Avenue‘s Holiday Gift Guide 2023

Peruse these 47 gift ideas for stocking stuffers, local spirits, creative games, splurge-worthy gems and more.

By Shelley Arnusch, Tsering Asha, Colleen Seto and Alana Willerton

Clockwise from top left: Photo courtesy of Deanna Lavoie, photo courtesy of Lucky Bear, photo courtesy of Combinist, photo by @meganbrittney, photo by Sarah Beau, photo by Animals & Legends.

Give the gift of choice with Market Bucks from the Calgary Farmers’ Market so your giftees can select from more than 75 Alberta-based vendors selling everything from apparel, jewellery and skincare to decor, pet products, liquor and food products of all kinds. Market bucks are good at both the south and west locations, and can be purchased at Customer Information or by calling 403-240-9113. $5-$20 denominations.
CFM South, 510 77 Ave. S.E.; CFM West, 25 Greenbriar Dr. N.W., calgaryfarmersmarket.ca

Photo courtesy of Calgary Farmers’ Market

Add a bit of the force to the holiday season with a mystery Star Wars ornament. The fun part is discovering which of the six ornament options you end up with — you could get one featuring Luke Skywalker, Lando Calrissian, Boba Fett or another favourite character inside. $9.99.
Indigo, multiple Calgary locations, indigo.ca

Photo courtesy of Indigo

Arguably one of 2023’s “it” bags, this versatile, fashionable and durable shoulder bag is available at Uniqlo’s Calgary store that opened earlier this year. The compact size makes this bag ideal for daily essentials and the variety of colours means it’s easy to style with any outfit. $12.90-$24.90.
Uniqlo, CF Chinook Centre, 6455 Macleod Trail S.W., uniqlo.com

Photo courtesy of Uniqlo Canada

An excellent stocking stuffer for the coffee aficionado in your life, Monogram’s boxes of Milligrams instant coffee feature four packets of coffee (there are two different flavours in each) that can be made in seconds, just by adding hot water. $14.
Monogram, multiple Calgary locations, monogramcoffee.com

Photo by April Wilcocks

Cochu’s sponge toffee, dipped in up to four different couverture chocolates, makes for a delicious stocking stuffer. This sweet treat just melts in your mouth with its deep rich toffee flavour and divine creamy chocolate coatings. $15.
Cochu, 429 8 Ave. S.E., cochu.ca

Photo by Cochu Chocolatier

Calgary artist Jill Harrison, a.k.a. Lucky Bear, makes adorable five-inch mini versions of her hand-tufted creations. Choose form shapes like smiley faces, watermelons or bananas to hang on the wall. $19.

Photo courtesy of Lucky Bear

Available in two colours, this cotton tote bag is perfect for carrying groceries, extra winter gear or whatever supplies you need to get through your day. Plus, each purchase gives back, with all of the profits from each bag going to The Calgary Dream Centre. $24.
Change is Good, 1317 9 Ave. S.E., changeisgoodyyc.com

Photo by @meganbrittney

This reversible pink/gray igloo-style cat house will give your feline friend a cozy place to nap or, more likely, to hide from you and your family. Made of recycled polyester, it’s lightweight so it can be placed on a shelf or at the top of a scratching tower. $24.99.
IKEA, 8000 11 St. S.E., 866-866-4532, ikea.com

Photo by IKEA, IKEA.ca

Proudly feminist retailer Madame Premier stocks this 2024 calendar featuring colourful artwork by Vancouver illustrator and muralist Paige Jung. Each month reveals a new vegan or vegan-adaptable recipe hailing from different parts of the world to try. $25.
Madame Premier, 1012 9 Ave. S.E., madamepremier.com

Photo courtesy of Madame Premier

These gorgeous eight-by-eight-inch images by Longview artist Deanna Lavoie, replicated from her original artworks, are each hand-signed and titled. Choose from 15 different reproductions of Alberta landscapes to create a wall collage or simply get your favourite. $28.

Photo courtesy of Deanna Lavoie

This handy flashlight can stand or be hung up to help brighten any workstation or home project your giftee might be tackling this year. The LED light head also rotates 120 degrees. $29.
Home Depot, multiple Calgary locations, homedepot.ca

Photo courtesy of The Home Depot Canada

What happens when you take Eau Claire Distillery’s award-winning whisky and add real cream and spices? You get Rupert’s Whisky Cream, the Turner Valley distillery’s new cream liqueur with tantalizing notes of whisky, vanilla, toffee, melted ice cream and cinnamon. $34.95.
Available at participating Alberta retailers and Eau Claire Distillery, 113 Sunset Boulevard S.W., Turner Valley, eauclairedistillery.ca

Photo courtesy of Eau Claire Distillery

Field Notes, which won a 2022 Made in Alberta Award for its Don’t Call Me Sweet Pea Garden Amaro, recently launched a new product featuring ingredients like Canadian grain spirit, Alberta beet sugar, Assam tea, cardamom and clove. Made with a secret family recipe, Jaya Chai Liqueur can be sipped on its own or used in drinks like coffee cocktails. $36 to 40.
Available at multiple Calgary retailers including Vine Arts, 101, 932 17 Ave. S.W., 403-454-1106, tastejaya.com

Photo by Mat Simpson

Spicy pickled beets, rye whisky soufflé pancakes, Saskatchewan bison stew — these are just a few of the prairie-inspired dishes you can learn to make with this cookbook by local authors Dan Clapson and Twyla Campbell. The book’s gorgeous photography, creative meal ideas and prairie ingredients are sure to inspire a cooking spree. $37.50.
Available at multiple Calgary retailers including Shelf Life Books, 100, 1302 4 St. S.W., 403-265-1033, shelflifebooks.ca

Photo courtesy of Dan Clapson

Give the gift of great wine with a bottle of this award-winning, full-bodied Syrah aged in French oak from Calgary company Hello Someday. This Syrah captures floral, black plum and tobacco notes and pairs well with grilled meats and bold cheeses (or, it can be cellared to enjoy at a later date). $38-$41.
Available at multiple Calgary retailers and restaurants, hellosomedaywine.com

Photo courtesy of Hello Someday

Say goodbye to the sad, sticky scene of melted ice cream on a hot summer’s day (or any day for that matter) with this ingenious pint cooler that will keep your frozen treats ice cold. The Icecreamzzilla is a 16-ounce stainless steel, insulated and vacuum-sealed pint cooler that keeps ice cream pints frozen for up to four hours (and up to eight hours when inside an ice cooler). $38.99.

Photo courtesy of Icecreamzzilla Team

Chromecast helps you access the music, games and movies that live on your apps on one convenient TV screen. It’s easy to set up and even offers voice control. $39.99.
The Source, multiple Calgary locations, thesource.ca

Photo courtesy of The Source

Ideal for the creative person in your life, this diamond art kit invites them to craft a beautiful canvas while also helping them to relax. The Cloud Atlas design by artist Anna Cole features a fun exploration of shapes, patterns and colours. $40.
The Livery Shop, 1119 10 Ave. S.E., 403-453-7711, theliveryshop.com

Photo by Journey of Something

A Calgary father-and-son team are the masterminds behind this fun card game, which sees two to four players battling it out with teams of lions, dodos and mythical creatures like unicorns. It’s sure to be a hit with adults and children alike who love a good game night. $40.
Cherry Tree Lane, 905 1 Ave. N.E., 403-243-1993, cherrytreelane.ca; animalsandlegends.com

Photo courtesy of Animals & Legends

Get crafty with this shadow box kit by Alberta company, Our Little Makery. In it, there are 10 layers to paint and assemble to create a lovely mountain scene to display in your home. $42.

Photo by Sarah Beau

You’ll feel rejuvenated in no time with this Bathorium soak made with ingredients like French red clay, African watermelon seed and French grey sea salt. Simply add some to your next bath and relax. $48.
Oak + Tonic, Southcentre Mall, 100 Anderson Rd. S.E., 403-236-9509, oakandtonic.ca

Photo courtesy of Oak + Tonic

Take your taste buds to the mountains with this kit that helps you make creative cocktails from Banff restaurants using your own handcrafted tea syrups. The kit comes with three cocktail recipes and tins of Alpine Peppermint, Scarlet Berry and Wild Rose Buds tea from Jolene’s Tea House. $49.95
Jolene’s Tea House, 211A Bear St., Banff, 403-985-5500, jolenesteahouse.com

Photo by Gareth Paget

Made in England, these beautiful Mason Cash bowls come in a range of sizes (from eight inches to 11.5 inches) and can be used for mixing batter, food prep and more. The bowls are currently available at Stone House Decor in red, with green and cream options coming soon. $56.99 to $92.99.
Stone House Decor, 216, 10816 Macleod Tr. S.E., stonehousedecor.com

Photo courtesy of Stone House Decor

This stand is ideal for anyone who wears a headset, whether they’re a gamer or work from home. The stand’s base is made with engineered recycled bamboo chopsticks by ChopValue, which has a Calgary microfactory. $59.

Photo courtesy of ChopValue

Crafted using leftover wood from furniture production, this oiled oak candle holder features classic brass detailing. Pair with the OVO Things candlesticks (also available at Sunday State) for a complete gift. $68.
Sunday State, 105, 1934 34 Ave. S.W., sundaystate.ca

Photo by OVO Things

Combinist’s In Waves fall-winter 2023 collection includes this eye-catching acrylic bib necklace that promises to draw many compliments. Choose from four vibrant colours: cobalt blue, hot pink, mango or merlot red. $75.

Photo courtesy of Combinist

Medium Rare makes chef apparel that’s worn by both restaurant chefs and home cooks alike. This tan canvas apron will offer sturdy and stylish protection for the chef in your life. $84.95.

Photo by Gustav Nel

Stay cozy with the Unwind Hoodie by local brand Bäre Activewear. Available in black or forest grey, the hoodie offers both comfort and style with its high-low hem, large hood and light feel. $92.
Bäre Activewear, Southcentre Mall, 100 Anderson Rd. S.E.; 103, 1409 Edmonton Tr. N.E. bareactivewear.com

Photo by Jordan Reid

All the skiers and snowboarders in your life want for Christmas is more days on the slopes, so tuck a Sunshine Super Card from Banff Sunshine Village in their stocking. Cardholders get their first, fourth and seventh days free, a bonus free day at the WinSport ski hill in Calgary, and discounted rates on purchased lift tickets at Sunshine throughout the year. Free days can also be redeemed at Marmot Basin in Jasper and Revelstoke Mountain Resort. $99.
Purchase in-person at 1037 11 Ave. S.W. or online at shop.skibanff.com

Image courtesy of Banff Sunshine Village

For serious home cooks, you can’t go wrong with something from the suite of kitchenware items by Le Creuset. This enamel-coated stoneware French press steeps coffee grounds or tea leaves to perfection. And since it’s dishwasher safe with a nearly non-stick interior, it’s a breeze to clean. $100.
Britannia Kitchen & Home, 816 49 Ave. S.W., 403-243-4444, britanniahome.ca

Photo by Le Creuset

This elegant, wheel-thrown vase by Calgary artist Kate Husted (who won the 2023 Made in Alberta Awards craft category with this Sphere Jar) would make a beautiful addition to any home. The pale blue glaze offers a subtle pop of colour that works in many spaces. $140.

Photo by Husted Ceramics

Imagine a lamp masquerading as a linen notebook. When opened, it transforms into a sculptural light emitting a wonderful warm light. This unique lamp’s design opens to a full 360 degrees and its soft touch papers are tear-proof and water-resistant, lit up by long-lasting LED bulbs. $148.
Steeling Home, 1010 17 Ave. S.W., 403-245-0777, steelinghome.ca

Photo courtesy of Steeling Home

Made with a breathable, stretchy fabric that has moisture wicking and anti-bacterial properties, Duer’s No Sweat Pant delivers on both comfort and style. Choose from a dozen colours ranging from red rock to spruce. $149.
Duer, 1708 4 St. S.W., 587-779-6341, duer.ca

Photo courtesy of Duer

Amsterdam-based Atelier Munro may be best known for its made-to-measure menswear, but you can also pick up stylish, ready-to-wear pieces like this handmade suede belt at its Calgary storefront. The belt adds a sophisticated touch to any ensemble. $159.
Atelier Munro, 1112 2 St. S.W., 825-513-3917, ateliermunro.com

Photo courtesy of Atelier Munro

Part of KitchenAid’s new cordless appliance collection, this hand mixer will make mixing and whipping ingredients a snap for any baker. The fact that it has seven speeds, stainless steel accessories that are dishwasher safe and can stand on its own make it even more convenient. $159.99.
Canadian Tire, multiple Calgary locations, canadiantire.ca; kitchenaid.ca

Photo courtesy of KitchenAid

This Calgary company’s long-sleeve pyjama top and pants set comes in a festive ruby colour, but that’s not even the best part. Thanks to its proprietary fabric technology that helps sweat evaporate from the fabric quickly, Lusomé’s pyjamas will help you stay dry and comfortable all night. $178.

Photo courtesy of Lusomé

Local mattress company Black Sheep Mattress Co. shreds natural Talalay latex (which it also uses in its mattresses) to create these comfortable pillows that come in a zippered case. Choose from a queen or king size in a low or high profile. $180.
Black Sheep Mattress Co., 601 Manitou Rd. S.E., 403-455-8491, blacksheepmattress.com

Photo by Black Sheep Mattress Co.

Available in black or sea salt frame colours, the Aura Carver Frame allows you, family and friends to upload photos and videos to it to help you keep up with each other’s adventures. Especially ideal for someone that lives far from home, this product is a great way to make them feel like they’re still part of the action and revisit beloved memories. $199.
Indigo, multiple Calgary locations, indigo.ca

Photo courtesy of Indigo

Cabin life is much better when you’re schlepping firewood with this handy carrier by legacy brand Filson. It’s made of durable and abrasion-resistant rugged twill, waxed for water-resistance, with bridle leather handles that will look better and better with age. $225.
Elements Outfitters, 201 8 Ave. S.W. and 10816 Macleod Tr. S.W. (Willow Park Village), elementsunfailing.ca

Photo courtesy of Elements Inc.

The crafty types in your life will go ga-ga over this small-but-mighty machine that does professional looking precision cuts and inkjet printing. The Joy Xtra Cutter is the gateway to being able to make everything from custom cards to printed t-shirts, labels and waterproof stickers. It’s like an entire maker’s workshop in a box. $279.99.
London Drugs, multiple Calgary locations, londondrugs.com

Photo courtesy of Cricut

Known for its footwear and accessories, Edmonton-based Poppy Barley recently launched its first knitwear collection. It includes this merino wool and cashmere mockneck sweater that’s available in five colours and promises to become a winter wardrobe staple. $348.
Poppy Barley, CF Market Mall, 3625 Shaganappi Tr. N.W., 587-351-7171, poppybarley.com

Photo courtesy of Poppy Barley

Heading out on an adventure? Simply sling this stylish soft cooler (available in navy, charcoal or black) onto your back to keep your drinks and ice cold. The new cooler has enough room for 20 cans and has a kangaroo pocket where you can keep other essentials like keys or a phone. $380.
Available online at Atmosphere, multiple Calgary locations, atmosphere.ca; yeti.ca

Photo courtesy of Yeti

This stainless-steel fire pit uses a smokeless airflow design so you can enjoy a toasty bonfire without reeking like a campfire afterwards. It’s designed and crafted in Canada, and burns either firewood or economical and space-saving wood pellets. $399.

Photo by Havilah Heger Photography

We all know someone who saw The Super Mario Bros. Movie last spring and rekindled their childhood love for playing Nintendo. Surprise them with their very own Nintendo Switch gaming system, which comes bundled with the hours-of-fun new Mario Kart 8 game. The console converts easily from a portable to a home-based system, so there’s a good chance you’ll get to play it with them, too. $399.99.
London Drugs, multiple Calgary locations, londondrugs.com

Photo by Nintendo Co. Ltd

A perfect pearl in a beautiful gold setting might be just the thing for that special someone. Polished to a glossy shine, this rich Tahitian pearl is like wearing a tiny drop of the tropics around your neck. $590 (chain necklace not included).
Gem By Carati, Bankers Hall, 221, 315 8 Ave. S.W., 403-264-8772, gembycarati.com

Photo by Gem by Carati

Give the gift of cozy chic with this hand-knit, ultra-soft, Italian-spun wool sweater. Featuring an A-line jacket silhouette, large flowers on each arm, patch pockets and porcelain buttons, this chunky sweater comes in eight colour combinations and is made to order. $1,050.

Photo by GOGO Sweaters

Anyone who loves biking will appreciate the ease that comes with using an electric bike. The Calgary-designed TuffHill eBike features special perks like a carbon belt drive system to avoid greasy and rusty bike chains, significant battery life where each charge allows for four to six hours of ride time, a built-in back rack and more. $5,400.

Photo courtesy of TuffHill eBikes

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