Propllr’s 3rd Annual Holiday Gift Guide

It’s that time of year again! We’re here to save you from showing up to holiday parties with ho-hum gifts for your loved ones. And this year, the Propllr team’s grown, which means even MORE suggestions for what to get the person in your life who already has it all. The following are gifts that we, the people who keep Propllr running, think will be slam dunks.

From Josh

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One of the first decisions you make for yourself every day is "What socks should I put on?"

That means that once a day, right when it's starting out and could turn good or bad, you have a chance to say, "Dammit, today's going to be a good day."

But that opportunity for self-determination only works if you have socks worthy of a good day. While I've never actually worn these particular socks,  I know I would want them (perhaps 1 pair in each color...) and I know that REI is an amazing company that does things right. 

So help your friends and / or your family to carpe the damn diem and get them some world-beating (and moisture-wicking) socks for Christmas.

From Erica

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My two favorite things to do in Chicago: Drink beer in Chicago and explore new neighborhoods in Chicago. The Beermiscous Field Guide is the perfect way to do both! The pocket-sized book features 117 taprooms and brewpubs in and around the Chicagoland area, broken down by different regions of the city, suburbs ,and Northwest Indiana. This is the perfect gift for people who’d love to plan their own beer adventure.

[Editor’s note: we’ve linked to this book on Amazon, but feel free to score a Chicago Hat Trick and buy it from a local bookseller!]

From Jorie

Screen Shot 2018-12-06 at 2.25.31 PMPlanning out my week used to not be something that filled me with joy – until I received a Happy Planner as a gift last year. This refillable agenda is one part planner, one part journal, one part motivational speaker, and one part scrapbook! With stickers and pages for due dates, appointments, general encouragement, and even budgeting, this planner will become your best friend in no time! Trust me, I never leave my house without it.

From Abby (2 suggestions!)

First, Secret Hitler.

It’s a game of “social deduction” from the minds behind Cards Against Humanity that will tear your friend group completely apart (joking, kind of). It’s like if the game Mafia met a Ken Burns documentary. Basically, you have to lie your way to victory and it will make you question everybody’s motives to a hilarious extent. I never dreamed I would have to ask my own mother “Are you Hitler?” And now I know Nancy is a terrifyingly good liar.Screen Shot 2018-12-06 at 2.23.09 PM

Second, We Are Never Meeting in Real Life by Samantha Irby.

This woman is TALENTED. Her personal essays are heartbreaking, painfully relatable at times, and cackle-on-the-train-so-people-are-looking-at-you funny. Plus, she’s from Evanston. #readlocal? This is a great gift for that one friend who “does improv” or for anyone who DVRs Real Housewives.

From Brenna

Coffee is delicious. But metal travel mugs make it taste less delicious. Solution: give the coffee lover in your life a to-go mug topper, to turn any mug into a to-go mug. Screen Shot 2018-12-06 at 2.22.41 PM

How do I know these are so great? I have them. And the folks at my hip local coffee shop always ask me where I got them ("The internet," I say. "You know. The place with all the websites?"). Bonus: these also gently nudge us all away from using paper cups, which are destroying the whole planet, just like plastic straws!

From Hunter

Bonobos fleece sweatpants.

Screen Shot 2018-12-06 at 2.22.11 PMIs $68 a lot to spend on a pair of sweatpants? Absolutely. But hear me out. These things are amazing. They're lightweight and comfy (like most sweatpants) and (unlike most sweatpants) stylish. Which means when you're lounging around the house and have to run to the grocery store or the pharmacy, you can do so without looking totally slovenly.

Fun fact: Bonobos are a kind of monkey, which are very cute, but about which there are some rather unsavory stereotypes.


From Clay

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I was on the #shoplocal train this year (even though I purchased everything online [nervous smiley face emoji]). Amazon gets enough of my business during the year. I like this bedside light for a couple reasons: It’s reasonably priced (so you don’t have to fork out a ton of cash for something decent), it’s made by a small business, and the industrial style makes it a fit in virtually any home. And did I mention it’s not from Amazon?

From Amy

Lodge cast iron skillet.

Screen Shot 2018-12-06 at 2.21.26 PMI love these so much that I have five (in different sizes). They’re virtually indestructible and extremely versatile – I use mine for everything, even eggs! Somehow, I feel like they make food taste better, too. Contrary to popular belief, they’re very easy to clean after you’ve built up a nice seasoning. Perfect for any aspiring home chef!

From Jack

Last year I got my younger brother the 100 Essential Films Scratch-off Chart from Pop Chart Labs. The idea is you scratch off each movie you've seen (like a lottery ticket) to reveal a colorful mini poster. Screen Shot 2018-12-06 at 2.20.52 PM

They have a similar one for graphic novels. In fact, the website has tons of unique print designs, from Harry Potter to Seinfeld to wine to sharks to outer space. I think I'm going to get my dad the football clubs of great Britain (I don't think he reads this blog, but if you do, Dad, please disregard that last sentence). Also, they have one for the cheese lovers in your life.

Old Gift Guides

Not seeing anything here that calls your name (or, really, the name of your loved ones?). Check out our gift guides from 2017 and 2016, where previous years of our excellent taste are on display. Happy holidays, everyone!