2020 Holiday Gift Guide: 10 Affordable Presents from Local Shops and Businesses
Even if you aren’t on campus this semester, you can still shop like you were
A lot of things have changed in 2020, but there’s one thing that doesn’t change: the desire to give rad gifts to the people you love during the holiday season. However, if your brain’s a little fried from, you know, everything, and you don’t know where to begin, we’re here to help. All week, BU Today is providing affordable ideas for what to get everyone on your list, from the hardest-to-please to the person who’s happy with anything.
We kicked off our series Monday with gifts that will make most any living space look good, whether it’s a dorm room, apartment, or house in the suburbs. Tuesday, it was gifts that entertain. Today, it’s gifts that support local shops. On Thursday, we’ll have gifts that will make the folks on your list look good, and Friday, gifts that give back.
If you’ve got a jokester on your list, these ICA-exclusive cork coasters featuring Boston manhole covers are for them ($32 for a set of four). But if they’re a little too, uh, sewer-y for your taste, try the table tile coasters ($25 for a set of six), which create fun 3-D illusions when combined. And your gift will help support the ICA at a time when arts institutions everywhere are struggling.
Did your parents love the coffee shop you took them to during Family & Friends Weekend last year? Bring back happy memories of the visit with a bag of coffee from that shop. If it was Pavement, grab them a bag of the Winter Solstice blend ($17), and if it was Jaho, get them a bag of the Scarlet Espresso ($16). And if it was somewhere else—well, you can figure it out.
York Athletics’ sneakers may be out of the price range for our gift guide, but one thing on the site’s list isn’t: the sleek hat that Olympic gymnast, activist, Massachusetts native, and all-around badass Aly Raisman designed for the Boston brand. Featuring the words “Worth the Fight,” a reference to the campaign Raisman and York Athletics launched last year to inspire individuals to lead their best lives, the black baseball cap ($38) is a welcome addition to anyone’s athleisure wardrobe.
Treat someone on your list to a jar of decadent body butter from this Charlestown-based company ($29). Made from shea butter and a blend of argan, sunflower, and jojoba oils, these 100 percent organic butters are crazy nourishing and more than ready to take on dry winter skin.
This Beacon Hill shop might be best known for its custom letterpress invitations, but it also carries a wide selection of fun ready-made paper products. Keep your present on-brand for 2020 with this sweatpants-themed to-do-list ($8), which has two columns for tasks: pants required and pants optional. Pair it with a trio of metallic markers ($14) and you’re all set.
We know you’ve been eyeing one of campus-favorite Tatte’s “Brunch” crewnecks ($35) for yourself—so why not get two and gift one to your favorite brunch buddy so you can match? You might be eating your shakshuka over Zoom these days, but the brunch bond remains.
Kimberly Huestis makes gorgeous jewelry out of—you guessed it—porcelain and stone from her Somerville workshop. Snag a pair of her 22-karat-gold-dipped ceramic studs (starting at $56) for the minimalist on your list; they’re simple but pretty and ideal for daily wear.
Got a vinyl collector in your life? Help them keep their collection in tip-top shape with Woburn-based U-Turn’s antistatic record brush ($15), which gets rid of debris to ensure smooth, crackle-free playback. Add a hard-to-find record from Brookline Village’s Village Vinyl & Hi Fi in the mix and you’re good to go.
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