Unique holiday items can be found across Metro Detroit

Judith Harris Solomon
Special to The Detroit News

Because it’s a bit too early to be dashing through the snow in a one-horse open sleigh, we decided instead to drive all around the town (in our made-in-Detroit automobile, of course) looking for unique gifts for you to bestow upon the special people in your life. May we suggest:

Perpetual calendar

Made out of raw Kraft board, maple wood, brass and grosgrain ribbon, this stunning handmade 151/2-by-24-inch perpetual calendar features red, white or black rotating discs with the year, month and day of the week. Crafted by Tait Design Co., an independent product design studio based in Detroit, it costs $55 at Post or at taitdesignco.com.

Gronk football speaker

Guys (and perhaps a few gals) are going to get a big kick out of this combination football and bluetooth wireless speaker ($59.95) that plays music while you play catch. The laces and stripes light up as well. Find it at Brookstone.

S’Well stainless steel water bottles

Just as the name implies, these great-looking stainless-steel insulated beverage bottles from S’well are indeed swell because they keep cold drinks cold for 24 hours and hot drinks hot for 12 hours. Available in several different great patterns, the 17-ounce bottles cost $35, and the 25-ounce bottles, $45, at Nordstrom Gift Departments.

Iconic scarves, socks

How cool will it be to gift Detroit lovers accessories reflecting iconic buildings? Whether it’s a Fisher Building Mosaic Scarf ($59), Guardian Building ceiling socks ($20), a Packard Plant Engineering hoodie ($42), a Navin Field T-shirt ($26) or a Hotel Yorba Mug ($12), there’s hundreds of Detroit-centric items designed by Bethany Shorb, owner of Well Done Goods in Detroit. And each item is printed in-house by the elves of the Cyberoptix Tie Lab.

Kids knit hats with goggles

These adorable knit hats ($30), made in England, feature goggles made out of 100-percent cotton and are in stock in size 6 months to 3 years. Find them at Little High Flyers on Cass Avenue in Midtown Detroit.

Men’s themed socks

Sock it to the guys in your life with this guaranteed-to-make-you-smile footwear. The bicycle- and football-play-themed socks from K.Bell cost $15 per pair at Art Loft, while the cocktail-themed ones cost $13 at Tommy Bahama.

Plaid kitchen accessories

This Christmas, because we’re mad for plaid, may we suggest you enhance your buffet display with a delightful 15-by-7-inch rectangular white china platter from Mudpie ($42) as well as 18-inch square napkins ($18.50 for a set of four) from Small Favors Gift Gallery in Grosse Pointe. And the white mug (complete with red plaid initial) costs $8 at Pottery Barn.

Baby Santa

What could be more perfect for a baby’s first Christmas than this guaranteed-to-make-you-smile one piece Santa suit ($25) from Mudpie? Find it at Found Objects in Birmingham.

PJ time

These pretty PJs from Soma Intimates could make a dreamy gift for ladies on your list. Sold separately, the tops and bottoms cost $46 each. And the bottoms feature a red satin bow at the waist.

Place mat art for kids

Here’s a constructive way to keep your kiddies (ages 8 and up) entertained while waiting for their food to be ready. Award-winning illustrator Marion Deuchars’ Let’s Make Some Great Placemat Art ($12.95) contains 36 paper mats (with nine different designs) for children to first draw on and then use as place mats. Find them at Nora in Midtown Detroit.

Reindeer planter

Whether you use it as a planter or a beverage cooler, this 38-inch-tall reindeer could turn out to be the most welcome guest at your holiday party. Made in India out of industrial metal parts, it costs $230 at Leon and Lulu in Clawson.

Judith Harris Solomon is a Metro Detroit freelance writer.


Store locations

Art Loft

123 W. Maple, Birmingham

(248) 647-4007

4160 Cass Ave., Detroit

(313) 818-0023


Somerset Collection, Troy

(248) 637-2866

Twelve Oaks Mall, Novi

(248) 348-7185

Detroit Metro Airport, McNamara Terminal

(734) 229-0853

Found Objects

168 S. Old Woodward, Birmingham

(248) 220-4999

Leon & Lulu

96 W. 14 Mile, Clawson

(248) 288-3600

Little High Flyers

4240 Cass, Detroit

(313) 818-3748


Somerset Collection

(248) 816-5100


Twelve Oaks Mall

(248) 504-5700


14500 Kercheval, Detroit

(313) 939-2172

Pottery Barn

Village of Rochester Hills, Rochester

(248) 375-8829

Somerset Collection

(248) 816-8359

Twelve Oaks Mall

(248) 348-0410

Soma Intimates

Somerset Collection North, Troy

(248) 822-8020

Twelve Oaks Mall

(248) 277-4756

Partridge Creek Mall, Clinton Township

(586) 913-0242

Small Favors Gift Gallery

17125 Kercheval, Grosse Pointe

(313) 887-1774

Tommy Bahama

Somerset Collection North, Troy

(248) 283-1886

Well Done Goods

1440 Gratiot Ave, Detroit

(313) 404-2053


*also two off site pop-up locations

GM Ren Center Holiday Headquarters (though December 15)

Rust Belt Market, 22801 Woodward Ave, Ferndale (Dec. 15 - 24 )