2016 Holiday Gift Guide: Last Minute Shopper’s Helper

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Welcome to the Baltimore Fishbowl Local Gift Guide series. We’ll be featuring ten themed items each week through the holidays. Let us help you find that special something for everyone on your list, while supporting local businesses, and getting out to shop in different parts of this diverse and thriving city.

This Week’s theme is something along the lines of: “Christmas is when now?”

That’s right. Here it is, The Last Minute Shopper’s Gift Guide. While you might think, at this point, it’s more a question of “who’s still open” than “who’s got the best stuff,” prepare to be pleasantly surprised. There are plenty of wonderful, unique, perfect gifts available for sale, right here in Charm City. Many shops stay open straight through Christmas Eve. So bundle up, make your list, check it twice, and get out the door. Fellow procrastinator, breathe easy. You can do this. You still have time.

1) Hot Water Bottle

Baltimore has got the gusts! These hot water bottles from Donna Wilson Ltd have 100% lambswool covers and promise warmth & coziness! The artisan makes a full line of cozy products, but these sweet guys can be found at Trohv in Hampden.


2) Locally Made Snacks

Is there really a better stocking stuffer than a homemade treat? At this point, let’s all admit you’re not going to bake whatever insanely complicated cheese straw recipe you had in mind. You have other things to do, and it’s ok. Hit up any number of Baltimore shops that sell Kinderhook Snacks’ delicious and addicting treats, and you’ll be respected all the same. Try Eddies Market in Charles Village for a wide selection.


3) Toiletry/Wash Bag

This handsome wash bag is made of water-resistant 18 oz canvas with a special lining for quick cleaning. Treason Toting Co was started by two Baltimoreans who met at a bar in 2013. The company sews all of their bags and soft travel accessories right here in town. They recently expanded to a retail space on Thames Street, and you can visit and shop 7 days a week.

1714 Thames St. Baltimore MD

4) Cleansing Facial Steams

Picture this: A cooling botanical facial steam that clears pores, promotes cleansing and calms inflammation, and encourages deep meditative breathing. In an easy to reuse 6oz gold tin. ANC Alchemy, a small business based in Marfa, TX (though originally run in Baltimore), is in town for a one-night-only trunk show at MEND in Remington. The popular acupuncture center is now open in its new location at Remington Row, and will host an open-house featuring these herbal remedies Thursday, December 22, from 5-7pm.

2700 Remington Row, Baltimore, MD 21218


5) Buddha Board

A surprisingly satisfying toy, The Buddha Board gently encourages the user to “value the present” by painting on the board’s special surface with water. The image darkens and then slowly fades away, leaving a blank canvas. It brings out the creative side that exists in all of us, and is stress free. The Original  Board comes with a bamboo brush and ‘Japanese style’ water tray / stand. Pick one up at Pla-Za Artist Materials in Mt Vernon or Towson.


6) Classic Children’s Books

Children’s books are great gifts for any age, but especially great for families. The Children’s Bookstore in Roland Park was founded in 1978 and specializes in fine children’s literature and illustration. Sidelines include some licensed stuffed toys, Gund products, Folkmanis puppets, posters, seasonal items, cards, books on tape and CD, storytelling tapes, as well as children’s music tapes and CDs. The staff is very kind and knowledgeable, and eager to help you find the perfect book. Visit this wonderful institution Monday – Saturday 10am – 5:30pm


7) Hand Printed Motivational Poster

Husband and wife Kyle Van Horn and Kim Bentley run Baltimore Print Studios, a public-access letterpress and screen printing studio located in the Station North Arts & Entertainment District in Baltimore, Maryland. In addition to selling their own hand printed work, they offer rented time and workshops in the print shop. Their posters can be found at the Made in Baltimore Pop-up Shop in Hampden (1021 W. 36th St), which is a temporary retail store set up by local makers to sell exclusively Baltimore Made items through the holidays.

Find out more at http://wemakebaltimore.com/news/


8) The Perfect Pepper Grinder

The Wine Source in Hampden is generally a spot you’ll be hitting up this week anyway. Why not pick up one of these beautiful Swissmar brand pepper grinders? Nothing is more frustrating than a grinder that won’t work properly, and you must know someone ready for an upgrade, right? Made in Germany and built to last. Visit the Hampden wine shop and browse their enormous selection of alcohol, seven days a week.



9) Handmade wooden cutting boards

These gorgeous cutting boards and cheese platters were made by artist Lawrence Cromwell, and are on sale now at Jordan Faye Contemporary Gallery as part of their annual artist’s Holiday Pop-up Shop. The gallery also offers two full exhibitions on view, and represents many Baltimore area artists.


10) How To Swear Around the World

Sometimes, you just need a good book, right? This one’s not for the kids, but it sure does sum up how exhausted you probably are after all this shopping. Stop by Becket-Hitch in Green Spring Station to pick up this cheeky guide to airing your frustrations out loud all around the world.


After that, wrap em if you’ve got em, folks, because the final countdown has begun. Have a very happy holiday, and don’t forget that the best gift is always being together with those you love.

Rachel Bone’s Gift Guide is proudly sponsored by The Village of Cross Keys, celebrating 50 years of featuring some of Baltimore’s best shopping, dining and lodging in a courtyard setting.  Click to See What’s Happening at the Keys this Season.

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