Wednesday, November 29, 2017

{ GIFT GUIDE 2017 } FUN, COOL GIFTS UNDER $50


Every year this is probably my favorite gift guide to create—mostly because this is the wheelhouse I live in. I rarely if ever spend more than $50 on a holiday present for anyone, so I pride myself on thinking of clever, useful and enjoyable presents that won't break the bank. Naturally, many of this year's selections will make great stocking stuffers (in the $8 to $15 range) and there's a few books, too, and then a few things that skirt the barely-under-fifty mark.

Since I rather painstakingly sussed out each of these by hand, I'm going to walk you through each one and give a little explainer on why it'll make a great gift! Then again if you don't have time for that, you can scroll down to the shopping widget at the bottom and click through to what you're looking for! (I won't be offended, I promise!)

HOLIDAY GIFT IDEAS UNDER $50
  • The School of Life 100 Questions game, $30: I mentioned it last year, but The School of Life is one of my favorite sources for gifts for just about anyone. Last year I featured The Confessions Game, and this year I'm eyeing 100 Questions, another conversation-starting game to pull out at your next dinner party.
  • Bamboo breakfast tray, $16: Since moving into a new apartment in earlier this month, I haven't had time to fully furnish it yet. To wit, anytime I want to sit and relax—I get on my bed. For that reason I've decided I desperately need a breakfast tray on which I can prop my iPad, coffee, maybe a bag of chips... Just kidding I'd never eat chips in bed. Never...
  • Catbird 14K gold alphabet stud, $48: Catbird has been a local favorite in Brooklyn for years, but now that you can shop their delicate pieces from Net-a-Porter, the secret's out! These tiny alphabet studs make the perfect thoughtful little gift—and since they're solid gold, they'll never tarnish and can be worn everyday.
  • Diane Von Furstenberg silk scarf, $49: Recently marked down for the holidays, I love this small silk scarf from DvF that can be tied around the neck for a jaunty finishing touch or woven around the handle of a handbag for a little flair. I love the unique color combination of this one, which will look excellent with a camel or ivory sweater this winter.
  • 50 Years of New York by the Editors of New York, $41: This massive book tops my list of the best coffee table books to give this year. Like most locals, I worship at the alter of New York magazine (and their approval matrix), and would love to thumb through this collection and proudly display it on my bookshelf.
  • J. Crew leather iPhone case, $20: A winning stocking stuffer for guys or girls, this simple iPhone cover is sophisticated and cool.
  • Stone & Strand gold number stud, $48: Another solid gold stud earring I highly endorse! Stone & Strand, much like Catbird, makes affordable single studs in real metals. Give your favorite girl her lucky number. (Mine is 7, by the way...)
  • Bob's Burgers Tina pin, $13: If you don't watch Bob's Burgers, start. And if Tina isn't your favorite character, get out. I love decorating my denim and outerwear with pins, and this one would make a hilarious addition to anyone's collection.
  • Good Candle 1lb Campfire candle, $32: My roommate introduced me to this wonderfully scented candle from a local Brooklyn candlemaker that starts at just $16 and smells like a campfire. Seriously—it's so good.
  • Pottery Barn set of 2 old fashioned glasses, $24: Another winning unisex gift, these super-affordable double old fashioned glasses look like something you might dig out of your grandparent's attic (in a good way).
  • Uniqlo Heattech turtleneck t-shirt, $15: I have and love this turtleneck, and can vouch for how great it is. As the name implies it's super warm, and it makes the perfect cozy layer under crewneck sweaters or that itchy wool turtleneck that you love even though it really bothers your skin.
  • Williams Sonoma mulling spices, $13: Mulled wine is delicious, and during these cold winter months, will make you feel less guilty about uncorking a bottle of red at 2 p.m. These spices from Williams Sonoma make brewing up a batch at home super easy, just sprinkle them in and heat it up. Voila, hot wine perfection.
  • Memebox Disco Daze masking gift set, $29: Masking is amazing. Masking while wearing a cat headband and taking Insta-worthy selfies because your face is suddenly silver? Even more amazing.
  • Best Made brass dice, $22: Put the Midas touch on your next game night with these leave-them-on-the-table-all-the-time brass dice from one of my favorite gifting sources, Best Made.
  • Four Roses Small Batch Bourbon, $32: Hot Toddy, Spiked Cider, Old Fashioned. All of these drinks require bourbon, and Four Roses is one of the best bang-for-your-buck whiskeys out there. Give it as a host gift or fill the whole stocking in one fell swoop. (Clever, no?)
  • Women Who Run With The Wolves By Clarissa Pinkola Estes, $6: So basically what happened was, Garance Dore posted such a lovely Instagram caption about this book that I went right over to Amazon and bought it immediately. I can't wait to read it!
  • Johanna Buchanon set of 4 tassel cocktail napkins, $42: Coasters are one of those things you never want to buy for yourself, which is why they make such a great gift. These colorful and tassel-trimmed ones from Johanna Buchanon are my favorite this season.
  • Timex Weekender watch, $42: This unfussy, sporty watch is a great gift for any guy who is just like, always wearing the same boring watch and could use a little variety. Classic and cool, you can't go wrong with the Weekender.
  • Fredericks & Mae rainbow playing cards, $13: 52 Card Pickup has never looked so good! Just kidding, that game sucks. But if you've got a friend or relative on your list who loves to play Gin Rummy or Speed on cozy afternoons at home, these make a perfect little treat they'll want to have on display all the time. (Oh and if playing cards aren't your thing—what about Tarot cards with craft cocktail recipes!?)
  • My Absolute Darling by Gabriel Tallent, $17: For any friend who devours novels on holiday vacations, this one has gotten some of the biggest buzz of 2017. (And will be going into my carry-on this December for sure!)
  • Kate Spade wireless speaker, $42: Wireless Bluetooth-enabled speakers have to be one of the most useful gifts out there. They're amazing for travel, for the bathroom, for "getting ready" parties with your girlfriends, for entertaining outside when you're not bougie enough to have a speaker system... You name it.
  • Kikkerland copper big and little fish nail clippers, $10: I have nothing to say except what's not to like about these nail clippers shaped like fish and in a lovely copper color instead of boring ol' silver? These are a perfect stocking stuffer for a whole variety of people—from your boyfriend who needs to keep his toes in check to your bestie who's an expert at at-home manis.
  • Slip silk sleep mask, $45: In my new apartment, my bedroom is flooded with light at a very early hour of the morning. For that reason, I've really come to embrace the sleep masks I've had in my bedside drawer forever but rarely ever used. This one is the cream of the crop—developed over 10 years to aid in restful sleep and protect the soft skin around your eyes while you toss and turn.
  • Various Projects Bon Vivant KeyTag, $15: I took years and years of French in school, and still, bon vivant—a mostly used by English speakers adjective—is my favorite phrase. 

// SHOP THESE GIFT IDEAS (AND A FEW MORE) BELOW //

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