25 Answers To Your Question
A cheat sheet for stumped holiday shoppers
You’ve got one month before Christmas. Hannukah will be upon you even sooner. Not religious? As if that will help you decide what gifts to buy for whom this year.
We’re here to help. If you can’t find something for anyone in this list of 25, can’t-miss gifts, why then turn the page. It’s AV’s Annual Gift Guide, and there are dozens more ideas ahead to help you navigate the holiday season.
City Hall Snow Globe
Back by popular demand. This handsome bit of tchotchke sold out by word of mouth alone in 2007. Last year’s installment in the series was the Richardson Towers, and in January there will be Botanical Society snow globe. Available for $50 at www.avalonsacrves.com, the Floristry (1385 Delaware Avenue), the Burchfield Penney Art Center gift shop, the Gift Loft at Main Place Mall. the Teddy Roosevelt Inaugural Site (641 Delaware Avenue), the Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society, and Gilda’s Club Holiday Open Studios (1140 Delaware Avenue, December 4-5, 11am-6pm)—where you’ll find lots of other swell gifts, too. Batteries included.
A Rakish Hat
Just $12 for this stylish red herringbone buckle cap? Come on. Find it at Cats Like Us (67 Main Street, Tonawanda, 694-6600 / www.catslikeus.com), which is a treasure trove of cool rockabilly and retro clothing and accessories. Tonawanda’s is becoming an increasingly groovy place to shop and hang out, too; you’re guaranteed to find more gifts nearby.
A Basket Full of Buffalo Stuff
Folks come into town for the holidays and they want to take some Buffalo memorabilia back to Phoenix, Charlotte, Houston—wherever. You can tool all around town, picking up stuff piecemeal, or you can run down to Jabco General Store at the Broadway Market and load up on local foods food, baseball caps, and t-shirts, as well as cool retro toys and novelties.
A Nice Watch
How about the Bulova Precisionist? They say it’s the world’s most accurate quartz watch, and it’s certainly handsome. Just $300 at Abraham’s Jewelers (798 Elmwood Avenuw, 873-0734).
Tree of Life Ties
For the man who likes to wear a little Buffalo history to work. Features Wright’s celebrated Tree of Life art glass pattern from the Darwin Martin House. Available at the Wisteria Shop at Frank Lloyd Wright’s Martin House Complex (125 Jewett Parkway, 856.3858) or online at www.darwinmartinhouse.org.
Living and working in Buffalo, Chelsea Victoria’s photography has a light, dreamy quality with an air of mystery. She manages to transform a familiar place or object into something otherworldly through her use of muted tones and deliberate focusing. One of her prints would be perfect for sprucing up a dingy hallway or low-lit bedroom. She is offering a buy one, get one free sale until December 25 and there are a large variety of photos to choose from. The Winter’s Lullaby ($20) captures the beauty of winter snow. The Escape From Reality 2011 Mini Desk Calendar ($10) can be an artful addition for someone who has a desk that could use some livening up. Chelsea Victoria Photography: www.etsy.com/shop/ChelseaVictoria.
A Day on the Barricades
You know that friend who marches in every antiwar protest, who writes endless letters to her elected representatives, who plants trees in the city’s blight-stricken neighborhoods? Your gift to her this year should be solidarity: Tell her you’ll stand with her and the other Women in Black at Elmwood and Bidwell one Saturday this winter, or ladle soup with her at Friends of the Night People—any civic-minded activity. Then take her out to dinner to thank her for her unyielding dedication.
An Electric Guitar Package
The good folks at Allentown Music (1113 Elmwood Avenue, 883-2341) have a deal that will outfit the budding rocker on you gift list: This $180 package includes an Indiana IE1 Electric guitar, a Sundown Rover 15 amp, a gig bag, cable, guitar stand, picks, and an instructional DVD.
2011 Certain Days: Freedom for Political Prisoners Calendar
Inspiration for the activist on your gift list comes in the form of the Certain Days Collective’s annual calendar, which features stries and artwork about this country’s many political prisoners. You can find one at El Buen Amigo (114 Elmwood), Rust Belt Books (202 Allen Street), or Talking Leaves Books (951 Elmwood Ave, 3158 Main Street) for just $12. Or you can call Nate Buckley at 886-0544 and get one for $10.
A Couples Massage
Here’s a nice way to unwind once the holiday merry-go-round has ended. Book a relaxing, 70-minute massage for two, on side-by-side tables. At the Mssage Studio (181 Allen Street at Elmwood, 870-0240), they’ll throw in scented oil aromatherapy and hot stone therapy at no additional cost. Good for you and your partner or for another couple.
Need to take some relatives on a field trip this holiday season? Take them to visit the Graycliff Estate, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright (6472 Old Lake Shore Road, Derby). While you;re there, stop in at the Graycliff Gift Shop and knock a couple of gifts off your list: The pattern for Graycliff China, made exclusively for Graycliff by Buffalo China, is adapted from Wright’s stunning design for Graycliff’s signature Diamond Window.
Lisa Joy Freedenberg scours Buffalo’s thrift shops and charity shops to offer the best in best vintage shoes and bags. Check out the navy and white wingtip Leon David’s pumps for $23 or the tan western cowboy boots made in Romania for $32. These would be the perfect gift for someone who is environmentally conscious and strives to reuse or a fashionista who doesn’t have the time to shop vintage. At Liza Zain’s Vintage Shoe Love: www.etsy.com/shop/lisazain.
Irish Classical Tickets
Get tickets to any of the four shows remaining in the Irish Classical Theater’s season—Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, The Mandrake, Shining City, and The Playboy of the Western World—at bargain prices: four tickets for $100 (a saving of $68) or three tickets for $85 (a saving of $41). You can use the tickets to see any show or cobination of shows you’d like. The gift is twofold, supporting the arts and treating your loved ones to some of the best theater in town. Call the Irish’s Holiday Hotline for more information: 853-ICTC.
Buffalo History Calendar
The folks at www.BuffaloHistory.com have published a handsome calendar this year, featuring images of the city’s bustling waterfront in its heyday, its iconic architecture, its once teeming Main Street. A great stocking stuffer or office gift. Pick them up at Poster Art (1055 Elmwood Avenue, 883-3034).
Have Tea, Will Travel
A must have for this holiday season is the tea wallet, sold exclusively at Tealeafs Tea & Gift Shop (499 West Klein Road/Hopkins-Klein Plaza, 688-8022). With multiple compartments to fit your tea and sweeteners, the Tea wallet folds and snaps together to fit in your handbag or pocket. Fill with teabags or your favorite loose tea. Tea wallets are exactly what the discriminating tea drinker needs: a neat way to carry those special teas with you.
Cocktail Glasses for Mad Men
Are you sick of hard-edged modern furniture and cheaply made department store clothes? Go vintage with Rust Belt Threads, which offers an eclectic collection of hand-picked vintage clothing, barware, and home décor. Whether you’re shopping for your favorite domestic goddess or a hipster who just got a new apartment, check out the vintage brass deer figurines with fur and spotted detail for $110. The vintage 1960s raspberry and black wool coat for $78 will be much appreciated by any Buffalonian gearing up for winter and hoping to avoid the puffy coat look. Shopping for a Mad Men fan? The 1950s aqua and gold spruce pinecone cocktail glasses for $26 are festive and functional. Rust Belt Threads: www.etsy.com/shop/RustBeltThreads.
A Meeting With Santa
Santa and his reindeer are annual visitors to Niagara Hobby and Craft Mart (3366 Union Road, 681-1666 / www.niagarahobby.com). Santa, one of his elves, and their real live reindeer welcome children and pets in a rare, 1949, 29-ton red caboose, where each child receives a special gift packet. There is no cost to see Santa, his elf, and his reindeer, and no cost for the photograph. Saturdays and Sundays, 11am-4pm, through December 19.
Send the Kids to Summer Camp
You’re going to send them anyway, right? It’s already in the budget, right? So why not present the kids with two weeks at Ska-No-Ka-San or Seneca Lake or Forrestel Farm Camp. If that’s not in the budget, maybe some tennis lessons at the park. Wrap up the reservation with an appropriate accessory—a riding crop, a racket, a high-powered flashlight, a case of Snickers bars to use as currency—and Bob’s your uncle.
In an age of virtual e-cards and generic greeting cards, the high quality of letterpress stationery stands out. French Press (2495 Main Street, Suite 507) designs and prints their stationery, posters, cards and more in Buffalo using vintage presses from 1964, 1921, and the 1890s. They also offer letterpress printing workshops. The French Press Etsy shop offers a selection of holiday cards for $5 each, which will send your holiday greetings with a touch of class. Or you could get straight to the point and give your current crush “You Rock” coasters. See more on their websites: www.frenchpressonline.com and www.etsy.com/shop/FrenchPress.
A Year's Worth of Glamour Shots
The photo session for your customized Boudoir Photo Calendar takes place in the privacy of Spoil Me Silly Studio where your hair, makeup, wardrobe will be styled by a professional artist and you’ll work with photographers who understand how to capture a women at her best. Call now for special holiday rates! Spoil Me Silly Studio is inside the Eastern Hills Mall: 634-7459, spoilmesilly.net.
Care for the Caregivers
We all know someone who is caring for an elderly or infirm loved one. Giving is a year-round daily act of love that inspires and enervates caregivers. Here is one way to give love and strength back to them: tai chi classes. Tai chi is a gentle physical exercise that can be done both sitting and standing, using the breath and physical movements to promote calmness and harmony. Those who offer care and those who receive it can benefit in ways that not only promote health but alter the care giving relationship through increased strength and calmness. Very importantly, it has been shown to decrease falls, the bête noir that threatens everyone’s independence and wellness. Often, caregivers are seeking activities to share with their loved ones—tai chi is ideal in that people in almost all stages of fitness can participate and enjoy the enhanced wellbeing it brings. Help a caregiver you know move through this journey.
A Rock Show Poster
Do you have a friend that just won’t shut up about the Broken Social Scene show at Town Ballroom? Get thee to Western New York Book Arts Center (468 Washington at Mohawk, 348-1430 / www.wnybookarts.org) and, for just $20, pick up a two-color letterpress poster, hand-carved and hand-printed. You’ll find lots of excellent gifts at WNYBAC, as a matter of fact, and you might be tempted to pick up a couple tickets to their New Year’s Even fundraising gala. It’s the perfect place to watch the ball drop from the Electric Tower.
Shoes: One Pair for You, One Pair for the Needy
Here’s a charitable donation that will give succor to your loved one’s aching dogs: Pick up a comfy pair of Tom’s Shoes, and the company will donate a new pair to a child in need, one for one. Locally available at ShoeFly (801 Elmwood Avenue).
A Little Night Necklace
Buffalo artist Kathi Roussel’s jewelry and other handmade objects can be found in shop and gallery display cases across the region. (They also, of course, hang from the ears and drape around the necks of thousands of stylish men and women in Western New York and beyond.) We like this La Nuit Bellflower Necklace, pictures on Roussel’s Etsy page: www.etsy.com/shop/kathiroussel.
Bowl 'Em Over
Erin Lynne Meissner graduated from Alfred University with a bachelor degree in fine arts. She moved back to Buffalo to be near family, friends, and the strong community of crafters and artists. She designs her ceramic bowls with balanced text and illustration to create whimsical and personal pieces. Each bowl is handmade and unique. The adorable Winter Birdie Bowl for $18 will remind the recipient of cold weather along with a warm and fuzzy feeling. Besides the ready-made bowls, Meissner also takes custom orders that can be personalized.Elm Studios: www.etsy.com/shop/elmstudiosonline.blog comments powered by Disqus
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