Five portals for interesting and unique gifts

Bored of giving ties, mugs, perfumes and inconsequential presents to your besties? Then, read the gifting guide for some inspiration.

The gifting season of the year, December, just got over. Thank God! After all the splurging it’s time for SAVING. Time to hide all the plastic cards away and forget the pin numbers for a while! Anyway, so the winter month is filled with shaadissaalgirahs, Secret Santas, Christmas, New Year and celebrations without reasons, as it’s the need of the season. Obviously, to en cash, literally, the festive mood and spirit, big and small, local and glocal (or international), retailers open their gigantic doors plastered with big, bold words ‘SALES’ all over. Some are genuine ones and some are just a farce, but that’s for another day.

Being picky, in most areas of my life, I fuss over ‘what to buy’ for days! I look, look and look, till urgency doesn’t set in. There’s this innate need to find the ‘perfect’ gift – which means something the receiver really needs or wants, will value, will cherish for life and won’t burn my pocket, holes are fine. So, I need to be really not interested in the person if I buy him or her a clichéd photoframe or random gift voucher or a cutesy mug or the likes of it. Not denying that in the past, I have bought these things for buddies, but back then there was only so much available in the market. Today, there’s a slow but steady rise in the appreciation for quirkier and offbeat things, stuff to do, people, etc.

With so many gifts to buy and little time (yes, I have a 9 to 6 kinda job to foot my shopping bills), I chose the millennial way of shopping – online. I surfed and explored the e-commerce giants, but was disappointed as they didn’t have anything that fit my idea of the ‘perfect gift’.

As I said, I look till the D-day isn’t close! Fortunately, through my search I found a few exciting places, online, for quirky yet functional, interesting presents that I felt would be appreciated.

Personalization, of all sorts, makes a big difference. Not just taking personal interest in what to gift the loved one, but taking something that can bare the individual’s name or represents their personality is like the beautiful bow on the well-wrapped present. And that’s how I thought of gifting personalized stationery to my dear friends. I came across Tinge Paperworks that has a variety of designs and ideas, from corporate to feminine to quirky to kiddy themes, for stationery sets (diaries, note pads, gift bags, gift tags, gift cards, scribbling pads and more). There’s also an option of kinds of paper and printing styles available. You think it and the lady behind Tinge will create for you! The best part being – as its customized orders she can make sets to suit every budget. And yes, how can I forget the wonderful packaging – cutesy boxes, classy trays to pack the stationery sets just enhances the gifting experience. Find them here

When it comes to buying gifts for men, it can be daunting. Shirts, colognes, ties, cuffs, etc. are things that usually comes to one’s mind to give the boys. So, pick the person’s personality. Does he like to read? Is he is frequent flyer? Does he have a hobby? It was while surfing Prop Shop 24 pages, I thought of getting a series of travel-related gifts for my male colleague. The self-proclaimed Curators of Cool, actually have a cool range of goodies for men and women. There’s quirky ties to offbeat desk accessories to organic chocolates to healthy snacks to homegrown luxury fragrances to unique greeting cards to thingummies. Only word of caution – you need to order in advance for some items, as it is sourced from other entities. Those products take almost 10-15 days in delivery. Otherwise, the products are pretty sick! They constantly update their collection on the website, ensuring the shopping bug is alive in you. Check them out here

There’s another site, The Souled Store, if you want to buy gifts for the men, actually even women, in your life. Let me confess, I am yet to personally order a product, but the range of goodies are genuinely exciting. So I have bookmarked it for a future shopping spree. They sell badges, posters, backpacks, shoes, boxers, totes to official merchandise. What sets them apart? The Souled Store was started by four friends, all engineers, to create something they could be proud of. Also, the other objective was to create an online marketplace that provides independent artists a platform to showcase and monetize their creativity. All the designs on the products are by independent artists or official merchandise of popular entertainment brands, like TV show, Friends, Marvel franchise, All India Bakchod, etc. You can check them here

Moving on, sometimes it’s the ordinary stuff that makes life extraordinary. Too much philosophy? Anyway, there’s The Wishing Chair, a lifestyle brand named after Enid Blyton’s eponymous children’s book. From gift wrapping supplies to diaries to mugs to crockery to décor to lighting, the stuff these guys have is pretty, dainty and right out of a fairy land. I ended up buying some cute desk accessories, vintage themed gift wrapping supplies and a fairy dust glass lantern! If you have friends and family members who love feminine designs, vintage themes, dreamy stuff, check out

For the eclectic and bright souls across age groups, there’s Chumbak. They are a lifestyle brand for products across apparel, home and accessories. What’s distinguishes the wide variety of products – fridge magnets to bobble heads to watches to trunks to platters to mugs to footwear to tops to shorts – is it’s truly unique designs in bright and bold colours. They have stores as well as online presence

That’s it for now, but keep watching this space for more on retail therapy.

Till then, happy shopping!



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