Since we are in the very midst of the holiday season, with Christmas being just over a week away, many have their gift shopping over and done with. I, on the other hand, am not one of these people. Although I have 80% of my shopping done, I have a couple more left to go and hope to get that done within the next few days. I also know a few individuals that are only halfway done or have yet to start. If you fall into this latter category then keep on reading, because this post is dedicated to all of you last-minute shoppers! Whatever your budget may be, here is a list of awesome gift ideas to help with your last-minute decision-making and shopping.
*FYI: For online orders, the date to purchase items by in order for you to receive them on time is getting close or is today! I will do my best to highlight the holiday shipping dates below, but for those I don’t, please check with them before placing your order. Remember: T-7 days until December 24 and t-8 days until December 25th! *
Ideas for your Stylish Friends:
Tuckshop Trading Co. City of Neighbourhoods Toques
Available at: TuckShopCo.com
Tuckshop Trading Co’s “City of Neighbourhoods” toque collection is a must-have (or a must-give?) for all the proud Torontonians on your list. The collection includes a “Toronto” toque as well as others emblazoned with the names of different local neighbourhoods. Not only cute, but definitely useful during this super cold season! Just an FYI, a few of the toques, including the popular Queen West and Kensington versions, are sold out online. But not to worry, because if you check out their website, they have loads of other cute Ontario-made products. On there, you can also find a list of shops in Toronto that carry their products!
Holiday Shipping Info: Orders are fulfilled within 48 hours and all shipments are sent via Canada Post. Local delivery is 1-2 days. Place orders on or before December 19th to ensure delivery before Christmas.
Warby Parker Gift Cards
Available at: WarbyParker.com
Price: $50, $95 or $150
What better way to celebrate the season of giving than this! By purchasing a Warby Parker gift card for your awesome bespectacled friend (*cough* hint for my friends *cough*) not only are you giving them a gift that they will actually use, but you will also be giving them a chance to do a good deed. This is because for every pair of glasses sold, another pair is provided to someone in need. Also, when you purchase a physical gift card, a “Make-a-Snowman kit” is included. Yup, that’s right, I said snowman (you’re never too old for such things!). All the necessary tools – the carrot nose and coal for the eyes (NOT a real carrot or real coal) as well as buttons – are all included. Gift cards are also available in digital form, if you choose to go that route, and your gift recipient will receive the email with the gift code on whatever day you choose. PS. Tell whoever you are giving card to (OR if you wear glasses yourself and are in need of new ones) to check out their rustic yet modern Winter Collection. It’s pretty darn cool. Now that I’ve started wearing glasses again, I may just place an order myself!
Holiday Shipping Info: This info is for physical gift cards only, NOT glasses or sunglasses orders. Purchase a physical gift card no later than December 19 to ensure delivery by Christmas Day. Digital gift card orders can be placed up until the day of.
Ideas for the Girly-Girl:
Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette (as well as Naked and Naked 2)
Available at: Sephora and Sephora.com
This eye shadow palette collection is a hit at Sephora. Every time a new palette is introduced, it’s a sell-out (but they, surprisingly, have them in stock at the moment) and is one of the most popular Urban Decay products. The older eye shadows of the collection; the original Naked palette, as well as Naked 2 are still available as well. This one, Naked 3, is just the newest addition to the Urban Decay shadow palette family and is composed of rose-hued neutrals. This would definitely make a great gift for the makeup lover on your list.
Holiday Shipping Info: Order by December 17 at noon PST for express shipping (for Canada only) on Sephora.com.
Sally Hansen Gem Crush Nail Polish
Available at: Target, Walmart, Shoppers Drug Mart
Price: $6 to $9 (depending on the store) *
I just added this because I’m completely in love with this collection. I’m always skeptical when it comes to nail colours that have any sort of glitter to them, because more often than not, they end up being watery and more suitable as a top coat. I find Sally Hansen’s Gem Crush polishes thicker than others I’ve tried, although it still takes 2 to 3 coats to get the full effect. But, the overall effect is so much better than any other glitter colours I’ve used. They’re super sparkly and great for the holiday season, for any special occasion or just whenever you feel like dressing your nails up a bit! I haven’t tried it as a top coat, but I hear that they look amazing over black nail polish. There are a total of eight colours that are part of this collection. I’ve tried most of them, but have only actually purchased a red shade, called “Cha-Ching!” and my favourite of the moment, and the one I’ve been wearing ALL the time lately, “Big Money,” which is glittery golden goodness (I’m lame, I know). This also makes a great stocking stuffer!
*They are the least expensive at Target!
Ideas for the Arts & Culture Aficionado:
National Ballet of Canada
Available at: The National Ballet of Canada box office or online at national.ballet.ca
Why not get the ballet fanatic a 2013/2014 season subscription to The National Ballet of Canada? If that’s out of your budget, how about a pair of tickets to a single performance! The Nutcracker, a seasonal favourite, is currently underway. Many pre-Christmas performances are sold-out, but there’s still time to get tickets for a post-Christmas (runs until January 4, 2014) outing to watch this ever-popular ballet. I’ve seen it a few times, and it’s one of my all-time favourites! Tickets for Swan Lake performances, which run from March 8 to March 16, 2014, are also available for purchase.
Toronto Symphony Orchestra
Available at: Roy Thomson Hall box office or online at tso.ca
Just like with the ballet, you can either purchase a 2013/2014 season subscription to the TSO, or purchase tickets for individual performances. A popular one every year at this time, is Handel’s Messiah, which runs from December 17 to 22.
Available at: The Princess of Wales Theatre box office or online at Mirvish.com
Price: Ticket prices for holiday performances are from$59 to $130.
As one of the best musicals of all time, this production in Toronto has had tons of sold-out performances. It has received rave reviews, and would be a great gift for a musical lover, a loyal Les Mis fan, or a newbie who has only seen the movie but not the live version! It’s on stage until February 2. There is a holiday schedule, but most of these are already sold-out, so the best bet would be to purchase tickets for performances during its last few weeks.
Art Gallery of Ontario
Available at: Art Gallery of Ontario membership desk or online at AGO.net
Price: $45, $80, $100, $130 +
As a former AGO member (note to self: renew membership, oops), this goes on my top ten list of things to do in Toronto. Nobody is ever too young or too old to appreciate art! There are various membership levels that can fit various lifestyles and budgets. From the $45 student membership (student I.D card required and the recipient has to be a student) to the family membership, there’s something for everyone, so check it out!
Ideas for the Fitness Fanatic:
This can make either an amazing gift, or the recipient might think you are trying to give them a hint! Remember to proceed with caution! If you have someone on your list that you know for sure would appreciate this gift, then by all means go ahead. I would love it if someone else paid for a year membership for me! If this is something that fits your budget, it would be an amazing and thoughtful gift for the gym bunny (what’s the male version of that? hmm..), health nut and fitness buff on your list.
Available at: Various
Yoga and/or Pilates
Ideas for the Technology and Gaming Lovers:
I could say I know everything there is to know about this subject, but unfortunately I do not. I’m a know-it-all except when it comes to technology and anything game related. Knowledge = zero, I will have to admit. My brother, on the other hand, is a nerd (and I say that in the nicest way possible!) when it comes to these things. These are gifts he would enjoy, so I decided to add it in case you have any such people on your list as well. I know a lot of the latter items are sold-out in a lot of places, but you might have some luck via the links I have given. Good luck!
Apple Ipad Air
Available at: Apple store, Apple.com, Best Buy, BestBuy.com, Future Shop, FutureShop.ca, Staples, Staples.ca
Price: $499.99 +
Playstation 4 or Xbox One
Available at: EB Games, EBgames.ca, Best Buy, BestBuy.com, Future Shop, FutureShop.ca
Price: $399.99 + & $499.99 +
Ideas for the Animal Lover:
Everyone knows at least one person obsessed with dogs, cats or all animals in general. I, for one, am known as the crazy dog lady And crazy poodle lady. I also know many other animal lovers, and I am 100% sure they would all enjoy everything I have listed below. Their pets would also appreciate it!
World Wildlife Fund (“adoptions” and gift cards)
Price: $30 +
Why not give a gift that your animal lover (or even nature lover!) friend would enjoy while at the same time helping conservation efforts! It’s a win-win in my books. Online, you can find all sorts of items such as apparel, kids toys and more. You’ll be making a purchase that gives back, while purchasing a Christmas gift! It is the season of giving, after all! You can also symbolically adopt a species at risk on behalf of someone and you will receive an adoption kit, complete with a personalized adoption certificate, to give them. The adoption kit also contains an adorable animal plush to remind them of what animal or species has been helped. You can also purchase personalized gift cards for your friend, by making a donation on their behalf, and these will help WWF’s efforts in helping out whatever challenges each species is facing.
Holiday Shipping Info: Order by December 17
ETSY (too many things to name!)
Available at: Etsy.com
TOO many great gifts for animal lovers, pet owners and their best furry friends. Items such as art, pet collars and tags, bags, dog toys, pet furniture can be found here. Many of them are hand-made, which adds to the uniqueness of it. Just take a look for yourself!
Special Mention: Drake General Store – Gifts for Everyone!
There are so many great gift options this magical place. I will list a few unique items I really liked below, but you will definitely have to check out the products online, or even better, in-person! Locations can be found at the end of this post.
Macaron Trinket Box – $12
Damien Hirst ABC Book – $25.50
Arborist Ontario Trillium Cashmere Sweater – $175
Arborist Cashmere Mountie Sweater – $175
Donna Wilson Pillows – $130- $155
Holiday Shipping Info: For express shipping order by December 17. Priority shipping by December 20. For US orders, the latest date for priority shipping is December 17. Electronic gift cards can be ordered at any time including Christmas day.
For Drake General Store locations in Toronto click here.