Holiday Gift Guide 2015: Brick and Mortar

For those who ran out of time and have to dash to the shops

If you had a hectic time leading up to the holidays and are suddenly panicking—while looking online at shipping times and balking at the fees for same-day delivery—this is the gift guide for you. Also a judgement-free zone, our Brick and Mortar Gift Guide includes uncommon, thoughtful presents you’ll find at real-life stores, and not just hard-to-find boutiques. Chances are there’s at least a couple of these shops in or near your town—but even if there isn’t, we hope these gifts act as an inspirational starting point for your mad dash to the shops.

The Mission Chinese Food Cookbook

From Mission Chinese restaurants’ co-founder and chef Danny Bowien and Lucky Peach EIC Chris Ying comes a treat for your eyes and your belly:

The Mission Chinese Food Cookbook ($24). Through conversations between Bowien and collaborators, friends and colleagues, photos and—of course—recipes, readers are offered a charming and tasty glimpse into the story and flavors that define the SF and NYC restaurants’ desire to rethink Chinese cuisine.

Urbanite XL Wireless Headphones

Sennheiser’s Urbanite XL Wireless headphones ($250) let your ears get a taste of high-quality sound, without the tangling cords. Made of stainless steel hinges, aluminum sliders and a silicone headband, these collapsible headphones feature comfortable velvet earpieces—making them ideal for long wears. The headphones come with a USB charging cable, a universal cable with a built-in microphone and a carrying case.

Vintage Impossible Project One Step Camera Kit

A limited edition rerelease of Polaroid’s sleek silver Sun 600 (which originally debuted in the ’80s) is back on the market, thanks to the Impossible Project—the initiative that acquired all of Polaroid’s film production equipment when the company ceased making it in 2008. The kit ($180) comes complete with two packs of film, so it’s as easy as (carefully) installing a cartridge and snapping away.

Roadster Scoot

With the clean lines associated with the zippiest vintage European race cars, Restoration Hardware’s

Roadster Scoot ($189) for kids is a beautiful toy car—that allows children between the ages of two and four to get behind the wheel and power it along. It’s pedal-free (meaning it’s foot-to-floor powered) and comes with padded seating, a working steering wheel and silver-walled rubber tires. Altogether, it’s a smooth and beautiful ride.

Kincaid Sunglasses

Warby Parker’s

Kincaid sunglasses ($145) are an effortlessly show-stopping take on classic aviators that partially exposes the lenses. The seemingly continuous line of the frame’s lightweight titanium makes them sleek, and the two colorways (brushed navy or riesling) are subtle and neutral, but never dull.

Reverence Aromatique Hand Balm

With a beautiful yet subtle scent, Aesop’s

Reverence Aromatique Hand Balm ($27) offers heavy-duty moisturizing without making hands greasy. The fragrance is suitable for all genders; its earthy but citrus scent (we love the touch of vetiver) is gently refreshing. Packaged in a convenient tube for easy squeezing, it’s perfect for chilly winter winds, or as a pick-me-up during air travel.

Pocket Dial

Teaming up with “The Tonight Show” host Jimmy Fallon, J Crew has released a quirky new accessory called the Pocket Dial ($48)—and all proceeds go to the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, which protects Africa’s elephants. Combining practicality with a little panache, the Pocket Dial doubles as both an iPhone 6/6s case and pocket square, so you’ll never need to sacrifice suit storage space for style. Each case is made from leather and comes with an exterior card slot and an interchangeable silk pocket square accessory.

Teardrop Sapphire Ring


delicate ring ($168), crafted from 14K rose gold, carries a minimal style that’s equal parts sweet and refined. With a small, faceted .22CT teardrop-shaped sapphire at its center, there’s a bit of glitz, but it’s ultimately understated and easily paired with other metals or colored stones.

Drink Rocks


geometric rocks ($35) keep the temperature down, without diluting what you’re sipping. Available in a set of four, each rock has a distinct shape (from pyramids to spheres) so everybody can keep track of their own cocktails. While they look like they could be from outer space, they’re made from earthy materials: soapstone and marble.

Blenheim Bouquet

For over 100 years, Blenheim Bouquet ($128) has been one of the most coveted and recognizable scents from London perfumer Penhaligon’s. Light citrus notes up front give way to hearty—but delightful—musk. It’s outdoorsy through and through, with a balance of rugged and refined as the takeaway.

Images courtesy of respective brands