Along with the excitement of the holidays comes the inevitable pressure to find gifts that go beyond the ordinary. Not only do one-of-a-kind gifts show that you’ve put some time and effort into your choice, they also carry the underlying message that the recipient is equally special.
To help you out, we’ve scoured the city and found extraordinary items that are sure to be conversation pieces. Some have creative twists to commonly found objects, some have surprising eco-friendly elements, while others are just completely unique. And the best part? For those of you who like to avoid crowded, frenzied holiday shopping, all of these items can be found in stores outside of the malls.
Bird’s Nest Necklace by Gedan
In butterscotch, cognac, citrus and cherry amber. $540 at Amber Connections.
Typewriter Key Bracelets by Tokens & Coins
Authentic, vintage keys that are recycled from actual typewriters used during the ‘20s, ‘30s and ‘40s. $135 in nickel; $165 in a sterling platform, at Honey B’s.Cigar Box Guitar by daddy-mojo
In three- to six-strings with red-oak necks, offering a traditional southern blues sound. $225 – $800 at Kickaxe Guitars, 1418 – 9 Ave SE.
sk8bag by Beck(y)
New York designer Beck Hickey’s bags are made from recycled skateboards with original scratches and stickers, and lined with satin. $139.95 at Green Bee Boutique, 205 – 4 St SW.Reginelle Multicolori by Sapori Antichi La Pasta
Made in Italy, this 250 gram bag contains naturally coloured and flavoured pasta. $15.95 at The Cookbook Co.
Wine Stand Sculpture by Bogart
Handcrafted wine sculpture by European artisans using nuts and bolts and other metal parts. $74 at The Cellar.Delphinium Chandelier by Brand van Egmond
Handmade from wrought iron. DC100 model $14,000 at Lightform, 1403 – 9 Ave SE.
Hand-carved with wood inlay, this calendar describes the evolutionary cycles of the universe, a concept that was first created during the Classic Mayan era of 200 – 900 A.D. It stops in the year 2012, when the solar system is expected to experience a galactic alignment. $179 – $1,950 at Tiempo.Trafalgar Pipe Set by Dunhill
A limited edition Billiard pipe in Group 5 (5103). Vulcanite tamper mouthpiece is crafted from original wood from Lord Nelson’s 19th century battleship, the HMS Victory. Also comes with a brown leather box and hardcover book. $2,250, Cavendish & Moore.
BeoCom 2 Phone by Bang & Olufsen
A distinct design in aluminium, with a unique ring tone, phonebook, and eight handsets. $1,100 at Bang & Olufsen.
Organic Leather Men’s Belt by Catalyst
With silk-screened cityscape in vegetable inks. $85 at Riva’s – The Eco Store.—Laura Pellerine