If office party invites are probably going to land in your inbox this week, you’ll definitely want to check this list twice. Every office and coworker is unique, which makes a one-size-fits-all holiday gifting policy impossible. We’re not workplace etiquette experts, but we do have plenty of ideas for artsy, office-appropriate presents guaranteed to brighten the work spaces and moods of your bosses and peers. Don’t waste your money on cheap tchotchkes that are destined to be re-gifted. Instead, choose stylishly thoughtful gifts that won’t break the bank.
1. Like a Boss
This Christmas, whether you’re paying homage to the boss lady, a goal digger or a cubemate with hustle, Harvest Paper Co. has a gift for that. Pair clever pencil sets with a desk caddy organizer from Peg and Awl for an office gift that’s sure to impress. Each organizer is made in Peg and Awl’s Philadelphia studio from reclaimed wood. Customization options are available.
2. The Year Ahead
Use your problem-solving skills to help your coworkers spruce up their office space in style. Skip the run-of-the-mill mall kiosk organizers, and spring for a luxurious, handmade letterpress calendar instead. Portland-based Old School Stationers’ gorgeous nature-inspired prints make each month something to look forward to.
3. Journal Joy
The Matt Lauer Collection from Shinola is a perfect pairing of time-honored, American-made goods and philanthropic giving. Proceeds from the collection go to the Detroit Children’s Fund to benefit the Detroit Edison Public School Academy. Give a journal, planner, boxed card set, nylon watch strap or a passport wallet. Coworkers will always appreciate a gift that gives something back.
4. An Eye for Detail
In the world of business, it pays to stand out. Be an artful Secret Santa by gifting a unique card case, like the Frida Kahlo Three Skulls holder, available from MOMA. Or, if skulls aren’t your bag, gift a hand-crafted leather card holder by Nashville-label Peter Nappi instead.
5. Truth Bomb
It’s not for everyone—but everybody knows somebody whom it’s perfect for. The F bomb paperweight, available through Uncommon Goods, made by metalsmith Fred Conlon, is an unexpected gift choice, sure to win workplace points with the right guy or girl who “gets it.”
6. Home Away From Home
If you’ve gotta be there, why not make it comfy? Gift your peers the ready-to-frame Cubicle Sweet Cubicle print from Yardsale Press.
7. Keep Your Nose to the Grindstone
The Sydney Hale Co. home fragrance brand operates under the belief that “If you are going to do something, make it matter.” Based out of Purcellville, VA, the line is composed of 26-plus small-batch, signature-fragrance products. With scents like Bourbon Brown Sugar, Smoked Cardamom Honey, and Elderberry Rose, you can feel good about gifting Sydney Hale candles to colleagues. Ten percent of profits are donated to dog rescue organizations.
8. Graphic Glam
Famed interior designer Jonathan Adler operates under the philosophy that one should “build a timelessly chic foundation, then accessorize with abandon.” To that end, his brightly colored, geometric high-fired porcelain trays are not only adorned with hand-applied 24-karat gold. They also come pre-wrapped in a sweet little gift box. If you’re looking for a stylish gift for the boss, your search is over.
9. Easy on the Eyes
What’s not to like about the Reverie Desk Collection from famed boutique print shop Elum Design? We love the pear, navy and lilac journals, notepads, a snazzy clipboard, and letterpress note and thank you cards. Your work chums will be elated to receive these stylish desk adornments.
10. Ornamental Objects
Andrew Molleur’s ceramics combine clean lines and geometric fragments. Hand cast and finished with a high-gloss glaze, his contemporary small origami vase is a great gift pick for cubemates who need to upgrade their desk décor.
Emily Davidson Nemoy is a freelance writer based in Nashville, Tenn. When she’s not at her computer or on her yoga mat, she can be found at live music venues happily spending her excess cash on concert tickets.