I'm an Editor Who Is Hard to Buy for—These Gifts Would Genuinely Impress Me

51 Unique Christmas Gifts From the Coolest Indie Brands: @emmahoareau



I’ll admit, I’m a confessed lover of Christmas. December is a ways away and my nearest and dearest have been subject to many a Christmas rendition on my behalf. While it may seem untimely, it’s that time of the year when whispers of Christmas are in the ether. The mention of shopping holidays is starting to flood our inboxes, people draw names for Secret Santa, compile lists and echoes of “When is an appropriate time to put the Christmas tree up?” are heard far and wide. Whilst I know the festive period divides opinion and I’m a strong believer that the objective isn't gifting, I enjoy commemorating the people in my life that matter most to me.

As with most seasons, Christmas in the fashion industry is also premature, so with that said, I’ve been shortlisting pieces from months ahead in anticipation of sharing. On said journey, I’ve been presented with many wonderful contenders, whilst reflecting on my most loved brands of 2023.

Although the mass market booms during the festive period, I prefer to turn my attention to independent brands and their offerings, most of which I consider a triumph over their counterparts. There, you’ll likely discover artisanal products, inimitable services and bespoke pieces, making the gift-giving experience that bit sweeter. Shopping small pays dividends. There’s a level of sentiment that’s unique to the process. When supporting independent businesses, you’re gifting with intention and likely unearthing communities of budding artists, makers and unique pieces, each crafted with consciousness in mind. In many instances, small business owners are advocates for sustainability either intentionally or as a direction correlation of having rationed production.

I’ve sourced the internet for some notable gifts which are bound to put a smile on the faces of your loved ones (and reduce the stress of Christmas shopping). Continue reading for a considered edit. You’ll find something for everyone — from homeware to beauty and made-to-order apparel.

Shop Gifts From Independent Brands:

The gift of sparkle never goes amiss and L'Atelier Nawbar is one of Net A Porter's bestselling jewellers.

The idea for Celui was conceived by hair expert Anisa Sojka and it's now recognised as a hero hair oil for all hair types. With a blend of Jojoba and Marula oil (and laced with Rose Geranium and Lavender), it's definitely a luxe stocking stuffer.

Studio Bust offer a unique concept that will make the most thoughtful keepsake with bespoke bust ornaments in myriad finishes. It's a celebration of the form and a beautiful way to say "I love everything about you".

Not only are the drinks delicious but Amie has one of the most aesthetic bottles around so they're always appreciated as gifts. After enjoying the bottles with loved ones, they can be upcycled into vases or ornamental pieces for around the house.

If you're really, truly treating your loved ones this Christmas, I can't think of a more unique piece than art. Figurative artist Emilia Duarte creates inspired art that embodies femininity and the practice of self-care with the use of whipped acrylics. 

Grocery shopping will always be joy-inducing with this tongue-in-cheek produce bag.

You can always count on Soru for statement jewels. This seashell-adorned necklace couldn't be more fitting for 2023 and the mermaid core phenomenon.

For a pretty accessory, look to Clementine & Mint, a small brand that creates timeless headbands, bows and pouches. We particularly love this new chocolate brown velvet piece, which is perfect for a friend, sister or even yourself.

Bring some joy to the mundane with the use of this exceptional hairbrush. The terracotta hue and twisted handle are such special details.

Liha rose to prominence in 2020 and the brand continues to have our hearts years on. Their arsenal consists of candles, and shea butter-based cosmetics. They make the sweetest stocking stuffers.

Tablescapping 101, invest in a standout piece of art. It's the centrepiece you never knew you needed.

There's nothing more luxe than feather-trim pyjamas. Wear them outdoors with heeled mules.

There's something so special about Kitty Joyas' pieces that I think every jewellery lover will appreciate. The designs meld classic elements with organic shapes.

There's no shortage of creamy liqueurs on the market during the festive period but unfortunately, the opinions are sparse for dairy-free alternatives. Thankfully, Black Lines has swooped in to save the day with a creamy, dairy-free tipple.

Cosy season is nigh and a handstitched velvet quilt is something I will endorse. Especially one in this blush colourway.

Bed Threads offers an array of sumptuous linen bedding but if you'd like to take things one step further and brush up on your hosting skills take note of this title.

Expert craftsmanship and a swoon-worthy design. What more could you want in an accessory?

A fluted wine glass with a sculptural stem. It's one to keep on display.

Add this sparkly addition to Bardot necklines.

Make a beeline for Stripe & Stare for supple undergarments comprising biodegradable fibres.

The perfect gift for someone who is looking to upgrade their beauty regime.

The gift of cashmere never goes amiss and in addition to apparel, Really Wild is the maker of high-quality cashmere accessories.

A barely there initial pendant for everyday wear.

Uplevel classic tailoring with this timeless leather belt. The “S” motif also forms hearts, making the design even more adorable.

It's a good day when our favourite crockery and coffee brands come together.

Not only is this lamp beautiful but it's crafted from 3D- Printed biodegradable plastic! It boasts an undeniable vintage lilt that's ever so charming, in addition to the moniker soft serve, of course.

When you opt for Navy Grey knitwear, be assured that it's a gift for a lifetime

Dora Larsen creates the ultimate "feel good" underwear that every woman will appreciate. Who wouldn't want to receive this gorgeous piece?

In my humble opinion, a plush notebook is the best gift. In addition to its bags, The Cambridge Satchel Company creates beautiful leather-bound notebooks. 

For the frequent traveller in your life, I can't recommend Nere enough.

Astrid and Miyu offer many services — from piercing to fine line tattoos and my favourite is the offer of welding. I'm the proud owner of a welded bracelet that has the deepest sentiment and it's become like second skin. Bracelet prices start from £120.

Mashu has long been a firm favourite of mine and its latest release comes just in time for Christmas. Consisting of an angular handle squared shaping and wave flap, it's a style that stands out from the rest.

Wear your loved ones close to your heart with Rachel Jackson's handmade jewels.

Frances Costelloe's work has been a firm favourite of mine for some years now. This particular piece is wonderfully whimsical.

As if the celestial print wasn't darling enough, this set comes complete with an eye mask and makeup pouch.

A silken nightgown comprised of lyocell? That's quite the dream. Lyocell is an eco-friendly cellulose fibre that'll also keep you cool while you're sleeping.

I'm always eager to see what Amberlee has in the pipeline for Line & Honey. I'm eager to invest in one of her prints to christen my new space and this particular piece piqued my interest. Her artwork hones in on the celebration of all bodies and championing black women. While you're on the site, pop one of these free wallpaper prints in your basket!

My best friend gifted me a blanket from Tartan Blanket Company and it remains one of my favourite gifts to date. Their soft furnishings are a chic and cosy addition to any home.

Bias Editions' collaboration with India Cardona comprises a 12-piece handblown vase collection in muted cotton candy hues. It's perfect for housing a single stem.

I don't know a single person who wouldn't appreciate the gift of Aesop in their life. Refill the glass bottle when the product runs low and it'll be the gift that keeps on giving.

This concave piece doubles as an enticing piece of art that demands attention. Fashioned from milk porcelain clay sourced from Limoges, France, its conception is as meticulous as you'd expect. It's perfect for housing dried blooms.

Made-to-order label Olivia Rose has just released one of my favourite dresses of 2023.  A grand statement but oh so true.

Founders of Daphine Damasia Ball and Philippine de Follin' know a thing or two about statement jewels and their newest pieces do not disappoint.

TOMS donate a third of all profits to grassroots Good, which is incentive enough to invest in their offerings. The Ezra slippers are plush and comprise a step-back design, which turns this style into a slip-on mule. 

For lovers of sentimentality (myself included) the best part of receiving gifts is the heartfelt card that comes with. This sweet card doubles up as a keepsake.

I always recommend this diffuser for an inviting scent that lingers throughout the home.

Whilst this season encourages new acquirements, why not go against the grain and opt for something entirely unique? Book in for garment aftercare and alterations with The Seam if you know your loved one requires a clothing nip and tuck. 

The considered contents are just as delightful as the aesthetically pleasing packaging.

The chicest everyday bag. Demellier also offers a free monogramming service should you wish to add a personal touch.

I'm always at odds with beautiful ceramics. Granted, they're crafted to be well used but I'm always tempted to use them to display trinkets.

For the majority of 2023, overstated jewels have been trending yet there's something timeless about YSSO's ocean-inspired offerings.

These speckled, tapered candles are the perfect addition to a festive tablescape!

Allow me to kindly introduce you to a joy-inducing cosmetic brand turning bathing into an art. With an array of nature-inspired soaps, your rushed AM showers will never be the same again.