Our Top 10 Christmas Gift Ideas for Graphic Designers & Creatives... Part 2
The first part of my gift guide focused on gifts under £50 so I wanted to mention a couple of things for bigger budgets in part 2. However, I’ve also included a couple of super easy to order online and budget friendly options at the end.
This might not be an obvious one because it’s not typically something that individuals own. However, I think the Silhouette Cameo vinyl cutter is something you could easily have at home, it’s small and compact enough to sit on your desk and plugs into a computer just like a printer - I have one in the studio and I love it. I bought the Silhouette Cameo to replace my big old commercial vinyl cutter that I use to cut garment vinyl over at Tshirtable.
I don't think a vinyl cutter is just for commercial projects though, it’s a really cool tool for any designer to have, a true show of gadgets. With the Silhouette Cameo you can cut many different types of media including sign vinyl and garment vinyl but you can also cut paper and card. The things you can do on this machine are endless and if you can create vectors, you could waste away hours and hours creating things. They are especcially good for someone who is into card making or designing wedding invitations - I recently used mine to cut these wedding invitations to shape and the stickers into circles.
My Fujifilm X-A2 camera is the new love, I carry it everywhere. It’s a really good camera to grow into but it’s also a really good compact if they’re like me and love photography but get put off by carrying a massive DSLR. It’s a high-performance compact system camera with interchangeable lenses, so it’s more professional than your average point and shoot camera. It also has some serious style points and an LCD screen that flips up 175 degrees making it easier to take a selfie, what more could you want! Available in black, tan and white from Currys for £340. Read more about my love for the X-A2 in my October Favourites blog post
8. Pantone Guides // For the freelancer
Pantone mugs, notebooks, coasters and other household items are becoming increasingly popular, you see them everywhere and I guess there’s a lot of people out there that don’t even realise what Pantone really is. Pantone guides are really important in a graphic design studio but unfortunately much like their overpriced mugs they are expensive. If your creative friend is just starting out as a freelancer, buying these guides will hit them hard. I put off buying Pantone guides when I first went freelance because of the expensive but the time came when I really needed them to be able to supply accurate colour codes for printing and branding projects. I bought the Essentials guide but I managed to negotiate a free Metallic guide, so it’s worth speaking to stockists and looking out for offers. Pantone are currently doing 15% off Bridge guides and 10% off the bigger bundles. So if you know someone who’s just starting out on their freelance career then this would be a good one for them. I’d recommend the Coated Bridge guide for £110 to start them off, and then they can build up to a full set of guides themselves. The Pantone Bridge guide is a good one to begin with as it shows the difference between CMYK and Pantone colours and it also gives the HEX code for web. If you’re feeling very generous you could get the Essentials guide for £295 or the Portable Guide Studio for £410.
9. Social Book // For those who fill your Facebook feed
I actually ordered this as a gift last Christmas, My Social Book takes all your photos from Facebook and Instagram and prints them all in a book from £7.90. All you have to do is go onto the website, log into Facebook then select your friends Facebook profile that you want to order a book for and it compiles it all for you. It makes a really nice coffee table book and is so much easier than trawling through photos and getting them printed individually. I never get round to getting photos printed so ordering one of these every year with every photo I've uploaded to Facebook or been tagged in that year is quick and easy. It's also good to know I've always got a copy of my Facebook photos incase one day we all move on... What ever happened to all our photos on Myspace? I guess we'll never know!
10. Subscription // The gift that just keeps giving
It’s an obvious one, but if all else fails, go for a subscription! I recently subscribed to Computer Arts magazine from www.creativebloq.com. I often read articles on their website for inspiration but it’s nice to have something printed to flick through. Saying that, since the new one came out this month I keep leaving it at either home or work, one or the other, but it’s always the one I’m not at. So I’m glad I got the Print & Digital subscription because I have read a few articles on my phone. CA use some nice printing techniques on their magazines too, which makes it even nicer in a digital age to pick up and have a flick through, to feel the matt lamination and glossy highlights, and even heat-sensitive ink last month. From £44 for the Print subscription or £53 for the Print & Digital Subscription. I also got the binder to keep them all in which is £9.99 and is delivered before the magazines, so you could wrap the binder up for Christmas day with a little note saying that by next Christmas is will be full of magazines.