When it comes to gift giving, anniversaries, holidays, birthdays, housewarmings and other celebrations that come up on the regular may leave you feeling tapped out. The search for the perfect gift can often feel like an overwhelming task. Whether gift-giving is your love language or you are looking to treat yourself, here are some great places to find unique gifts in Austin’s downtown.
Austin Rocks is both a complete sentence and a store filled with wonderful treasures you won’t find anywhere else. For your star-obsessed friends and loved ones, choose from celebrity votive candles, astrology candles and altar candles. To provide the perfect finishing touch to any room, you can gift a candle of Snoop Dog giving you the side eye you or Dolly Parton filling the room with joy through her lovely smile. These are also excellent pieces available for purchase if you are looking to enhance your own home decor. Austin Rocks also has fun puzzles, unique socks, cool books, bags, textiles, accessories, home goods, home bars and much, much more. We highly recommend this 2ND Street destination to anyone who with a fun sense of style or loves disco balls and neon.
Csilla Somogyi is a great stop on Congress for the special people in your life who are passionate about sustainable fashion and local artists. Everything in Csilla’s shop is handcrafted and hand-designed. If you want to give a gift that is one of a kind, this needs to be on your list. The locally-owned store features handmade dresses, swimsuits, tops, bags, earrings, necklaces and other accessories. Better yet, Csillas even has a kid’s corner if you’re grabbing gifts for little ones. The store prides itself on providing an excellent shopping experience, and your purchase will support a local business dedicated to reducing carbon footprints.
If you are searching for some of the finer things in life for that hard-to-buy-for person on your list, check out the Nebula Gallery. At least one of the many works in the gallery’s rotating exhibits will catch your eye or remind you of that person. Nebula should be on your list if you or your recipient are fans of abstract and contemporary art. And even if you don’t find exactly what you are looking for at Nebula, you will leave feeling inspired. You can even schedule an appointment if you want a more individualized experience.
For lovers of art and culture, the Mexic-Arte Museum store has great gifting potential. Find Frida-themed socks, books, coloring books, greeting cards, candles, puzzles and other Latinx-inspired items. During the fall, put this on your list if you need to purchase books and sugar skulls for Dias de la Muertos. And keep in mind that you can also pick up limited edition artworks crafted just for the exhibition! Better yet, the proceeds for those purchases benefit the museum’s programs and exhibits. That’s a gift that truly gives back.
Toy Joy is a great place to find gifts and games for kids of all ages. This favorite downtown destination has an extensive collection of plush animals and characters to choose from, rows of cubbies of hilarious novelties such as rubber chickens, board games, card games, toddler toys, action figures, outdoor games, kites, dolls, trucks, tarot decks, science experiments and crafts. This storefront is chock full of delights that will put a smile on the face of anyone in your life.
Wild About Music
It’s not hard to be “Wild About Music” in the Live Music Capital of the World. For the musicians and music-lovers in your life, you will definitely be able to find something truly unique in this local shop. Among the gift items are guitars, ukeleles, guitar-shaped wine holders, coolers that look like boom boxes, guitar-pick earrings, piano-shaped jewelry and books about favorite musicians. Wild About Music also has music-themed glassware, signs, shirts and wall art. You’ll find it’s nearly impossible to leave this store empty-handed, and even harder to leave without picking up something for yourself.
We guarantee that you’ll find something for everyone on your list downtown, support local businesses and have fun doing it. Now, get out and Keep Austin Weird!