eucalyptus holiday wreath

Holiday Gift Ideas for Loved Ones.

I have to confess that last year, I waited a little too long to order my holiday gifts (very unlike me!) and I vowed not to let that happen this go around, especially in light of COVID, which continues to interrupt shipping times and occasionally spur frenzy-buying. We are now less than 70 days away from Christmas, so I’m making my list, checking it twice, etc. Below, my top picks for gifts for loved ones this fall, mostly oriented towards women. (There will be a dedicated men’s post later.) Per usual, I favor gifts that are under $100 and many have been thoroughly vetted by yours truly…!

+Hedley & Bennett Apron. This apron gets incredibly high reviews and would be a luxurious and appreciated upgrade for a discerning home cook. Alternately, this printed one from La Double J would be the most delicious surprise for a fashion-oriented home cook. (I also love the copywriting on the description: “You’ll look so good no one will care if you can cook!” Ha!)

+The HHH Caroline Nap Dress. I am obsessed with this confection. I own several HHH nap dresses in different styles, but nothing tops the Caroline. I love to slip it on after a shower or in the pocket of time between the children’s bedtime and my own. It is so comfortable and so elegant and I would love to bestow one on a sister or close friend.

+The Revlon One-Step. Fantastic gift for any lady in your life with longer-than-shoulder-length hair. I’ve written far too much about this already but it is truly a life-changing contraption and I can’t/won’t stop evangelizing about it. Add on: Davines Oi hair milk. This combination of products has given me extra pep in my step for the entirety of 2020.

+Bala Wrist Weights. For your home exercise enthusiast — these always sell out. Add-ons: an Outdoor Voices LS tee or Lululemon LS tee (love and use both heavily).

+Artis Brush. One of my favorite beauty investments this year. I use this daily and it comes in great packaging that any cosmetics-lover will enjoy. (Sometimes, giving cosmetics feels so underwhelming because of the packaging — but these come in a big, sturdy box that will be fun to wrap and open.)

+Gucci Logo Socks. A bit above budget, but so extra and unexpected for the fashion plate in your family who has a taste for the finer things.

+Vita Grace pearl-edge cardigan. For the chic pea who walks the line between uptown and downtown fashion sensibilities.

+Prime Cut shearling pouch (also love this neutral one). A few Christmases ago, a girlfriend of mine gave me a gray sherpa pouch almost identical to this and I have used it every winter since as a fun alternative for nights out. Highly on-trend right now. If the texture isn’t your vibe, this python MZ Wallace pouch/clutch would make an excellent alternative.

+Cashmere slippers. Perfect for literally any woman in your life. Who wouldn’t want to float around her home on cashmere pillows?

+Champagne coupes. These are an absolutely gorgeous, hand-blown whimsy of a gift made by a woman-owned business!

+Casetify iPhone Sling. I have seen these worn with aplomb by both downtown Manhattan moms living a hands-free life with small children and Vogue editors. You can personalize the case and wear the phone almost like a purse. So cool.

+Standing wireless iPhone charger. We also have a few of the flat charging pads throughout our apartment, but I love this for my bedside. Ultimate in luxury/laziness and a great tech contraption for that brother-in-law who always stumps you from a gift-giving standpoint…

+A Billie Razor Subscription. The kind of thing you can only give to a sister or very close female friend but I am so in love with this subscription service — one less thing to worry about! And so cute and well-packaged! Cheaper than the corner pharmacy! Trust me when I say that any woman will appreciate this unexpected and indulgent gift.

+Roop Furoshiki Bag (<<just restocked, run! Available in a few other colors, too.) This is one of my favorite frivolous purchases of 2020. Just the happiest little satin handbag, handmade by a female entrepreneur, and it gives me major The Row vibes for under $100. Would be so fun for a fellow fashion-loving friend or sister!

+A Teddy Liner Jacket. Who doesn’t love a cozy jacket in a modern shape (and great color) like this for winter?

+La Double J Dessert Plates. Perfection for the discerning doyenne of interiors — this brand is *chef’s kiss.*

+Melamine Dinnerware Set. Amazing gift for a young family with a backyard dining area — could be use for al fresco dinner or simply to stave off shattering plates with smaller children. LOVE the design!

+Colugo Baby Carrier. For a mom friend. Such a fun option in the gingham print! We still loved our Baby Bjorn Mini more than any baby carrier we’ve ever used but the Colugo has been a good fit for Hill now that he’s outgrown the mini — and this is the kind of thing you don’t think of when you have a newborn (i.e., that you might soon need to upgrade to a bigger size).

+Sophie Bille Brahe Jewelry Box. A gorgeous way to stow meaningful pieces of jewelry. Could also be a super-extravagant add-on to a pair of inexpensive statement earrings or an everyday set.

+Hunt Slonem Bunnies Dish. Love this trinket tray featuring Slonem’s now-iconic bunny! Could be thoughtful for a recently-engaged friend as a ring dish of sorts.

+Waffleknit Joggers and Matching Crewneck. Yes pls.

+Amanda Lindroth Placemats. Gorgeous gift for a friend who enjoys a pretty tabletop.

+Catbird Key Charm. I love the itty bitty dimensions of this precious charm, which can be engraved with something meaningful for a roommate, sibling, or spouse — perhaps your shared address number, or a favorite vacation destination, or the zip code of your home city together. Or maybe just initials! So precious. (They carry a few other very sweet charms here.)

+Lake Pajamas. I know that pajamas might sound boring at first brush but these are deliciously soft and come in the loveliest colors (and, if you are reading this in the lead up to Black Friday / Cyber Week, on rare sale!) Plus, there is nothing nicer than receiving a splurge-y set of jammies. The maternity styles are a great option for new/expecting mamas!

Big Ticket Items.

In case you’re looking to splurge on someone this year, a few pricier items that would be extravagant surprises:

+Bearaby Weighted Blanket. Extremely well-reviewed, including by both my sister and brother-in-law who cannot stop raving about it. (Also like the knit look!)

+Jennifer Zeuner Cross Necklace. A meaningful gift for a woman of faith.

+Boll & Branch Waffle Bed Blanket. (I may or may not have bought this for Mr. Magpie as a gift this year — he has been complaining about our quilted coverlet for the better part of a year and this gets RAVE reviews.). I have also been totally blown away by the quality of B&B sheets — the softest we’ve ever owned. Note that you can score anything for 20% off through the end of October with code 20MACKENZIE (thanks to my girl Mackenzie for it!)

+Rue de Verneuil Houndstooth Tote. I’m obsessed with this bag. That is all. (Also comes in a smaller size.)

+Vanina Handbag. This is like jewelry in bag form. IN LOVE.

+Sophie Bille Brahe Pearl Earrings. I’m swooning over these. These are wear-everyday-and-wear-forever earrings.

Smaller Gifts ($35 and Under).

In case you have a White Elephant situation, or a price limit in your family, or are looking for smaller gifts for colleagues and acquaintances…

GORGEOUS FACE MASK

BROTHER VELLIES TUBE SOCKS

MONOGRAM NOTEPAD (OR FROM THE MOTHER OF…NOTEPAD IF A MOM!)

THESE ARE THE BEST PUZZLES

CARAN D’ACHE PEN OR PENCIL (THESE COME BEAUTIFULLY PACKAGED IN CASES THAT ARE FUN TO OPEN / OFFER A DRAMATIC PRESENTATION)

PEOPLE LOSE THEIR MINDS OVER THE LOVESCRUB BODY EXFOLIATOR

BILLIE WIPES — I DON’T KNOW IF YOU CAN ORDER THESE A LA CARTE (IT SEEMS ONLY AVAILABLE THROUGH SUBSCRIPTION?!) BUT IF I COULD, I WOULD BUY THESE FOR EVERY WOMAN IN MY LIFE

PERSONALIZED LAVENDER SACHET (SO SWEET TO WRAP UP IN CELLOPHANE WITH A BIG VELVET BOW)

PERSONALIZED BOOK PLATES FOR A BOOK LOVER (ALSO LOVE THESE)

PERSONALIZED CANVAS POUCH (SHIPPING IS PRICY GIVEN THAT IT’S MADE OVERSEAS, BUT IF YOU BOUGHT ONE FOR ALL YOUR GIRLFRIENDS/SISTERS AND SHIPPED TOGETHER…)

COOKBOOK STAND (CANNOT BELIEVE THE PRICE — WE OWN THIS EXACT STYLE AND IT LOOKS FAR MORE EXPENSIVE) ALONG WITH A FAVORITE COOKBOOK

I will be coming out with more gift guides — one more focused on men (though several items above would work for either gender!) and several for children.

Let me know if you’re in the market for something specific — I love personal shopping for you! (Email me at jennifer@thefashionmagpie.com).

P.S. More first hints of holiday.

P.P.S. Recent Amazon finds.

P.P.P.S. Wedding guest dresses and musings on watching my littlest sister tie the knot over Zoom.

24 Comments

  1. Thanks for all the ideas! I second Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat as a great cookbook and gift. Got it for my husband right when it came out, and you have me considering getting it for my mom this year 🙂

    Re: razors, for those looking to go plastic-free (or working toward it, like me) the Leaf Razor is worth it! It’s an old fashioned razor that comes with blades you change out, every couple months or so (depending on use). I love mine! One of my favorite purchases from the year and I have considered gifting for my sisters, especially my sister who is very into the environment.

    On a separate note, would love to see a consumable gift guide: spices, candles, soaps, foods. I have so many friends who don’t want clutter (and I get it) so was thinking of giving mostly consumables this year 🙂

    Thank you !!

    1. Joyce, thanks for the Leaf Razor rec! I have been debating getting a safety razor and am intrigued by your positive review — it helps to hear from someone who’s tried it!

      Also, I think a “consumables” gift guide would be super useful!

      xx

    2. You’re welcome, MK! Thanks for giving me the term I should have used “safety razor”! Would have saved me some words, haha. I will say that I did cut my knee the first time I used it but that was probably a personal issue (haha) and I actually enjoy that it encourages me to slow down 🙂 A friend who has a plastic-free shower (impressive!) recommended it to me. I still use shampoo & conditioner bottles but hoping to switch to bars of those soon, if anyone has any recs, I’m all ears!

    3. @Lauren and Joyce — YES! Great idea. Will include gifts along these lines in an upcoming post.

      xx

    4. @Joyce – answering these comments out of order but YES, great idea. Will put some thought into this!!

      xx

  2. Oh and if I may add one other thing, in the same vein as the casetify phone sling — Dagne Dover has a phone sling that is also like a mini purse to fit small items (COVID essentials!) – recommended by Hitha Palepu in her IG a while back. I was on the waiting list for a long time, and it came out again a couple of days ago and the black one sold out the same day! There are other colors though: I ordered the “dune” shade. It is such a practical gift!

    https://www.dagnedover.com/collections/mara-phone-sling

    I’m so tempted by so many of the items on this post! I have to remind myself that I should be shopping for other people, haha!

    1. Ooh – thanks for that tip, Mia! Had not even heard about the Dagne Dover sling but I know people LOVE that brand. Thanks!! xx

  3. Jen, your timing is impeccable. I have been thinking about gift shopping too! Plus there are so. many. sales going on right now…

    Oooh thanks for the intel on the Boll & Branch waffle blanket! I had been looking for exactly that — well not as a present but for our home. Have you experienced any pilling?

    100% yes to the Luv Scrub. I use mine frequently and have given it to a few of my friends, who have texted me more than once to say how much they love them! This is one thing I’d love to gift to all the women in my life 😉

    As for other gift ideas, I really like gifting premium olive oil to those who I think would appreciate it. People seem to rave over Brightland but I was honestly underwhelmed (although the plastic free packaging/box configuration was brilliant). In fairness though I only tried one kind so maybe I have to try one another variety. However, my tried and true EVOO is Olio Nuovo from The Olive Press in Sonoma. It is so delicious, definitely a boldly flavored olive oil if you’re into that. I just use it in raw preparations or for dipping bread into, to really appreciate the flavor. It’s a limited edition they release this time of year and I buy several every year (a couple of bottles for ourselves and a few as gifts). While it is so special, it’s definitely not one to store for a long time; best enjoyed while fresh, especially once the bottle is opened. They harvest it in October and sell the same year’s harvest, so once it’s gone, it’s gone till the following year. I was actually wondering if it would still come out this year as we had an awful wildfire season, but they do have it! It is THE best US-produced olive oil I’ve had. I know you and Mr. Magpie love to cook/love fine food in general (and I think many readers do as well) so I thought I’d share it here!

    https://theolivepress.com/shop/olive-oil/olio-nuovo/product-1?utm_source=Main+List+2020&utm_campaign=10b30ec534-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2017_02_09_COPY_04&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_d2dbbfcf0e-10b30ec534-149023804

    1. Ooh thank you SO much for the olive oil rec! We love olive oil. We buy almost exclusively from Eataly here in NY because they import incredible quality oil from Taggiasca olives (according to Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat, exceptionally good olives for oil) but I’m always game to try something new 🙂 Sounds like a really special gift for Mr. Magpie. Merci!

      We haven’t yet tried the B&B waffle blanket but I’ve heard fantastic things!

      I also want everything on this list…

      xx

    2. Oh I’m intrigued by that EVOO from Taggiasca olives…I tend to favor the oil from Arbequina olives (which I believe is Spanish in origin but it grows abundantly here in CA) but like you I trust Samin Nosrat’s recommendations!

      Some friends of ours once generously gifted us a few bottles of Bagatto olive oil from this winery Sovestro in Poggio in San Gimignano that was absolutely delicious. I still dream about it…

      I’m jealous about your easy access to Eataly! I should browse their website more often — thanks for the reminder!

    3. What a fantastic gift! This is really a great idea to give to friends who love cooking in my network! xx

  4. Ok, I am obsessed with that phone case. That would most definitely come in handy chasing my little around the playground.

  5. So much goodness here! That cross necklace, the book plates, the “from the mom of…” notepad! It is such a good point to start gift shopping early this year.

    I’ve also been meaning to tell you that I recently ordered a HHH nap dress, and I’m also OBSESSED!

  6. Lovely gift guide! So many good ideas — I’m going to bookmark a few for my mother-in-law and a couple of other female relatives. I’m also trying to get a jump on Christmas shopping this year … it’s stressing me out a bit because we have so little room for storing gifts, but I’m starting to panic a little that COVID-19 will make shopping later in Nov/Dec really difficult. Eeee!

    Side note: I love Sophie Bille Brahe’s jewelry so much. SO MUCH!

    Also, those Gap waffle joggers are so tempting for myself … ha. I have to restrain myself from shopping for myself at this time of year!

    xx

    1. Yay! So glad you found some winners. Agree with you on shopping early this year for COVID-related reasons!

      xx

  7. Nell Diamond recently posted on her IG stories that plaid and tartan nap dresses come out next week 🙂 . I’m very excited to purchase one!

    Estelle Colored Glassware is beyond beautiful. I coordinated a retirement gift for a coworker recently and purchased a couple sets of the stemmed wine glasses for her. She was thrilled! And thanks to many, many work vcons, I knew what colors would go well with her home décor.

    1. OOOOHHH I am so down for the tartan nap dresses. I bought one last winter and I’ve already been wearing it close to nightly this fall. Need a backup. The material from last year is deliciously soft — kind of like a brushed cotton or something? Not crisp and poplin-y, but soft, almost flannel-like, without the heft. It is SO good. Hoping they bring that back.

      Yay for the Estelle glassware! So fun and so gorgeous. What a thoughtful gift for your colleague.

      xx

    2. So excited for a tartan nap dress! The one I have is a little bit too light, so I’m excited! Thanks for the info!

    3. @April and @Amy — YAY! I trust you will not be disappointed. Everything Nell touches is gold!

      xx

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