Gift Guide 2020
Here it is, finally! The Sweat Edit’s editors Holiday Gift Guide 2020 list. These are the awesome gift ideas I’ve dug up for everyone on my list that I always struggle to shop for.
You can check out my other gift guide here.
I’ve put so much thought into these items and I really wanted to provide you with a list of things I am actually buying as gifts this year. This is not just another fantasy gift guide.
There are several niche categories here, so if you have friends with calligraphy hobbies, are creative, or really into the woo-woo and you have no idea where to start with that…these are the items you are going to want to check out for them. There is no better gift than the really personalized, thoughtfully considered gift.
This list was inspired by the poor guy I heard asking for help at the local pen shop where I was buying some fountain pens as gifts. His girlfriend had asked for calligraphy items and he came in to get calligraphy pens and a notebook thinking it was a straightforward, simple enough purchase. Of course, it was anything but straight forward. The shop owner asked him ‘what kind of calligraphy does she do? There are thousands of different types.’ He no idea what to do and looked so defeated.
The Stationary Lover
fountain pens, calligraphy sets, cursive writing tools
Hand-lettering and copperplate calligraphy are HUGE this year. Everything from creating hand-lettering on Procreate on the iPad, to disciplined and precise Spencerian and Copperplate calligraphy using nibs and dip pens with ink. Fountain pens are also always popular with collectors. They are a slightly more practical way to incorporate handwriting into everyday life.
One thing I’ve realized is that after a year of digital living and online learning, a lot of kids are really struggling with cursive writing skills (which were already lacking for most I’m sure). This is especially apparent in grades that require note taking by hand. Fountain pens are a way easier way to write quickly as you don’t have to use much pressure to lay ink down. Because of the nibs reservoirs, the ink just flows through with natural pressure. The pen nibs glide across the page really easily.
pretty paint palettes, sketchbooks, pencils
My daughter and I can both spend hours upon hours browsing the local art supply stores. We just love it. This is such a highly underrated place to Christmas shop and it’s such a treasure trove of ideas.
If you have someone on your list who is creative, you need to shop here. Wether they are into hand lettering; cartooning; journaling; water-colour painting; or just stationary, this is the place to shop.
I think this pretty pearl metallic paint set is just perfect as a gift. The presentation is beautiful and it works equally well for a water color artist, a hand-letterer, or a scrapbooker.
These beautifully curated art supply stores have really struggled as a result of the pandemic and I would be crushed to see them go out of business. Sure, you can pick these items up off amazon or big box stores, but shop at these boutiques because the variety of product they cary and the expertise they provide is unmatched.
The Family Bubble
card games, board games, old classic games
There are many great games out now and they are such a great way to spend time with you family unplugged. I’m particularly fond of card type games like unstable unicorn where the game is different every time, and there is strategy and story telling built in. If you are bored of the usual monopoly or your kids don’t like those games, try something new!
These games will come in very handy this holiday for us since we are now on full lockdown again. Family gatherings are now banned and all festive events cancelled until January 8th. We are extremely sad that we can’t spend Christmas with family or do the holiday things we always do, but we are making the best of it and creating new traditions.
cozy throw blanket, a book series, home fragrance sets
This one is me this year! Hello making my home the coziest little sanctuary. Nothing better than a snuggly blanket and a good book. I picked up this Philippa Gregory series the other day for myself, and am gifting another set for someone else I know who also loves her writing. We both read her books back during the Tudor series and haven’t read her in years. I’m excited about these two books.
astrological planner, oracle cards, beautiful crystals
*side note. The little illustrated oracle cards on the bottom left here are drawn by a local artist who works as a graphic designer for lululemon. We’ve seen her art on many leggings and accessories, as well as store murals.
Tarot cards and oracle decks
I love tarot and oracle cards and have a few I’ve purchased over the years because I’ve loved the artist who created them. Check out the deck above created by a lululemon graphic designer! Tarot and Oracles are hugely popular right now and many graphic artists create decks as portfolio projects of their illustration. It’s really a great way to showcase an artists style. The traditional imagery is very evocative and inspiring and artists use the archetypal images as creative prompts which is why there is so much great art hiding in these decks. I display my favourites on my desk or my cork board.
Astrology planner and moon phase journals
Last year I picked up this really beautiful planner I saw in a local shop just because it caught my eye. It is PACKED full of astrology information. Most of which (99.9% of it) is right over my head. I can tell you I’m an Aries, but don’t ask me what a sun-sign is or moon rising… or whatever the jargon is. The Astrology section in magazines is a must read for me though. I have only a surface level of knowledge about astrological signs and I read it for entertainment purposes.
I didn’t use this planner to it’s fullest, I used it as just a planner, and occasionally made note of the full moons of course, when ‘the vibe’ got weird. This year I grabbed two for a couple of friends that are astrology nerds because I know they will fully appreciate the level of detail available in these planners. Maybe they will give me a proper heads up when the world turns upside down again.
Crystals are really great objects for decorating your home. You really can’t beat nature’s beauty. I have several around my home on bookshelves and on my coffee table because they are interesting and unique and don’t have to be very expensive. My kids love going into rock-hound shops when we go on vacation anywhere and they always pick something small up as a keepsake. I’ve gotten into the habit of also looking for un tumbled raw crystals for displaying. I’m partial to raw clear quartz clusters, and smokey quartz. I hate those man made geodes dyed crazy colors.
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Cristina founded The Sweat Edit in 2010. She lives with her husband, two daughters and two boston terrier fur daughters in Vancouver, BC. Cristina dabbles in many creative hobbies such as drawing, painting, and jewelry design which sometimes makes it's way here on the blog. Cristina enjoys various sweaty pursuits such as Peloton spin, olympic weightlifting and running.