Food & Culture

The Ultimate Seattle Holiday Gift Guide 2017

Finding the perfect holiday gift isn't easy. Fortunately, we can help.

By Nia Martin & Marianne Hale November 29, 2017


This article originally appeared in the December 2017 issue of Seattle Magazine.

It’s that time of year again when we pause to write cards and wrap special somethings for special someones in sparkly paper and ribbons. There are a million gifts out there to choose from and, sure, it’s the thought that counts, but taking the time to select the right gift for the right person is truly thoughtful.

Without further ado, here’s our 2017 picks to guide you through the shopping bustle.

What a Card
Holiday selections from Seattle stationery shops we love

1. Paper Delights. Two locations, including Wallingford2205 N 45th St.; 206.547.1002.

2. Paper HammerDowntown, 1400 Second Ave.; 206.682.3820.

3. Pike Street PressDowntown, 1510 Alaskan Way; 206.971.0120.

4. Farewell PaperieGeorgetown, 5628 Airport Way S, Suite 170; 360.930.9858.

5. Dahlia Press. Eastlake, 2917 Fuhrman Ave. E; 206.552.9447.

Out & About
For the outdoorsy types

1. Perfect for work or weekends away, SoDo-based Filson’s 48-Hour Duffel bag ($475) can carry you through rain or shine thanks to its rain-repellent tin cloth exterior, rust-proof zippers and durable bridle leather. Wayward, two locations including Bellevue, Bellevue Square, 238 Bellevue Way NE; 425.230.4740.

2. The waterproof Freeman jacket ($325) is the gift that keeps giving in our drizzly city. The men’s trim-fit, flannel-lined, locally made outerwear comes in a few hues as well as a Lady Freeman version. FreemanCapitol Hill, 713 Broadway E; 206.327.9932.

3. Electrify your spin class with these bright yellow Rapha Reflective Climber’s Shoes ($400). Made from reflective material, they’re highly visible, and dare we say, hella stylish to boot. Rapha SeattleCapitol Hill, 301 E Pine St.; 206.420.1810. 

4. From Seattle publisher Sasquatch Books, Curious Kids Nature Guide ($19.99) explores the wonders of our Pacific Northwest playground with fun facts and illustrations that will have little adventurers itching to get outdoors. Available at area bookstores including The Elliott Bay Book CompanyCapitol Hill, 1521 10th Ave; 206.624.6600.

5. Oiselle’s Runner Trucker hat ($30) is a fit pick for the female athlete. Made of moisture-wicking mesh with an easy-to-pack, foldable bill, this sporty trucker features nature photography by Olympian track star Sarah Attar and is available at their Seattle flagship store. OiselleUniversity Village, 2632 NE University Village St.; 206.523.1091.

6. The Nikon Monarch 5 8×42 Binoculars ($300) offer a large field of vision, and this pair from Seattle Audubon Society works for newbies and seasoned bird-watchers alike. Wedgwood, 8050 35th Ave.; 206.523.4483.

In Good Taste
For lovers of food and drink

1. Craft cocktail fans can take refined sips from these one-of-a-kind vintage Baccarat coupe glasses ($110/glass), available at Seattle-based Watson Kennedy Fine Home, which regularly stocks drinkware from the storied French crystal house. Downtown, 1022 First Ave.; 206.652.8350.

2. If you’re looking for something truly out of this world with the ingredient of the moment, try Moon Goo caramel sauce ($18), with activated charcoal from Frankie & Jo’s, local makers of plant-based ice cream. Incorporate the caramel confection into batters for cakes and brownies, or simply drizzle it over ice cream. Capitol Hill, 1010 E Union St.; 206.257.1676.

3. This restaurant-quality, custom stainless-steel Gatsby steak knife ($125) from award-winning chef Jason Wilson’s newly opened dining hot spot, The Lakehouse, is made in partnership with Bradford Knives. The Lakehouse, Bellevue, Lincoln Square South, 10455 NE Fifth Place; 425.454.7076 (also available at Wilson’s Miller’s Guild restaurant downtown).

4. Soothe a sweet tooth with Jcoco’s chocolate tasting flights ($13/trio of 3-ounce bars), a select line of bars by local company, Seattle Chocolates. Sample cacaos from different South American countries, with varying cacao percentages or levels of milk and cocoa butter. Seattle ChocolatesSouthcenter, 1180 Andover Park W; 877.427.7915.

5. An appropriate present for a foodie and entertainer, these hand-forged, hammer-pinged copper CG Sculpture and Jewelry Disco Spoons ($25), by Seattle artist Catherine Grisez, lets you add that perfect dash of spice or mix a cocktail with sophistication.

6. Crack open a local lager in style with this Mount Rainier Topographic Bottle Opener by SML, a local husband-and-wife design duo. Each wall-mountable piece is laser-etched from unique woods (shown here in Douglas fir). The Handmade Showroomdowntown, Pacific Place, 600 Pine St., No. 301; 206.623.0504.

Sparkle & Shine
For those who want a little extra shimmer

1. Keep it fun and make a statement with these Arc + Line Earrings ($112.95) in silver and brass by Portland designer, Natalie Joy. Available, along with several other exclusive designs, at Velouria, Pioneer Square, 145 S King St.; 206.788.0330.

2. Seattle jewelry maker, Rebekah J. Design’s two-toned Londey bracelet ($66) combines a silver bangle with a brass top for a versatile, minimalist-chic accessory for fashion-forward friends and family.

3. The Hugo Boss Grand Prix watch ($295) comes in a few styles of band, including a sporty perforated tan leather and a sleek silver bracelet. Nordstrom, multiple locations including downtown, 500 Pine St., Suite 500; 206.628.2111.

4. These Deakin and Francis Sterling Silver Oval Cufflinks ($220) marry modern design with practiced craftsmanship. Alvin Goldfarb JewelerBellevue, 305 Bellevue Way NE; 425.454.9393.

5. Seattle-based Allison Claire’s Micropavé Dubs Up diamond ring ($1,109–$1,104) in 14K gold with .363 total carat weight is an elegant way to show off your school spirit.

6. Baleen’s geometric, handmade Beam Necklace ($48), with a silicon orb-like bead, will leave your gift recipient beaming as well. Shown in navy (also available in black or white) from the Ballard-based shop and studio. Ballard, 6418 20th Ave. NW. 

Design Minded
For the artsy crowd

1. These hand-cut, 100 percent wool Northwest-chic The Peaks Mountain Pillows by Three Bad Seeds, based in Washington, are available in various sizes ($65–$90) from Join Shop (by the Join Design collective), which carries a bevy of creative gifts for the home. The pillows combine the likeness of nature’s breathtaking design with cozy softness, lending warmth to any room during a Seattle winter. South Lake Union, 400 Fairview Ave. N, No. 102.

2. Forget sand rakes and stress balls, ponder your next big idea while fiddling with Portland-based Ekko’s laser-cut Elliptical Desktop Mobile ($63). Seattle Art Museum Shop, downtown, 1300 First Ave.; 206.654.3120.

3. These limited-quantity scarves are more than just neck dressing, they’re actual works of art. Seattle-based Italian artist Carlo Scanagatta’s Scomposta Rampante scarf ($385) comes printed on soft modal and cashmere fabric. Available at a few locations including Margaret O’Leary, University Village, 2609 NE University Village St.; 206.729.5934.

4. Known for her raw, sculptural aesthetic, Joanna Morgan’s brass dishes ($45–$115; 1.5–2 inches in diameter) are sweet and bijou, perfect for holding your tiniest treasures, and crafted in Morgan’s Pioneer Square studio.

5. Whether you’re 6 or 66, fling some natural beauty back into the environment with these handmade Hella slingshots ($39) designed from found tree branches by the San Francisco company. The accompanying colorful, earth-friendly Hella seed bomb ammo balls ($5.95/pack) include seeds from flowering plants such as snapdragon and catchfly. Prism, Ballard, 5208 Ballard Ave. NW; 206.402.4706.

6. We’re head over heels for these uniquely designed men’s Nike Air Max Woven boots ($200) at Likelihood (which carries a curated selection of both men’s and women’s stylish kicks). Capitol Hill, 1101 E Union St.; 206.257.0577.

One Size Fits All
For those who deserve more than a gift card

1. The Out-of-Town Relative. Aunt Judy couldn’t make it this year from Omaha? Bring the Northwest to her with these sweetly designed Oliotto tea towels ($20) made locally and available at area retailers, including home and accessories gem Click! Design That FitsWest Seattle, 4540 California Ave. SW; 206.328.9252.

2. Secret Santa. Blindly choosing a gift is tough, but in this town, chances are your recipient will have a little Seahawks spirit. These bright Posie Turner Be Twelve socks ($16.50), available in men’s and women’s sizes, are a safe bet from a favorite Seattle designer.

3. The Dog Lover’s Dog. The Seattle Barkery’s Pumpkin Pup Pies ($14 each, $25 for two) from the Treat Bar at Dogwood Playpark are sure to make canine tails wag. Lake City, 12568 33rd Ave. NE; 206.851.1549; (see website for traveling truck schedule).

4. The Coworker. Encourage your staffers to stop borrowing your pen with this nifty Apolis Transit Issue Fisher Space Pen ($28), which they’ll never want to lose (it writes upside down and underwater). From contemporary clothing and home goods store, GlasswingCapitol Hill, 1525 Melrose Ave.; 206.641.7646. 

5. The Teacher. They’ve given your kids the tools for success, so reward instructors with this adorable and versatile Kikkerland Animal Multi-tool ($20) from Flora and HenriPioneer Square, 401 First Ave. S; 206.749.9698.

6. The Traditionalist. Whether it’s grandma or your hipster niece, this clever set of The Letter Farmer’s Letter Topics writing prompts ($22) from their stationery truck are a letter writer’s dream—and they just might up your chances of getting real mail that isn’t a bill.

From left to right: Feller raincoat (Tereza Janakova), Not Monday cardigan (Darren Hendrix) and SCHAI Vita Snood (Charlie Shuck).

Fashion: Hers and His
For stylish men or women

Rain Gear
The “Queen Anne” waxed cotton and water-resistant trench ($495) by Seattle-based Feller adds a bit of cheer to the dreary season with a fresh floral pattern that compliments your best jeans and wellies.

Wrap Up
Seattle tee and sweater company Not Monday’s “The Weekend” cardigan ($350) is a dreamy blend of mercerized wool and cashmere that we can’t wait to fold ourselves into.

Neck Cozy
Designer and Seattleite Suk Chai of brand SCHAI offers polished, modern and versatile pieces for women, including this luxe alpaca “Vita Snood” ($295).

Photo by Angela Carlyle of Angela and Evan Photography

Dual Scent
What’s better than having one signature scent? Having two! Seattle area perfumier, Immortal Perfumes, has created romance in a bottle with the “Heathcliff & Catherine – Literary Lovers Set.” Heathcliff possesses darker notes of leather and chocolate, while Catherine’s notes are lighter with English Ivy and heather ($75).

Clockwise from top left: Photos courtesy of Tunellus, Dick’s Drive-In Restaurants, Woolly and Sharply.

Warm Up
Local brand Tunellus keeps things cozy and sophisticated with their speckled “Shawl Neck” cardigan ($99) available at Nordstrom. Multiple locations including downtown, 500 Pine St.; 206.628.2111

Seattleite Must
Guys, represent your favorite burger joint in a classic button down flannel ($39.99) that sports the orange and blue of Seattle establishment, Dick’s Drive-In.

Travel Time
A solid dopp kit is a must when traveling. Seattle company Sharply carries a number of quality goods for men, including this waxed canvas kit ($75) by Portland-based Wood & Faulk. Capitol Hill, 500 E Pike St.; 206.258.2881

In the Fold
Time to replace that velcro bill holder? Portland brand Woolly offers the sleek, handsewn leather “Landscape” wallet ($120) available at Seattle graphic design and apparel spot, Mystery Made. West Seattle, 2727 California Ave. SW

Clockwise from top left: SheePals courtesy of Bergström Studios, Seattle Ballooning, Lenna Peterson rug (photo by Brandon Herrell) and The Stemmery (photo by Sarah Abare).

Gifts for the special anybody in your life

Creature Feature
Sit back and put your feet up on these adorable Sheep Pals ($189) made from organic materials by Vashon-based artisans, Bergström Studios.

Up & Away
See Washington as you’ve never seen it before—from above! Choose from several gift certificate packages from Seattle Ballooning ($275-$1150) and float above the treetops towards Mt. Rainier. Burien, 16247 8th Ave SW; 206.588.9788

Flower Power
Give the gift of natural beauty this season with a subscription to The Stemmery, which delivers to Seattle, Kirkland and Bellevue. Go big with an Olympic Blooms bouquet (price varies based on delivery and frequency), featuring locally and seasonally sourced flora. 

Fabulous Floor
Seattleite Lenna Petersen weaves her one-of-a-kind rugs ($400-$1100) from the looms in her dining room, creating colorful geometric pieces that are also on display at Seattle boutique, Jack Straw, through December.

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