9 Holiday Gift Ideas for People Who Need Inspiration

And now, for something new.

If you know me even a little bit, you know that the holidays are my favorite time of year. I am that person that people who don’t want the holidays to start until after Thanksgiving absolutely despises. I am a sucker for holiday lights, well-decorated trees (and Charlie Brown Christmas trees), cookies, 24/7 holiday music, and all of the holiday trappings. I love it all!

But, my absolute FAVORITE part of the holidays is finding THE perfect gift for those special people in my life. It always surprises me when I hear people say that they don’t know what to buy people – for me, it’s just a matter of identifying someone’s passions. So, this year, I thought I’d make a list of some of gift ideas for folks who need some inspiration AND support great individuals and companies at the same time.

Happy holiday shopping, everyone!

For the animal lover:
SarahCustom pet portraits are a great way to capture your pet’s unique personality – and they don’t have to break the bank. My extremely talented friend Sarah Flinn will do a one-of-a-kind painting of your pet on upcycled wood for anywhere from $50 for a tiny 4-inch round to $150 and up for larger sizes. In Atlanta? Check out Sarah’s artwork and pick up a pre-painted piece at Dupre’s Antique Market at 17 Whitlock Ave SW. Seen all you need to see? Contact Sarah at InLikeFlinnStudio@gmail.com.

For the sports fan:
FreakerSocks may be a tried and rather tired holiday gift, but I promise you if you pick up some sports socks from Freaker USA, you’ll be at the top of your gift recipient’s NICE list. I’m a big fan of the NFLPA socks that feature a caricature of leading NFL players, but this Wilmington, NC-based company also had a handful of college teams available, fun pop-culture socks, and unique koozies available for purchase. I’ve probably bought about 15 pairs of socks from them over the last three years…and I just love their fun packaging and personal touches! (Sorry, Eagles fans, Carson Wentz is sold out…but I’d keep checking back!)

For the art lover:
KarenLibecapAt Festival in the Park this year, I stumbled upon the cutest booth. Karen Libecap makes tiny, detailed paintings of just about everything – animals, objects, movies, music, you name it. These 5 x 5 prints pack a lot of punch into a tiny little space – the painting itself measures about 1.5 inch by 1.5 inch. It’s quirky and the perfect gift for the person who loves eclectic decorations in their home. She has a tiny painting to suit just about everyone.  For $35, these are a steal. Check out Karen’s Esty Shop or Instagram.

For the traveler:
HunkerBagCo_013_EIf your loved one loves to travel and look good doing it, look no further than Hunker Bag Company. Based in Nashville, Hunker Bag Company was started by Denton Hunker, a drummer in the band Green River Ordinance, and his wife, Alicia. They make an array of super-stylish leather and waxed canvas bags for men and women, ranging in price from $90 to $350+. Whether you’re looking for a wristlet for a night out, an every day purse or bag, a slick briefcase, or an overnight travel or duffel bag, you won’t be disappointed by what you find at Hunker Bag Company.

For the fashionista:
There’s nothing sharper than someone who knows how to accessorize well. And unique accessories can make or break an outfit. I’m a big fan of funky, unique jewelry, and I’ve got two custom jewelry makers that I adore:

LynneLynne and Lucille – I first found Kelly when I was looking for some recycled cymbal jewelry. I’ve purchased a number of pieces from her over the last few years (at right is my favorite, a dagger-like cymbal piece on a long chain). She uses lots of typically discarded materials to craft unique jewelry – everything from cymbals to bullet casings to leather scraps and old spoons. She’s branching out into stamped jewelry now, too. She fills orders really quickly and often includes discounts for additional purchases in her orders. Check out her Etsy shop.

JaclynBear on the Moon – For outdoor enthusiast fashionistas, I have to recommend my friend Jaclyn’s amazing handcrafted jewelry. Jaclyn is the free spirit I wish I could be, and she channels her love for nature into her jewelry making, mixing stones and gems with sterling silver. She is so incredibly talented. Pay a visit to her Etsy shop – but don’t wait too long on anything. She turns items over very quickly!

For the music lover:
LstnWherever you go these days, headphones are sort of ubiquitous. I’m an Apple fan, but those white headphones are obnoxious. Don’t subject your music lover to a life of tunes with ugly headphones. Check out the beautifully crafted headphones over at LSTN Sound Co. Whether you’re looking for full-sized headphones or earbuds, they’ve got you covered with both wired and wireless options. Bonus: a percentage of every purchase goes to the Starkey Hearing Foundation to help provide hearing aids to people in need around the world.

For fans of Charlotte:
704ShopI might be a Jersey Girl, but I love my adopted home of Charlotte. I’ve lived here longer than I’ve lived anywhere in my life, and I love everything about the Queen City. 704 Shop has an array of funky Charlotte-themed shirts, hats, socks, and more to help you show off your love of our Crown Town, including fun collabs with teams, sports stars, neighborhoods, and more.

For the impossible to buy for person:

NikkiWe all have one – the most impossible person in the world for whom to buy gifts. You get stuck every year. Well, what about a custom map of a special place in their life? A college campus, a first home address, a restaurant or park where someone got engaged… My super talented friend Nikki makes these intricate, hand-cut maps that are simply perfect for the person who has everything. All she needs is an address to get started! Contact Nikki through her Etsy shop or pay a visit to her Instagram.

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