Everything you need for everyone you know—all inside the 495
For the Legal Addictive Stimulant Addict
Cups from FC Designs ($30)
Boston-based designer Frank Criscione uses repurposed and virgin materials in the production of unique domestic and personal accents. For his latest collection, Perc, Criscione used the cast of a classic Italian espresso percolator to create a series of ceramics that re-contextualize and bring whimsy to the hot beverage-drinking experience.
For That Friend With a Swallow Tattoo
Cupcake-Patterned Apron from Boutique Fabulous ($36)
Cupcakes have more than made a comeback with countless bakeries spread like frosting over the country. The in-vogue confection is a classic, enjoyed by everyone with the exception of a few bitter diabetics. Even more enjoyable is the cupcake-patterned apron at Boutique Fabulous. This adorable vintage creation will make chronic pizza-orderers flock to the kitchen with great gusto and seasoned homemakers squeal with delight. Whether a lady chooses to utilize it for baking purposes or just frolicking around the house is her own accord.
[1309 Cambridge St., Cambridge. @BoutiqueFab. boutiquefabulous.com]
For the Person Who Absolutely Refuses to Buy Additional Glassware
Cuppow from … Cuppow ($7.99)
You know that friend who, if they were given the option, would never not drink out of a mason jar? Well, with this screw-on sippy cup lid designed in your own backyard at Somerville’s Fringe studios, that friend is one iced coffee closer to living the dream.
For the Creative Drowning in a Sea of Norms
Discount DJ/Ableton Classes from the Mmmmaven Project
The Mmmmaven Project is the answer for all those who love dancing to EDM but have always wanted to get the party started themselves. The new Music Production and Performance with Ableton class taught by Berklee Music Synthesis grad Encanti of the Zebbler Encanti Experience offers 64 hours of hands-on learning and a free QuNeo controller ($200 value) to take home as part of the course. Learn to DJ or make your own music for 20% off if you sign up for one of the classes this Monday. You’ll be behind the decks at a club in no time—they’ll even hook you up with gigs.
[@mmmmaven. Mmmmavenagency.com/the-mmmmaven-project. Register online here or call 617.849.9321 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Discount offered until 12pm EST Mon 11.26.12]
For the Practical Patron of the Arts
Teapot from MassArt Made ($100)
When perusing the catacombs of Mass Art Made, the retail venue that exclusively features pieces made by Massachusetts College of Art and Design students and alumni, one is easily overwhelmed by the staggering variety of original artwork for purchase. It’s easy to want to buy everything, but for the sake of holiday expenses one might want to condense his or her desires. Let the condensing begin with Keri Straka’s teapot, a masterpiece that is both fully functional and aesthetically enchanting. This sea-foam green and pale blue kettle with a bubbly orange design is swooning material for every artist and tea-lover on your list.
[625 Huntington Ave., Boston. @MassArtMade. massartmade.com]
For Somebody You’re Sleeping With (Or Are Planning to Sleep With in the Immediate Future)
Duet Vibrating Couples Ring from Good Vibrations ($35)
Traditionally, adult toys have a way of being very one-sided. This one’s for her, this one’s for him, this one’s for the dog, etc. With such stiff limitations, the possibility of joining forces with an erotic enhancer is often overlooked. But don’t despair, this vibrating couples ring is here to erase the self-satisfying prophecy. Perfect for you, perfect for your partner, and the quintessential enabler of a perfect night. It’s like you’re getting a gift for yourself and your bedmate! Find it and countless other adult treasures at Good Vibes, your haven for heavy breathing.
[308A Harvard St., Brookline. @GoodVibesToys. goodvibes.com]
For the Epicure on a Budget
City Dining Cards ($20)
When you’re absolutely stuck on gift ideas and are contemplating giving everybody IOUs and hiding in your room for the entirety of the holiday season, look no further than food. Who doesn’t love food? Tasty, life-sustaining, and pants-staining, the gift of eats is a no-brainer. With City Dining Cards, your loved ones can relish in a discounted meal at your expense—they offer $10 discounts on 50 Boston-area restaurants, like Da Vinci Ristorante, the charming Italian restaurant in Back Bay that puts the restaurants in the North End to shame. Between the octopus salad, lamb chops, and chocolate soufflé, your gift-ee(s) will most likely owe you for the rest of their life.
For the Man Who Would Be Burr
Movies and the Moral Adventure of Life from the MIT Press Bookstore ($14.99)
Ahh, the holidays. A time of chestnuts roasting on an open fire and sucking face beneath the mistletoe. In between these cliches are hours and hours of mind-numbing holiday TV and movie specials that have you chanting, “You’ll shoot your eye out,” in your sleep. If you love a film buff and wish to give them something that will stimulate their minds in the midst of yuletide wasteland, try upping the ante with Allan A. Stone’s Movies and the Moral Adventure of Life, a collection of essays exploring films as spiritually influential “life texts.” Groovy.
[292 Main St., Cambridge. @mitbookstore. web.mit.edu/bookstore/www/]
For Your Dog Who Would Be Grateful for Anything but Especially Grateful for This
Dog Treats from Polka Dog Bakery ($7.95)
Created in tribute to Pearl, a one-eyed stray who danced a polka for everyone she greeted, Polka Dog Bakery is a place where every canine can be spoiled with gourmet treats that use the finest ingredients. Each doggie delicacy is lovingly hand-baked for the special pooch in your life.
For the Nerd You Love
Ring from Zoa Chimerum Jewelry ($26 per)
Zoe Chimerum designs eye-catching jewelry made with repurposed materials from the electronics industry. Inspired by the growth of plants and animals, each piece is as singular as the elements of the natural world. Made of rubber over an aluminum core, the pieces are durable, lightweight, and sure to draw attention.
For Your Little Brother Now That He’s Actually Cool
Prints from Monkey Chow ($15+)
Monkey Chow is the illustration and design work of Boston artist Aaron Kovalcsik. His handmade art and illustrations feature everything from robots and aliens, to zombies and monsters, to sharks and many more quirky characters. Each brightly illustrated design adds a pop of color and eccentricity to any space.
For the Traveler, in Lieu of Plane Tickets
Pins from MaJenta Designs ($6/ea)
Young Boston-based designer Jennifer Tang created this collection to satisfy all your Asian-inspired jewelry, pendant, accessory, houseware, wedding, and party favor needs. These delicately handcrafted designs, all inspired by Asian decorative papers, are funky, fun, functional, and affordable.
For the Chronically Ill
Zip-Up from Kush Groove Clothing ($50)
Slow and steady wins the race. This is a message that has been pounded into our brains since childhood, thanks to Aesop and our parents’ lack of creativity. However, the quicker you can buy holiday presents for your crew the better. And if your crew is 420-friendly, substitute the proverbial tortoise with a precious turtle and treat them to the finest of Kush Groove. This unisex hoodie is as versatile as it is expressive of the Groovement, not to mention a superb addition to the infinite layers they will need this winter.
For Your Hip Grandma
Tote Bag from Stray Notions ($45)
Embroiderer Sharon Fische creates heirloom quality toys, décor, clothing, and accessories. Her pieces range from elegant to whimsical and every unique piece is individually designed with attention to detail and high-quality craftsmanship.
For the YarnBomber in Your Life.
Yards of Wool from Lady Dye Fiber Arts ($30)
Diane Ivey is an artist, knitwear designer, and nonprofit consultant in the Greater Boston area who founded this eco-friendly fiber arts business to create vibrant and colorful yarns and accessories. Her hand-painted yarns fuse inspirations from art, both modern and contemporary, and urban/hip-hop culture, resulting in truly unique knit products.
For Your Sister, Who Needs a Bling Update
Earrings from Glamourpuss ($19)
Lisa O’Neill’s company creates handcrafted jewelry designed exclusively from aged brass charms, lucite beads, and vintage chunky chain components. Glamourpuss Creations redesigns each vintage piece, making sure to pay close attention to color, texture, and form to instill a modern life into these classic vintage elements.
For the Fella Way into Twee Wildlife. You Know the One.
Nightlight from Happy Owl Glassworks ($42)
Tracy Bull produces utilitarian glasswork with a naturalist feel, drawing inspiration from birds, trees, and simple curiosities to create pieces that are both whimsical and functional, bringing light to any room.
For the Sensibly Adventurous
Piercing Spray from Stingray Body Art ($11.95)
Every family, circle of friends, and convent has that one member that just can’t get enough metal, and I’m not talking about the musical genre. We all know and love a piercing junkie, and what better way to show them that we care than with the polite suggestion of proper maintenance? Good for a lifetime, this sea-salt saline disinfectant will prevent the dreaded crusty monstrosity that piercings often transform into when not properly loved.
[1 Harvard Ave., Allston. @StingrayBodyArt. stingraybodyart.com]
For the Person Who Has Everything Except a Customized Toilet Seat
Toilet Seat Cover by Toiluxe ($79.99)
Stephanie Ziobro brings new meaning to functional art by creating an eclectic collection of toilet seats. Each seat is hand-painted and cured with an acrylic sealer to prevent water damage and, though seat-mounting hardware is included, each piece is beautiful enough to be mounted just as fittingly on your wall.
For the Socially Conscious Clotheshorse
T-shirt from An Li Studio ($28)
Cambridge-based artist An Li Liu creates fun and lighthearted hand-printed garments on both organic and conventional cotton. Using the highest quality water-based inks, all her products are non-toxic and solvent-free. Each garment is made with care and attention, right down to the label Liu personally sews inside each one.