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Emily Henderson

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by Arlyn Hernandez
Emily Henderson Gift Guide 2018 Holiday Christmas Babies Toddlers Teens Babies

1. Strolley, $135: A baby doll stroller and trolley all in one.

2. Key Key the Monkey, $13: A sweet, pint-sized corduroy monkey friend perfect for taking on the road during the busy holiday season.

3. Wooden Shape Sorter, $15: So sweet looking, made of sustainably harvested rubberwood, and ideal for encouraging hand-eye coordination.

4.  Hallway Playhouse, $59: Traditional pop-up playhouses can be a space hog, so for anyone with limited square footage, this “hallway” or doorway playhouse means plenty of fun even in smaller spaces.

5. Baby Rattle, $20: A plush little rattle for the littlest hands.

6. Mix & Baker Blender, $35: This one is for the older part of our age spectrum here (3 and up). There’s a little hand crank at the top of the mixer that turns the wooden whisk…it’ll be the best batch of invisible brownies you’ve ever enjoyed.

7. Toy Fruit & Vegetables, $30: One of my favorite things to do as a little kid was to play grocery store or have a make-believe cooking show. That concept might be a little advance for anyone 3 and under, but this is the type of toy that will find new uses as your little one gets older.

8. Dress-Up Wand, $20: What little one doesn’t dream of running around, proclaiming ABRACADABRA with a hand-crocheted and pom-pom adorned toy wand? I fact, I wouldn’t mind one now…as a 33-year-old woman.

9. Octopus Reflection Toy, $32: Not all babies enjoy tummy time, but most do seem fascinated by their own reflection, making this plush octopus with built-in mirror ideal for even the fussiest of infants.

10. Gummy Bear Light, $29: This one new twist on the nightlight was too cute and fun not to include. All the candy fun, none of the sugar rush.

11. ABC Book, $25: Start ’em young: This simple but beautiful book on the ABCs is both visually and tactfully engaging for developing brains.

12. Wooden Block Set, $38: Block sets are a classic, go-to toy for toddlers and young kids, but they can be a nuisance for storage. This compact set comes with its own box to keep everything tidy after playtime is done.

13. Lollipop Pink Teether, $28: Have you ever seen a prettier teething ring? But wait, it’s more than just good looking. Food-safe silicone rings and beeswax-conditioned natural wood create a multi-sensory and textural experience for those itchy and aching gums.

14. Make American Grape Again Book, $19: A well-timed story about how an unhappy orange wants to send away all the misshapen apples, overripe mangoes and other “imperfect” fruit…a lesson in learning to appreciate everyone’s differences.

15. Speedster Race Car, $150: Um sorry, but this is the coolest thing on this whole list we think. At $150, it’s definitely a “special”, pricey gift, but one that would add to the decor of any toddler’s room.

16. Superhero Doll, $28: The entire line of Maileg toys reads nostalgic in the best way. There’s a whole range of animal friends in boxes or tins (this superhero mouse comes with a luggage-type carrying tin), clothes to change up the story, plus the color palette of the brand is just neutral enough that you won’t have to worry about disrupting any well-planned nursery or kid room designs.

17. Construction Toy Set, $94: These are the types of toys that are kept and passed down from generation to generation.

18. Busy Baby Activity Chair, $139: Keep that baby entertained for hours (well, maybe minutes) in this soft and cushy activity chair equipped with a mirror, rattle, squeaky toy, textural embroidery and more.

19. Cosmic Play Gym, $60: Non-toxic, made sustainably with rubberwood and water-based dyes, this might be the most beautiful play gum we’ve ever seen.

20. Roxy Marj Bear Lovey, $15: Are you even a tiny baby if you don’t have a signature lovey?

21. Musical Pull Plush, $46: A simple pull of a wooden ring for instant lullabies.

22. Wooden Rocking Horse, $69: Crate&Kids updated take on the rocking horse comes in a pretty cool black.

23. Artecnica Themis Prism, $162: A mod (and frankly pretty chic) mobile for a new little person’s nursery.

Emily Henderson Gift Guide 2018 Holiday Christmas Kids And Teens Kids

1. Toy Doll Farmhouse, $150: Hearth & Hand for Magnolia’s dollhouses always sell out FAST, and this is the new new from the line.

2. Kitchen Accessory Kit, $25: Probably the best looking play kitchen accessory kit we’ve ever seen.

3. Play Kitchen, $649: All those wooden kitchen tools and felt food needs a place to be cooked up.

4. Artist Dress-Up Set, $48: At the very least, this would be an excellent Bob Ross Halloween costume should you add in a curly wig (happy trees, anyone?).

5. Felt Breakfast Food Set, $29: Do they still say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day? Even if they don’t, it can still be in pretend land.

6. Grill And Food Set, $140: Make it grilling/BBQ season all year round (or, at least pretend it is). This wooden, non-toxic grill comes equipped with a collapsible side table, tongs, condiments and a variety of play foods.

7. Wooden Toy Tea Set, $30: Without realizing it, there’s a theme going on here: lots and lots of play pretend food/dining-related sets. Here, a tea set that you don’t have to stress about breaking.

8. Wooden Shopping Cart, $47: I may have already mentioned this, but playing “grocery” was absolutely my favorite thing to do as a little kid (maybe it explains why I can easily and happily be at the supermarket for hours on any given day…it’s my happy place). Plus, I could see this shopping cart easily doubling as a stroller.

9. Wooden Cash Register, $39: They’ll need somewhere to pay for that shopping cart full of only the freshest, organic produce, after all.

10. Kids Art Easel, $149: A big wooden kid-height art easel was easily one of the most used Christmas gifts I ever gave my twin nephews. It only recently made its way to the donation bin as they were too tall for it, but it was used for years. Throw in a few pads of oversized paper, water-based/washable paints and brushes to complete the set.

11. Local Catch Toy, $50: No fussy (and not exactly child-safe) hooks here. A metal disk in the cotton fish matches up with the magnet on the end of the fishing line.

12. Playhouse, $149: A cotton playhouse that might just be better looking than your actual living room.

13. One Thousand Things Book, $17: An 80-page visual encyclopedia of first words, things in nature, things inside your house, things outside your house…one thousand things, to be exact that will help build a young mind’s vocabulary and comprehension.

14. Little Feminist Book, $15: When stories of princesses just won’t cut it anymore.

15. Juno Valentine Book, $19: I won’t lie…I bought this book for myself (huge fan of author, ex-editor and current Instagrammer Eva Chen), but kids of all ages can appreciate Juno’s journey of walking in the shoes of female icons (from Frida Kahlo to Serena Williams) only to discover the simple pair of soles she had all along might be the best shoes of all.

16. What Do Grown-Ups Do All Day? Book, $23: A book that makes the doldrums of adult working life far more charming and interesting that it really is (ha!).

17. Construction Site Book, $15: 60 tabbed moving parts means the little guy or gal who picks up this book to experience will be busy for a while.

18. Fox Toddler Sleeping Bag, $99: The bigger kid’s version of the hooded towel. Plus, the cushy fox head doubles as a pillow, so there’s one less thing for your kiddo to forget at a sleepover.

19. Wooden Train Set, $50: Another gift I’ve given my nephews that they loved and played with far beyond when I thought they would for their age.

20. Toy Box & Art Lid, $54: Durable and rugged but in a fun, poppy color, this toy box stores all those play food sets we’ve already suggested, but also moonlights as an art easel. Just clip paper onto the lid and get to creating something.

21. Toy Storage Bag, $48: I have something similar for my cosmetics and if it’s as genius here as it is in my bathroom, every parent will be kneeling down to you in gratitude. The bag opens up flat so all the toys inside can be easily seen, grabbed and played with, then sinches right back up to make clean up a breeze.

22. Fire 7 Kids Tablet, $99: A lot of the toys and gift ideas on our babies and kids list might seem a little old fashioned, so we had to throw in something tech. This tablet comes with a kid-friendly case/grip and comes in under $100.

23. Play’n Pack Jungle, $30: Okay, back to playing make-believe. Transport a little adventurer into the wilds of the jungle with this fun-filled backpack.

24. STEM Puzzle Set, $20: A challenging set for your favorite little student.

25. See-ya Suitcase, $79: The See-Ya Suitcase was one of Oprah’s Favorite Things this year, and what’s good enough for Oprah is good enough for us (to recommend). Plus…it’s just such a cute little suitcase that comes in four pastel colors.

26. Indoor Bowling Set, $59: A lot of play bowling sets have pins that are stuffed in a way that they don’t stay up for very long (or they’re made of plastic). With nearly 5-star reviews across the board, it’s safe to say that’s not the case with this one.

27. Dinosaur Dress-Up Set, $48: Sometimes all a little one needs is a tail and some gloves to completely transform.

28. Outdoor Dollhouse Accessories, $30: Because even a dollie needs a day at a pool sometimes.

29. Puppet Theater, $39: The easy set up of this play theater means a puppet show can pop-up anywhere at any time without much to-do.

30. Fairy Dress-Up Set, from $24:

31. Plaid Tiny Toms, $36: We’re big fans of brands like TOMS, that promises to help one person in need with every purchase (no matter how “tiny” the purchase).

32. Suede Tiny Toms, $39: These suede slip-ons come in sizes from 2 to 11 and are water-resistant.

33. Stuffed Animal Hoodie, $45: One part stuffed animal, one part hoodie. Genius.

34. Mint Scooter, $119: A retro-styled balance bike that will make transitioning into (and out of) training wheels faster.

gifts for kids and teens

1. Herschel Supply Co. Backpack, $70: They likely already have a pack for school, but this simple and straightforward backpack from Herschel Supply Co. is a great second go-to for weekend hobbies, travel or beyond (without having to stress about unpacking it come Monday morning).

2. Ultra-Portable Phone Charger, $36: Keep that tech all charged up for hours of YouTubing or ‘Gramming. 

3. 100 Movies Scratch Off Poster, $15: A visual guide to all the Silver Screen essentials for the movie buff.

4. Packing Cube Set, $70: Five zipper packs of varying sizes make packing insanely organized (and dare we say…fun?).

5. Carry On Suitcase, $100: EHD friend Bri of DesignLoveFest designed this line of luggage for Target and honestly, we want it all. Available in two colors (this light aqua and a soft lilac). Plus, a carry-on is a great size for shorter trips (college visits, sleepovers).

6. Getaway Travel Pillow, $24: A great add-on to #4 and #5.

7. Handheld PAC-MAN, $26: A throwback toy that doesn’t eat into the family data plan.

8. Noise Cancelling Headphones, $60: Bluetooth headphones can get super pricey, but these come in at just under $60 (technically $59.99) with a 4.5-star rating across over 7,000 reviews. 

9. Back Me Up Mobile Charger, $35: Ban.do knows how to take everyday necessities (like this power bank) and turn them into statement-makers (literally).

10. Pop Socket Phone Stand, $10: The black-and-white checker pattern of this Pop Socket is just edgy enough to be “cool” without having to guess what YOU think is cool for a teen (because that’s a losing battle).

11. Suede Mini Rocker Speaker, $159: Do they make these for adults, because we want one. This rocker chair has built-in speakers that can sync up with desktops (Windows) and MP3/CD/DVD players for an immersive watching/listening/playing experience.

12. InstantFlex TL70 Camera, $390: Compatible with Instax Mini film, this vintage-style camera has a 1:1 viewfinder, twin lens and five shooting modes.

13. Wireless Ear Pod Headphones, $40: AirPods are about twice the price and don’t come in a gold finish…she sayin’.

14. Ring Holder, $6: Small but mighty. Great for a nightstand to hold a finger-full of rings when not in rotation.

15. Classic Sherpa-Lined Zip Hoodie, $45: A sherpa-lined zip hoodie keeps you warm without too much bulk.

16. Adidas Beanie, $20: A unisex beanie (available in 4 neutral colors) with throwback styling (because isn’t that what the kids are about these days?).

17. Leather Strap Watch, $95: MVMT watches have a simple yet classic style for a great price.

18. Chunky Hope Earrings, $24: A few of us in the office have the larger version of these and love them. These are sized just right for smaller ears.

19. Layering Necklace Set, $44: Emily was all about the layered necklace this year. Plus, a set like this is like five gifts in one, right?

20. Astrological Sign Necklace, $78: I remember getting really into my “sign” in my early teens, and was a proud Aquarius. Times haven’t changed that much, have they?

21. Cylinder Bag, $70: The whole line of crossbody bags from Ban.do are universally cute and come in a handful of fresh colors.

22. Orbitwheel, $80: For any kid whose ever wished their shoes were also wheels…we don’t really get how these work, but as non-teens, maybe we’re not supposed to? Regardless, they seem pretty cool, and far less expensive than those “hover” boards that were all the rage last holiday season.

23. Lip Stain Collection, $28: A color for nearly every day of the week.

24. Lightning Bolt Sweater, $188: Made of 70% wool and 30% cashmere, this graphic sweater is durable, super warm and with a fun pattern that will still feel pretty cool for years to come.

25. Striped Cashmere Beanie, $68: Teen’s first cashmere (that was kind of an obnoxious statement, wasn’t it?).

26. Flannel Pajama Set, $75: Made of super soft flannel, the shorts and short-sleeve top means no overheating at night.

Need EVEN MORE ideas for babies, kids and teens? Head to our epic GIANT Gift Guide Landing Page for hundreds of gift picks.

  1. This is a great idea list! Thank you for sharing!

  2. Hi Emily- I am a fan of your site and design ideas. I was disappointed by the “make america grape again” book suggestion. I along with millions of people support our President. I am disheartened that this book made your list. It paints him and his supporters as wanting to “send away all the misshapen apples” and mischaracterizes and marginalizes so many good Americans. I hope you can try to keep your heart open to the fact that we simply love our country and wish to lift up ALL Americans (Choosing not to focus on race, skin color, gender or sexual orientation) and put America First. Focusing on our differences actually divides us; focusing on our common Americanism unites us.

    Have a blessed day.

    1. You just made me want to buy the book.

      1. Me too.

        1. Ditto.

    2. “we simply love our country and wish to lift up ALL* Americans”

      *except anyone who needs healthcare, seniors who need social security, children who need food assistance, parents who worry their children are going to be gunned down at school, young people who can’t afford college and/or are drowning in student debt, women who need medical procedures or don’t wish to be assaulted, brown immigrants, Muslims or anyone who isn’t Christian, gay people who wish to marry or adopt children, anyone who worries that our President praises foreign dictators and says law abiding citizens should be locked up, anyone who is concerned about our environment, water, climate change and our national parks…

      1. I agree with you and I honestly wish things weren’t this way but it’s the truth. I appreciate Carla’s approach in trying to be nice not nasty (I think) but the naivete in her statements is just too much for me. Put America first? What does that even look like? Does that mean other countries should feel shamed that they weren’t born in America? Does it mean that our children are better than everyone else’s? We can be a great nation without tearing down others in fact that would put us on the path to greatness. Smh

    3. The book looks awesome.

    4. Hi Carla.

      I agree. It’s wrong to propagandize children in any facet of politics. Thank you for a compassionate, non-argumentative post.

      Nicole

  3. Good ideas, but a little disturbed that the “movie scratch off” poster includes many movies that are really only appropriate for 18+ (like American Psycho, Apocalypse Now, The Deer Hunter, Pulp Fiction). And you have that in the TEN year old kids category. Please add a disclaimer to the description.

  4. I’m loving these fun gift round-ups! Thank you!

    And I appreciate the personality of the selection. They aren’t generic, which may turn some folks off. Not every gift is for everybody! Keep the personality of your site and suggestions coming – it’s why I return day after day.

    xo
    Natalie

  5. This is such a great round-up! You clearly have observed kids at play because you chose many of the long-term favorite toys in my house. My advice to all “new parent” friends is buy the best quality you can of open-ended toys and they will get endless play. Our huge collection of wooden blocks, play food, and cart/stroller are still going strong and my youngest is now 9. Through in some art supplies, matchbox cars, and stuffed animals and that describes 90% of the play that happens in our house.

  6. @carla I could be living under a rock but I’m pretty sure our president does want to send away all the misshapen apples?

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  8. The gift guides are great. A small suggestion – I would have benefitted even more if these guides were released 3 weeks ago instead of now. I’d be too anxious if I saved my shopping until halfway through December!

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