It’s that time of year again! Gift-giving season is soon upon us, and the options might seem endless. We’re here to help with brands that are small, sustainable, and making things that are both useful and beautiful.
Our gift edit showcases the best in fashion, design, beauty, and books, as well as ideas for those who want experiences rather than physical items, and organizations that need donations.
Whatever your gifting needs, we have you covered!
Here are the best presents to buy this season for your loved ones and yourself:
Gifts for People Who Love Design
A design classic designed in 1949 by Hans Wegner for Carl Hansen & Søn, the Wishbone Chair, also known as the Y Stole, is the perfect piece of Danish design. It’s comfortable, incredibly well-made, and will never go out of style. Whether you’re building up to a full set around the dining room table or want one as an accent chair, the Wishbone is a timeless, quality purchase of which design lovers will never tire.
Need a place to keep all of your tech items, such as chargers, headphones, wireless mouse, and so on? This tech kit is the answer. If you commute to an office but need to take your tech with you, or travel for work, or like to work remotely in different locations, this kit is a lifesaver. It’s big enough to hold everything but compact enough to fit into most bags and briefcases. Bellroy is an Australian B-corp brand that makes some of the best functional products around. They work, they last, they look great.
Bellroy Tech Kit 59€
Want a watch that’s both minimalist and unique? VEJRHØJ is the answer. The Danish brand brings together a steel frame with a wood face for a look that’s both sleek and organic.
Get 15% off your watch with the code SCANDI15 at checkout.
One of the original street style photographers, Søren Jepsen has made a name for himself as The Locals: all about local, authentic fashion wherever he goes. He also takes stunning travel photography.
Jepsen’s prints come in A4 and A3 sizes and are ideal for creating a calming, chic space. Don’t have any wall space left? Check out his card set; perfect for after-holiday thank you notes!
Carl Hansen & Søn Christmas Heart Ornament
Made from leftover wood used in their production facility, these Christmas Hearts (Julehjerter) by Danish furniture brand Carl Hansen & Søn are a charming and traditional Scandinavian Christmas ornament. These hearts are usually made from paper; the wood version will last much longer. It’s sure to become an ornament you hang in the home year after year.
Carl Hansen & Søn Christmas Heart Ornament, €37
SONOS is always finding new ways to help us live with music – in an aesthetically pleasing way, of course – and their portable speakers are no exception. The Move, which is the bigger of the portable options, looks as sleek and solid as their stationary items, but it’s also wireless and even water resistant, so it can join you outside. The speaker has 11 hours of battery life; definitely enough to make sure the party keeps going wherever you are.
SONOS Move Speaker, €399
Love cocktails but can’t be bothered with all the accoutrement (shakers, strainers, etc etc) and fancy bottles that go with them? Danish brand Aeris has you covered! They’re producing cocktails in beautiful, minimalist bottles so you just pour over ice, or freeze the bottle itself, and go. The bottles come in 100 ml. 200 ml, and 500 ml versions, so you can sip a single cocktail or share with friends. These are ideal for a dinner party when you want to impress but don’t have time to bartend.
The bottles can even be customized with names if you want a really thoughtful gift for the cocktail lover in your life. Being in an episode of Mad Men has never been easier!
Aeris Old Fashioned Bottled Cocktail from 10€ – 39€
Danish lighting brand Nuura has a tight, curated collection, and they highlight how a material change can make a big difference. Their classic Miira Table Lamp is now available in polished brass for a glamorous look. It’s a small lamp that gives a big impact thanks to its clean lights and strong but warm light.
Nuura Miira Table Lamp in Brass 350€
Love classic board games but hate how they look? You’re not alone! HAY, in collaboration with Swedish designer Clara von Zweigbergk, have created a series of reimagined board games, including yatzy, backgammon, and chess. Perfect for those cosy holiday nights with friends and family, and for introducing the classics to your kids!
HAY Play Backgammon 45€ | Yatzy 35€ | Chess 45€
There’s something very luxe about a high-quality candle with a delicate scent in beautiful packaging. That’s what you get with Amoln, the Swedish candle brand with distinctive, chic blue votives. All of the scents are special in their own way, but at this time of year we recommend Kassett, a blend of green foliage, Greek figs, and Icelandic wood.
Amoln Candles 65€
Get 15% off by using the code SCANDI at checkout.
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Gifts for People Who Love Fashion
Loafers are unisex shoes that suit every style, every outfit, every season. They’ve found their perfect form with Vinny’s, the Copenhagen-based brand founded by fashion expert Virgil Nicholas. A pair of Vinny’s loafers is an long-term investment; a purchase that will just get better with age and use.
Vinny’s Loafers from 215€ – 295€
Samsøe Samsøe Kylo Crew Neck Sweater
A thick, cream-colored sweater made from a cotton, wool, and cashmere blend. The ribbing throughout gives it a hearty texture that makes it the ideal warm layer for winter or fall. This piece is a classic, and thanks to the great quality, you’ll be wearing it for a long time.
Samsøe Samsøe Kylo Crew Neck Sweater, €140
We’ve sung the praises of Rains backpacks before and we remain convinced: these are the best and most stylish rain-proof backpacks around. There’s a number of styles, so find the one you think fits your personal style best.
Rains Backpacks, from €76
Looking for a different kind of stylish Scandi backpack? We’ve got your back (literally). Find more here.
Socks on a gift guide? Look, everyone needs socks, so why not get them GREAT socks? Swedish brand Socksss makes socks that look fantastic and will last for years. Literal years. From experience: Socksss socks don’t lose their color, shape, or thickness for a remarkably long time. They can be worn through the seasons thanks to a thick sole. If you’re gonna go with socks for a present, go with these socks.
The Karla Bag has been a mainstay for Marimekko for years, but the latest iteration is ideal as an evening or formal bag.
The chain is strong but gives the bag a more delicate look, while the bag itself is still big enough to fit all your essentials (plus a burrito, of course). The Karla is high-quality, stylish, and a little funky.
Marimekko Pikku Karla Chain Bag 222€
Paula Maso launched Quinta Maso with the idea of creating timeless, high-quality scarves that draw on her experience as a textile designer. The result is a gorgeous fabric that can make any outfit look chic. They come in stunning, Klein blue gift boxes that make them ideal as presents.
Imagine just melting into a fluffy, cozy bathrobe after stepping out of a steaming shower or sauna. Tekla’s bathrobes are thick, hearty, and absorbent – plus they look great. They’ll last for years to come and make every single shower, bath, or swim into a slightly more joyful experience.
Tekla Fabrics Bathrobe from 160€ – 180€
Who doesn’t love a good sweatsuit? We may be heading back into the office soon, but evenings, weekends, and lazy holiday mornings are still
Colorful Standard Sweatsuits from 60€
Get 15% off your order by using the code SCANDI at checkout. This offer is good until 31st December 2021.
Danish sustainable clothing brand Organic Basics makes a lovely selection of basics including activewear, swimwear, sweatpants, and more. They have a number of “bundle” options that put a few items together with a discounted cost. Get a full sweatsuit, hat and scarf pack, or even a bunch of boxers. Get a little bang for your buck!
Organic Basics Organic Cotton Complete Pack 93€
Get 10% off your order by using the code SCANDINAVIA10 at checkout.
Corali is a Danish jewelry brand focused on local, ethical production. Their pieces have fluid sculptural quality that makes it feel more like wearing a work of art than a piece of jewelry. The Frida Earrings in sterling silver are simple enough to wear every day but eye-catching enough to feel special. These are timeless, stunning, and a lifetime investment.
Corali Jewelry Frida Earrings 295€
A boot that is useful for hiking, city walking, inclement weather, and everyday wear, the La Fighetta boot has a calfskin lining that makes it breathable and even suitable for summertime. The quality and timeless look make this a pair of boots you’ll have for years to come. You’ll want to be in-the-know about this emerging Italian brand before it’s sold out everywhere!
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Gifts for People Who Love Beauty
Colekt x Polite Worldwide Wellness Ritual Set
California-based made-to-order fashion and accessories brand Polite Worldwide has teamed up with Stockholm-based skincare brand Colekt to create a gorgeous ritual set, including a scented candle, luxurious facial mist, and a hand-painted bag. The candle’s fragrance has notes of acacia, lavandin, orris and amber. The facial mist combines elder tree and seaweed for a hydrating, soothing mist that also protects against pollutants. As with all Colekt products, these are vegan. Want a spa experience at home? This is for you!
Colekt x Polite Worldwide Wellness Ritual Set, €256
Maria Nila Stockholm The Caring Mind Gift Set
Maria Nila Stockholm has made a name for itself as a salon-quality brand that’s also vegan, cruelty free, and affordable for the quality. Their Caring Mind Gift Set includes the Head & Hair Heal shampoo and conditioner – both of which nourish both hair and scalp during these dry winter months – and the Cream Heat Spray, a leave-in treatment that protects hair from heat while repairing damage such as split ends.
Maria Nila Stockholm The Caring Mind Gift Set, €54
Made by Stockholm-based Eyes of the Mind, Spiritual Stashbox includes a number of items that are rooted in a variety of traditional rituals and ceremonies. There is Paolo Santo, white sage, incense, an abalone shell, and a beeswax candle. All items are meticulously sustainably and ethically sourced. This is a great gift for someone moving into a new space!
Eyes of the Mind Spiritual Stashbox 65€
This dual hydrating spray set includes rose for the day and lavender for the night. Extremely useful for keeping skin hydrated during the day and soothed at night. Expert tip: keep the lavender spray next to your bed and give your pillow an extra spray before sleep.
The Witchery CPH products are all organic, vegan, cruelty-free, and beautifully packaged.
The Witchery CPH Organic Rose and Lavender Hydrosol Set 40€
With their playful motto “bottling counter-culture,” 19-69 perfume is all about creating unexpected by engaging scents that play on our emotions, nostalgia, and sense of fun. We recommend “Orange Kush,” a collaboration with Palm Angels that recalls the early days of skateboarding with notes of hemp (duh), sweet orange, and tangerine blossom. Need a night-out scent? Go for “Rainbow Bar,” a 1980s sweaty glam rock explosion with notes of bergamot and bourbon.
Is your skin parched this time of year? Woods Copenhagen has a starter kit to get hydrated again, and stay that way through the winter. This kit includes a cleanser, serum, and cream, all packed with ingredients such as aloe vera, carrageenan, and sea buckthorn.
Woods Copenhagen Dry Skin Starter Kit 128€
Five makeup brushes (one is double-sided, so six really) in a gorgeous red vegan leather clutch. These are the kind of brushes you’ll use often if you wear makeup daily, and the case makes them easy to travel with as well as the store at home.
Kjaer Weis Beauty Clutch 167€
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Gifts for People Who Love Books
An exploration of Black womanhood in both the American and Swedish contexts – and how these contexts differ from one another – this novel by Lola Ákínmádé Åkerström tells the story of three Black women as they interact with a white Swedish man and navigate the supposedly progressive society of Sweden.
American, UK-based writer Aja Barber has been writing and speaking about injustice in the fashion industry for a long time, and we’re so glad her much-anticipated book is finally here. In it, Barber highlights the both the ways in which the fashion industry creates layer after layer of inequality, as well as how we can best understand our role as consumers (including why we feel we need to consume all the time!). This is a must-read for understanding what “sustainable fashion” really means.
Consumed: The Need for Collective Change:
Colonialism, Climate Change, and Consumerism 15€
Colonialism, Climate Change, and Consumerism 15€
Re-released from its original publication in 2002, Paris Living Rooms is a photo series by photographer Dominique Nabakov highlighting interesting Parisian interiors from the early 2000s. For those who like a little voyeuristic look into other people’s homes, this is for you!
Apartmento Paris Living Rooms 39€
Slippurinn, a restaurant located in the Westman Islands of Iceland, has become a culinary destination thanks to the work of chef Gisli Matt. This book dives into his knowledge of and passion for traditional Icelandic recipes, as well as stories about the restaurant and Matt’s gastronomical direction, which is truly unique.
This book, by Katrine Martensen-Larsen and Mikkel Adsbøl, explores the relationship between artist’s process and how people live with the work of those artists. There are profiles of ten contemporary Danish artists, and then home tours of art collectors who have a piece by the profiled artist. It’s a fascinating look at the space between how the art gets made and where it ends up. As for interior art inspiration; it is plentiful, with lots of different home styles, from bright and busy to strictly minimalist.
Living with Art, €68
Looking to go plant-based but aren’t sure where to begin with your meals? This book offers easy-to-make plant-based recipes to help you “nudge your way towards healthier and more sustainable food habits.”
In addition to tasty recipes, the book offers loads of information about how food production affects our planet. It’s a non-judgemental look at why living plant-based may be beneficial to you and the environment.
This book of letters, by Denmark-based author Lesley-Ann Brown, is written to her Danish son. They’re a tender look at what a mother longs to communicate to her child about her own life, as well as anecdotes that delve into racism, colonialism, immigration, and divorce. There’s nothing prescriptive here; it’s a life told in letters, almost a diary.
Written by American Vogue fashion writer Christian Allaire, this book is all about how style and fashion can be used to communicate community and cultural power. Allaire, who is First Nations (Ojibwe), takes the reader through topics as varied as men’s heels, hijabs, and ribbon shirts. The book is full of great pictures, is easy to read and reference, and makes it clear that fashion is truly for everyone – today and historically. This book would be great for a young adult or teen interested in fashion, design, or style.
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Gifts for People Who Want an Experience
Know someone who loves music? Why not get them tickets to their favorite festival? FestTicket provides tickets for music festivals all over the world. You can search by country, by festival, or by artist.
Want to learn a new online skill, such as building your website or making video content? Ilovecreatives is the place for you! With courses hosted by the tremendously talented and funny Puno, these courses are worthwhile for the actionable skills they offer; you will walk away feeling you’ve really gained something, and you’ll have fun in the process.
Hey Captain Gift Card
Let a loved one play at being Captain and take to the seas (Copenhagen’s canals) with a Hey Captain gift card. The receiver can choose from a public or private tour, opting to sail past landmarks, hidden gems, or just to float along Copenhagen’s waterways on a long summer’s day – though a winter trip is just as enjoyable, as the company provide blankets and hot drinks for a true hyggligt experience.
Hey Captain Gift Card from 200 DKK | €26
Choose from a range of expert-level teachers in specific topics, such as Danny Elfman teaching Music for Film. Some of these classes are better than others, so be sure to read some reviews before you commit to a class!
Masterclass from 16€
Gifts that Give Back
If you’d rather show you care by donating money to a worthy cause, there are plenty of organizations and individuals that need donations.
GiveDirectly’s purpose is right there in the name. The organization enables people to give directly to those in poverty so that those who receive can choose how to use the money for themselves.
This has been proven to be one of the fastest and long-lasting ways of reducing poverty and is based on the idea that those living in poverty know best what they need.
MSF is working to reduce suffering in disaster and conflict zones.
Planned Parenthood provides reproductive health care and education for women at the community level. It is particularly important to donate now, when reproductive health care is under attack in the United States.
Happy Holidays, Scandiphiles! We hope everyone has a happy and healthy festive season.
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