East Bay Holiday Gift Guide
Diablo takes the stress out of holiday shopping with our highly curated guide to ideal gifts for women, men, and kids.
Give the gift of light with hand-blown glass candle holders. Created in Glassybaby’s Berkeley “hot shop,” these vessels also support good causes: $3 from each sale goes toward helping “people, animals, and the planet heal.” This season, check out Glassbaby’s Deck the Halls votive holders, in luminous red, green, and white. $50 each, glassybaby.com.
Force of Nature
Designer Erica Tanov, known for her boho-luxe clothing and accessories, has translated her distinctive aesthetic into her first book, Design by Nature. Drawing from organic materials found in our environment, Tanov offers fresh ideas for creating textured living spaces. Available at Erica Tanov’s Berkeley store or online. $35, ericatanov.com.
Flaunt your East Bay pride in the cozy Diablo Dame sweater by Lingua Franca, a New York–based line of sustainably sourced, fair-trade luxury cashmere sweaters, all hand-stitched by women. Available at M by Maggie Rizer at City Center Bishop Ranch in San Ramon. $380, mbymaggie.com.
All That Glitters
Elegant and understated, Ariel Gordon’s jewelry has a timeless allure. Working with pearls, diamonds, and 14-karat gold, Gordon—an East Bay resident—has created a to-die-for line of necklaces, earrings, and bracelets. Available at Oakland’s McMullen boutique. Prices vary, shopmcmullen.com.
A gift card to Walnut Creek’s luxurious Woodhouse Day Spa is the perfect way to indulge the woman in your life with beautifying and stress-busting treatments. Choose from skincare regimens, massages, sleep therapies, and more. Prices vary, walnutcreek.woodhousespas.com.
With its distinctive square case and starry history (ultracool actor Steve McQueen will forever be associated with it), the sleek Tag Heuer Monaco Calibre 11 watch features an automatic chronograph movement, sapphire crystal, and water resistance to 100 meters. Available at Heller Jewelers in San Ramon. $5,900, hellerjewelers.com.
Spirits of the Season
Alameda’s artisanal St. George Spirits has concocted a pair of fruit liqueurs that make wonderful gifts to be enjoyed at a holiday feast—or anytime the “spirit” moves you. The distillery’s raspberry liqueur is sweet but not cloying, while the complex spiced pear liqueur has just the right touch of cinnamon and clove. $35 each, stgeorgespirits.com.
A Cut Above
Need a gift for a local trailblazer? Look no further than Trader, a specialty store offering gear for outdoorsy types. Located at City Center Bishop Ranch in San Ramon, the shop carries these limited edition scrimshaw pocket knives, designed by Linda Karst Stone and emblazoned with Mount Diablo and the Trader logo. $190–$225, tradersanramon.com.
Pendleton Woolen Mills—the iconic manufacturer known for blankets and clothing inspired by Native American designs—has created rugged men’s jackets in a variety of patterns. The Gorge bomber jacket (shown here in Mesa Dawn) will become an instant favorite for its durability and comfort. Available at Maple Street Denim in Oakland. $349, msdoak.com.
Easily accessible from the East Bay, Northstar California, in North Lake Tahoe, offers some of the most scenic skiing in the West. And whether the man in your life is a die-hard skier (consider the season-long Epic Pass) or an occasional visitor (day passes), he’ll love some quality slope time. Prices vary, northstarcalifornia.com.
Children can’t get enough of Duncan and his willful crayons; the books based on their adventures have become treasured best-sellers. The new holiday installment, titled The Crayons’ Christmas, includes games, ornaments, a poster, letters, and even a pop-up Christmas tree. Available at Mr. Mopps’ Children’s Books in Berkeley. $20, mrmopps.net.
Dressed to Chill
Berkeley’s Bird and Bean is a delightful little shop that sells toys, books, and comfy kids’ apparel. Among the latter is the Vintage Forest dress, which your youngster will no doubt agree is the perfect outfit for the holiday season—and beyond. $39, birdandbeanshop.com.
Young at Art
Sometimes the best present is one that encourages creative play. Rebel Art School, in Walnut Creek, offers classes, camps, and seasonal sessions for kids of all ages; purchase a gift certificate for the budding artist in your life. Prices vary, rebelartschool.com.
Days (and Nights) of Wonder
Nothing builds excitement like a countdown to the main event—so why not encourage the little ones to enjoy their anticipation of Christmas? Lemon gift shop (with locations in Danville and Lafayette) makes it easy with Adams and Co.’s decorative calendar. $43, lemongiftshop.com.
Check out Wish in Walnut Creek—and its adjacent children’s boutique, Little Wish—when shopping for the younger set. Along with this cuddly stuffed corgi, Wish carries a selection of Squishable animals as well as a vast variety of gifts. $30, wishwalnutcreek.com.