Overwhelmed with holiday shopping? Check out our curated selection of unique gifts.
Clothing is rife with chemicals. From harsh manufacturing agents and dyes to fire retardants and preservatives, the laundry list of multi-syllable technical names can be daunting. And while the collection of chemicals, referred by many as “toxic soup,” is bad enough for full grown adults, it can be a real mess for children, especially newborns, whose skin is extra sensitive to, well, everything. So if there is a new baby in your life in need of some clothing this gifting season, opt for some all-natural organic threads from Under the Nile. From onesies, pajamas, and dresses to booties, hats, and bibs, there are plenty of styles and looks to stock the wardrobe.
Lined Hooded Romper ($48)
Make that all-natural baby gift a double whammy and load up on some soft plush toys to boot. Made with the same organic cotton used on the clothing, Under the Nile has an array of plush toys that will keep baby entertained and safe, because inevitably, that toy is going in the mouth. My personal favorites: the Veggie Crate ($32), a wooden crate filled with plush veggie toys; and the Tool Box with Tools ($34), letting that little one start on those DIY projects early and often.
Bring a little greenery into your abode with the Lucky Gardener Terrarium Kit ($84). Created by artists Michelle Inciarrano and Katy Maslow, the terrarium kit comes with everything you need to create an enclosed micro-habitat (soil, wood, stones and glass, seeds, and moss), as well as detailed instructions on how to properly build up the terrarium layers to ensure your garden-in-a-bottle thrives. Easy to make, this little DIY project is a great way to teach the kids about the wonders of plants, while still maintaining that chic decor level in the house.
Here we present the perfect present for everyone on your gift list.
With the popularity of craft spirits on the rise, the question arises: how difficult is it to make this stuff anyways? If there is a fan of brown water in your life who has that DIY attitude, then The Kings County Distillery Guide to Urban Moonshining ($20) is the perfect gift. Created by the distillers behind New York City’s oldest operating whiskey distillery, Kings County Distillery produces handcrafted moonshine, bourbon, and chocolate whiskey. This book chronicles the rise of the spirit in America, from those heady Colonial times to today, as well as gives would-be home distillers a manual on creating their very own batch of hooch.
It’s a bird…it’s a plane…it’s a drone…
Those whirring, flying toys/hobbyist obsessions are everywhere. From the neighbor kid crash landing it on the roof to Amazon’s fleet of automaton delivery fliers, we are officially living in a post-drone world. But they are not exactly innocuous. From concerns for personal privacy, to flying and flitting through restricted airspace, not to mention runaway drones crash-landing into people and/or animals, there is plenty to make people wary of the flying quadcopters. Regardless, drones are one of the hottest holiday items around, a gift for young and old. But which one to get?
The range of drones runs from uber expensive carbon fiber fliers to the pint-sized JetJat Nano quadcopter from Mota. At $39 and less than one-square-inch, this itty-bity drone is the smallest, lightest flier on the market. But don’t let its postage stamp size fool you: the JetJat is a blast to operate.
While most hobbyists and enthusiasts probably don’t consider the JetJat a true drone—it does lack quite a few of the larger drone telltales: self-stabilization, GPS sync, WiFi enabled, assembly required—the nano quadcopter does fly similarly, albeit a bit more difficult. The controller, which doubles as the carrying case, operates in a similar way, with one joystick controlling throttle (altitude) and the other handling turning. And while larger drones are equipped with self-stabilization and hover mode, the JetJat has none of these—if you let off that throttle, it will crash. Its diminutive size makes it especially susceptible to the slightest breeze, making it somewhat difficult to fly, especially outside. But that’s half the fun. And if you are a drone hobbyist, the level of difficulty in flying the JetJat, and the fact that its small size allows for indoor flying, make this the ideal trainer drone.
Welcome winter with fire- and flame-themed luxuries.
Do you have a beach bum in your life whose looking to stand out? Get them a Makai Project skateboard deck ($130) so they kick and cruise in style. Handmade in South Florida, the boards come it two basic styles, longboard and retro kicktail, and are designed for cruising in mind. Made with various wood species laminated together to create some rather fly outer veneers, the boards either let the natural beauty of the wood do the talking, or get some fresh graphics from local artist CocoRamb, all hand painted directly to the deck. These boards are all one-of-a-kind, ensuring that each ride is as individual as the riders themselves.
The future is now! While 3D printers may cost a pretty penny (around $2,000), and they are still working out all the kinks, that artsy pal in your life can go freehand with the 3Doodler 2.0 for a pittance at $99. The pen/magic wand allows artists to create 3-dimensional doodles with the press of a button and a flick of the wrist. Using the same premise as 3D printers, the 3Doodler uses colored plastic strands (65 different colors), which are melted (similar to a glue gun) and dispersed through a nozzle. The only difference is this is a pen.
Have a fitness buff in your life? These wearable fitness trackers will give their next workout a technological edge.
Know someone with a bit of an edge? Give their desk some instant cool points with Peg & Awl’s Small Medical Desk Caddy: No. 1, Skull ($42). Created from reclaimed floor joists from 19th century era homes, and finished with a decoupage skull pulled from 19th century medical texts, this desk caddy is functional, stylish, and a study in up-cycling.
And since you are in such a giving mood, double-up on the handcrafted fun from Peg & Awl, and shine a light on the workspace with the Medical Candleblock: No: 1, Cobblestone Skeleton Fig. 2 ($18). Using the same source material as the desk caddy, the candle block comes with one hand-poured beeswax tea light candle.
Need a hostess gift? Serve tidings of joy with these elegant entertaining accoutrements.
Sleeping with the Fishes