It’s that time of year, friends - the holidays! And since 2020 is such a sh*t show, thought we’d throw it back and be inspired by a simpler time, 1994: Princess Diana was still alive (but separated from Charles), The US and Russia agreed to stop aiming nuclear missiles at each other, China was first connected to the internet, Jeff Bezos created Amazon, AOL goes live and the SPICE GIRLS burst onto the scene (well they wouldn’t officially burst onto the scene until 1996, but they got together).
Because there are infinity gift guides out there, we thought we’d mix it up and create one based on some of our favorite ladies: Baby, Ginger, Posh, Scary and Sporty.
The below is meant to inspire you to gift however works for you, but to consider something sustainably/ethically/conscientiously sourced first before going straight to a big box or big eComm store. We also fully realize that 2020 hasn’t exactly been …. kind to anyone, so if you aren’t in a place financially to give material gifts, there are lots of other, even better ideas out there. Think about what your friends and family may need this holiday and gift those things instead. Do you have a special skill that your loved ones don’t have? Gift them that instead. Ideas could include: writing a letter, having a quality conversation/listening to someone (+ a virtual cup of coffee), sharing a skill/resource/insight, passing on/sharing the things you already have, offering to babysit/help with childcare, cook, etc.
And finally, if you are in a place to gift this holiday season and don’t want to gift something material, there are plenty of other ways to gift sustainably: donate to your loved one’s favorite charity in their name, help them out with a bill (utility, car payment, rent, gas for their car), buy them a meal (or meals), help with making the holidays bright for their children, help in some other way, but just don’t know how to ask.
And now without further adieu, the TBR 2020 Holiday Gift Guide, inspired by the Spice Girls:
Baby Spice, or Emma Bunton, was the youngest member of the Spice Girls. She was known for wearing her long, blonde hair in pigtails, as well as lots of pastel colors (especially pink), babydoll dresses and platform sneakers. Is there someone in your life that this sounds like? Check out some gifts we think Baby Spice would be into today.
Back Home x Yates Perfume No. 3650; A Hug by Nicola Manton; Odyssey and Oddities Fringe Mask; TBR Pink Polo; Back Home Rose Shea Butter; Odyssey and Oddities Pink Resin Arc and Vintage Daisy Earrings; Nova Coffee Co Ethiopia Coffee Beans; TBR Floral Button Down; or A Virtual Cookie Decorating Class
Ginger Spice, or Geri Halliwell, was known for her “liveliness, zest and flaming red hair.” While her image centers on “glammed-up sex appeal”, more importantly, she was seen as the de facto leader of the group due to her articulate conversational style and business savvy nature. If you can’t find the Ginger Spice in your life an equally iconic dress as the Union Jack one Ginger Spice was famous for wearing, maybe there’s something here that would appeal.
Odyssey and Oddities Camel and Black Fringe Mask; Sex Positive Talks to Have with Kids by Melissa Carnagey; TBR x Penguin City Beer Fringe T-Shirt; Branch Street Coffee Co Costa Rica Cordillera de Fuego Coffee Beans; Back Home Caffeine Under Eye Serum; TBR Purple Leather Trench; Back Home No 2 Amber and Oakmoss Candle; A donation to the Conscious Kid’s Anti-Racism Books Education Fund; or A Virtual Cooking Class
Posh Spice, Victoria Beckham, always seemed to be the most boring (IMO), although I do love a good suit or little black dress. Posh came from an affluent background and projected a refined attitude, signature pout and designer outfits, specifically an LBD. If this sounds like someone in your life you are gifting for, here are some things they might like:
Scary Spice, Melanie Brown, was known to have the best “in-your-face” attitude. With her loud, Leeds accent, pierced tongue and bold manner of dress (all the leopard-print!), she was one of my favorites. For that bold, caring person in your life, maybe there’s something here you think they might like.
Sporty Spice, Melanie Chisholm, or my other favorite “Melanie” was my favorite Spice Girl, because she appealed to my tomboy nature. Always doing some sort of sport or activity in her stylish tracksuits and trainers, she sported a tough-girl attitude (but really we all knew she was a big softy, hello “Spice World”) and tattoos. Sadly, I was never as good at spontaneous back handsprings as she was, but you won’t have to do flips to find something for this character in your life.
And if you’d like some other ideas, check out these local NE Ohio small businesses that would love your support*:
- Hand-Lettered Stuff: Kate Maple CO, It’s All in the Deetails, Encourage Co, Hand Lettered Old Shit, Champaign Paper
- One Stop Shops: Gardener of Bath, Jean + Lou, Reverie, Land of Plenty, Bomb Shelter (Akron), Highland Throwbacks, Oceanne, CraftyMart (Virtual this year!), East Ave Flea Market, West of Venus Vintage, Flower Child Cleveland, Bombay Taxi Boutique
- Plants: Leaf Home and Blooms, Graf Growers, Lepley and Co
- Handmade Gifts: Noble Fawn Jewelry, Kaleidoscope Designs, Soul Cloth Collective, Fleecewood Mac, Sweet Grass by Heather, Just Another Bracelet, Stephanie Lee Paynter, Kiri Chic, Well Spring Clothing Co, J Burgess Designs, Thrive Styling, Honey and Three CO, Lady Noel Designs, Whiskertin
- Clean Beauty and Home: Glam and Grace, Miffwick Candles, Goods, The Venus in Aquarius, 1820 Co
- The Devil Strip and other local media outlets (don’t forget your local music venues, too! NIVA is hosting a Save our Stages campaign this year)
- Local Foods: Akron Coffee Roasters, Akron Honey
- Fun Supplies: Lovely Somethings
- BIKES: Dirty River Bikes
- Other secondhand shops: Cybernetic Meadow, Helm Collective, The Other Elizabeth Vintage, Gypsy Moth Vintage, Ode Vintage
- And because I couldn’t figure out a way to incorporate them into each gift guide, and I’ve been learning more and more about them, and lots of our local makers make such beautiful stuff with them, here are some fun crystals and their meanings that might inspire a fun gift for your loved ones:
- Citrine - Brings joy, wonder, and enthusiasm to every part of your life with citrine. It’s said to help you release negative traits from your life like fear, and in turn help encourage optimism, warmth, motivation, and clarity. It’s also claimed to enhance mindful qualities, like creativity and concentration.
- Jasper - “supreme nurturer” crystal; empowers the spirit and supports you through times of stress / claims to protect the wearer from and absorb negative vibes while promoting courage, quick thinking and confidence.
- Obsidian - a protective stone that is said to help form a shield against physical and emotional negativity / also said to get rid of emotional blockage and promote qualities of strength, clarity and compassion to help find your true sense of self / may also aid in digestion and detoxification while helping reduce pain and cramps.
- Tiger’s Eye - if you’re in need of a power/motivation boost, this golden stone may be for you / it’s said to help rid your mind and body of fear, anxiety and self-doubt, which is beneficial for career aspirations or guide you to harmony and balance to help you make clear, conscious decisions.
- Clear Quartz - considered a “master healer”, it is said to amplify energy by absorbing, storing, releasing and regulating it. It’s also said to aid concentration and memory. Physically, clear crystals are claimed to help stimulate the immune system and balance your entire body. Can be paired with other stones to enhance their abilities.
Happy Holidays, friends! Let us know what you end up gifting and tag us on social @thebackrack_
*There are so MANY GREAT small businesses in Ohio, it’s tough to get them all, so if you have a small biz, drop it in the comments - we’d love to support you <3