The Ultimate Seattle Holiday Gift Guide 2019

From the simple and elegant to the unique and unexpected, discover the best local gifts in our annual gift guide
| FROM THE PRINT EDITION |
 
 

This article appears in print in the December 2019 issue. Click here to subscribe.

ENRICH
These gifts are meant to soothe the soul, whether staying in or going out

1. Local perfumer Maria Christofilis seems to have bottled the essence of a Greek vacation in her Mykonos12 eau de parfum ($150 for 50 milliliters), which carries notes of Florentine iris, jasmine and Mediterranean bergamot. Available at Sarah Alexandra, Madison Valley;
mariachristofilis.com

2. Forget pain pills. Whidbey Island–based Resonant Botanicals’ Neuro-Soothe lotion ($70 for 8-ounce bottle), made with hemp oil extract and other organic ingredients, can alleviate intense nerve pain for hours at a time. Available at Resonant Botanicals, Pike Place Market; resonantbotanicals.com

3. Tukwila-based French Girl’s Jasmin Sea Spray hair texture mist ($18 for 3.4 ounces), made with aloe and pink salt, preserves beachy waves through the winter. Available at French Girl, frenchgirlorganics.com

4. For the friend who has everything, a room fragrance is the perfect way to wrap them in the holiday spirit. Downtown-based Antica Farmacista’s new holiday-inspired concoction Cassis Cuvée ($69 for a 250-milliliter diffuser) blends grapefruit and berry with the sweetness of cassis liqueur and the effervescence of champagne. Available online at anticafarmacista.com

5. SoDo-based Bio-Therapeutic’s Bt-sonic 2.0 ($89.50) cleansing brush leaves skin feeling smooth and radiant. Available at Bio-Therapeutic, SoDo; biotherapeuticspa.com

6. Silversmiths Kristeena and Ron Sabando are giving us a second look at the Alaskan Way Viaduct with a collection of jewelry, like pendants ($175-$275), made with Viaduct concrete and rebar set in sterling silver. Available at Sabando Design, Pike Place Market; sabandodesign.ecwid.com

7. New Pacific Place jewelry store Bezel & Kiln boasts a curated collection of contemporary accessories, such as kinetic rhombus cuff links ($425), which will surely turn heads. Available at Bezel & Kiln, downtown; bezelandkiln.com

DECORATE
From the kitchen to the living room, deck the halls this season with gifts worthy of a double take

1. Speech therapist turned mixed-media artist Laura Van Horne creates pieces that light up any room; her popular geode works ($250 for a 12-by-12-inch piece), made with ink and resin, come in a variety of colors and feel at home in the Pacific Northwest. Available at Gray Sky Gallery, Pioneer Square; lauravanhorneart.com

2. Coffee table companion Almost Lost Arts by Emily Freidenrich (Chronicle Books, $35) explores the work of more than 20 artisans practicing their crafts, such as book mending and bronze casting, using traditional techniques and technologies. Available at Elliott Bay Book Company, Capitol Hill; elliottbaybook.com

3. For friends on the go, the wide-mouth water bottle ($29.95 for 20-ounce bottle) by Fremont-based MiiR is created with medical grade stainless steel and keeps drinks hot and cold for hours. Available at MiiR flagship store, Fremont; miir.com

4. These laser-cut wood and clear acrylic planters, such as the wall hanging planter 08 ($45), will take plant enthusiasts’ succulents and air plants from counter fixtures to wall art. Available through Light Razor Design; lightrazordesign.com

5. The person on your list with a heart of gold—and eclectic interior design taste—will adore this brass anatomical heart ($150) from Arden Home. Available at Arden Home, Capitol Hill; ardenhome.com

6. For the red wine lovers on your list, these Divine Wine cups ($58) by Heidi Kunkel are said to soften and smooth the flavor of bold reds thanks to their translucent, unglazed porcelain. Available at Fremont Sunday Market, Fremont; online at heidikunkel.com

7. These Washington volcano topography coasters ($35 for a set of four), made of laser-cut wood and navy felt, feature the state’s most famous volcanic mountains: Rainier, St. Helens, Baker and Adams, ensuring you’ll remember whose drink is whose. Available at SML by appointment in SoDo; designbysml.com

FEAST
From sweet treats to delicious drinks, look no further to wow your loved ones

1. Handmade &Tonic syrup ($14.95 for 8 ounces) isn’t your grandmother’s tonic—it’s the perfect citrusy gift for any G&T lover. Available at various locations and at andtonic.co

2. Nothing says the holidays like a bottle of brandy, especially this award-winning, limited-quantity Archipelago de Haro apple brandy ($98) from Orcas Island Distillery. Email distiller@orcasislanddistillery.com to place an order; distillery only ships within Washington state.

3. Put a smile on your host’s face with a bottle of warming SeaSpirits Distillery spiced rum ($30), with notes of vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg (great in eggnog or coffee). Available at SeaSpirits Distillery, Woodinville; seaspiritsdistillery.com

4. Seattle Chocolate truffles ($13 for 6 ounces) are the perfect stocking stuffer for anyone with a sweet tooth. Flavors include eggnog, champagne and Hiker’s Trail Mix. Available at various locations and online at seattlechocolate.com

5. Sustainably caught, smoked Copper River salmon from Sena Sea ($42 for two jars) showcases the bounty of Pacific Northwest seafood for out-of-towners and locals alike. Available at University District, West Seattle and Capitol Hill farmers’ markets, and at senasea.com

6. Holiday errands don’t leave much time for baking, but Burien’s Schuller’s Shortbread has you covered with heavenly chai tea cookies ($10). Just be sure to order an extra box for yourself. Available at The Shoppe Seahurst, The Quarterdeck, Capers Home and schullerskitchen.com

7. No foodie will be able to resist the Ultimate Charcuterie Collection ($100) from Made in Washington, featuring cured meats from iconic Salumi, smoked salmon from SeaBear Smokehouse, Beecher’s flagship cheese and other local food heavy hitters. Available at Made in Washington, Pike Place Market, and online at madeinwashington.com



PLAY
These handpicked toys and gadgets will keep the fun going even after the festivities end

1. Don’t forget your furry friends during the holidays: The Odin ($23) stackable treat-dispensing toy from Up Dog Toys will keep Fido busy when it’s too cold to play outdoors. Available at updogtoys.com

2. This darling cat ball ($52), made in a variety of sizes and colors by local artist studio Careful It Bites, will squelch any begging for a real kitten this holiday season. Now, about that puppy... Available at The Handmade Showroom, downtown; thehandmadeshowroom.com

3. Your resident millennial will love the 1998 pillow ($39.99), shaped like an old Mac computer, perfect for displaying unironically on the loveseat. Available at throwboy.com

4. From the local creators of Exploding Kittens comes another card game: Throw Throw Burrito ($24.99) combines cards with dodgeball for unforgettable game-night burrito fights. Available at Target, multiple locations; target.com

5. From design studio fruitsuper, these wooden blocks ($36), which include several patterns, bring snowflake cheer to any kiddo in your life. Available at fruitsuper, Pioneer Square; fruitsuper.com

6. Make your forgetful friend’s life a little easier with a coffee subscription ($45 for three months) to Bottomless, a Seattle-based company that provides users with a smart Wi-Fi scale that orders freshly roasted coffee when it senses the bag getting low. Available at bottomless.com

7. Add flair to a loved one’s phone with the Dancing Dragonflies phone case ($38), available for iPhone and Samsung models. The design is by Acoma Pueblo artist Michelle Lowden, whose culture considers the dragonfly to be a sign of good luck. Available at Eighth Generation, Pike Place Market; eighthgeneration.com

EXPERIENCE 
Show the minimalists in your life how much you care with these unique experiences around town

Cooking Classes at Addo
Amateur chefs will enjoy sharpening their skills with chef Eric Rivera, whose series of six cooking classes is akin to a culinary school curriculum. Around the holidays, he offers a bundled price of $325 (normally $65/class) and teaches at-home kitchen skills, from meat and fish cookery to plating and presentation. Available at Addo, Ballard; ericriveracooks.com

Spa Treatments at Elaia
The award-winning Elaia spa is the perfect oasis for a downtown staycation after a busy season full of relatives and endless holiday parties. Its Vanilla Chai Spice Revitalizing Scrub and Massage ($225 for 90 minutes) refreshes skin and stimulates circulation while the Vanilla Chai Spice Mani Pedi (manicure $55, pedicure $75) will make you feel like you’re on holiday, no plus one required. Available at Elaia, downtown; hyatt.com/en-US/spas/Elaia-Spa/home

Pasta Making with Salty Seattle
Linda Miller Nicholson is the author and pasta expert behind the popular—and colorful—Instagram account @saltyseattle. Her workshops (starting at $250) in Fall City are the perfect activity for a couple or group. All you have to bring is the wine. Available at Salty Seattle, Fall City; saltyseattle.com

Bread-making Classes with Sea Wolf Bakers
Launched in 2014 by brothers Jesse and Kit Schumann, Sea Wolf has a reputation for baking some of the best loaves in town. That means its small classes (starting at $85) for learning to bake staples like sourdough bread and pretzel rolls fill quickly. It really is the greatest thing since...well, you know. Available at Sea Wolf, Fremont; seawolfbakers.com

Jewelry-making Classes with Samantha Slater
Can’t find the perfect piece of jewelry to buy? Give the gift of creating it. Jeweler Samantha Slater teaches a wide range of classes, from stone setting to fine silver fusing, at venues around town, plus private classes (starting at $25 per hour) at her Ballard-based studio. Available at Samantha Slater Studio, Ballard; samanthaslaterstudio.com

Introductory Flight Lesson
If you know someone looking to stretch their wings, an introductory flight lesson from The Flight Academy will help get them off the ground. This three-hour experience ($650) will take two guests over downtown Seattle and on to Snoqualmie Falls, and includes an hour of flight time at the controls with an experienced instructor. Available online at theflightacademy.com

Yoga Classes
Yoga classes are the perfect way to kick-start 2020’s fitness resolutions and help giftees destress along the way. Be Luminous, the beloved South Lake Union yoga studio, makes gifting easy with its Five-class Card Holiday Special ($98). Available at beluminousyoga.com

THE GIFT OF FAB
Jessica Zen knows how important presentation is when it comes to gift giving. Her company, The Present Perfect, specializes in finding and wrapping showstopping gifts. Here are her tips to make your perfect present shine

1. If you’re traveling light over the holidays, perhaps opt for gift magazine subscriptions. You can attach the gift certificate to the current issue of the mag before you leave. Easy, lightweight and a gift that keeps coming all year around. (Editor’s note: We didn’t even pay her to say this!)

2. Wrapping paper doesn’t have to be expensive. For bulky gifts, fabric is your friend. Or for a DIY look, try purchasing a big roll of white butcher paper and have your kids doodle all over it with crayons and markers. It’s cute and sentimental—and a great way to occupy your kids for an afternoon.

3. If you can’t find the perfect gift, I’ve found that people really treasure receiving experiences. Some of the unique ones that I’ve planned for recipients include a hot-air balloon ride, a chess lesson with a champion player and a behind-the-scenes kitchen tour of a favorite restaurant.

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