Even the best gift-givers among us get stumped by a few people on their list each year. That friend, family member or colleague who always says they don’t need or want anything — because they truly do have everything.
A good rule of thumb: The perfect present for them is something fun that they’d never think to buy for themselves. If you’re wondering where to start, we’re on it. We’ve rounded up gift ideas that are quirky, unexpected, and will put a smile on their face. (And we’re willing to bet that they don’t already own ’em.)
Want more holiday gifting ideas? Check out The Sleigh List — our guide to the perfect gifts for everyone on your A-list.
These absorbent microfiber kitchen towels are both funny and functional. Choose from sayings like ”I like big bundts and I cannot lie,” “Don’t go bacon my heart,” or “Let’s give them something to taco ‘bout.” Ideal for the home chef who loves mixing a little humor in with their ingredients. ($11.95+, Do Take It Personally on Etsy)
Because ICYMI recycling is cool. And so are socks from one of our fave eco-friendly brands. These ones are made from recycled water bottles and have a compressive stitch that'll help your pal's circulation. Plus they can also help get rid of swelling. Do good, feel good, look good. The magic trifecta, coming right up. ($10, Girlfriend Collective)
For all those #selfcare selfies they post. This uber-plush one from Brooklinen marries aesthetics (think: fun colors) with comfort (think: adjustable tie waist and pockets). It's made from 100% Turkish cotton, has an oversized fit, and is machine washable too for easy care. So all they'll need now is a face mask and some 'me time.' ($98, Brooklinen)
If quarantining taught us anything, it’s that people really love to unwind with a good ol’ jigsaw puzzle. This one features an illustration of people and pets by UK artist Jo Taylor and measures 18 by 24 inches when completed. The 800 pieces come in a reusable glass jar with a cork stopper, aka it’s basically two gifts in one. ($49, Jiggy)
This made-to-order book features 70+ pages of custom horoscope readings and interpretations based on their birth chart. They can learn about their sun and moon signs as well as which celebs share a similar reading. You’ll just need to find a way to get their birthday deets without spoiling the surprise. Or consider the Birthdate Candle ($38), which consults the stars for a fragrance specific to their birthday. Just input the day, and the scent and label will be fully customized. ($115, Birthdate Co.)
Every pet owner wonders what their dog or cat would say if they could talk. This funny book tells kids what those barks and meows might mean. You can personalize the book with their child’s name and their pet’s name — and the rest of the book writes itself. Trust us, they’ll ruff this. And for more great holiday gifts from Uncommon Goods, shop here. ($35, Uncommon Goods)
Say ‘welcome to paw-renthood’ with a membership to Pawp. Psst...that’s a digital clinic that includes unlimited, instant, and 24/7 access to licensed vets via text or video call. Perfect for Qs about nutrition, behavior or overall health and wellness. Plus a no-strings-attached $3K emergency fund in case the going gets ruff. The best part? Zero wait times. Aaaand your giftee can add up to six pets within a single household at no extra cost. Any breed. Any age. Any pre-existing conditions. Raise the woof. PS: Skimm’rs save big when they shop their gifting program. Take advantage before it’s dog-gone. ($99 for 6 months, Pawp)*
“I think I have too many sweaters,” said no one ever. This festive Old Navy one is sure to become a new staple. We love the classic neckline, slightly ballooned sleeves, and fair isle pattern. But genuinely can’t pick between the cream-pink-navy and navy-green-periwinkle color combos. Both pair well with jeans, leggings, or boxers...ya know, in case they’re embracing that hibernation life. Which, tbh, sounds amazing. Cozy vibes, here we come. ($44.99, Old Navy)*
If this lamp looks strikingly similar to an actual piece of bread...it’s because it is. It’s created by a Japanese artist who bakes real bread, then hollows it out, coats it with resin, and fills it with LED lights. It also comes in a croissant design, if that’s more their jam. Time to get bready for their fave gift yet. ($79, East Fork)
Lighters used to be butane or bust, but now there’s a tech-y, eco-friendly alternative. This one can plug it into an outlet and will give them 300 uses on one charge alone. It’s slim enough to easily toss in a pocket, and it comes in seven colors. Plus, it automatically turns off after 10 seconds of use. ($32+, Food52)
As beautiful as it is functional, this basket is made from vetiver grass that’s hand-woven and hand-dyed by local artisans in Ghana. It comes in three color options and attaches to their bike with leather and brass straps. So they can securely tote wine and cheese to a picnic or use it for everyday errands. Consider their ride upgraded. ($100, Goodee)
This journal includes prompts, artwork, and activities that will keep them mindful and allow them to take a break from their daily to-dos. They can write down their goals, get tips on how to better connect with those around them, and plan ways to make more time for themselves. There are even daily and weekly check-ins available. Joy = sparked. ($18, ban.do)
So they can create speakeasy-style cocktails without leaving the house. They’ll just need to fill the glass with their favorite drink, then place the white oak on top, add smoking chips to the mesh cup, apply the torch, and presto: Cool cocktail completed. Pssst...the kit is available with or without the torch. Either way, their at-home happy hour drinks will be smokin’. ($40+, Uncommon Goods)
These hilarious air fresheners come in a custom pack of three faces — either the same or three different ones. So you can gift them a pack of their whole family (or their fave celebrity crushes). Choose from surprising scents like bacon, coffee, and fruit salad, or go with more traditional ones like fresh linen and island breeze. ($24, Firebox)
Even if they’re a notorious plant killer, this foolproof kit will help them grow like a pro. The planter has a smart control panel that tells them when they need to add water or plant food — and automatically turns the LED grow light off and on. It comes with a seed kit so they can start with basil, parsley, dill, thyme, Thai basil, and mint. No green thumb necessary. ($79.99+, Amazon)
They may not be performing in school talent shows anymore, but adulting successfully in 2021 is definitely award-worthy. This silk ribbon has a gold foil design that lets them know how magical they are. And yes, they can still hang it on their wall. ($5.75, Yellow Owl Workshop)
All you have to do is send in a picture of their dog or cat and pick an outfit. There are 20 options, including a Renaissance royal, Sherlock Holmes, and a Star Wars Jedi. Choose from digital, canvas, or poster options. Totally pawesome. ($33.40+, Van Woof on Etsy)
This petite lamp shaped like a boba tea drink will be the perfect addition to their nightstand. It’s 4.5 inches tall, and ideal for using as a bedside lamp or bookshelf decoration. It works using three AAA batteries and can easily be wiped clean if it starts to collect dust. ($22, Urban Outfitters)
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Skimm'd by: Erica Cohen, Emmy Favilla
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