Posted in news on November 22, 2016 2:37 pm EST

It’s a Wrap: The 2016 Holiday Gift Guide for Church Designers

A sampling of just-right gifts for under $50 from a seasoned Church Designer contributor.


 

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TAGS: architects, christmas, designers, gift guide,

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By Cathy Hutchison

It is incredibly difficult to find Christmas gifts for church designers. For one thing, they never give anyone a list because too many of their projects commission in December. (Well, the ones that aren’t opening at Easter, anyway.) And for another, most of the gifts they truly want have price tags that take them way out of stocking stuffer range.

So, to help you in getting your peers the perfect gifts -- or to help out your family and friends when it comes to buying for you -- we’ve assembled a list of items to go crazy for without breaking the bank.

UPGRADE THE NOTEBOOK

Black Moleskine’s are ubiquitous among church designers, but did you know you can get an upgrade? The Leuchtturm1917 is the same hardcover A5 size as the Moleskine, but features pre-printed page numbers and a blank table of contents for easy organization. Best of all, the dotted pages serve as writing guides while still allowing for freestyle drawing. Available via Amazon for $19.50. Free shipping with Prime. (visit link)

CHARGE YOUR DEVICES IN STYLE

Church designers are usually pretty big on their personal devices, but it is annoying to have to fish charging cables out from the back of the nightstand every evening to charge them. And overpriced name brand charging stations are just annoying to buy. iVAPO makes a Bamboo Charging Station for iPad, iPhone and Apple Watch that is elegant and easy-to-use, priced at just $25.99. Free shipping with Prime. (visit link)

CHEAPER THAN THE ENO HAMMOCK

The Eagle’s Nest Outfitters popular hammock (seen on college campuses everywhere) has a competitor. The Bear Butt Double Parachute Camping Hammock is a comparable product at a much lower price, making it worth a look for the church designer in your life who loves the outdoors—or simply needs a nap on the patio. (visit link)

THE SINGLE PERFECT CUP OF COFFEE

If the person on your list is into finding the single perfect cup of coffee, then the Aerobie AeroPress Coffee Maker might just be the ideal gift. It is hard to believe that such a simple device—an injection mechanism that looks like a giant syringe—can produce such a smooth, rich flavor, but it does—rivaling the best coffee houses. (No kidding, there is even a subculture around this device who compare the advantages of different methods.) The AeroPress is available at Bed, Bath and Beyond or pick it up for $25.95 via Aerobie. Be sure to get some spare filters to put in the stocking. (visit link).

HYPER-COOL INSTRUCTIONALS

Make Magazine is a bimonthly magazine that focuses on DIY projects involving computers, electronics, robotics, metalworking, woodworking, and other disciplines. (Not that the church designer in your life will actually have time to do any of this, but sometimes it is just fun to get inspired by seeing others do them.) Digital PDF or iPad subscription is just $19.99. (visit link)

NOISE CANCELING HEADPHONES THAT MAKE YOU LOOK GOOD

If your fellow church designer happens to work in an open office, then there are probably times when they throw on headphones to do focus work.

These Symphonized Wraith Premium Genuine Wood Headphones come with two cords—one with an in-line microphone and one without. This lets your favorite designer look good while tuning in or tuning out. Available via Amazon for $49.99. Free shipping with Prime. (visit link)

THE 7-INCH TABLET THAT JUST KEEPS BEING AWESOME

The Amazon Fire Tablet continues to be a great buy, and when paired with services like Kindle Unlimited or Amazon Prime Streaming, it keeps giving all year long. Best of all, the Fire Tablet now has Alexa (Amazon’s cloud-based personal assistant similar to Siri and Cortana). The basic 8GB model is a modest $49.00, but consider adding a little more to your order to upgrade to the 16GB or to get a nice cover to go with it. (visit link)

GIVE THE GIFT OF VIRTUAL REALITY

Canbor’s VR Headset is designed to give you a cinematic experience from your smart phone. Compatible with most of the major devices (check for your specific model), Canbor’s VR headset is a low-cost way to test drive the technology that everybody talks about. (visit link)

GIVE THE GIFT OF QUIET

Etymotic Research makes the ER20 High-Fidelity Earplugs that reduce noise by approximately 20db while preserving sound quality. These ear plugs serve as a volume control for concerts, airshows and other events. At around $11 on Amazon, these are great when sitting in a poor location at a seminar, conversing with high volume clients, or dealing with acousticians. (visit link)

JUST SEND BACON

If your favorite fellow church designer lives in another state, then consider sending a Man Crate—specifically one filled with bacon. Man Crates come in a wooden crate with a crowbar to help open it. No bow. No ribbons -- and absolutely no instructions. Man Crates come in a variety of themes, but the Bacon Crate is priced at $49. (visit link)

DID YOU KNOW THERE IS A GROWN UP VERSION OF SILLY PUTTY?

Crazy Aaron makes Thinking Putty. And it comes in a wide array of really cool effects (like glow in the dark and magnetic) and colors (like clear glass and color changing). The best part? Playing with thinking putty can make a boring conference call go by much, much faster. $15 for a half-pound tin. (visit link)

We hope you find that perfect gift. And if it isn’t on this list, there is always the Starbucks gift card. After all, chances are your favorite fellow designer will find themselves headed onto a job site early in January -- wishing desperately they had a warm beverage.

 

 

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