Yule Gift Guide 2012, part 1: Accessories

I am one of those people who loves finding great gifts for people, especially around the holidays. The massive “You MUST buy (expensive) things to show people how much you LOOOOOOOOVE THEM” commercial push around Thanksgiving and Christmas annoys the living crap out of me–particularly the pervasive idea that you have to spend a lot of money in order to buy thoughtful, interesting gifts for people. With the economy the way it is, dealing with these attitudes (which seem like they are on display EVERYWHERE–thank you, free market!) can be especially hard for people who are unemployed, underemployed, or whose employment is in some state of flux (shout-out to my fellow temp workers).

This year, I have decided to do a gift guide mostly designed for those who are on a limited budget. Of course, if you do not have a budget, you can still give gifts (Design Sponge has some great ideas in this post); for those of us who aren’t crafty, or whose crafting skills are limited, smaller gifts may be a good compromise.

People who hate shopping–or who say things like “The person for whom I am shopping [HAS EVERYTHING/is hard to shop for!]”–might find that this helps. I have YEARS of experience with hating shopping, and for finding gifts for people with discerning and/or bizarre tastes.

I’m dividing these up into categories; today’s installment focuses on accessories under $20 (not including shipping), and future installments will focus on music, books and DVDs, things you can wear, beauty/personal care items, things you can eat or drink, and (possibly) big-ticket items from all of these categories that are over $50 (in case your budget is less limited). I hope that you’ll be able to find something for a person on your gift list–or something for yourself. In any case: LET ME HELP YOU. First up: accessories!


Do you know someone who takes pills? If so, this pill box featuring two dapper cats ($8) from Etsy seller che655 will make a great gift. I recently purchased this very Dickensian Yorkie pill case and love it.

For something that holds all of your crap in style, check out Baggu’s nylon bags ($9), in prints (seahorses! llamas!) or solid colors.

Three words: Steampunk pendant necklace. Now that I have your attention, check out this stunning copper and resin necklace ($15) by designer Jama Watts.

Artist JM Tolman’s hand-painted pendants ($7-10)–many featuring cartoon ladies and multi-colored tentacles–are so wild that I want several of them as soon as possible.

bird rings
These Filigree Bird Head Rings ($16) from Sea of Bees are a favorite of mine, and I don’t usually wear rings. If putting a bird on it isn’t your style, the fox hair pins ($9.75) may hold some appeal.

BlueQ’s zip cases ($5) are great for makeup, pencils, or odds and ends.

If you know a person with pierced ears who doesn’t want diamond earrings that cost a week’s salary, get ’em these sweet Raven Cameo Earrings ($19) from Vintage Goods.

Do you know anyone who wouldn’t want tentacle fingers ($14.75)? Yeah, neither do I.

It’s possible that I’m spotlighting these because I need a new set of coasters, but a set of Cat Meme Coasters ($19) will appeal to anyone on your list who spends too much time on Tumblr.

And finally, a weird one for the “accessories” category that I’d be remiss if I didn’t include: the Boo plush dog ($12.49). Boo is the World’s Cutest Dog, and the stuffed toy version will surely appeal to anyone on your list who loves small dogs or cute things. There are also miniature versions, all curiously devoid of a mouth.

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