Creative Holiday Gift Guide

Posted by Paladin on December 18, 2013

If you’re anything like us, you feel at least a teensy bit of stress when it comes to selecting just the right gift for that special co-worker. When you work in a creative environment, the pressure to come up with an imaginative gift that says just as much about your own gifting genius as it does your thoughtfulness can be downright exasperating!

We put in a little research time and found some creative and fun colleague-appropriate, last-minute (mostly) holiday gifts that are sure to please:

Alfred’s Teach Yourself to Play Ukulele, Complete Starter Pack
$39.99 at
Perfect for the person whose New Year’s resolution is to learn to play the ukulele (or any musical instrument, for that matter)! This all-in-one starter kit includes a ukulele along with an instructional DVD and manual to get the recipient ramped up and playing “Aloha ‘Oe” in no time.

Gift Book – Humans of New York
Hardcover, $18.35 at Barnes and Noble
Your copywriter/blogger/photographer friends and colleagues (or really, anyone with a heart) will appreciate this uplifting collection of stories and photographs and New York Times #1 Bestseller, Humans of New York. Photographer Brandon Stanton set out to capture the stories of New Yorkers and chronicled them in his blog, which inspired the book. Check it out, you’ll be glad you did!

Typographic Cult Film Quotes
Pete Ware, freelance designer of 17th and Oak, designs and prints to order this Yoda typography print, as well as others inspired by the likes of Darth Vader, Batman, Superman, Walter White, Ron Burgundy and other film favorites. Since this gift is printed to order, it may not arrive in time for Christmas, so order quickly!

VT PenPad Graphic Pen Tablet
The VT PenPad Graphic Pen Tablet turns a Mac, PC and Netbook into a tablet. Draw, edit, mark up digital documents, annotate and personalize presentations, write notes, draw diagrams and navigate applications with speed, accuracy and comfort. It’s got excellent reviews from Amazon customers, and the price is right! We found this recommendation thanks to ArtopiaMagazine’s excellent holiday gift guide, by the way.

Gift Book – Graphic: Inside the Sketch Books of the World’s Great Graphic Designers
Paperback, $38.96 at
Some of the world’s most respected illustrators and graphic designers opened up their sketchbooks to authors Steven Heller and Lita Talarico to provide a rare look at their creative process. Graphic: Inside the Sketch Books of the World’s Great Graphic Designers is sure to inspire any designer!

Crocheted Headphones
Handmade by artist Traci Madeiros-Bagan with a cool vintage-inspired look, these crocheted headphones make the perfect gear for cozying up into a creative cocoon. We must mention that we found them via, a great resource for finding cool and unusual gift ideas.

USB Mixed Tape
$18.49 at
If you have a boss or co-worker who says things like, “Back in the day…” or “Remember that Cheap Trick song?” there’s a good chance that he or she will appreciate this thoughtful gift idea. Curate a customized USB Mixed Tape and personalize the cardboard cover made to look like an 80’s cassette tape.

Electronic Goldfish in a Bowl
$14.95 at
Know someone who just can’t seem to handle the proper care and feeding of a pet goldfish? Someone who is not yet prepared for the responsibility of caring for another living being, but is eager to learn? Then the Electronic Goldfish in a Bowl is an ideal solution. Give your friend the companionship of a pet goldfish without the maintenance. When Goldie starts to look lethargic, just change the batteries, and she’ll swim like a young guppy again!

iTunes Gift Card
Any denomination
When all else fails and you’re tapped out on funds or you’ve waited until the last possible moment, just throw in the towel and pick up an iTunes gift card. Who wouldn’t enjoy the gift of music or the coolest new app? Simply write a thoughtful note to the lucky recipient and tell them you support their resolution to become more productive, begin a New Year’s a fitness regimen, or start reading an art magazine. Insert gift card, and you’re good to go!

What’s the most creative gift you’ve given or received? Share your thoughts in the comments, and Happy Holidays!

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