The Girl's Guide to DC
Issue 30: The Ultimate Girl's Gift Guide
I’m in your inbox early this week! Today’s Girl’s Guide is a little different — because it’s a gift guide! I interviewed three DMV-based shop owners, as well as compiled a “Gifts for Him” section. I hope you enjoy!
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In case you missed it, read last week’s interview with Ximena Barreto here!
The Girl’s Guide to Local Gifts
A very important holiday is upon us, and no, I’m not talking about Thanksgiving. IT’S BLACK FRIDAY!!! Skip the Amazon cart this year and support these DMV-based businesses instead.
For the girl who loves all things cottagecore
Any lady on your list would love Rachel Hankinson’s Etsy shop, which is based in northern Virginia! Make sure to check out her Instagram as well. I may or may not have already done some Christmas shopping of my own at her shop!
“So far, the most popular items this holiday season have been the teacup candles and resin bookmarks!” Rachel tells me. “I’m also working on some custom painted book stacks for Christmas commissions, which you can see pictures of on my Instagram!”
For the friend who loves statement earrings
I truly believe a girl can never have enough earrings, and Clara Johsens has got you covered in that department! Find Clara’s shop Clara Joh on Instagram and check out her website for Black Friday sales.
“Clara Joh is a small handmade jewelry business that features a unique combination of classic style with a bold, modern twist. Using handmade clay elements, freshwater pearls and occasional vintage components, the earrings and other accessories you'll find at Clara Joh will be the perfect addition to your outfit,” Clara says.
I love that she offers several collections at once so you can choose between funky or dainty, including pearls sourced from local sellers. Clara Joh also has a bridal collection.
“The Vermeer earrings are definitely my most popular pair! There are two options for the pearl — a beautiful peach color or an iridescent sea green. They're super classy and can be dressed up or down. Several people have worn them for their weddings but I also find myself throwing on a pair for a normal work day!” Clara says.
For anyone who believes home is where the heart is
Adriana Von Helms of Citrus & Pine Design creates custom watercolor paintings of homes. Just look at that attention to detail!
“Each of my house portraits is sketched in pencil, detailed in pen, and then washed in layers of watercolor,” Adriana says. “My 8x10-inch watercolored house portrait is my most popular item. Though the 11x14-inch size is not far behind!”
You can connect with Adriana on Instagram to see her paintings and place an order. This is such a great gift for anyone in your life who has put a lot of time into making their house feel like home!
For the woman who has it all together (or wants to)
You guys sent in a couple of great recommendations for DC-based paper product companies! The first is Jenni Bick Custom Journals, which has its flagship store in Dupont Circle. Find Jenni Bick on Instagram here. Founder Jenni Bick grew up in the suburbs of DC and attended American University — read this profile in The Washingtonian marking her return to DC to open the store in 2017.
“Literally a candy store for anyone who love stationery. They also do custom leather-bound journals,” reader Bailey Mailloux says.
“Appointed has THE BEST planners/stationary/writing tools. I'm a pretty big fan,” reader Rachel Clary says.
Let me know if you check out any of these shops for gifts this Christmas season!
The Girl’s Guide to Gifts for Him
You ladies sent in some great suggestions for gifts for the men in your lives! Skip the socks and ties this year and try out one of these gift suggestions:
For the brother who always wear the same sweatshirt
Slightly more elevated than a sweatshirt, but just as comfy. Orvis men’s flannel shirts are a steal at Costco right now — you can get red plaid for only $19.99. My husband Nick received a bunch of these as a gift, and I haven’t seen him wear anything else in weeks.
Warning: they run large! You may be able to find more colors in-store than online — Nick has red, green, and navy. He also loves the extra side pockets.
For the boyfriend who’s a golf aficionado
Winter may be putting a damper on every golfer’s weekend plans, but that doesn’t mean they have to put away those clubs till spring! Get your favorite golf aficionado a home putting green to practice on — like this one with three different cups from Dick’s Sporting Goods. H/t Meridian Baldacci
For the dad who can’t keep track of his keys
Whether you have an Apple or Android smartphone, the Tile device can help you keep track of your keys, phone, and more. Tile trackers ring when you’re trying to locate them as well as pop up on a map in the Tile app. Tile says to order by midnight on Dec. 12 for free shipping and on-time gift delivery.
For the husband who’s a coffee snob
Well, I wish I could get this for my coffee snob husband, but he already bought it for himself. The Cold Brew Kit from Blue Bottle Coffee (they have several locations throughout DC) is the perfect gift for someone who needs a caffeine IV drip to survive. Not to mention, it’s a pretty bottle that doesn’t look too bad on the counter, and the hand coffee grinder can be used for any purpose, not just cold brew.
The kit’s a little pricey (cost is $85 for bottle, grinder, and booklet), but Nick has used it everyday for the past six months, so it’s paid for itself many times over. Pair this kit with some whole beans from a local roaster like Small Planes Coffee, and your work is done!
For the man who has everything
So what do you get for the man in your life who already has everything? A tungsten cube, apparently.
What started as a trend among crypto bros is going mainstream. In case you’re wondering, tungsten is a super dense metal used as the filament in lightbulbs. How dense is super dense, you ask? A 14.5-inch tungsten cube weighs one ton. THAT’S 2,000 POUNDS, PEOPLE.
A one-centimeter tungsten cube from Midwest Tungsten Service will set you back $29.99, while a 2-inch cube will set you back $499.99 (luckily, there are many sizes in between). Truly a conversation piece — read this Insider story to learn more about the hype around tungsten cubes. H/t Saurabh Sharma
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Before You Go…
The holidays are approaching, and it’s easy to get caught up in the parties and presents and decorations. I’d love to highlight some worthy DC-based causes to donate your time and money to this Christmas season — please share your favorites with me by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org!