[Image above] Credit: Emily Orpin; Flickr; CC BY-NC 2.0
The holidays are here, whether you like it or not.
As I mentioned earlier this week, this time of year is quite heavy on consumerism—Americans alone are expected to spend some $600 billion on holiday shopping this season, according to the National Retail Foundation.
The day after Thanksgiving, Black Friday, is a consumer spending extravaganza (which, contrary to popular belief, is not named after financial terms). People either love it or hate it, but the numbers don’t lie—this is one of the biggest and the most anticipated shopping days of the year.
While you could tap into your creative side for a custom DIY gift or make a charitable donation in lieu of exchanging gifts, many people will still buy presents to show their love, appreciation, friendship, and good cheer (or even disdain).
So if you’re going to buy a gift, why not get one fashioned out of your favorite materials? Here are some ideas to get you started.
[Disclaimer: Some of the items on this list aren’t strictly ceramic or glass. And, some can’t actually be purchased yet…but it’s the thought that counts, right?]
- Lithoz GmbH’s 3D printer for ceramics, the CeraFab 7500. The system uses lithography-based manufacturing with a photosensitive resin to bind ceramic particles with “unparalleled accuracy and detail.”
- The Nifty Xoo, a belt-slash-cellphone charger made with a lithium ceramic polymer battery. For all those times you looked at your belt and wished it would do more than hold up your pants.
- Smart luggage that might be smarter than many travellers themselves. Bluesmart is a self-weighting, auto-locking, GPS-locating, app-laden suitcase that can plug into and charge your devices during travel.
- Functional yet beautiful Tung Shape lamps are crafted from concrete with LED lights cast within. (Thanks to former ACerS editor Peter Wray for finding this one!)
- A Hendo Hoverboard, perfect for the Back-to-the-Future fan on your list…Isn’t that everyone?
- The Pelty Bluetooth speaker, which delivers sound from beautiful ceramics with only the flicker of a mood-setting candle—no outlet or battery required.
- For your favorite griller, a Big Green Egg—which is big and green but most certainly not an egg. Even better, it’s a ceramic egg-shaped grill that can cook almost anything and will last a lifetime, thanks to its “state-of-the-art ceramic technologies.”
- Liquid glass. Not quite solid, not quite liquid, and not quite glass. But quite fun.
- If you love pizza like I do, a ceramic pizza stone is a must, especially one made by people who know their ceramics.
- A Moment high-tech lens that can turn your smartphone into a high-quality moment-capturing machine. Ah snap!
- A sleek, gorgeous electric motorcycle that can hit 60 mph in less than four seconds. Harley Davidson’s Livewire is perfect for the environmentally-conscious rebel (James Dean-meets-Elon Musk, perhaps?).
- Trash-turned-treasure, via creativity. How about some recycled art made from spent spark plugs?
- Winter sport goggles that are completely fog-free. Abominable goggles keep sights set on the slopes with vision free from fog thanks to a battery-powered heat-conductive film right in the lenses.