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The Christmas Gift Guide You Didn't Know You Needed

The Christmas Gift Guide You Didn't Know You Needed

With just a tiny bit of extra effort, you’ll be able to become the star gift-giver in your family, friend group, or office party.


5 min read

December 21, 2021

We all know the feeling—you excitedly tear off the wrapping on your gift only to discover yet another mug you don’t need or holiday hand soap that’ll end up in an already existing collection under the kitchen sink. Not exactly the merriest, right? To be fair, picking out the perfect gift for anyone can be hard work, and it’s always easy to grab something basic from the store when you don’t know what to get that one hard-to-shop-for person in your life (dads, we’re looking at you). However, with a little, seriously, just a tiny bit of extra effort, you’ll be able to become the star gift-giver in your family, friend group, or office party. And it all starts with perfecting your Christmas gift guide.

The Golden State: The Best Gift Guide for Everyone in Your Life

The holiday season is the biggest gift-giving time of the year—naturally, you’re feeling the pressure to find the perfect presents. And whether you love to be organized or tend to leave everything for the very last minute, the Golden State is the best place to turn to. Our handy holiday gift guide has everything; a little something for your BFF, a stocking-stuffer for your favorite coworkers, and a thoughtful present that’ll earn you the tightest, longest, most loving hug from your mom. Santa could never.

Christmas Gift Guide for Her 

The California State Parks Annual Pass offers something for everyone and makes a great gift throughout the year.

California State Parks Annual Pass

Do you want to make this Christmas season the merriest yet? Gift your favorite outdoor explorer a golden ticket to the Golden State. An annual pass to California State Parks provides access to nearly 300 incredibly diverse parks like the rugged-granite Mount San Jacinto, the out-of-this-world Salton Sea, and the glistening Emerald Bay.

Oversized Rain Jacket from Rewilder 

Help your favorite wanderlust look cool, stay dry, and save our planet all at once with a thoughtful Christmas gift. Los Angeles-based Rewilder created this jacket from 100-percent up-cycled material using car shell fabric, salvaged seat belts, and uncut keys. Sustainability never looked this cool. 

Surprise her in style this year and add a touch of uniqueness to your bedroom.

An Original Headboard from Xio Design Studio 

Joshua Tree-native Xihomara Alvarez always designs with the magic of the desert in her mind. Her chevron-style headboards are inspired by the sun’s rays, making for a stunning statement piece and the ultimate holiday gift guide.

Cuyana’s Crescent Belt Bag

With the motto “fewer, better things,” San Francisco-based Cuyana’s goods are built to last while making you look good. The festive Crescent Belt Bag by Cuyana is one of the best holiday gifts you can get the fashionista in your life. Made from Italian leather and designed to be tied around the waist or slung across the chest for a statement look, this bag will spread holiday cheer faster than any ‘nog and Christmas cookies.

Destination PSP’s Mid-Century Butterfly House Tissue-Box Cover 

Got an architecture fan you wish to impress? Destination PSP’s decorative piece is definitely up their alley. Bring the mid-century modern vibes into your friend’s home with this unique, obscure, yet totally awesome holiday gift. Every tissue—pulled from a mid-century chimney because why not—will transport the sniffler straight onto the streets of sunny Palm Springs.

"I don't like a stylish bandana" said no woman ever.

A Bandanna from Bandits

Nicole and Connor Humphrey’s sustainably sourced, 100-percent organic cotton bandannas are super soft and feature exclusive designs by artists all over the world. Get one of their unique, stylish bandanas as a Christmas gift for your bestie, and 10 percent of its proceeds will go to a charity of the item’s artist’s choice. For instance, if you get the ‘Life in Flight’ bandanna, your benefits will go to the Ojai Valley Land Conservancy—taking thoughtful gifts on a whole other level.  

The Palm Springs Puzzle by Werkeshoppe

This striking 300-piece jigsaw puzzle based on an Andrew Burgess Palm Springs still life is so pretty, the mid-century modern lover in your life will complete it in a matter of days. And when they’re done with it, you best believe they’re keeping it up on display permanently.

Christmas Gift Guide for Him

A creative gift set made from rescued California wood, the sustainably harvested honey is the perfect gift for eco-friendly honey lovers.

The Honey Hive Gift Set from Sola Bee

Perfect for the gourmand in your life, the Yolo County-based Sola Bee Farms is the first honey company in the country with a completely solar-powered, sustainable model. This three-jar set is the perfect ethical Christmas gift for him, as it's made from reclaimed wood (which he can repurpose to plant an indoor vertical herb garden) and tastes sweeter than anything else in the world.

Hot Sauce Bundle Pack from Truff 

The Huntington Beach-brewed Truff has gained quite the following in recent years. That’s why this Christmas, surprising your favorite flavor-enthusiast with a hot sauce bundle pack from Truff would be hitting the nail on the head. Focusing on the original black truffle formula and pairing it with their hotter offerings, the brand provides the best holiday gift for those who like to kick up the heat.

A pizza oven may not exactly be an essential item, but it sure is fun to use when you're all about tossing the dough.

Forno Piombo Pizza Oven

The father-son duo at Napa Valley’s Forno Piombo is infamous for building every one of their stunning ovens from scratch. Part wood-fired furnace, part shimmering art piece belonging to a museum, their production is limited to only 160 a year to ensure perfection—hurry up and snatch yours to make your favorite foodie’s Christmas wish come true.

A Waxed Canvas Chalk Bag from Static

Expertly crafted by Taylor Carpenter—a San-Diegan climber on a mission to craft the perfect chalk bag—Static’s stunning collection is the perfect gift guide for the explorer you wish to make smile this holiday season. Infused with SoCal-grown lavender and built to last a lifetime, a waxed canvas chalk bag from Static will make all days merry and bright.

Paradise is anywhere with palm trees and a surfboard. You can't buy happiness, but you can buy a surfboard, and that's pretty close.

Almond’s R-Series Surfboards 

The awesome team at Almond has been hand-shaping surfboards in Costa Mesa for more than a decade now. If you get their 5’4 ‘Secret Menu Surfrider, you’ll help make the world a better place—part of the proceeds go to giving back to Mother Earth.

Fireplace Tools from the Blacksmith Shop

Visiting the quaint, Victorian village of Ferndale in Humboldt County always feels like a journey back in time. And as a Christmas gift guide for him, we’re suggesting you help capture some of that old-world feel with a fireplace set from the Blacksmith Shop—a local staple specializing in the lost art of blacksmithery.

The Ron Burgundy Hat from The Truckee Hat

Try and look at this hat without cracking a smile—we dare you. This corduroy cap from The Truckee Hat mixes mountain man, train conductor, and ‘70s dad vibes into one stylish package. You know what the Anchorman says: “Stay classy, San Diego.”

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