Archive for December, 2012

Christmastime in the Cities

December 10, 2012

I love city-related gifts and every December, I highlight some of my new finds. (See last year’s list here.)


Loose Petals makes great prints that highlight cities around the world (including cities in that are often overlooked, like Nashville, Des Moines, and Madison). I like that the modern SF print of the Ferry Building (shown above) includes the N Judah train, the Embarcadero’s bow and arrow sculpture, and Red’s Java House.

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If photography is more up your alley, consider a Shawn Clover print of these incredible mash-ups of current SF and SF after the 1906 earthquake (the example, above, shows California Street).


The Social Dept. sells all kinds of city-related shirts, including some that celebrate regional food (spam for Hawaii, burritos for SF). I like the simplicity of this SFer shirt, and I appreciate the important reminder in the “Welcome to San Francisco (bring a jacket)“. But I think the real winner is the “Straight Outta San Francisco Land of Quality Big Hills and Summer Chills“.

See what The Social Dept. has to say about your neck of the woods.


One of my favorite things about cities is all the individual neighborhoods, and The Bold Italic’s postcard set of SF neighborhoods is a visual tour through SF-landia.

Prefer states to cities? Check Apartment Therapy’s round-up of state-related gifts.


Just because it’s Christmastime

December 7, 2012

I wasn’t ready for Christmas this year. I’m still a little bewildered to find us all here, at the dark end of the year. My box of Christmas stuff is still in our storage shed, and we still don’t have a tree. All I’ve done so far this holiday season is check some of my favorite online shops for gift ideas. Here are some of the shops where I’ve been looking for unique gifts:

826 Valencia Pirate Store –  826 Valencia is a nonprofit writing and tutoring center that also functions as a pirate store, selling lard, glass eyes, and beard extensions. More modern folk will likely be more interested in the Beards are the New Black t-shirt or prints that are guaranteed to confound visitors to your home, such as A Lemon a Day Keeps the Teeth in Your Head (You have scurvy, get over it).

Huset – Huset is the place to go for Scandinavian designed (or inspired) items, like patterned ceramics, and adorable animals that prevent your pots from boiling over.

Rifle Paper Co. – Beautiful paper goods, like invites, cards, prints, and calendars (I’m putting the Cities calendar on my Christmas list this year). Rifle also makes one of the loveliest recipe boxes around.

Canoe – Just about everything sold at Canoe is beautifully designed. Need proof? These genius bookends that are also planters.

TerrainTerrain is part of the Anthropology chain, so it isn’t the most independent option out there, but where else will you find straws that look like birch trees or this botanical-printed tape?