Another holiday season, another gift dilemma. This year think outside the (gift) box with unique items from local designers, shops, and even restaurants in Boston. From gym duffles with secret pockets to hand-forged jewelry pieces, our gift guide will help you wrap up the season quite nicely.
The Enso is local jewelry designer Sophie Hughes’ fresh take on everyone’s favorite earring – the hoop. These lightweight hoops are made from one sinuous piece of either 18K yellow gold or 18K grey gold in a hammered texture. Each is individually forged in her South End studio using timeworn hammers, anvils, and torches and recycled gold for environmentally and socially responsible pieces. Available in three sizes starting at $328, Ore, 681 Tremont St., Boston.
Talk about a gift that gives. Island Creek Oysters’ ergonomic shucking knife is made from 50 percent ocean-bound plastic recovered in Haiti through cleanups that give back to the community. Give your lucky recipient a chance to practice their mad skills by pairing the knife with a trio of Island Creek, Row 34, and Aunt Dotty oysters shipped directly to them. Aw shucks. Knife, $20; oyster trio, $89.
She’s one-of-a-kind, so give her a gift that reflects that. Artemis Design Co. is Boston designer Milicent Armstrong’s collection of buzzworthy bags and shoes created from antique textiles. Think vintage Turkish kilim rugs and ikat silks and velvets from Uzbekistan. The Kilim Wallet & Crossbody is wallet by day, chic crossbody by night (just add the leather strap). Each is unique – just like her. $128.
Complaining about gift shopping stress? Put a cork in it, and grab these super soft 100 percent brushed cotton, American-made tees from City Winery that speak to the oenophiles on your list. We can’t stop toasting the cheeky quips, including Stop and Smell the Rosé and Everything Happens for a Riesling. $19, City Winery, 80 Beverly St., Boston.
Take note: Everyone loves candles. Noted owner Sara Morris hand-pours her soy candles in small batches, finishing them with simple typography and a pop of specialty paper under each lid. Her gift boxes shine brightly this season, with two petite candles, a vial of matches, and a lovely reusable box. Scents are heavenly, including Fraser Fir, Lime Basil Mint, Vanilla Amber, and White Tea Lavender. $42, 525 East 1st St., Boston.
The quilted Kitchen Sink Gym Duffle by Oliver Thomas boasts a detachable yoga mat holder, RFID Blocking Technology, a hidden “Secret Stash” zippered bottom, and plenty of mesh pockets. Available in tomato red, green camo, blue camo, and black, you can even customize it with her initials or fun patches. It’s also available in OT’s new Peloton collaboration, just in time for holiday rides. $149, Isabel Harvey, 41 Central St., Wellesley.