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Unforgettable Birthday Gifts For Everyone

July 2, 2015

Whether you’re just meeting a friend for the first time or you’ve known someone all your life, odds are they probably have a birthday. For as long as birthdays have existed – Claudia Severa sent the first documented birthday invitation around 100 AD – so too has the pressure to find the perfect gift. Yet birthdays themselves actually aren’t all that distinguished; just today, 15 million people will celebrate their special day. How could anyone hope to stand out?

Fear not! Since one of the world’s most celebrated birthday months is nearly upon us, we’ve put together a list of our favorite uncommon gifts that are sure to make the other 14,999,999 people jealous! From all of us here at UncommonGoods, we hope this year is a good one!

PicMonkey Collage

“I’m 21 This Year…Again!” (Beer, Wine, and Cocktail Gifts)

Whether a beer, wine, or cocktail connoisseur, these gifts are sure to quench those who have truly aged to perfection.

Birthday Wine Box | UncommonGoodsA bottle of wine is a nice gift, but it’s only a keepsake in the sense that the birthday boy or girl might keep it until their next dinner party–and then they’ll drink it already, for Pete’s sake! Gift that bottle in a Birthday Wine Box and they’ll have something special to actually keep. (And to stock with more wine once that gift bottle’s gone!)


Having trouble coming up with a gift for your beer-loving buddy? Drink outside the box with this Beer Caddy with Bottle Opener, made from reclaimed redwood beams – perfect for building your own six-pack!

 

 

Or, if liquor’s more their thing, bring some extra flare to their bar with a rock-solid embodiment of your appreciation. | Stone Drink Dispenser 


Don’t take a chance on a great birthday gift – but do with what cocktails you’ll serve for a little added spontaneity, surprise party or no. | Mixology Dice

 

Show the birthday guy or gal that they’re worth a bump up from the salt line and lime wedge standard. | Himalayan Salt Tequila Glasses

 

A clever take on the morning brunch favorite with the recipe built right in! | Bloody Mary Diagram Glassware

 

 

 

You might want to sing the ‘Happy Birthday’ song a few extra times this year… | Major Scale Musical Wine Glasses

 

 

Go for a DIY take on a crisp and classic drink without the stress of gift wrapping elaborate distillery equipment. | Homemade Gin Kit and Tonic Making Kit

(Not sure if your giftee will toast to homemade tonic? See the kit put to our test in this gift lab.)

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If gin’s not their thing, help ease the aging process for your favorite whiskey lover while accelerating the aging process of their favorite whiskey – with a personalized touch. | Personalized Whiskey Barrel

Bubba Jones crafts handmade steins as toastworthy as their recipient. Cheers to another year! | Tankard Stein

 

Still thirsty for more? Check out more beer, wine, and cocktail gifts here >>

 

Bag o’ Laughs (Funny Gifts)

If they’re more of a comic than a cook, you’ll need to up your humor game and pack the laughs. Any of these ironic, side-splitting gifts are sure to deliver.

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Should I get them this book? –> Is it their birthday? –> Yes –> Do they like funny books? –> Yes –> You should get them this book. | Inconsequential Dilemmas

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Ironic and iconic, this cup is meant to imitate the original paper version, a symbol of the NYC morning rush. | Ceramic Greek Coffee Cup

 

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Elwood’s distinctive colorful charm is sure to bring a smile to anyone’s face, no matter what year you’re celebrating. | Elwood the Rainbow Unicorn Mug

 

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Judgmental Ned or any of his other overgrown avian pals are sure to be a big hit. | Ned – Ostrich Portrait

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These adorable and easy-to-care-for ducks come with cute boots, so you won’t have to worry about them waddling around and leaving a trail of frosting. Each is handmade, and has its own personality. | Spotted Wellies Garden Ducks

 

 

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Drop the big one on a coworker, or subtly tell your boss off on their special day. | F Bomb Paperweight

 

Searching for someone with an uncommon sense of humor? We’ve got plenty more laughs here >>

 

 

 

More Cake Please (Foodie gifts)

You’ll want to ensure that the foodie in your life has something new to whip up after the cake’s been devoured! Treat them to one of these cool culinary presents.

 

Crafted with wood from old European buildings and a natural beeswax glaze, this Reclaimed Wood Cookbook Stand is the perfect place for the birthday chef’s secret recipes.


Add a pinch of these Dessert and Baking Salts, each a scrumptiously curated flavor combination of sweet and salty. You might want to present this gift early, or you’ll wish you had come cake time!

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If they’re more into sour than salty, the Citrus Juicer is the way to go!

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Or, maybe spicy is their thing, and pre-made hot sauce falls short of their heat needs. | Make Your Own Hot Sauce Kit

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For the always-on-the-go BBQ lover, who’s sure to rule “Great Gift” when they take this case to court. | Portable Briefcase BBQ Grill

A robust gift for any coffee lover who loves to chill just as much as they love a hot cup of morning glory. | Coffee Cold Brew Gift Set

(Watch a member of our team whip up a batch of homemade cold brew in a very cool gift lab.)

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How many ounces is that? No one wants to break the flow of amazing cooking to check the metrics. Solution? A tasteful wrist piece for a cook that doubles as a measurement conversion tool. | Cooks Cuff

 

Want to see what else is cooking? Find more great foodie gifts here >>

 

 

More Exciting than Socks (Kid-Friendly Birthday)

Stop! Drop the socks and sweaters! Any of these kid-friendly gifts will elevate you to the coveted position of favorite aunt or uncle.

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Hard pressed to find something great for a sweet kid? Look no further! | Mini Ice Cream Sandwich Press Set

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Treat the birthday boy or girl like royalty. | Ring Jewel Ice Pop Mold

This cute and customizable octopus is a great piece for kids’ rooms, especially those who love adventure or all things ocean. | Personalized Eight Legged Sailor

 

 

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He shoots, he scores! Perfect for hot cocoa, cereal, or tomato soup for a fun twist on a tasty treat. | The Mug With a Hoop

 

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Inspire your favorite whiz kid with creative fun and scientific knowledge with this set of super geeky science blocks. Each side of each block presents a different fact. For science! | Super Nerdy ABC Blocks

 

Still looking? Find toys, games, and loads more cool stuff for kiddo here >>

 

For the Sporty Sort (Gifts For Sports Fans)

Score big this year with the MVB (most valuable birthday) with one of these gifts for sports lovers and outdoorsy types. Whether a baseball, golf, or hockey fan, the MVB is sure to cheer like you got them tickets behind home plate.

 

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Score as many points as possible with the birthd – wait, it’s golf, so you’ll want to score as few points, got it? Point is: they’ll love it! | Golfer’s BBQ Set

 

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It’s never the wrong time of year to crack open a cold one for their favorite team. These bottle openers are game used by the players who provide the drink-worthy moments. | Game Used Hockey Stick Bottle Opener

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The Snow Ski Wine Rack is perfect for a slope-shredder with a taste for wine. Just don’t try to strap on the skis after the rack has been relieved of its charge…

 

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Grounded in baseball pastimes, this home-run hitting pen is made from authentic wood and paint from your baseball fan’s favorite stadium. | Ballpark Seat Pen

 

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You can’t gift wrap an actual college stadium, but this is the next best thing! | College Football Stadium Art

 

Gooooooooaaaalll! See more gifts for sports fans here >>

 

Put a Bow on Top (Jewelry & Style Gifts)

For the friend who already thinks they have the greatest gift – their sense of style – one of these fashionable pieces will have them looking nicer than the box you wrapped it in.

 

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Commemorate a special month with this timeless piece that will make her feel like a birthday girl all year long. | Dots Calendar Necklace

 

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Cherish the little bits of luck in her life so far with this spirited yet deeply sentimental piece. | Pennies from Heaven Locket

 

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For someone inspired by the natural world, celebrate her birth and the Earth’s. | Story of the Earth Bracelets

 

22302_zoom1Whether she stars in a solo show or has a supporting cast of bright young talent, she’ll love this shining necklace handmade by Catherine Weitzman. | My Lucky Stars Necklace

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Your favorite yogi might wake up with a series of sun salutations, but they’ll enjoy wearing this reminder of the morning’s practice throughout the day. | Yoga Cuff

 

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Keep them feeling homeward bound, even when they’re miles away. | Custom Map Key Ring

 

For someone with an exquisitely elusive sense of style – check out even more jewelry options here >>

 

Make a*Birth* Day of It (Relaxation & Grooming Gifts)

Sometimes the best gift for a busy person is simply a moment of respite, but all of these relaxing amenities are sure to pair nicely.

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Roll out the yoga mat for a calming, age defying birthday. Roll it back up into this beautiful Hand Loomed Yoga Bag.

 

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The collection of aromatic teas soothe the senses, all the while benefiting longevity and aging skin. ~ And many more! | Green Herbal Tea Kit

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Rather than gift someone in need of relaxation another errand, bring the spa right to them! | Spa in a Bag

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Three blissful mini-vacations in one, the Sea Glass Scents Bath Gift Box offers waves of relaxation inspired by the sea.

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A Deluxe Shave Set is perfect for the man who prefers a bare face over a deluxe beard.

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Kind of like gifting good vibes in a box, this Meditation Box is customizable for a personal touch.

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Who’s to say a rugged man’s man wouldn’t enjoy some TLC? These salves, scrubs, and balms are designed for course hands and aching feet. | Working Man’s Hygiene Kit

 

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Made from reclaimed Saris, this luxurious Upcycled Cotton Sari Robe adds a dash of exoticism to their around-the-house wardrobe.

 

Explore many more ways to relax here >>

 

 

Design

An Enchanting Children’s Picnic with A Daily Something

August 20, 2013

Enchanting children's shoot with A Daily Something | UncommonGoodsOne of my personal favorite bloggers, Rebecca of A Daily Something, has an incredible way of making everything beautiful and ethereal. I first met her when she was styling the room at BlogShop with old book pages, antique suitcases, and fresh flowers, transforming an empty studio into a colorful yet serene work space.

I wanted to see what she could do with our wooden and crocheted toys and how they would inspire her. So she staged a play picnic (with real life children) and shared these dreamy pics with me for the blog.

Enchanting children's shoot with A Daily Something | UncommonGoodsEnchanting children's shoot with A Daily Something | UncommonGoodsEnchanting children's shoot with A Daily Something | UncommonGoodsEnchanting children's shoot with A Daily Something | UncommonGoodsEnchanting children's shoot with A Daily Something | UncommonGoodsEnchanting children's shoot with A Daily Something | UncommonGoodsEnchanting children's shoot with A Daily Something | UncommonGoodsEnchanting children's shoot with A Daily Something | UncommonGoodsEnchanting children's shoot with A Daily Something | UncommonGoodsEnchanting children's shoot with A Daily Something | UncommonGoodsEnchanting children's shoot with A Daily Something | UncommonGoodsEnchanting children's shoot with A Daily Something | UncommonGoods

oval xylophone // lowercase alphabet blocks // puzzle stacker
pita pockets lunch // organic fruit rattles // fox pillow

The Uncommon Life

Our Fabulous Mothers

May 6, 2013

We all have moms. It’s a natural fact. Odds are, she’s a really fabulous lady. Meet the moms of UncommonGoods ladies and find out what made her such an amazing mother when we were growing up.

As a child living in the Bronx, my mom always made sure I was in contact with my family who lived in Brooklyn. We traveled long train rides to be in touch with my grandparents and cousins. As an adult, I look back and realize those trips meant a whole lot, because we built bonds and my cousins are like my sisters and brothers.

Ne’Quana Rollings, Merchant Assistant

She always encouraged me to put school first.

Melissa Bishop, Associate Buyer-Children’s & Leisure

My mom is literally the kindest and most understanding person I know. She has truly taught me what it is to love unconditionally.

-Liz Minch, Graphic Designer

She used the fact that she is a single mother (and has been most of my life) as her driving force to always go the extra mile. As a child, she always gave me everything I have ever needed and most of the things that I have wanted, even when she didn’t have enough to take care of herself. What I am most appreciative of, though, is that instead of spoiling me rotten, she used “tough love” to push me to be self-sufficient and rely on no one but myself. Without that, I don’t know that I would have the same drive that I do to succeed and get what I want out of life.

Kimberley Fargiano, Quality Control Specialist

Recalling my childhood, I would probably say that the most extraordinary thing my mom did for me when I was young was that she never doubted me.

I can’t remember her ever saying anything negative about any dream or wish I’d ever expressed.
And even now, so many years later, she remains a positive force that still is there to absorb all of my thoughts and dreams, and all of my children’s wonderful hopes and wishes.

Jackie Udden, Assistant Buyer-Jewelry & Accessories

I have never seen my mom wear high heels and I’m pretty sure she was barefoot at her wedding. But for someone who never puts product in her hair and considers Blistex Chapstick her makeup essential, I think she looks pretty awesome! She definitely taught me that beauty comes from the inside.

-Hannelore McElheny, Graphic Designer

She read us the speeches of Martin Luther King, Jr instead of bedtime stories and fastened a “Question Authority” pin on my denim jacket.

Gaby Dolceamore, Community Outreach Coordinator

My mom would let my brother and I turn our family room into a fort and leave it there for DAYS. We could play endlessly and always let our imaginations wander. She has always been so supportive and encouraged our creativity.

Abigail Truet, Marketing Assistant

My mom makes Martha Stewart look like a hack. Because of her I think I can pull any three items out of my fridge or cupboard and make an amazing meal – which is just not true. From watching her I learned a very important life lesson: things that look special, and things that feel special, are not effortless.

-Rebecca Marshall, Senior Graphic Designer

No matter how hard the wind blows, she’s always there to catch my hat before it hits the ground. Being there for all my learning experiences, the frustrations of adolescence, even the transition into adulthood. My mother has been there for it all with a smile on her face and warm words to follow.

-Sheronne Peters, Purchasing

When I was younger, my mother would tell me the story of the three little pigs at bedtime every night – but with new characters and variations at my request. Some nights the big bad wolf would huff and puff at a house made of jelly beans. Some nights it would be jello. Sometimes I’d give the three little pigs new names – AA, BB, and CC were popular at one point. I was a strange child.

Tiffany Jyang, Product Development Associate

Being a young, single mother was tough and unplanned and my mom probably never realized the extraordinary gift that she was imparting on me. She provided me with a home in which I was surrounded by four independent, strong-willed, and unique women. From my grandmother, aunts and especially mom herself, they each taught me valuable lessons that ultimately shaped who I am today. My childhood home was brimming with personality, laughter, love, and beauty regimens. I was taught that it is ok to pick up a paintbrush and climb trees, that it is ok to be someone else’s family to those without, and that sometimes it is necessary to work the night shift to put food on the table.

Jessica McDonough, Senior Graphic Designer

Design

Trend Spotting: Kantha Quilting

April 24, 2013

We recently introduced Kantha Blankets to our assortment and I couldn’t be more excited to bring these to our customers. These eclectic, one-of-a-kind quilts each have a special story to tell while brightening up any room. I thought it would be fun to share a bit about the history of Kantha as well as some fun decorating tips.

Decor8, Celadon, Desh Crafts


Kantha, a word meaning “old cloth” or “rag”, refers an age-old art form traditionally practiced by the women of Bengal. Kantha blankets are made from recycling worn saris originally intended to keep warm during the cooler months. In the traditional Kantha style, five layers of used saris are sewn together with a single running stitch to make a quilted blanket. Once the blanket is finished, Bengali women “sign” their pieces with their name, a mark of pride and identity. Such blankets are passed on as heirlooms to future generations. While this tradition dates back to the late 16th and early 17th century, Kantha is still the most popular form of embroidery practiced by rural women. Aside from providing a source of income for Bengali women, the popularity of Kantha products has given this traditional folk art a stake in the modern global marketplace.

Justina Blakeney, Apartment Therapy


Nowadays, this age-old tradition is finding its way into modern home décor and design. Traditional Kantha is used on a wide array of products, from personal accessories, to pillows, and upholstered furniture. No matter what the execution, the unique, one-of-a-kind nature of this traditional folk art is a show stealer. Each piece is unique and one-of-a-kind and you can truly see the fingerprint of the artisan women who created them.

Hand & Cloth, Justina Blakeney, Anthropologie


I see Kantha as an easy way to incorporate a little colorful, bohemian touch to your living space. Suddenly you can integrate a splashy touch to your otherwise monotone bedding; the blanket, casually strewn over a couch or chair can transform the look of the room to that of one occupied by a world traveler and collector.

Design

Slate Cheese Board Styled 3 Ways

March 19, 2013

Any apartment dweller knows the plight of a lack of storage. I cringe at the though of single-use items that will take up space on a shelf or counter (oh, how I’m dying for a waffle iron!). Since moving to New York City a couple moons ago, I have started to give a lot more thought to my purchases and make sure everything that enters my tiny apartment will be used. Simply, I don’t buy things that won’t get used frequently!

I spied the Slate Cheese Board with Soapstone Chalk since it was launched on our site months ago but wasn’t sure how often it would get used. Yes, I love cheese – many, many kinds of cheese – but it’s rare that any lasts long enough in my posession to leave out for guests. But the board was too gorgeous in all it’s rustic glory to pass up. So I took it home and gave myself a weekend to see how many times it could get used, finding that there were more uses for this board than meets the eye.

Build your own omelet party After work on Friday I met some friends at the gym to get the weekend started. Afterwards we all came to my place for dinner and I had two main objectives: a) eat some protein to rebuild muscle tissue and b) clean out my fridge. So I threw a “build your own omelet” party and set out the ingredients. It was a self-serve experience so everyone could make their omelet to their liking. I’m glad I got to label their choices so no one picked up an ingredient they didn’t want. The idea was a success and I can’t wait to throw another “build your own” party (sundaes, cocktails, pizza, grilled cheese…).

Movies in Bed Nothing is more fun that lounging in bed on a cold Saturday with your laptop and Netflix, but I always struggle with keeping crumbs from falling out of a lopsided bowl of popcorn. Wondering how the cheese board would fare as a bed-tray, I stocked it with gummy candies, a Mexican Coke and a heaping bowl of lime coconut popcorn while getting under the covers to tackle my growing queue. It did the trick and kept my soda and popcorn level when I readjusted in bed. That night’s sleep was not a story of the Princess and the Popcorn Kernel, thankfully.

Sunday Brunch One of my favorite New York past times is hunkering down after a morning of yoga with the NY Times and a cup of tea. Just sitting all day, leafing through the massive pages that cover my dining table. Since my Sunday brunch is never quite a complete meal – some fruit, nuts, a bagel, maybe a pastry – it was nice to spread out an afternoon’s worth of things to munch on as I caught up on current affairs. I was so comfortable, I didn’t get up until the sun went down and it was time to make supper.