The holidays are upon us--as are end of the year deadlines and planning for 2018, so finding a gift for the design-lover in your life may feel like a bit of a hassle. Here, editor-in-chief Kadie Yale lists some of her favorites for everyone on your list.
I love the FM500 Ergonomic Foot Rocker by Humanscale because it’s not only beautiful, but so simple in the way it promotes health and comfort through engaging the lower leg muscles, circulating the blood. And for someone like me who has a hard time sitting still without fidgeting, it allows you to move while staying seated at your desk.
Package Free: (Website.)
Did you know that according to the National Park Service, Americans throw away 500 million drinking straws a day? In a year, that would fill 46,400 school buses. When I found that out, it felt hypocritical for me to preach sustainability, then go out and use a straw when I eat on the road. So I love following Package Free Shop on Instagram and these metal reusable straws; they help me cut back in small, doable ways every day, like being able to tell the server no thanks to the straw.
Colleen O'Connor Art: (Website.)
Art is a difficult one to gift, but one I think people should try giving more often. I love Colleen O’Connor’s paintings for two particular reasons which made me think to showcase her work here: 1. she is an expert at color, and 2. from geometric patterns to sunny landscapes, she has a few different aesthetics that could work for anyone on your list. She’s also still relatively unknown, so you can boast you have one of her early works.
The lighting the Menorah during Chanukah is a beautiful and special tradition—and the Menorah will often be used in families across decades, if not generations. ANNA’s Yachad Menorah is made of Brazilian Crystal Quartz and gold- or silver-plated. The polished surface reflects spectacularly.
Photo Credit: Frank Huelsboemer
We all know that lighting is important—particularly now that circadian rhythm is more widely understood—but in the home, the look of the light, even when it’s off, can change the aesthetic of the space. FLOS’ Gatto and Gatto Piccolo are quirky table lamps resembling hot air balloons. Using a coating process to cover the lamp’s steel structure, the resin softens light, producing a flattering glow, perfect for those curl-up-in-a-chair-to-read-on-a-cold-night moments.
Personally, I have this thing with chairs. In a lot of ways, they’re like shoes: they all do the same thing, but can look so strikingly different that they can change the look of an interior. They’re also pretty hearty and often timeless, so I tend to spend more on a good chair than I will on other furniture in my house. The MHC.3 Miss—the Tobia Scarpa re-design of the original 1986 Miss chair—features a more comfortable armrest joint, and is available in natural or black tinted ash, seat in leather or hand woven paper cord in either ecru or grey.
Yoga Design Lab: (Website.)
If you’re not into yoga, you probably know someone who is. We’re even seeing yoga rooms being incorporated into offices, schools, and airports. Yoga Design Lab’s mats, towels, and accessories are aesthetically pleasing and sturdy. What’s more, they support urban youth yoga programs, so $1 of every purchase goes back to the community.
Klean Kanteen: (Website.)
For the sake of transparency, I need to admit that Klean Kanteen is from my hometown of Chico, CA (as are Chico Bags), but that’s one of the reasons why I stand by them: I’ve had Klean Kanteen bottles for over a decade now so I can attest that they stand up to hiking, throwing in backpacks, and being filled with everything from water to red wine. I can also attest to their corporate mission to treat their employees and the world well. They’re a partner of 1% For the Planet and a certified B Corp which meet high standards of social and environmental transparency, accountability, and performance. And anyone who has ever met me can probably attest to the fact that I always carry a reusable water bottle—another small way to make a sustainable difference.
For the minimalists and green-design-junkies in your life, Stickbulb offers table lamps made of a single sustainably-sourced wood beam lighted with a linear LED panel, and held by a metal base. Available in Maple, American Walnut, and Ebonized Oak, as well as reclaimed Heart Pine and Water Tower Redwood beams, and either a powder coated (in white, slate grey, and matte black) or premium finished (hand blackened steel, brushed nickel, polished nickel, brushed brass, or polished brass) base, this simple table lamp can be made to fit any interior.
Burel Factory: (Website.)
Available through the BLACKBARN Chelsea Market Shop in NYC, the Portuguese company of Burel has a fascinating back story: the Burel Factory was started in 1947 with the birth of the Lanificio Império, an important wool factory in Serra da Estrela. Rediscovered in 2010 by João Tomás and Isabel Costa, the factory has had a second life creating unique and sustainable goods inspired by the rich inspiration that the region provides. Their high quality handwoven blankets are made from wool which is harvested using an ancient art of wool production, so one can feel good about the process as they warm up in the winter.
I believe whole-heartedly that no matter how far we go with technology, there will always be a need for a well-designed analog wrist watch. With their new watch, essence, Mondaine takes their clean Swiss design a step further by producing the watch with castor oil casting and a natural rubber strap, combining sustainable design with elegant design in a way that hasn’t been approached before.