2020 Gift Guide for Architecture and Design Lovers

It’s that time of year! We’re back with our 2nd annual gift guide for architecture and design lovers, this year with some fun sustainable and local (to Colorado) twists thrown in. These ideas come straight from our staff to you. Ranging from silly to serious, and down-to-earth to wildly extravagant, there’s a little something for everyone. We had fun putting this list together, we hope you enjoy!

Aspiring Artists

For aspiring artists of all ages!  Studio Create by Cherry Arts curates all the supplies you need for your choice of 3 different mediums: drawing, watercolor or printmaking. It even provides virtual sessions with experts to teach you how to do it! Order before December 10th to make sure it arrives in time for the holidays.

A great gift for kids while they are lacking access to Arts Education due to COVID and a great alternative to electronic devices.  It also benefits a great organization.

Jennifer Williams, Managing Partner, KGA

Lego Architecture

If you’ve ever dreamed of building the Colosseum, now’s your chance! Not for the faint of heart, this epic Lego set captures every architectural detail of the original amphitheater, from the columns on the outer wall’s façade to the vast mysterious structure that runs underneath the entire arena. With 9,036 pieces, it may be the largest Lego set yet!

Not ready to tackle 9,000+ pieces? Start a bit smaller with a Lego architecture set. We love the architecture Paris kit, which brings together Lego interpretations of iconic Paris landmarks. The kit also includes info about the designer, architecture and history of each structure.

Star Wars Instant Pot

Cook up the fastest meals in the Empire with these playful, Star Wars themed Instant Pots from Williams Sonoma.

Off-Grid Get Aways

Creating memories and sharing experiences are always wonderful gifts. While COVID continues to limit travel opportunities, for those who are comfortable with it and local to Colorado, here are 2 amazing, off-grid options that are perfect for outdoor lovers and sustainability enthusiasts alike.

Custom built on a 130-year-old wagon frame, this unique caravan rental is set on a working horse ranch near Boulder, Colorado. An off-grid rental, this charming wagon allows guests to enjoy a truly unique glamping experience near a creek that meanders through the property providing picturesque views and a peaceful getaway. It’s also pet friendly!

This secluded, well-appointed, off-grid cabin is right on Tarryall Creek, with more than 5 acres of solitude and 360-degree mountain views. It’s remote and quiet, but accessible year-round: just 1 hour and 15 minutes from Denver and 50 minutes from Breckenridge.

I’d like to encourage gifting experiences this year! Some experience ideas include renting a cabin or VRBO for a weekend, planning a camping trip, or gifting someone a national parks pass!

Shannon Ricketts, Architectural Drafter, KGA

Architecture Reference Books

No architectural library is complete without these handy reference guides! Both are readily available online, or consider checking with your local bookstore. See on Amazon: Get Your House Right or A Field Guide to American Houses.

We use these books as a staple at the office: great for architects, designers, builders, and homeowners.

Kristen Fowler AIA, Architect, KGA

Grow Your Own Microgreens

The creative folks at Hamama make it easy to grow your own superfood microgreens at home year-round. Just add water once, place near a window or in a room with regular ceiling lighting, and harvest in a week. They offer a great variety of microgreens to choose from, all of which are non-GMO and some of which are organic.

Stay Connected

Samsung’s Galaxy Watch3 has a ton of fun design options and combines smartphone-level productivity and sophisticated health technology in one classic, premium device.

This smart watch helps you keep track of your day to day schedule, connects to your music, and helps you track your health. It’s great for a busy lifestyle.

Angela Lopez, Architectural Drafter, KGA

Premium Puzzles

These incredible puzzles are works of art! Made in Boulder, Colorado, Liberty Puzzles are a throwback to the golden age of jigsaw puzzles. Each one contains dozens of hand-drawn “whimsy” pieces intricately cut into the shapes of characters, animals, and geometric designs. NOTE: According to their website, there’s currently a long wait list for ordering, so puzzles won’t arrive before the holidays. We still chose to include this unique, local company, since we think they’re worth the wait!

During the initial shutdown, puzzles re-emerged in our house as a good way to talk and challenge ourselves not to just watch TV. I purchased a Liberty puzzle to do with my grandson and found out very quickly that we would have to wait a while for him to have the patience for these. I appreciated the challenge, but he isn’t old enough to ward off the frustration yet! We look forward to ordering a big piece puzzle to be made.

Paul Mahony AIA, Senior Partner, KGA

DIY Star Power

Everything you need to look your best on your next video call! We’re all familiar with how spotty the lighting can be on video calls. One minute the light is great, the next you’re plunged into darkness for no apparent reason (other than perhaps a passing cloud outside?). Here are a couple of lighting options we’re curious to try:

The Panel Mini brightens up your workspace with powerful, adjustable LED light. Includes softening diffuser, easy-to-control color temperature and run time, and adaptor cables to ensure you never get left in the dark. Compatible with both laptop and desktop workstations.

For mobile phones, a ring light is a great option. This 12″ ring light from TaoTronics features 3 color modes to choose from and a tripod meant to hold your phone.

Linen Bedding

Give the gift of amazing sleep! Linen is the oldest cultivated plant in human history – and once you experience it, it’s easy to see why. Thanks to hollow fibers, it acts as a natural insulator, keeping you cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Check out Parachute (pictured above) for a beautiful selection of linen bedding.

I love my linen sheets from Parachute. I’ve had them for a couple of years now, and they still make me happy every time I get in bed!

Andrea Thomas, Marketing Director, KGA

For Staying Cool

It might be the middle of winter, but it’s never a bad time to add or upgrade ceiling fans. The right ceiling fan can do wonders for comfort, and completely change the look and feel of any room.

We recently moved, and I’ve been eyeing this fan for my office because the blades retract when the fan isn’t on and I don’t like the fan on during the day, I get too cold. It’s the best of both worlds because my husband can turn it on a soon as he gets home — he loves moving air.

Heather Guadagnoli, Business Manager, KGA

Handcrafted Helicopter Bed

The unique, handcrafted helicopter bed from Dragons of Walton Street is sure to the capture the imagination of children and adults alike! No two beds are the same, and all include extraordinary details like a personalized dashboard with a joystick, speed dial, clock, radio with speaker and 2 USB ports to plug in gadgets.

For the Dinosaur Lover

This prehistoric planter from Urban Stems comes with a low-maintenance air plant. Don’t like dinos? Urban Stems has a wide variety of fun, unique planters and plants for all.

The Perfect Chair

Give a home office upgrade! The right chair can make the difference between comfy, productive work days or ongoing back and shoulder pain. Look for something with ergonomic support that’s designed to promote healthy posture while sitting. These two options from Design Within Reach caught our eye – the Taper Chair and the Cosm Chair.

That wraps up our 2020 gift guide for architecture and design enthusiasts! For more great gift ideas, check out our 2019 gift guide here. We hope you and yours stay safe, healthy and happy this holiday season.

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