The TabletTail ($49.99) is one of the neatest inventions I’ve seen for propping up an iPad. The tail uses a heavy-duty suction to attach to the back of the iPad. Once it’s affixed you can use it to prop up the iPad on a table, or grasp on for easy viewing/carrying. The tail is adjustable so you can view the iPad from any angle.
A Record Clock (prices vary) featuring his favorite band is another item he’ll love to add to the man cave.
When we first met, the only artwork my husband had hanging in his apartment was Michigan-sports related. I put the kibbosh on that when we moved in together because basketball players from the 70s hanging over our couch just wasn’t my thing. I could get behind the Stadium Prints ($40) from City Prints. Their abstract prints come in the colors of the football team and are more graphic than a traditional stadium photo.
If he’s outdoorsy, he may love this National Parks Canvas Map ($115). All of the national parks are listed on the map and it comes with stickers so he can visually check off all of the parks he has already visited.
First he can practice his swing at home with this Indoor/Outdoor Swing Groover ($33.96). Once he has perfected his swing he can get more serious and take it on the golf course with a one-hour Golf Lesson with a PGA Pro ($129).
My husband works in a profession where he has to wear a suit everyday, so I try to add some fun to his wardrobe by picking up fun ties and cufflinks for him. These Batman Cuff Links ($125) fit the bill perfectly.
Instead of throwing your takeout menus into the junk drawer or keeping them out on the coffee table, store them nicely in this Takeout Menus Organizer ($20). Inside you’ll find tabbed dividers so you can store your menus by cuisine type or favorites or whatever else, and it also comes with a notepad so you can take everyone’s orders.
Normally I’d include a sweater in the gifts for men section of this gift guide, but this year I decided to go with the Super Sweater Down Jacket ($99) from Eddie Bauer. I love the button front and the snap-front pockets. I also like their color selection, including the adriatic blue above. (I don’t know how long this will last, but as of posting this jacket is currently on sale for $49.)
If you enjoy taking weekend trips together, grab him a copy of The New York Times 36 Hours: 150 Weekends in the USA & Canada ($23.99). Then, go through the book and highlight some of the trips you’d like to take together.
Not only does Proraso Shave Cream ($10) come in ultra-chic packaging, but this ultra-concentrated formula is free from parabens, SLS, artificial colors, and more.
Eufora is a men’s hair care line specially formulated to help prevent hair loss. Some men are lucky enough to face this issue, but for others these products could bring a bit of joy. Eufora products are created without petrolatum, an ingredient known to clog hair follicles and prevent healthy hair growth. The Eufora Hero Travel Kit ($49.95) contains the following items: 2 oz. Complete Shampoo, 2 oz. Revitalizing Treatment, 2 oz. Texture Putty, 1.7 oz. Exceptional Shave, HERO Travel Bag in navy. Eufora products are only available in salons. Follow the link above to find your nearest retail location.
What can I say? I like preppy looking watches for men. Although perhaps this one is more Team USA and less prep. Regardless, this IZOD IZS3/9 Sport Watch ($80) is currently tops in the list of watches I’m considering for my husband.
Most people don’t need expensive pens, but if he’s in a profession where he’s writing frequently in front of clients or customers, then a fancy pen could be the perfect item. This Parker 5th Generation IM Gunmetal Pen ($80) is absolutely gorgeous and is sure to impress other pen aficionados.
For more gifts for men be sure to check out our list of Gifts for Teen Boys. There’s plenty of overlap for gifts on the list!
Gifts for Children Ages 0-3
The Kinderfeets Push Bike ($109) will have your little guy or gal rolling around and balancing – sans training wheels – in no time! The bike comes in multiple colors and has a fun chalkboard finish. (Keep your eyes peeled – we will be hosting a Kinderfeets Push Bike giveaway soon!)
Transform your child’s room into a starry night with the Twilight Turtle ($25.99) The constellations project out of the turtle’s shell and onto your child’s ceiling. Not only will Twilight Turtle help ease your child to sleep, but it’s a learning experience, too!
This Baby Buff Rattle ($9.95) from The Land of Nod is just too darn cute. Every baby needs one – what better way to impress their visitors?
We saw the Lollacup ($16) featured on The Shark Tank and thought it was an ingenius idea. This cup has minimal parts, is BPA-free, and has a flexible weighted straw making it easier for toddlers to drink from without spilling.
What baby wouldn’t want to see his or her own face on their plate? There’ll be no mistaking which dinner goes on which plate with this Olliegraphic Plate ($24) from Sarah + Abraham. (While babies will love this plate, something tells us mom and dad will hang onto it as a keepsake long after baby has outgrown looking at his or herself while eating.)
Kids and their technology. While I didn’t get my first cell phone until I turned 19, kids much younger than that have their own private phones these days. Might as well get them started early with the B. Hellophone ($11.99). When your child presses the buttons they’ll hear a pre-recorded message left by you.
Technology is well and good, but at the same time you’re preparing them for the future, keep them grounded in the classics with Pride & Prejudice: A BabyLit Counting Primer ($9.99).
Time to get cozy! My Ubby ($27-$77) blankets are designed by you. You pick the material and color/pattern that goes on either side of the blanket, as well as the color that cinches it all together. If you want, you can even have it monogrammed or personalized. I can personally attest that these blankets are amazing and really fun to create. I have one in my possession that I created in FantabulouslyFrugal.com’s colors that I’ll be giving away to one lucky reader soon! Stay tuned!
The Sleep Sheep Snug Rug ($50) grows with your kids as they get older. Wee babies can use it for tummy time and older babies and children can use it as a resting spot as the sheep’s head doubles as a pillow.
I’m sure the kiddos will love LOL Elmo ($64.99), but I kind of want one for myself. Is that weird? LOL Elmo tells jokes and laughs. A lot. You can tickle his tummy to make him laugh. You can also make him laugh by squeaking his fishbowl, making a funny sound near him, or squeezing his foot.
Toys like this Vtech Sit-to-Stand Learning Walker ($29.99) will provide hours of entertainment (in short bursts, of course) long before the child is truly mobile, and then the walker portion of the toy will help teach your child the wonders of walking. They’ll never look back.
Gifts for Children Ages 4-12
This fun Phineas and Ferb Portable Speaker System ($19.99) is not only functional but looks fantastic and sounds phenomenal. It connects to all iPods/iPhones and most MP3/CD players.
I can’t tell you how many BFF necklaces I had as a kid, but none of them compare to this BFF Kit ($19.99), which comes with 100 elements for complete and ultimate customization. Of course two bracelets are included so the BFFs can spend some time together designing their ultimate declaration of friendship.
Jingle the Interactive Story Buddy ($34.95) comes with his own book that he will help read! Keep your eyes peeled – we will be giving one of these away soon!
Reverse Charades Junior ($17.66) is all kinds of fun. Instead of one person acting out the clues while everyone else guesses, reverse charades is the exact … reverse. Everyone acts out the clues while one person guesses what the heck is happening.
Corduroy was hands down my favorite book as a kid. If only this Corduroy Book and PJ Set ($46) existed way back in the day. Luckily it’s not too late to pass down this bit of wonderfulness to a younger generation.
Encourage your kids to be adventurous eaters with My Food Passport ($10), which will help keep track of the awesome things your kids eat, like asparagus and mango. They’ll be rewarded for trying new things with stickers (and possibly finding their new favorite food).
If you have a budding dancer, why not commemorate one of her performances witha Personalized Ballerina Necklace ($36)? This is one of those gifts she will treasure for years on end.
For your active, yet perhaps not as graceful child, this Yo Baby Kick Flipper ($14.95) looks like fun. With this board students can simulate skateboarding, surfing, and snowboarding while working on their coordination and balance.
Kids will be up up and away with the Discovery Kids Cardboard Rocket Ship that they’ll be able to design themselves and then use on their missions. Parents will like that the ship is eco-friendly and folds up easily. You’ll find this item at Gilt Kids when their holiday sales kick off November 11.
Wikki Stix are super cool! These colorful sticks are covered in a glue-like substance so they stick to each other – and other items – without making a mess. The Wikki Stix After School Fun Kit ($24.95) comes with 30 paper cut-outs to decorate with the 324 colorful wikki stix that are also included in the kit.
Your kids will be flying to the moon and saving the world with these next two gifts. First up – Superhero Shoes ($22) – shoes not included. This is a fun way to punch up any old pair of kicks and a variety of colors are available.
Next, what better way to start and end the school day than with a Cape Backpack ($45)?! Traditional backpacks, as well as a messenger bag are available. Both girls and boys colors are also available, so everyone can be the superhero he or she desires!
GIVEAWAY: Be sure to enter our giveaway for a Superhero Cape Backpack! One person will win their backpack of choice.
Keep the mini golf fun going on rainy/snowy days with the Alex Toys Mini Golf Set ($20). You’ll have a mini Tiger, Bubba, or Annika on your hands in no time! This set will be available from Gilt Kids when their holiday sales begin November 11.
For more indoor fun, use these Moulin Roty Circus Shadow Puppets ($21) to get your children’s theatrical juices flowing.
Let your child be the designer with Books to Illustrate: Where Do Monsters and Spiders Hide? ($14). A short story is included, with plenty of room for your child to design the pictures that go on each page.
If you’re looking for more inspiration that then project or two that gets included with each pack of Legos, look no further than The Lego Ideas Book ($15.28). Your child will be inspired to keep on building.
Talking Tom ($34.40) is a talking stuffed animal based on the smart phone app character of the same name. When his red recording light is on Tom will repeat back to you everything that has been said.
When my brother was younger he received a very similar Balloon Modeling Kit ($12) and taught himself how to make all sorts of balloon creatures. This lead to him receiving a few paying gigs making balloon animals at local festivals and whatnot. I’m not saying your children should be earning their keep already, but the ability to make balloon animals would be a pretty awesome skill to pull out at parties!
Gifts for Teen Boys
My experience with teen boys is that the older they get, the more they enjoy cartoons and cartoon characters. While this Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Hoodie ($45) can double as a costume, my guess is that it’s going to become a favorite article of clothing for some. Who knew that one of the most popular cartoons of the 80s/90s would enjoy such a resurgence?
Because not everything can be done via iPad (yet), get him a Dark Knight Flash Drive ($19.99) for saving all of his important documents.
The Nintendo Wii U ($349.99) is going to be one of the hottest gifts this holiday season. In fact, it’s so hot that it hasn’t even been released and it is sold out everywhere! The Nintendo Wii U will be available for purchase November 18, 2012.
If you’d prefer he get up and play you HAVE to check out the videos on the Waboba website. The Waboba Surf Ball ($8.99) is super cool! This ball somehow manages to mimic skipping a stone if you bounce the ball across water (and it floats so it won’t get lost). This ball is perfect for using at the ocean, a lake, or river.
It seems like with Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter ($14.96) he will get a little bit of history AND a bit of gore. (Warning: Rated R)
The Perks of Being a Wallflower ($10.99) is a modern look at teen angst, as told through the eyes of a lonely freshman boy. Check out my The Perks of Being a Wallflower review. While I was never a teen boy, this is a book I wish I’d read back in the day.
This Bubble Calendar ($20) would really work for anyone on your list, but I figure it’s a fun way to gift a functional calendar that likely won’t end with a giant eye roll.
The kids these days love giant headphones like these Skullcandy Hesh Headphones ($42.90). I’m not sure if they like the look, if the sound is better, or if it’s just a lot easier to pretend they can’t hear anything else when their entire ears are covered.
Just because they’re getting older doesn’t mean the “projects” have to stop. Keep them entertained for a bit with this Make Your Own Gummies Kit ($13.95). Sure, it’s candy, but this candy’s main ingredient is seaweed!
How to Speak Zombie ($10.17) doesn’t really need an introduction. I’ve never met a teen boy who wasn’t interested in zombies, and now he can speak their language.
Bubble Buttons ($4.85) are for those teens who are lucky enough to have an iPhone or iPod Touch. These fun buttons go over the generic square button on the front of the device. There are tons of designs from which to choose, for the ultimate in iPhone/iPod personalization.
These Pixel Frame Sunglasses ($12) aren’t yet available, but they’re sure to be a big hit. Pixelated products are popping up all over the place, and for those of us who spend way too much time staring at computers (isn’t that everyone these days?!), these items are full of fun and whimsy.
Gifts for Teen Girls
Free People Hair Chalk ($24) was released last week and sold out almost instantly. I’m told they’ll be getting more in stock later in November, so be on the lookout. Hair Chalk is a fab non-permanent solution for the teen girl that’s currently interested in experimenting with different hair colors. (There’s a great tutorial on the Free People website.) This is one of those gifts for teen girls that I think many girls -regardless of interests or personality – would love to have.
You never know when she might need to spruce up a T-Shirt or two, whether to better convey her own personal style or to spruce up a school T or whatnot. These T-Shirt Graffiti Markers ($8.64) come in a rainbow of colors.
We’re huge fans of The Hunger Games and of Katniss Everdeen, but if she’s looking for a new literary heroine working her way through a dystopian society, introduce her to Tris and Divergent. Divergent ($9.59) is the first part of the trilogy and part two, Insurgent, is also available. Part 3 will be released in Fall 2013. (And yes, a movie is set to be released in 2014.)
Rookie is the website founded by fashion ingenue Tavi Gevinson. Rookie is the site for “teenagers who are interested in fashion and beauty but also in dissecting the culture around them through a uniquely teen-girl lens.” Rookie Yearbook One ($16.45) is a collection of some of the best articles and interviews that appeared on the Rookie website during its first year.
This gift guide wouldn’t be complete without Taylor Swift Red ($14.99), but chances are she already has this CD based on the record sales last week. If not though, be sure to pick up the CD from Target because it includes a few bonus tracks you won’t find elsewhere!
It’s hard to gift someone holiday clothing, but this Deer Ugly Sweater T-Shirt ($20) can be worn long after December 25. This shirt is funny enough that she probably won’t make any comments about how you shouldn’t pick out clothes for her ever again.
The JulieG Holiday Collection ($3.99 each) by Jesse’s Girl Cosmetics is a limited edition line of five nail colors that were designed and inspired by top YouTube beauty vlogger Julie Gutierrez (JulieG 713). These seasonal polishes include colors like “Ornamental,” a gorgeous gold, and “Light it Up,” a multi-color glitter top coat.
She won’t have to hide her One Word a Day Journal ($14) from anyone, because only she will know the true meaning behind that one word.
Even more cryptic would be if she wrote in the journal using the Secret Message Writing Set ($10). The pens contain invisible ink that can only be read by the black light that is conveniently stored in the pen cap. This item will not be available until late November.
If she has an iPhone or iPod Touch then she is probably well-versed in the art of Instagram and probably has a huge gallery of Instagram photos. Now she can turn those photos into wearable art thanks to fab watch company May28th. I took a gander at designing a Custom InstaWatch ($44), which you can see above. I wasn’t very good about getting my pup Bacon centered though, so luckily it was just a practice go-round.
She can keep warm AND listen to her tunes quite easily with these Tech Earmuffs ($29.50). It doesn’t hurt that they’re super cute and come in a range of colors!
Gifts for Cats
The Easy Mount Window Cat Door – $99.95
Smart Cat Peek-a-Prize Toy Box – $29.95
Fat Cat AppeTeasers Toy – $6.94
Kitty Kong – $6.79
SmartyKat CatChaise Cat Scratcher - $14.88
FroliCat Bolt Laser Cat Toy – $21.99
Gifts for Dogs
Dog Miracle Puzzle – $29
Bionic Bone - $9.99-$19.99
dogIDs QR ScruffTag Collar – $26 – I really love this collar – any extra help identifying a lost dog is always a good thing!
Puppy Scarf - $22
Phuket Dog Feeders – $80
Ice Cream Cone Doggie Treats – $8.99
The Fifth Paw (poop bag holder) – $14.99
Wahl Rechargeable Pet Clipper Kit – $69.99
Gifts for Food Lovers
This Chocolat et Fromage Gift Set ($59.99) sounds divine. You’ll get chocolate. You’ll get cheese. You’ll get honey. And if you want to pay a bit more you can even get some wine.
While there’s no denying the Farmstead’s Meat Club ($275) is a bit pricey, you’ll get six months worth of meat and other accoutrements spread out through the year. Based on the descriptions, everything sounds absolutely amazing.
I’m one of those people that’s always drawn to different types of salt. I have quite a selection, although I never really know how/when to use them. Enter Beyond the Shaker, where you’ll find nothing but gourmet salts such as this Red Alaea Salt ($13.50). The website gives you descriptions of the salt (this red salt is the native salt of Hawaii!), and gives suggested uses (one recommended use for this salt is over scrambled eggs). Plus, the salt is housed in bottles that stack together in a decorative manner.
There are few treats tastier than a homemade marshmallow, and those from Wondermade are exceptional. Wondermade makes their marshmallows in small batches and the flavors are constantly changing. Above is a Guinness Marshmallow ($7.50), and you’ll currently find other flavors such as Honey Pear, Apple Cinnamon, and Pumpkin Pie.
When the people at Masala Pop reached out about their gourmet popcorn made with Indian spices, I was a little skeptical but I’m a believer now. Masala Pop has such a nuanced flavor, unlike anything I’ve ever tasted in a popcorn before. It’s absolutely delicious! A Three-Pack Masala Pop Sampler ($13) is the perfect way to try all three flavors, just be prepared to have a new favorite treat! (Though I called this a sampler, the bags are quite large and each contains a couple of servings.)
I may have included this Aztec Iced Hot Chocolate ($24) in large part because of the fantastic packaging, but something tells me it will also taste delicious and it’s a nice spin on traditional coffees and teas that are common gift items.
For the person that loves to cook comes the Qooq ($399), the first tablet designed specifically for kitchen use. It has 3800+ recipes stored on it, as well as videos featuring kitchen technique. It can help with meal planning. It’s rugged design holds up if it gets dropped or things get spilled on it. And yes, you can still check your email, listen to music, and watch videos on it, too. Qooq was designed in France, and only the French version is currently available. The English version will be released by the end of the year.
You’ll find a few different artisinal olive oil gift sets available at Ah Love Oil & Vinegar, including the Decadence Taste Collection ($27.95), which includes Blood Orange Olive Oil, Lime Olive Oil, Berry Balsamic Vinegar, and Dark Chocolate Balsamic Vinegar.
I can’t imagine what Mugolio Pine Syrup ($28) tastes like because some reviewers on the Dean & Deluca website describe it as being “piney” while others say it’s more floral. All agree that it adds a tremendous amount of delicious and unique flavor to breakfast foods.
What intrigues me about this Vanilla Infusion Kit ($15) is that it claims you will never run out because you replace the extract you use with more vodka!
Gifts for Teachers
I consulted a teacher friend of mine for help on this part of the gift guide and she told me that teachers love ALL gift cards. With a gift card there’s no worry about whether the gift is something the teacher will like or use. You know the teacher will use the gift card to pick up something he/she enjoys. That said, I’d personally go for a coffee shop and/or Fandango. The coffee will help make sure the teacher is ready to go in class and the Fandango gift card will provide the teacher with a few hours away from grading papers and tests and lesson planning.
I kind of wish I was a teacher so that I would have use for some Personalized Teacher’s Desk Note Cards ($16.50). Note cards don’t have to be personalized, and remember – it’s OK to avoid the note cards with the apple on them.
Almost every teacher I’ve ever come into contact with has complained about the lack of school supplies in their classrooms, especially in the lower grades. Instead of getting a personalized gift for your child’s teacher, consider filling a box full of school supplies that everyone in the class can use! Oftentimes when there are classroom supply shortages the teachers end up purchasing items out of their own pocket so your gift of school supplies will help save them a few hard-earned dollars!
An extension of donating school supplies to the classroom would be to donate a few books to the classroom library. Take your child to the book store and have him or her pick out a couple favorites. Then, have them write a little thank you note to go along with the books. The teacher will think of your child every time those books get pulled off the shelf for some child’s future enjoyment.
Perhaps this To Kill a Mockingbird Brooch ($13.28) isn’t really appropriate for anyone other than a freshman English teacher (or whichever grade they’re readin this book in these days), but is it ever fantastic. Etsy shop House of Ismay has may other literary-inspired gifts available as well.
I know most of the country will have absolutely no interest in a paddle board, let alone this cool Inflatable Paddle Board ($495) from Tower. But for those of you with the ability and interest in paddle boarding, well, this could be your lucky board. The inflatable paddle board is easily transported as it rolls up to about 1 foot by 33″, and it’s almost indestructible – no more nicks and dents like in a traditional board.
I think I put the Nike+ Fuelband ($149) in last year’s gift guide, but what are you going to do? There’s always at least one product that overlaps. The Nike+ Fuelband tracks and monitors your activity for the day, including steps taken, calories burned, and more.
Bed of Nails ($39.95) allows you to experience the benefits of acupuncture from your own home. There are 210 acupressure points on each mat, and 8,820 nails per mat. The company sent me a Bed of Nails to try out and I’m a fan of the way it makes me feel. The “nails” take a few minutes to get used to, but once settled they feel really good.
For those of you who participate in bikram yoga or just get really sweaty when doing any type of yoga the Aurorae Deluxe Slip Free Yoga Mat ($69.95) is for you. One half of the mat – the part that goes flush against the floor – is the traditional skid-free vinyl. The other half of the mat is a skidless microfiber towel surface that will absorb your sweat and help you better hold your positions.
After bikram you’ll want to toss your wet clothes into this Ultra-Light Bag ($58) from Electric Yoga. The bag weighs next to nothing, is waterproof, and comes in a few bright and fun colors.
If you’re a night or early morning runner/walker, My Ring Guard ($49.99) could be your new best friend. Before you go out you program the ring with three emergency numbers. Then, wear the ring while you’re out and if anything should happen to you all you need to do is press the button atop the ring and it will automatically send a text message to your three emergency contacts letting them know your coordinates.
Getting water during your workouts is a breeze with this Armband Water Bottle ($29.99). The case pulls double duty, too, as the clear pouch on the front is where you can stick your iPhone/iPod/other music playing device.
If you’ve already got an XBox Kinect, check out Harley Pasternak’s Hollywood Workout ($29.99) and try out some of the workouts he puts his celebrity clients through.
Gifts for New Parents
I wasn’t sure exactly where to stick this Belkin WeMo Baby Monitor ($89.99), but I knew it had to be included in the gift guide so it is one of our gifts for new parents (seems more appropriate than a baby gift). You sync this baby monitor with your iPhone or iPod, and then the sound waves when your baby is crying or fussing are transmitted via the internet and into your phone. What this means is that you don’t have to be home to hear when your baby is crying – as long as you have an internet connection you’ll be able to hear what’s happening at home. This product has not yet been released but is available for pre-order from Amazon.
Parents will need a little bit of fun while they’re wandering around trying to calm the baby, so get them this magnetic Infant Care Troubleshooting Flowchart ($22). Parents entertain themselves in the middle of the night by arranging the various pieces of information into questionable/humorous advice.
Food: Zingerman’s Midnight Feeding Care Box ($125).
More Food: Anything from Edible Arrangements that can be eaten with one hand while holding a baby in the other.
Instead of going with a more traditional baby name necklace, why not pick up The Calendar Necklace ($150) and mark the date that her bundle of joy was born?
Get dad a Super Dad Key Chain ($32). The back of the key chain reads, “A force to be reckoned with. Always there in time of need. Super hero. Defender of good.”
Little ones outgrow their clothing so quickly, so scoop up a couple of mom and dad’s favorite outfits to ship off to The Patchwork Bear ($98). You’ll receive a custom bear created out of some of those favorite items.
Help entertain new parents by snagging them a Netflix Subscription (prices vary). What’s nice about the streaming subscription is that the parents can literally enjoy it anywhere – on the TV, their laptops, or even on their smartphones during those middle-of-the-night feedings.
If you want to really thank a hostess for a fantastic party or gathering you should consider ordering her some cookies from Well Mixed Sweets ($25 per dozen). I ordered a set of Fantabulously Frugal cookies and I’ll tell you what – they are some of the tastiest cookies I’ve ever had. They’re so soft and buttery and the frosting is delicious. Megan can make just about any design you send to her, so go ahead and make your cookies as personal and wonderful as you want!
I received a sneak peek at the Jouer Holiday Cracker with Sparkle & Pop ($12) this summer and it would make the perfect hostess gift. Or the perfect gift to go at each place setting at your girls-only dinner. Or the perfect stocking stuffer. The Jouer Holiday Cracker costs $12 and includes a party horn, chic cocktail ring, a beauty fortune, mini champagne bubbles, a Jouer cosmetics sample. This will be a fun treat that any lady would love to receive!
Quality wine doesn’t necessarily have to cost an arm and a leg. Pick up a bottle of Thorny Rose’s Red Blend ($11) to either contribute to the party or gift to the hostess.
Godiva’s Ultimate Dessert Truffles Gift Box ($15) had me at the words “Red Velvet Cake Truffle.”
Sometimes it can be difficult to get excited about soap, but that’s not the case when the soap is as cute and delicate as what’s inside this Claus Porto Orange Guest Soap Pastille Gift Box ($19).
Kusmi’s I Love My Detox Tea ($21.94) will help her unwind from the stress of the holidays. This tea is sad to eliminate toxins and reinvigorate the body. It’s rumored to be a favorite of Lady Gaga’s!
The Peterboro Ice Master ($49) is pretty much the world’s chicest cooler. To top off how awesome this insulated picnic basket is, the lid doubles as a serving tray!
Who doesn’t need a bit of extra storage, especially when the form is as cute as these Kähler Mano Storage Jars (price starts at $59.95 each)?
Over the past few years I feel like finding new and better ways to display photos has been all the rage. First there were canvases, and recently I’ve been seeing people imprint their photos onto wood. My favorite method though may be to Aluminyze (price varies) your photos, in other woods, embed your photo onto a thin sheet of aluminum. The photo is sturdy, can be hung on the wall or placed on a stand, and the colors are oh so vibrant.
In my opinion, winters are for cuddling up under warm blankets like this Micro Mink Reversible Throw ($29.99) and sipping warm beverages. Personally I don’t think one can ever have too many blankets, but that may be because every time we get a new one our dog claims it as his.
These Espera Photo Frames (starts at $95) may be the prettiest frames I’ve ever seen. I’d like the entire set of three.
Alphabet Photos (price varies) from Sticks & Stones are a great gift for the person who has everything. You design the photo to spell out any phrase – maybe a first name, last name, or meaningful word – and you can even choose the style of letters that are used.
I know, I know. A cutting board as a gift is so passé but this cutting board is different. It’s just downright witty. Tell me reading the words Romeo & Julienne ($29) didn’t bring a bit of a smile to your face? Pass this on to your literature-loving friends and family members and bring a smile to their faces, too.
My husband and I ate at Tastes of Black Star Farms in Traverse City last winter and were able to enjoy a raclette dining experience. You grill your own food and melt the cheese on the same contraption. Apparently this is all the rage in some parts of Europe. Thanks to this Swissmar 4 Person Raclette ($99.95), you can make this way of eating the norm in your household.