Holiday Gift Guide 2015: Custom Presents

From bespoke fragrances to personalized skateboards, products made especially for the people you're buying for

As much as you may want to shower your loved ones with gifts, the perfect present for each can be hard to find year after year. If you’re organized enough to be thinking about stocking up on holiday gifts already, ordering a customized item is a thoughtful way to make your gift extra special. From ceramic selfies to personalized skateboards, bespoke wallpaper to a fragrance crafted to suit a person’s individuality, our Custom Gift Guide is full of presents (almost) as unique as the person you’re buying for.

Camera Strap

DSLRs are all looking alike these days, so help yours stand out with Viveo’s personalized camera straps ($44). Made from simple, hand-cut strips of leather, the straps can be embellished with a hot-stamped name tag of its owner. Viveo’s camera straps come at maximum length of 110 cm with a width of 35 mm. Mount rings are included for free upon request.

My One True Love Patch

Whether your one true love is your dog, wine, a book or yourself, Tuesday Bassan will have it embroidered on a love heart ($20) for you. Inspired by 1940s sweetheart souvenir patches, Bassan enlists the help of Ben Goetting for the hand-stitching on these thick devotion-declaring patches (which measure about five inches by four inches). Sew it onto a tote, beat-up denim jacket or bomber and show your significant other (or pizza) how you feel.


Elevating wallpaper to the status of art mural is Brooklyn-based Calico, whose large-scale, handmade designs (from sunset gradients to their signature metallic paper marbling) are uniquely custom printed specifically to fit each project’s dimensions, and the design never repeats. Custom colorways are available to order (price on application), but for something extra special, Calico offers bespoke services (prices vary) to really transform your space.

Bespoke Perfume

Born from the belief that scent is intensely personal, NYC-based Tramuntana makes entirely one-of-a-kind fragrances ($315) using the purest oils and essences. Based on a questionnaire and conversations (in-person or not) with a representative, a perfume is created that reflects your individuality, interests and taste. Samples are posted, with room for up to three revisions for Tramuntana to tweak your signature scent just right. The formula that is chosen is then saved and only ever reproduced for you.

Penny Skateboard

Saltwater Planks has taken a more natural approach to the popular Penny skateboard ($121) by swapping out its plastic deck for one made from solid maple. With either black or white trucks, the board can be personalized to any rider with a custom engraving on the deck’s underside. It’s sure to be a memorable first board for any beginner, or just an easily identifiable grocery-getter for the more advanced.

Hand-Painted Bike Helmets

NYC’s Danielle Baskin designs and paints landscapes, video game throwbacks, educational charts and even internet memes and emojis through her one-woman company, Inkwell Helmets, proving the slightly dorky safety precaution is just as fun and customizable as a beloved set of wheels (or board). Her collection is always evolving, but you can also commission your own design (she’ll even paint on a helmet you already own). Custom designs start at $120; other designs start at $85.

Backgammon Set

With 65 years of experience, Crisloid makes long-lasting backgammon sets—and even offers the opportunity to customize your own. While the team is open to exploring all kinds of themes—from palm trees to skull-decorated pieces—they never lose sight of the fact that it’s a game that’s traditional and historical. With a personalized set (starting at $175), even losing will be a pleasure.

Ceramic Selfie

London-based artist Charlotte Mei is responsible for sweet and playful earthenware creations, and even personalizes several—from plates and toast tiles to these ceramic selfies ($170). Simply send a photo of your loved one to Mei and she will created a cute tchotchke in their likeness. Or, in a beautiful act of self-love, get one of your own punim and pop yourself on display like the work of art that you are. Be sure to order 28+ days ahead of gifting day.

Personalized Ball Caps

Californian brand FairEnds never strays far from a tasteful pattern or colorway, and their simple, logo-less Ball Caps ($52) are the perfect canvas for a little customization. Each six-panel cap comes with a nylon webbing closure for easy adjustability, and can be personalized with three felt letters at their front—just enough space for a set of initials or a snarky three-letter word.

Bourbon “Drinking Shoe” Set

With their limited edition, handmade gift set, historic bourbon brand Basil Hayden’s hopes to answer the question: what makes a good drinking shoe? In seeking an answer for this, they’ve partnered with family-owned shoe brand Quoddy, from Maine, whose family has been handcrafting shoes for over 100 years. The result is a whiskey-colored shoe ($399) hewn from Horween leather—made custom for each buyer. The set also includes leather wrapped rocks glasses, ideal for consuming bourbon.

Check out our entire Buy section for lots of gift ideas this holiday season.

Images courtesy of respective brands