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The Top Modern Holiday Gifts for the Design Lover in Your Life

We are grateful to Slowtide for supporting this gift guide. Our partners are hand picked by the Design Milk team because they represent the best in design.

10.18.21 | By
The Top Modern Holiday Gifts for the Design Lover in Your Life
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We probably all have at least one aesthete in our lives – the one who appreciates the way something looks just as much as how it functions. It’s more than just liking pretty things, it’s that true appreciation for how and why something was designed a certain way and how it makes us feel being around it. They’re the ones whose gift you want to put real thought into because when you find that perfect something you know just how happy it will make them. Give the gift of beautiful design this holiday season with these modern holiday gift ideas. From decor and glassware to games and tech, the design lover in your life will love the elevated aesthetic of these picks.

Boeien Salt + Pepper Set by Puik Design

Boeien Salt + Pepper Set by Puik Design

Boeien Salt + Pepper Set by Puik Design

We all know someone who still keeps their salt and pepper in their original, unsightly containers that belong hidden away in a cabinet. Simple yet elegant, these beautifully designed salt and pepper shakers are made from glass and cork, making them a great modern addition to any design lover’s kitchen or dining table.

$41

Alarm Clock BC22 by Braun

Alarm Clock BC22 by Braun

Alarm Clock BC22 by Braun

Braun has an award-winning design history thanks to help from designer Dieter Rams and his ‘less, but better’ philosophy. This classic analogue alarm clock was designed by Rams in 1984 and it’s been a hit ever since. We all spend too much time glued to our phones that it’s a nice change of pace to reference an actual clock when needing the time or an alarm to wake up the next day. The design is so clean and simple that it’s hard not to love.

$50

Keith Haring “Rise Up” by Slowtide

Keith Haring “Rise Up” by Slowtide

Keith Haring “Rise Up” by Slowtide

If you know a design lover, chances are they are an art lover as well, making Keith Haring’s work a familiar sight. Slowtide just partnered with the Keith Haring Foundation to launch a limited edition capsule collection that honor’s the late artist’s iconic works. The collection includes 11 towels, 4 blankets, a bathrobe and changing poncho, but we’re pretty keen on the Rise Up towel showing two dancing figures holding a vibrant red heart symbolizing optimism and love.

$44.95

Terrazzo Black & White Chessboard by House Raccoon

Terrazzo Black & White Chessboard by House Raccoon

Terrazzo Black & White Chessboard by House Raccoon

Most of the people on your shopping list have probably spent a crazy amount of time at home doing puzzles to pass the time. Chess is a different kind of puzzle, equally as addictive, offering an infinite amount of fun since you can play game after game. This chess set is such a good gift as it’s unique with its terrazzo board (it’s the first terrazzo chessboard in the world!) and modern without all the over-the-top flair some of them have. Your recipient can leave it on display while playing a game or not.

$350

Indoor Planter by Minimum Design

Indoor Planter by Minimum Design

Indoor Planter by Minimum Design

This modern planter comes in four sizes allowing you to tailor the gift to your recipient, whether you go teeny tiny to house a baby succulent or large for a cool cacti. The minimalist design is printed in wood with clean, vertical lines that any Scandinavian or modern design lover would enjoy having in their plant collection. And I do mean collection since many of us have acquired quite a number of new plants during the pandemic!

$18.27 - 84.02

Concrete Ennis Tile Bookend by BRCJ Designs

Concrete Ennis Tile Bookend by BRCJ Designs

Concrete Ennis Tile Bookend by BRCJ Designs

If you know someone who has a thing for architecture, this bookend makes a great gift. It comes in concrete, resin or steel, but each features the same geometric design that gives nod to the Mayan Revival textile blocks that live at Frank Lloyd Wright’s Ennis House in Los Angeles. In addition to being used as a bookend, it can be live on a desk to work as a paperweight and it can also be enjoyed as a sculptural object.

$188

Cascade Woodblock Print by Block Shop

Cascade Woodblock Print by Block Shop

Cascade Woodblock Print by Block Shop

Block Shop’s woodblock prints have been a cult favorite for years now and just recently they added a series of new prints to their growing collection. This graphic design features thin pinstripes that lead to an archway around a circle and a square in contrasting black and white. It makes a bold statement on its own but works well with other pieces of art also. Great for that person in your life that just hasn’t gotten around to decorating their walls yet.

$320~

Monti Taste Set by Sempli

Monti Taste Set by Sempli

Monti Taste Set by Sempli

For the beer lover in your life, this modern set of four glasses will elevate their drinking game to a new level of sophistication. Each of the four glasses is designed to hold a different style of beer while enhancing their flavor profiles. Included in the set is a glass designed for IPA, Pilsner, Pint (16-ounce) and 12-ounce brews.

$100

Enzo Mari Timor Calendar for Artemide

Enzo Mari Timor Calendar for Artemide

Enzo Mari Timor Calendar for Artemide

A modern desk calendar first designed in 1967 and still just as popular today. The modular design means the calendar can be used every year simply by rotating the month, day and day of the week each day. Any design lover will appreciate having this on their desk – it is featured in MoMA’s permanent collection, after all.

$145

Brass-Tone Beosound 1 Wireless Multiroom Speaker with Battery and Voice Assist by Bang & Olufsen

Brass-Tone Beosound 1 Wireless Multiroom Speaker with Battery and Voice Assist by Bang & Olufsen

Brass-Tone Beosound 1 Wireless Multiroom Speaker with Battery and Voice Assist by Bang & Olufsen

For the music lover that also appreciates good design, this wireless speaker is compact yet it will stand out wherever it’s used. The brass-tone exterior plus its conical shape add to its sculptural aesthetic. A single charge gives up to 12 hours of playtime while delivering top notch sound. It’s a gift that keeps on giving!

$1,750

Design Milk Gift Card

Design Milk Gift Card

Design Milk Gift Card

Still not sure what to give your favorite modern design lover? Get them a gift card and let them pick out their own perfect gift!

$25-200

>>> For more modern holiday gift ideas for the design lovers in your life, click here! <<<

Caroline Williamson is Editorial Director of Design Milk. She has a BFA in photography from SCAD and can usually be found searching for vintage wares, doing New York Times crossword puzzles in pen, or reworking playlists on Spotify.