StoryWorth makes it easy and fun for family members to share stories with loved ones, with weekly emailed story prompts — questions you’ve never thought to ask. I can’t wait to read my dad’s answers!
Cozy Minimalist Home
Cozy Minimalist Home by Myquillyn Smith isn’t about going without or preferring a modern style. Nope. It’s simply a mindset that helps you get whatever style YOU LOVE with the fewest possible items. Right now, buy the book and get her free winter class + Lindsay Letters printable! Pair this with a simple blanket.
The Year of Living Happy
“How would your life be different if you were just a bit happier every day for a year? What would you do to enjoy life just a little more day by day?” That’s the premise behind this latest (beautiful!) book by Alli Worthington, where she encourages us that we are allowed to be happy — with devotions, lovely art, and journaling pages throughout.
Stretched Too Thin
If you’ve got a working mom on your list, this book is just the thing to encourage her — Jessica Turner encourages her fellow working mamas how to establish boundaries, let go of the guilt, discover more flexibility, and more. Depending on the woman, this could pair well with either a Skillshare membership (get 3 months for $.99 with the code SIMPLE) or a bath + body kit.
The Ministry of Ordinary Places
With heart-tugging transparency, humor, storytelling, and personal confession, Shannan Martin’s The Ministry of Ordinary Places reminds us that no matter where we live or how much we have, as we learn to be with people, we’ll find our lives. Pair this with a thrift store vintage mug.
The Grace of Enough
In The Grace of Enough, Haley (from the pod!) shares how a year-long internship on a sustainable farm changed her family’s life for the better. She identifies values that create ripple effects of grace that help overcome the effects of our “throwaway” culture. Pair with seed bombs or small batch coffee!
Before he inspired the world with Hamilton, Lin-Manuel Miranda was inspiring his Twitter followers with words of encouragement at the beginning and end of each day, and as his audience grew, these messages took on a life on their own. Jonny Sun has an equally inspiring feed, filled with his whimsical artistry — now they’ve partnered with G’Morning, G’Night!
The Complete Calvin & Hobbes
Great for kids and adults alike (one of my kids taught himself to read with these), this Complete Calvin and Hobbes Collection includes on all their adventures in a four-volume set — every comic strip from the comic strip’s eleven-year history (1985 to 1996).
Book of the Month Club
The gift they get to pick! Let them choose their favorite books, every month. I’ve found a few hidden gems this way!
Clothing & Shoes
Who doesn’t love a set of matching jammies? Loved by kids and adults all over the world, Hanna Andersson’s legendary organic cotton knit, smooth seaming, and hand-me-down quality means that 50 washes from now these jammies come from the dryer happy as ever.
Classic slippers never go out of style and they last forever; Sorel crafts ethically-made quality shoes (Kyle especially likes their hiking boots). Their Manawan slippers are lined with wool, have a supple sweded upper, and their natural rubber outsole makes them outdoor enough to get the mail or chase the dog. Pair this with some grooming supplies they’d never buy themselves.
Here’s another shoe I fell in love with this year — I can walk miles in Rothy’s flats; they’re the perfect shoe for all day wear, especially for work or date nights. Made from recycled water bottles, knit by machine, crafted by hand.
Jewelry & Accessories
Copper & Leather Earrings Set
This is your everyday go-to set because they go with just about everything: the raw, hammered copper hoops and distressed leather loops from Happy Little Lovelies. Nickel-free and stress-free. (I have several of their pieces & I love them!) Use the code SIMPLEGIFT for 15% off thru 1/6/19.
Mini Emily Cowhide Clutch
These wrist bags combine the classic look of a clutch with the convenience of a strap to carry it. From Created Beautifully, it fits easily in a tote bag for day, then seamlessly to night on its own. Use the code simplybeautiful20 for 20% off from 11/26-12/31 (good only on this specific wrist bag).
The circle in this Kind Karma Necklace represents the cycle of giving and receiving, which Kind Karma believes can change society; when we help others, we create a better world — which benefits not only us, but also our descendants and their peers. (This sweet necklace is on my wish list.) Use the code SIMPLE15 to get 15% off through 12/31/18.
Morse Code Bracelet
Each of these morse code bracelets spells out a different word by using small gold-filled beads to recreate the combination of dots and dashes — choose between love, hope, courage, strength, and kindness, or create a personalized bracelet with a custom word! Fun way to personalize jewelry without being too literal. Use the code SIMPLE15 to get 15% off through 12/31/18.
Food & Drink
Iva Jean's Fudge
Iva Jean’s Fudge is made with only the best ingredients, using organic and locally-sourced products whenever possible. Made by the nicest lady, we’ve had the cappuccino and salted pecan pumpkin fudge, but our absolute favorite is the brown sugar bourbon.
Salt + Cellar
For the burgeoning cook on your list, this pound of salt is harvested fresh from the ocean and sun-dried on Bailey Island, Maine; its crisp and unique flavor comes from the mineral-rich saline waters of the Gulf of Maine (from Food52). Add a set of tabletop salt cellars and pair it with a new classic book on cooking.
Phlur's Hanami Fragrance
If you listen to the podcast, you know how much I love Phlur and all they put out in the world. Hanami is their most minimalist scent, perfect for gift-giving. Inspired by cherry blossom viewing festivals in Japan, this new-to-me edition of Phlur is next on my to-try list — their 50 ml fragrance bottles are all I wear (no exaggeration).
Phlur's Body Wash & Lotion
Akamai Essentials Kit
Multipurpose, non-toxic essentials for clean and healthy teeth, skin, and hair, from Akamai, one of my favorite brands. Use the code simple10 to get 10% off any item — one per customer, one-time purchase or subscription order, no expiration.
Harry's Shave Set
You’ve heard me talk about Harry’s on the podcast; they’re a fantastic company that makes fantastic shaving products. They’ve got a wide variety of gift sets, like the Winston, where you can add engraving. Good for women, too (my daughter and I both use Harry’s products!). Use the code SIMPLE for $5 off any shave set.
Monks are the most productive people in the world, and they know that productivity isn’t about doing more things, it’s doing the most important things well. The Monk Manual provides a practice of daily habits designed to help people mirror core qualities of the monk in their everyday lives (like gratitude, awareness, and intentional action), along with getting their stuff done. I’ve been using mine for about a month, and I love it. Pairs well with a hammock.
If you listen to the podcast, you know how much I love Phlur and all they put out in the world. And they have candles! With its subtle, warm embrace, the Annica candle is designed for tranquility when calm is required. An interpretation of their Hanami fragrance, Annica echoes Hanami’s minimalist sensibility, sharing notes of fig, white florals, hazelnut and sandalwood. I’m so eager to try this.
Wood Laptop Lap Desk
A handmade, portable desk that makes working from home even better. Includes an extended display dock for phones and tablets, complete with a cable slot for just about any phone or tablet. Ventilation holes cools down laptops; any remaining heat is absorbed within the natural bamboo. Pairs well with a soulful journal and good pen.
Geometric Air Plants
These geometric planters are the perfect home for easy-to-care-for ionantha air plants, from Airplant Design Studio. Made from sustainable and biodegradable plastic material, these small planters are a lovely accent for a desk at the office or a shelf at home. Planters measure about 2.5 inches high, about 2.5 inches wide, and come as a set of three, including the plants.
Toys, Games, & Fun
It’s a gift subscription for your dog and/or dog fan! Every BarkBox has at least two innovative toys, two all-natural bags of treats, and a chew, curated from each month’s unique themed collection. Ginny, our family dog, loved hers.
I know, this is a bit of a throwback, but I got this for myself recently, and it’s legit fun! And I’m excited to have a painting done by myself to hang on my wall. For the budding artist in all of us, this paint by number kit includes brushes, acrylic paints, a 20×16 pre-printed canvas, instructions, and a magnifying glass.
World Map Coloring Tablecloth
Little Loving Hands Subscription Box
Love the idea of subscription boxes but wish you could share your child’s creation for a greater good (besides clutter)? Each Little Loving Hands box focuses on a different charitable cause your child can support by making fun crafts, then donating them as gifts. They enjoy the activity while learning about giving!
Board games make a great family-wide game. In 7 Wonders, you’re the leader of one of the seven great cities of the Ancient World. Gather resources, develop commercial routes and affirm your military supremacy; build your city and erect an architectural wonder that’ll transcend the future. Pair with popcorn & bowl.
Bluetooth-Enabled Record Player
This three-speed turntable plays vinyl records on surprisingly good speakers; the built-in Bluetooth wirelessly plays music from any enabled device (no cords needed) — it’s the best of both worlds. The vintage portable suitcase design looks cool on a countertop, yet closes up to a portable music device that’s under 3 pounds.
Modeled in the spirit of those used to crack codes during radio shows of the golden era, this modern, secret decoder ring lets amateur ciphers test their knack for code-breaking. Friends and siblings will have a blast taking turns leaving coded notes for each other to figure out.
A simple but durable headlamp makes a great stocking stuffer for everyone — they’re useful for camping, yes, but also exercise, exploring, and my favorite — reading in bed. Foxelli makes an affordable classic headlamp in a variety of colors — and it takes normal batteries!
Single Station Radio
Sure, this is a bit luddite, but there’s something sweet about the simplicity here. This Mason jar radio is pre-tuned to one station of choice (think of it as a public radio machine). The uncomplicated, cordless unit fits anywhere; just add two AA batteries and attach the antenna for over 30 hours of listening.
Spread the beauty of wildflowers with these regionally-based seed bombs. With 16 native wildflowers, seed bombs make adding color and life to a yard or neighborhood easy and low maintenance. From Department of Everyday, they’ve got seedbombs for all sorts of places: the Southwest, Pacific Northwest, East Coast, and more.
This is the travel blanket for the frequent traveler on your list: use it as a scarf, lower it to a wrap, drop it all the way down to a blanket, does your taxes, cleans your kitchen. It’s almost that versatile.
Leather Key Holder
Keep pockets a minimalist space with a leather key holder — comes with free personalization, if you want. This is a great hard-guy-to-buy-for gift!
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(Psst… Want more ideas? You might also want to try our Ethical Shopping Guide.)