The holidays are traditionally a time of cheer and an exercise in the magnanimity of human spirit, but they can also be one long season of stress. But gift giving doesn't have to turn you into one big ball of resentment. Not sure what to get that one designer friend or artist family member? Looking for well crafted, thoughtful gifts? That's what this gift guide is for!
And to add that cherry on top, all items are handcrafted by local artists and makers who reside in the Bay Area!
Cup by Carole Neilson $34
With its smoky and earthen tones, this 16 oz cup is perfect for morning coffee on cold, winter mornings. Each porcelain cup is unique in form and color, with a matte texture that is soft to the touch. Carole Neilson studied ceramics at the Academy of Art in Mol in Belgium, allowing her to skillfully throw each cup on the potter's wheel and sculpt light but durable forms. Currently based in San Francisco, Carole originally hails from Alsace of Northern France, a region traditionally known for its rural pottery.
Vase by Melanie Abrantes Designs $110
Turned on a lathe and hand finished with mineral oil and beeswax, this buttery walnut vase takes modern craft to the next level. Simply put a sprig of leaves into the glass vial inside the vase to spruce up any room. Founder Melanie Abrantes strives to create eco-friendly and sustainable home goods that are equally beautiful and functional. This vase was turned from a solid piece of walnut hardwood, which means it's a handcrafted, heirloom object you'll want to hold onto!
Necklace by Olivia Shih $225
This black and gold necklace from the Raw Collection finds inspiration in concrete sidewalks and urban textures. Designed for the modern woman who speaks her mind and knows what she wants, this necklace speaks volumes, whether you're presenting a report at an all-hands meeting or wearing a slinky dress for night out with friends. Not sure if the necklace length is the right fit? Contact me at email@example.com to order a custom length chain!
Wallet by ODSY workshop $60
This cleverly constructed wallet is inspired by San Francisco's Lombard Street, famous for its sharp turns on a steep hill. Made with English bridle leather from Pennsylvania, each wallet is hand stitched with waxed thread and contains three card slots and one pocket in the center. ODSY workshop, which takes its name from the word odyssey, was founded by husband and wife team, Soojin and Yina. The couple not only create unique leatherwork, but also repair shoes in their Outer Sunset workshop!
Ring by Olivia Shih $95
A favorite among all genders, this Raw Ring was first carved in wax then cast with molten metal. If small, shiny jewelry just isn't doing it for you, this ring definitely packs more oomph! Each ring is finished and polished in my studio, which means that every ring will look slightly different. This ring is also available in sterling silver and oxidized silver and can be custom made in vermeil or gold.
Mini bowl by Zena Segre $35
Still looking for the perfect ring dish? Keep your stacking rings safe in this white and periwinkle bowl, made by hand and with great care. Each bowl is made with porcelain, which is a strong and durable material. Since this bowl is food safe and dishwasher/microwave safe, you can also use it to brighten your meals with a dash of color! Artist Zena Segre studied at the California College of the Arts in Oakland, where she honed her eye for color and dedication to craftsmanship.
Dessert bowl by MMCLAY $38
This lovely cream colored dessert bowl is overflowing with wabi sabi qualities. The nuanced variations in the glaze will complement any dessert, from ice cream topped with strawberries to a fresh green salad! Made by artist and designer Mary Mar Keenan, this bowl has a textured bottom that's delightful to hold. If you think this bowl looks familiar, it's probably because many popular restaurants in California use MMCLAY tableware!
Clogs by Bryr $268
Bryr clogs are a dream come true for shorties like me! Made-to-order in the Dogpatch district, each clog is made with supple leathers sourced from US tanneries and European solid wood. Bryr believes in slow fashion and making things that last, so a pair of clogs will take at least a week to make. Isobel Schofield, founder of Bryr, worked 10 years in the fashion industry but quit her job as a design director to embark on a "creative walk-about."
Bookends by Hannah Beatrice Quinn $52
Made from scrap steel and architectural beams, these bookends are a design nerd's dream! Angle iron, square tubing, rectangular tubing, and I-beams are powder coated and lined with cork pads to prevent slippage. Reminiscent of grade-school letter practices or building blocks, these bookends also work as doorstops or mini sculptures. Hannah Beatrice Quinn, also an alum of the California College of the Arts, incorporates the idea of "play" into all of her work, transforming everyday objects into playful but functional art.
Now that we're at the end of the gift guide, have you decided on a gift yet? If you're having a hard time deciding, give yourself a few days to mull it over. Just don't forget, if you have your eye on a piece of jewelry by Olivia Shih, place an order by December 10th, so that your gift will arrive on time!