Holiday shopping

November 30th, 2009

Holiday shopping

This is the time of year when things get pretty busy around here. There’s a whole lot of folding and packing and shipping. In the midst of all this, we bounce ideas for holiday gifts off one another, because there’s inevitably that one person on your list for whom you have nothing.

In the spirit of the season, we thought we’d share our favorite holiday gift ideas. Of course, the perfect gift would be a product from Wire & Twine, but we declare these other suggestions a close second!

Tom's Gift Ideas

Tom’s picks from left to right: Mini Orange App, booty from the Pirate Store, 1 hour of art, Buddha Machine, Vogues Bacon Chocolate


1. Orange Micro Crush Amp
Granted, you’ll never get the full roar of a full size Orange amp, but maybe all you need is just a little sound to rock out. This tiny battery powered amp sounds pretty good for a mini and has a built in guitar tuner to boot. A lot of fun for a low price.

2. Booty from The Pirate Store / 826 Valencia
Started by Dave Eggers and Ninive Calegari in 2002, 826 Valencia sells pirate themed goods to help fund writing workshops and other educational adventures in their community. There are now more chapters in others cities with themes such as superheroes and robots.

3. One Hour of Art from Jason Polan
Jason Polan is awesome. At the beginning of 2005 he sketched every piece of art at the NY MOMA and landed a job. As part of his shop, he offers one hour of art. Whatever he comes up with in one hour is yours, and he’s open to your suggestions and ideas. Perfect for the person who has everything (except Jason Polan art).

4. FM3 Buddha Machine
Om. Om. The concept is simple, the execution is brilliant. Housed inside a small handheld box are nine looping drones that range from 2 to 42 seconds. The same drone plays until you switch to the next drone. Each unit has it’s own built in speaker and a headphone jack. It’s the zen answer to the iPod.

5. Vosges Bacon Chocolate
It sounds wrong, but, man, is it right! Katrina Markoff’s obsession with flavor led to this unexpected treat. Strangely delicious.

Wendy's Gift Ideas

Wendy’s picks from left to right: Playmobil, The Self-Sufficent Life and How to Live It, Ribbon from Retrosaria, Mostly True Collected Stories & Drawings, The World’s Smallest Postal Service


1. Playmobil
You might think this is just for kids, but I would respectfully disagree and then proudly show you my ridiculously large collection. My daughter brought the dentist set as a gift to her first dental appointment, which is now proudly displayed for all their patients. Give a tiny office to someone to display in their cubicle, or a classroom to your favorite teacher. One year we interchanged parts from several different characters, and created Chris Glass in Playmobil. I suppose the kids might enjoy it, too…

2. The Self-Sufficent Life and How to Live It
Whether you’re just thinking about growing tomatoes on your patio or going completely off the grid, this book is the place to start. With dreamy illustrations and  thoughtful planning, this is one inspiring book.

3. Ribbon from Retrosaria
If you’ve got a crafty person on your list, consider purchasing a few yards of spectacular ribbon from Rosa Pomar. The Little Red Riding Hood ribbon makes me smile each time I see it. Although she’s based in Portugal, she’ll ship nearly anywhere.

4. Mostly True Collected Stories & Drawings
I stumbled upon this book many years, and immediately purchased the rest of the collection. Brian Andreas writes thoughts and observations about life, both humorous and poignant. He can pack more into one sentence than most of my aimless rambling.

5. The World’s Smallest Postal Service (via Junior Society)
One of those gifts for the person who has everything. Write a note of adoration, a poem, or tell a short story. Postmaster Lea Redmond will transcribe into tiny form, and send you on your way with a tiny magnifying glass.

Chris' Gift Ideas

Chris’ picks from left to right: New Super Mario Bros Wii, Mobilosity mobile, Souldier custom camera strap, New Moon soundtrack (for reals), Duluth Trading Co Suspenders


1. New Super Mario Bros. Wii
A modern version of the game that made me fall in love with pixels. And though this update doesn’t pack a lot of innovation, the co-op mode with up to 4 players elevates this game to new levels of awesomeness. If someone already has the game, ask to see if they have 4 controllers. If not, a gift opportunity still exists.

2. Mobilosity Mobile
Every time I look in the corner of my apartment and see this fine handmade mobile, I feel unbridled joy.

3. Souldier Custom Camera Strap
When I wear my deluxe camera strap with owls in oranges, browns and gold, I get compliments. They also make belts and guitar straps. Though the site is a little difficult to navigate, the products are well worth the challenge. (or visit a retail location)

4. The New Moon Soundtrack
Seriously. This is my favorite album this season. The trick to make it even better? Replace the shoddy, over-Photoshopped album art with some of your own creation. Then enjoy the soundtrack that packs all the emo alt-pop punch of an old John Hughes film.

5. Duluth Trading Co. Suspenders
Surely you have a friend that’s constantly tugging at their waistband. Get them some suspenders.

Gift's for Kids

Kid stuff from left to right: Magna-Tiles, Maisy Pop-up Book, LED Color Wand, digital camera, Scholastic Classics


1. Magna-Tiles
These magnetic shapes click together into endless configurations, and are nearly impossible to put down. When we have guests, we often find older kids and grown-ups playing with them just as much as the kids.

2. Maisy’s Pop-Up Playhouse
This book opens up into a three-dimensional paper house where Maisy the mouse can go about her day. Since it conveniently folds back into the book, this is a fantastic item for those who are traveling or limited on space.

3. LED Glo-Stick
Hours of fun can come at the low price of $1.99! Our kids have spent hours with this toy. In the daylight. In a dark room. Running through the yard after dark. It’s the perfect stocking stuffer.

4. A digital camera
We’re giving this one to our six-year-old this year after she has continually borrowed ours. It’s a fantastic tool to enable self-expression and creativity, and she’s even beginning her first stop-animation films. Although many cameras will do, we settled on this one which is reasonably priced, shoots both stills and video, is touted as being extremely rugged, and can even go under water.

5. Scholastic Treasury of 100 Storybook Classics
Few items in our parenting and uncle-ing careers have been as useful as this collection. All the childhood classics you remember, at your fingertips in DVD format. Perfect for a wide range of ages.

Chris Glass

November 30th, 2009   12:20 pm

If you’re curious about the deer head at the top of this post, you can find them at Cardboard Safari.

Chris Glass » best camera strap ever

December 18th, 2009   12:45 am

[…] everyone else) smile. It’s made by these folks called Souldier. (and yes, I mentioned it in our gift guide at the studio, but I never got around to putting this image in that post) Tagged: awesome, camera […]

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.