In case it isn’t already obvious, I encourage everyone to shop locally and support small, independent artisans, designers and producers as much as possible! Online shopping is super convenient—and I’ve made it stupid easy for you by providing links—however nothing compares to entering a shop and talking with the owner or creator about their products and process.
1. Rudraksha Mala Beads
There are all sorts of malas these days, and depending on your budget, you can get them with semi-precious stones or ornamented with sparkly beads. My favorite style is still the most essential, made with either Rudraksha or sandalwood beads.
2. Kashmir Tchaï from Kusmi Tea
If you’re not ready to invest in the raw materials for your own custom chai blend, this is the next best thing. It smells delicious, and is deeply satisfying when fortified with honey and milk.
3. Caran d’Ache ballpoint pen from Merci
I have always loved Caran d’Ache pencils and pens -- they feel great in the hand, and deliver a smooth writing experience -- and Merci carries them in cool colors like neon pink and acid green. Pair one of these with a groovy notebook, and thank me later.
4. Mini Soap Trio from Le Baigneur
I first noticed these at Les Petits Frenchies (I mean, look at the groovy packaging! I die!) then saw them again at mr. fish on the rue des Martyrs. So I finally took a sniff and decided that these make a terrific gift for ladies and gents.
5. Casall Massage Balls from Anima Athletica
I used to scoff at these tiny tools for therapeutic self-massage, but workshops with Jill Miller, Lillee Chandra and Ellen Saltonstall changed my mind. By slowly rolling on the floor with these underneath your body, you can knead and stretch muscles, fascia, connective tissue, and bring relief to chronic tight spots. If the technique is good enough for Robert Fairchild, principal dancer with New York City Ballet, then it’s good enough for everyone!
6. Community Service Announcements from Jeremyville
My favorite is, of course, “Be Your Own Guru”, but all of Jeremyville’s output is fantastic and there are many options depending on what kind of daily encouragement you need. Tame your inner monster? Build your oasis?
7. Anouk Oil Burner Blend from Aesop
If candles aren’t your bag, try burning scented oils (you’ll need a diffuser for that.) This blend’s citrus scent will bring an almost immediate sense of calm and repose.