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Put the pleasure back into gift buying with the Kinfolk editors’ guide.

The 2018 Kinfolk Gift Guide reflects the sorts of presents we’d hope to receive: thoughtful, unusual and—most importantly—with an enduring appeal that will outlast the festive season. To turn an old phrase; good gifts are for life, not just for Christmas. With items designed by everyone from small studios to big labels, and ideas for everyone from art book enthusiasts to design connoisseurs, we hope this list removes the stress from your last-minute shopping.

  • Words:
    John Clifford Burns and Harriet Fitch Little
  • Production:
    Cecilie Jegsen and Garett Nelson

 Design

Georg Jensen Offspring Interlocked Earrings
A gift for mothers (or for mothers to give to their children), the interlocking rings on these sterling silver earrings represent the enduring bond between a parent and child. Like all of Jacqueline Rabun’s designs, the intent is to illustrate aspects of the human experience through jewelry.

Marset Ginger Table Lamp
Designed by Joan Gaspar for Marset, the Ginger collection took its name and design inspiration from the elegant cymbals of Cream drummer Ginger Baker. The lamp uses extremely thin layers of paper and wood to create a sleek silhouette that still benefits from the warm associations of wood.

TEKLA Fine Merino Plaid blanket
By using an oversized pattern and creating four brightly-hued designs, Copenhagen design studio TEKLA has put a contemporary spin on the classic plaid rug. Use it as a bedspread or wrap yourself up in it this winter, then bring it back out as a picnic blanket in spring.

Arne Jacobsen Watch
The Arne Jacobsen Roman wristwatch is pared-back enough to suit any style of dress and all genders. Initially designed in 1942, the watch has a 40mm dial and comes with the option of various straps—all monochrome.

Iittala Alvar Aalto Collection Vase
Alvar Aalto—arguably Finland’s most famous architect—designed his iconic series of wave-shaped vases in 1936 in partnership with his wife Aino. Initially destined exclusively for the Savoy restaurant in Helsinki, these oddly-shaped vessels are now available for everyone to own.

New Works Aura Mirror
Designed by Bjørn van den Berg for Danish design studio New Works, the polished flat surfaces and curves of the Aura Mirror bounce surrounding light into diverse reflections. Sculptural and weighted, the mirror is also designed to be touched, held, and used.

 Fashion

Lunya Silk Robe
In the three years since its founding, Lunya has situated itself at the intersection of comfort and style in the nightwear market. In this robe, which is thigh-length and made of washable silk, the week of lethargy between Christmas and New Year’s Eve will feel indulgent rather than slothish.

Études Tunnel Socks
For a stylish update on the perennial stocking socks, try this calf-high, army green cotton pair from Études. The Paris design studio, which specializes in garments that put a high-fashion gloss on commercial trends, doubles as a maker of artisanal books—also available on their website.

Filippa K Silk Mix Rollerneck Sweater
This classic rollneck sweater is designed by Filippa K, a brand which has made its name synonymous with understated luxury. It’s a timeless piece that will keep its recipient comfy and warm for many winters to come.

Aure Atelier Trousers Black
Aure is a small studio specializing in timeless pieces inspired by natural materials, making these trousers—available in black or cream—the perfect gift for eco-conscious friends and family. With an elasticated waist and adjustable front pleats, the trousers are perfect for stylish everyday wear.

Clyde, Gaucho Hat
Made of angora felt, this wide-brimmed alabaster Gaucho Hat is sculptural but very wearable. It comes from the studio of milliner Dani Griffiths, who produces hats by hand in a small New York state factory.

 

 Travel

Aesop Gift Kit
One of four seasonal Aesop Gift Kits, the smartly packaged Contours of Discovery kit contains the bathroom staples for which Aesop has become so celebrated: the Resurrection Aromatique Hand Wash and Balm, and the Geranium Leaf Body Cleanser and Scrub. Buy it for someone whose house you spend time at.

Building Block Stencil Duffel
This weekender-sized duffel bag will be gratefully received by friends making post-Christmas visits to in-laws and friends. Made by LA-based purveyors of simple luxury, Building Block, this expandable navy duffel has a more striking structure than most carry bags thanks to its distinctive graphic handle.

Parachute Home Waffle Towels
Inspired by traditional hammam towels, Parachute Home’s lightweight and quick-drying bath towels are textured with a honeycomb weave and loomed from Turkish cotton. The Los Angeles-based company offers both hand and bath towels in its signature neutral color palette.

Cos Bucket Hat
The 90s throwback fashion moment isn’t going anywhere. Ride the wave in style with this bucket hat from COS, which has a structured brim thanks to a light layer of internal padding.

Lindberg Sunglasses
The minimalist designs of Danish eyewear brand Lindberg are only possible due to maximum engineering. A range of classic frames—like the 8202 in GT (pictured)—do away with any rivets, screws or welding, meaning each style is lightweight and comfortable to wear.

 Food

HAY Kitchen Towel
An elevated version of a very ordinary textile, HAY’s kitchen towels bring a thoughtful touch to any kitchen and are woven from a cotton blend that is soft enough to use in place of napkins at the dining table.

Feast for the Eyes: The Story of Food in Photography
From Betty Crocker to Cindy Sherman, Feast for the Eyes charts the history of food photography through more than 300 photos, exploring how the way we eat—and our compulsion to document it—bears witness to food’s profound significance.

Menu Stackable Glasses
Designed by Norm Architects, who seek to challenge the confines and soullessness of practical design, Menu’s everyday glasses are mouth-blown into elegant forms that are nonetheless easy to stack.

Skagerak Edge Teapot
Inspired by Ancient Greek and Egyptian traditions of craftsmanship—notice the Amphora-inspired foot—Skagerak’s Edge Teapot contrasts red-brown terracotta in a matte finish with brass detailing and an extended wooden handle for an elegant pour at height.

Mepra Due Serving Spoon
Since 1950, the Prandelli family have been perfecting stainless steel flatware in Italy’s Lumezzane Valley. This gold-tone titanium serving spoon is the ideal accouterment for dishing out holiday feasts.

Tina Frey Designs Wide Salad Bowls
Hand-sculpted in San Francisco, the shapes of these salad bowls are inspired by the organic forms that ceramicist Tina Frey finds in nature. Available in white, grey and cement tones, each bowl is carefully hand-sanded after blasting and carries its own individual patina.

 

 Culture

The Decisive Moment
One of the most famous books in the history of photography, The Decisive Moment assembles Henri Cartier-Bresson’s best work from his early years. This new edition, published by Steidl Verlag, is a faithful facsimile of the original 1952 book.

Barbara Hepworth: Writings & conversations
Spanning the entirety of British sculptor Barbara Hepworth’s artistic career, this collection of previously out-of-print writings, unpublished texts and photographs from the artist’s archive offers eloquent insight into the interests, inspiration and inner life of a seminal sculptor.

WA: The Essence of Japanese Design
The 300-odd objects in this book about Japanese design principles are categorized according to material rather than chronology or maker; a way of highlighting the close connection between material and object in Japanese craftsmanship. Intricately bound in traditional style and published by Phaidon, the book is a design object in its own right.

Galerie Maeght Kuroda: Bleue 3
Known for his silhouettes and figures painted with line strokes, Japanese artist Aki Kuroda employed the same techniques when designing his own poster, titled Bleue 3, for an exhibition at Galerie Maeght. This reproduction, selected from the gallery’s archive, is available at Danish store Stilleben.

  • Words:
    John Clifford Burns and Harriet Fitch Little
  • Production:
    Cecilie Jegsen and Garett Nelson
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