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Holigay Gift Guide 2016: More Super Cute Stuff Made by Women Indie Artists


Illustration by Sophie Argetsinger

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

Astrology Watercolor Print by Jade and Serif. I like a lot of this Alabama-based illustrator’s typographic work, but I know y’all will be into this one.

Notebook Set by Dorcas Creates. I love this so much. Beautiful, celebratory notebooks for all the excellent black ladies in your life.

Summer Fruit Lithograph by plant planet. LA-Based artist Claire Nereim also has prints of flowers that only bloom at night and poisonous plants.

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.

“Exit With A Kiss” Shower Curtain by Meike Legler. This Berlin-based artist mostly makes pillows but I just think this is so fun!

Grande Punto Blanket hand-knit by Ohhio. I love these huge knits, so chunky, so cozy! This makes me immediately want a very big book and some tea.

Lambchop mug by Ashley Hardy. These are just so cool and weird.


Stuff To Put Stuff In

Suki Dances Tote, illustrated by UK artist Laura Hastings. If you’re ever forced to leave the house and carry things, you can do it as you celebrate dancing naked throughout the house.

Kween Tote by Kristina Micotti. If this particular tote isn’t your style, Kristina hand-paints them and has a massive sale on them going right now.

Ceramic baby sloth bowl by Barruntado. I featured this team last year, and I’m doing it again because literally everything they make is so cute I want to die.

Greenhouse Daybag by Esther Sandler. Melbourne-based textile designer makes gorgeous, bright print bags. Also of note: her adorable print of Australian animals.

Can’t-Kill Cactus Vase by ceramicist Bea Bellingham. Suffering from sad succulents? Here’s a cute, kill-proof solution.

Sculptural Urchin Pots by Cat Brown. Treat your plant babies well.

Stuff For Your Appendages

Materia#1 by depeapa. Verónica de Arriba is one of my favorite artists, and I love this blocky, hip necklace style.

Porcelain Ceramic Ring. These handmade rings by ceramicist Dai Li are all stackable, unique, and super cool.

Minimal semicircle wire earrings by Monochromatiques

Sunday Night Pizza Night Socks. ?Pizza Socks!!!?

Tan Line Butt Socks. ? Butt Socks!!! ? (Also of note from the CoucouSuzette shop: boob pins.)

Little Lovers Hand-printed scarf by BonbiForest. Also of note: These lovely little Be Brave pins.

Stuff To Put On Your Body

Egg Boob Shirt by Saggy Bee Design. It’s boobs! On your boobs! That are eggs!

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.

The Glasgow red velvet bowtie by Wickham House. This is a husband-and-wife team who make the nicest, classiest bow ties I’ve seen around.

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.

Wink Pocket Dress by BZRShop. Tiffany Ju used to only make my favorite tights; now she makes my dream outfits. This dress is just so weird and great.

Stuff To Put On a Denim Vest

Awkward Lady Pin by Awkward Ladies Club. I love awkwardness!!

Jungle Greenhouse Broach. UK Artist Kate Rowland makes these darling little wooden illustrations and I just love them. Psst—she also has a feminist one and a bookworm one.

Minty Monstera pin by Pardon my Tone. This woman designs and produces these beautiful, pastel-colored enamel pins. I want every single one.

“Cool” patch from Gilly Press. Passive-aggressively declare yourself!!

Embroidered collar pins  by İrem Yazıcı. So cool!

Bad Feeling Pin by Hilda Palafox. Just to be obvious about it.

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.

Fight like a Grrrl patch. From one of my fave feminist shops, CreepyGals. Warn people not to mess with you.


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.

Planters, boobs, and lava lamp zine from fellow Texan, Lilah Shepherd. What’s not to like?

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.

P.S.—Need to wrap all these gifts? Here’s a lovely option.

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Raquel is a Brazilian-American designer and writer. She's from Austin, TX but she lives in Washington, D.C., and she's mostly ok with that. She’s fluent in emoji, gets emotional about fonts, and is always down to photoshop something weird. Find her at basically all hours on twitter @raqueldesigns and occasionally around the rest of the internet.

Raquel has written 23 articles for us.


  1. As someone who loves giving gifts so much I basically treat it like a sport, always looking for that perfect, meaningful gift for each of my loved ones, please don’t stop doing gift guides! They’re a great way to find really unique gift ideas and people and businesses that I feel good about supporting. This holiday season, we should all vote with our dollars if we can. And now that I know it helps support y’alls work, even better. I look forward to the Autostraddle gift guides every year, honestly.

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