We know the holiday season can become a Commerce Festival, but at Autostraddle, we rely on affiliate income to pay our bills, and these gift guides are a huge part of that! Basically, if you buy a product through an affiliate link on our site, we get a percentage of the sale (between 2%-15%, depending on the company.) All the products linked in our guides are either through merchants we have affiliate relationships with or through independent makers who don’t offer affiliate marketing but definitely deserve your money. Thanks in advance for your support!
I feel weird every year about gifting. It’s something I absolutely love doing, when I can do it right—find that one perfect thing that someone will love. But if I’m unsure, or worst of all I gift them something they already have, I fall into a puddle of anxiety.
I also feel somewhat complicated about celebrating a holiday through consumption, and about contributing to a capitalist system that has not exactly worked out for us, historically. These are my own hangups, but the result is that I’ve worked to spend my queer dollars with intention—especially this year. I’ve been seeking out independent artists, illustrators, designers, makers, and weirdos to support when I search for gifts, especially from my fellow queers, women, and people of color.
As often happens when you intentionally diversify your actions, this has also resulted in my finding really unique, beautiful, and cool stuff. It’s also continued to enable my serious Etsy problem, but on the other hand, look at this awesome list of gorgeous stuff I’ve put together for you—all of it designed and/or created by at least one woman or nonbinary artist!
Stuff For Your House
Eight Years of Daily Purchases by Kate Bingaman-Burt. Kate is one of my favorite illustrators, and I got the amazing opportunity to meet her when she visited my studio last year. This isn’t the space for me to sit and brag, but I did want to mention that she began this project when she was deeply in debt as a form of self-punishment. At the time, she hated drawing, and she decided that if she drew everything she bought, she may be more thoughtful about her buying choices. Well, eight years go by, she gets her financial situation under control, and she develops a newfound love of drawing as contemplative practice and becomes an illustrator. This amazing poster/newspaper print is the result.
Stuff To Put Stuff In
Stuff For Your Appendages
Sunday Night Pizza Night Socks. ?Pizza Socks!!!?
Stuff To Put On Your Body
Cat Person Collection Color Fusion Sweater. This is a very weird-looking cat and I’m so here for it. Traveler Misha Gazel finds a lot of strange cat fabrics and makes them into wonderful sweaters for your enjoyment.
Annabelle-Mesh and Velvet Lingerie Set by Danielle Wood. This has everything for your favorite femme: mesh! Velvet! High waists! Garter straps!!! If I could get away with only wearing this forever, I would do it.
Flopsided Pastel Femme Space Queen Sports Bra and here is the bottom by Rebirth Garments. Okay, I cannot say enough about these awesome folx. They make “gender-nonconforming lingerie for all bodies,” and they really mean it. Each object of clothing loudly celebrates our physical idiosyncrasies—this outfit that I’ve featured, for example, is for people who may have one breast larger than the other. They’ll work with you to make something that not only works for your body, uniquely, but celebrates its individuality. Also of note: one of the funnest binders I’ve ever seen.
Sky-Blue Bikini Swimsuit Top and here is the bottom. Swim in the water, look like the sky. Nina Ribena sources her fabrics around London and describes her stuff as “Dance as disinhibition, voguing, genderfuck, rave culture, empowered women and sportswear.” I’m sold.
Stuff To Put On a Denim Vest
LGBT/Queer/Transgender Buttons by Bimblesnoot. Um, finally, pronoun/pride buttons that are cute and fun and well-designed and include many different options! If you’re more of a punk type, check out these Aggressively Queer and badass pronoun buttons from Blindfold Ambition.
Stuff for Your Bookshelf
Peach Spell Book from Sarah McNeil, a zinester and risographist (is that a word? it is now) from Australia. I could buy every single one of her books, but I especially love this one, full of hand-drawn spells for your day-to-day.
2017 Pocket Planner by DOZI. Wendy Chung began as an engineer but became fascinated by color and pattern and started this fantastic design shop. Get 2017 off to a very handsome start, god knows we need it.
An Illustrated Guide to Cocktails by Elizabeth Graeber. Get better at making drinks, and do it with the cutest watercolor animals. Also of note: her zines Should I Get Bangs? and A Field Guide to Redheads: An Illustrated Celebration.
Queer Indigenous Girl Issue 1: a “handwritten perzine including an artist intro, O’Otham culture, health tips, reading recommendations and the artist’s experience of living with ADHD.” Really great.
The Sorriest Little Book by Penelope Gazin. This book is a great way to do a very hard thing, which is to apologize to someone you love. Penelope is one of my favorite illustrators, so if you don’t have anyone you currently need to apologize to, I strongly recommend you consider getting a surprise instead.