Shop small! These fun gifts support the little guy/gal — and will arrive by Christmas!
Sometimes you really want to support the little guy/gal, but the convenience of online retail giant Amazon is too tempting. We're here to tell you, you can have the best of both worlds. Amazon now has campaigns promoting small businesses, woman-owned small businesses and emergent brands. There's even a handmade items category. So you can bring your business to small brands and still enjoy efficient speedy delivery and the ease of one-stop shopping.
We've sifted through these small-brand selections to bring you a cornucopia of super-fun gift ideas (some of which you may need to buy for yourself, as well). If you have Amazon Prime, you’ll get free shipping, of course. Not yet a member? Sign up for your free 30-day trial here. (And remember, even those without Prime get free shipping on orders of $25 or more).
Order now and your gifts will arrive in time for Christmas!
Nerdbugs Heart Plush
This Christmas, give them your heart. Woman-owned Nerdbugs is a small biz that specializes in adorable body-organ stuffies. Yes, I said adorable body organs. This nine-inch-high Nerdbugs Plush Heart would make an excellent gift for a science-minded little one, a medical professional or anyone you want to give your heart to.
Some shoppers share this heart as a get-well present:"Great gift for my mom from her granddaughters post-surgery. Not too big like the heart pillows the hospital gives. These are super cute. Definitely happy and would recommend."
Check out the cute breast, uterus, lungs and kidney as well.
Nestpark Pup Claw Dog Toys 2-pack
White Claw fans with dogs will adore this gift. So will any dog for that matter. Split it up as two gifts and it'll run you just $7 a pop. This fun two-pack of durable, seven-inch squeaky toys is great for dogs small and large, and it has already earned more than 6,100 five-star reviews!
One five-star fan wrote: "My dog is a soft-toy destroyer. She usually tears them apart in five minutes, stuffing everywhere. But for some reason she has not gotten these apart yet! The fabric seems a little more durable but I think it also helps that there are no hanging pieces like a tail/ears, etc. She loves to toss them around. Squeaker isn't in an area she bites all the time so it's not overly annoying. Was super cute to post a picture of her with it and me with my own White Claw."
Ban.do Women's Write On Graphite Pencil Set of 10
Friends don't let friends wait around for a confidence boost. Gift these 10 colorful, mega-positive Ban.do Graphite Pencils and they'll have your compliments at their fingertips. The set arrives sharpened and ready for action. Who wouldn't want to hear that they're smart or a total champ?
One shopper shared, "Love these! The compliments are all fabulous, the pencil itself is of good quality and the erasers actually work! My coworkers were really excited to get these, and a year later they all still have happy little compliments sticking out of their pencil cups."
Loftipop Plant Lover Coffee Mug
For your plant fiend, er, plant friend, who loves plants but doesn't need more of them. Consider this nod to her obsession that won't clutter up her windowsill. This handmade 11 oz mug looks and feels special, because it is.
An original design by Loftipop Mugs, this mug has an impressive 4.8-star rating from shoppers: "Perfect," said one fan. "I received my mug today and I love it. Nice, crisp colors, well-packaged, perfect size (I hate those huge 14 oz mugs, some of us have arthritis in our hands). This is my Christmas gift to myself. Well done."
If plants aren't your giftee's cup of tea, check out the book lover and cat fanatic versions.
Tree Buddees King Kong Climbing The Tree Christmas Tree Topper
I LOL'd when I saw this star-stealing Kong, from Tree Buddees. The 10-inch-tall plastic tree topper is light enough that it won't become a tree toppler. It's perfect for young folks getting their first tree, your own tree and anyone with a sense of humor. It works well atop a live tree but also has hidden magnets to secure it to an artificial one. The 4.8-star rating is a testament to the quality.
One five-star reviewer said, "This has to be the best tree topper on the planet. My husband and I have been trying to find a nice tree topper that we both agree on and this definitely was the best choice. It's light, sturdy, goes on the tree really nicely. looks fantastic and fun to look at. I wrapped lights around the top stem of the tree to really make him pop."
Tree Buddees Wine Opener Holiday Workout Christmas Ornament
Crack up your Aunt Judy with the wine workout ornament, another fun decoration from Tree Buddees. The three-inch glass ornament is lightweight and surprisingly tough to break.
One happy gifter wrote, "Purchased a few of these for my wine-loving friends. They arrived intact, and seemed to be a hit! I should probably get one for myself now."
Arres S'mores Marshmallow Roasting Sticks Set
Tis not the season, exactly. But what the heck. These extendable marshmallow/hot dog roasting sticks are a promise of fun to come — and their off-season-ness may be why they're on sale for $20 (down from $33). The telescoping forks are delightful and (somewhat) useful gizmos that take s'mores-making to the next level! And if you know someone who that's important to, this is the gift for them!
They're a top seller in camping utensils with nearly 2,000 perfect ratings. One five-star fan writes, "These roasting sticks were a great gift and I plan to order some for myself. They’re lightweight and come with a convenient bag for storage and packing ease. Love that they are each a different color so that everyone can keep track of “their” stick. If you have kids, you know that this will help eliminate conflict! They also have little caps to cover the pointy ends."
Tipsy Elves Youth Ugly Christmas Sweater
This cleverly tacky Christmas sweater by small biz Tipsy Elves will delight your kids when it's time to get dressed for holiday parties, and charm everyone they encounter. It's available in children's sizes X-Small to X-Large. Check out the other versions too: One features a Christmas shark, the other a very holiday unicorn.
One happy shopper shared, "Adorable sweater....had lots of compliments...Very well made and cozy."
The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication.
If you have Amazon Prime, you’ll get free shipping, of course. Not yet a member? No problem. You can sign up for your free 30-day trial here. (And by the way, those without Prime still get free shipping on orders of $25 or more.)
Looking for more great Amazon auto + home deals? Check these out:
Hotor Car Trash Can with Lid and Storage Pockets$9$20Save $11
FBB Phone Mount for Car$14$40Save $26
Fortem Car Trunk Organizer$22$35Save $13 with coupon
Car Wipes by Armor$15$19Save $4
iRobot Roomba 694 Robot$249$275Save $26
Inso Handheld Cordless Car Vacuum$42$187Save $145
OKP Life K2 Robot Vacuum Cleaner$129$400Save $271
Black+Decker dustbuster QuickClean Cordless Handheld Vacuum$25$60Save $35
Lodge LCC3 Cast Iron Combo Cooker$50
Instant Vortex Plus Air Fryer Oven$130$160Save $30
Amazon Basics Ceramic Non-Stick 12.5-inch Skillet$27$30Save $3
Ninja NJ601AMZ Professional Blender$80$100Save $20
Bedding and home
Cozsinoor Bed Pillows 2-Pack$26$90Save $64
LuxClub 6-piece Queen Sheet Set$28$57Save $29
Beckham Hotel Collection Bed Pillows, Set of 2$30$50Save $20
Topcee Twin Size Weighted Blanket, 15 lbs.$30$35Save $5
More Holiday Gift Ideas
We’ve got your holiday shopping list covered with fantastic gift ideas for everyone on your list. You’ll find expert picks on the best tech gifts on Engadget, the best gift ideas for car lovers at Autoblog, gifts for the young (and young at heart) at In the Know, and picks for just about everyone else on your list (moms, dads, teens, nurses, you name it!) in Yahoo’s holiday gift ideas section. On AOL, you'll find for gift ideas for seniors shopping for moms, dads, teens and toddlers.