11 Thoughtful Gifts for Her

We rounded up some of the most fun and useful items for every woman on your list, whether it's your bestie, sister-in-law, or Becky from accounting.

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1. Ginger Beer Making Kit

Few things are quite as refreshing as a Moscow Mule, and this kit allows you to make organic, gluten-free ginger beer to serve as a mixer (or enjoy all on its own). The kit includes everything you need to make the beer, including a 1-gallon fermentation mug and spices. The brewing process only takes a week—perfect for people just starting out with fermentation. You can order the kit with or without the handsome hammered copper mule mugs, but they make it just a little more special.

Find It at Uncommon Goods for $69 and up.

2. Kodak Mini Shot

Smartphones have made taking and sharing pictures easy, but it's not quite the same as having a printed keepsake. The KODAK Mini Shot Instant-Print camera allows you to both take and print photos wherever you are—and you can even print photos already stored on your phone. A companion app allows for expert cropping and filtering, while Bluetooth connectivity lets you send photos from the camera to your phone for editing or sharing. The camera is available in fashion colors, and small enough to fit in a purse. This one's sure to impress.

Find It at Amazon for $120.

3. Sodastream Fizzi Sparkling Water Maker Bundle

The crisp burst of bubbles in soda is addictive, but it's far healthier—and cheaper in the long run—to make sparkling water yourself. This Sodastream bundle has everything you need to get started on your quest for the perfect homemade bubbly water, including extra CO2, carbonating bottles, and citrus flavoring.

Find It at Amazon for $125.

4. Rifle Paper & Co Art Prints

Bare walls are a menace. Treat your favorite female to the whimsical, colorful flora and fauna of Anna Bond's illustrations, and they'll never have to stare at bare plaster or paint again. Choose from abstract designs, inspirational sayings, or homages to your favorite places and people, all available in 8-by-10- or 16-by-12-inch sizes. You can even add custom frames.

Find It at Rifle Paper Co. for $24.

5. Cat Tea Infuser

What could make a comforting cuppa even better? A tea infuser shaped like a kitty perched on the edge of your mug. Available in gray or pink, these infusers are made of BPA-free, food-grade silicon and won't break down in the dishwasher.

Find It at Amazon for $15 and also at these other retailers:

6. Homesick Candle

Sometimes you just want to smell a favorite place again, whether it's the spring flowers of Central Park or the coffee and pine needles of Seattle. Homesick's all-natural soy wax candles are available in 14 scents tied to major American cities—a perfect gift for recent (or not-so-recent) transplants. Each comes hand-poured in a stylish glass tumbler.

Find It at Amazon for $30 and also at these other retailers:

7. Cyberoptix Pashmina

These aren't your mother's pashminas! (Well, unless you give her one.) Printed with scientific, geeky, history-inspired and botanical patterns—from the Dewy Decimal System to drum machines—they're a delightfully cheeky take on keeping warm. Whether your recipient is into coffee, old maps, insects, neurons, or dinosaur bones, these are sure to delight. Available in two weights, light or cozy, and screen-printed by hand in Detroit.

Find It at Cyberoptix for $44.

8. Cactus Enamel Pin

Have someone on your list who's crazy about plants, and just a little bit trendy? Surprise them with this high-quality pin featured a prickly cactus in a geometric copper terrarium. They'll grow to love it! But if pins aren't your giftee's thing, you could choose a lucky black cat, a llama, a hot air balloon, or everyone's favorite pre-teen with telekinetic powers.

Find It at Amazon for $10.

9. Vintage-Style Bird Tree Jewelry Holder


Amazon

Tame your bestie's bureau-top chaos with this handsome holder suitable for earrings, rings, and necklaces. The recipient will thank you for making their mornings just a little easier—and more fashionable.

Find It at Amazon for $16 and also at these other retailers:

10. Kaos Golden Soccer Ball

gold kaos soccer ball
Neiman Marcus

The fun doesn't have to stop once the World Cup is over. Your favorite soccer fanatic can let the good times roll all year-round with this stylish metallic-toned ball.

Find It at these retailers:

11. Posie Turner Socks

Your loved one will feel warm—on both the inside and the outside—with the help of these motivational Peruvian Pima Cotton socks, each featuring feel-good phrases like "I Am Brave," "Good Vibes Only," and "Dance It Out." The daily positivity of the socks's mantras is matched only by their vibrant colors and playful patterns (and, of course, their luxury feel).

Find It at Posie Turner for $17.

7 Ways to Take Advantage of the Bullet Journal Method

iStock.com/Neustockimages
iStock.com/Neustockimages

If you haven't heard of the bullet journal, it's the productivity method du jour—one that combines the features of a planner, calendar, to-do list, diary, and more. It's not a specific product (although the founder of the method, Ryder Carroll, has created a special notebook for it) as much as a way of creating a journaling system that works for you.

Proponents say the method helps you focus your time and your goals, in part through periodic "migration" sessions that force you to review how you've been spending your days. And yes, it's popular on Instagram—because many bullet journalers have filled their notebooks with colorful flair. (But that part is entirely optional.)

While core components of the bullet journal system like monthly spreads and daily logs are great, many bullet journalers like to add other features that fit their own life. After all, the beauty of the method is the customization and flexibility. We've rounded up a few ideas for new and not-so-new bullet journalers alike to try.

1. Track—and fuel—your creative projects.

Let's say that, like most people, you have a day job. But at night, you're writing the next Great American Novel—or at least some short stories. You might get an idea related to one of those projects on your morning commute or while taking a walk in the park at lunch. There's no time to pull out the manuscript, and if you email yourself the idea it might get lost in a jumble of newsletters and other alerts.

Instead, just start a new page for the project in your journal, note it in your index, and scribble away. You can come back to it later, and fill in other, non-sequential pages in the journal as the mood strikes. Your journal probably isn't the best place to write whole stories, but it's perfect if you just had a mini-breakthrough you want to take down, or even as a way to keep track of potential prompts and inspiration.

2. Improve your habits.

Habit trackers are some of the most popular add-ons to the regular bullet journal time-oriented spreads. You can make yours cute—tracking the number of glasses of water you drink a day by coloring in a big glass, say—or more minimalist, perhaps by listing the habits you want to build (yoga, waking up early) on the left next to a chart of days and coloring in the days you manage to do the habit. You can also create a page just to log you often you do one particular thing—drinking alcohol, for example. Some people even use their bullet journals to track food and digestive symptoms, either by creating a section for a food journal or just noting in their daily log when they eat a certain food and how it makes them feel.

3. Save money.

You can create a custom spread for your monthly budget, track all your expenses, or just track your purchases in a particular category (say, eating out) if there's a particular type of spending you're trying to curb. The design can be as crafty as you like—whether you're coloring in bricks that represent each $50 saved toward a house or just filling in columns noting every time you make a purchase. The key is that, as with health habits, writing something down can serve as a powerful motivator and/or deterrent, since you know you'll have to come face-to-face with yourself at the end of the month.

4. Plan your meals.

Nothing combines health and finance goals quite like planning your meals. You can make your meal plan a section of your weekly spread: Carroll, the bullet journal's creator, likes to set up a list of meals on the left page of his notebook and a shopping list of ingredients on the right. Dividing the items by categories (like meat, produce, and pantry staples) can speed things up at the store, too. It's great to do this at home so you can check the fridge and see what you're missing. Then, when you're done shopping, note how much you spent at the bottom of the list. You can track that to develop insights about your grocery budget.

Over time, you can also create lists to help you with meal planning, perhaps "Favorite Weeknight Dinners," "Easy Work Lunches," etc. Some people also like to create a master grocery list of frequently bought items they can consult whenever they're at the store, just in case they forget to write staples down on their weekly shopping list.

5. Remember the good things.

In our flurry of to-do lists, project deadlines, and meal plans, it can be easy to forget about the things that brighten our days, whether it's an especially funny joke from a colleague or a milestone in a child's development. Create a "memories" page (don't forget to log it in your index!) where you record the great stuff that happens, and pull it out to reflect whenever you're having a gray day. Some bullet journalers like to put pages like this toward the back of their journals to separate them out from the time-oriented spreads. A memories page is also a great opportunity to bust out some thematic artwork.

6. Track your reading lists.

Another great way to encourage better habits is through a reading log. Like a memory log, many people like to put this toward the back of their journal, although ultimately the placement is totally up to you. You can keep track of all the books you read this year, perhaps with notes on what you thought of them—a definite resource when you're drawing up those year-end best-of lists to share with other reading pals!

7. Pair it with an app.

While the bullet journal is touted as "the analog method for the digital age," most of us don't want to go full-on analog. There's now an official companion app that will help you organize and search your old bullet journals, help you learn the method, offer prompts, and serve as a log for when you're away from your journal. It's designed as an addition to the journal, not a replacement, so you still need to put in that time with pen (or pencil, or watercolor brush) and paper.

Bullet journals also pair well with apps like Evernote—for example, you can use Evernote on your smartphone to snap photos of text you scrawl down to save digitally for later use. (Maybe those on-the-fly notes on your novel go into an Evernote notebook that you consult when you have a bit more time, for example.) That's a good option for longer-term projects that might span a couple notebooks.

Many people also use both bullet journals and an online calendar, using the latter for fixed events like birthdays and doctors appointments and the former as more of a way to time-block the day and focus on goals. After all, the beauty of the bullet journal is that unlike digital space, the paper in your notebook is finite—which helps you realize that so is your time and energy. That makes it easier to plan accordingly.

This Ingenious Hanger Makes Hanging Pants a Breeze, No Clips or Folds Required

Hurdle Hanger
Hurdle Hanger

Get ready to clean out your closet. No, we don’t mean going all Marie Kondo on your clothes. There’s a new type of clothes hanger that promises to change the way you store your clothes, taking the headache out of hanging up your pants.

The Hurdle Hanger, which has currently raised more than $33,000 on Kickstarter, calls itself the “one-second pants hanger.” Rather than relying on cumbersome clips or requiring bulky folding techniques, the hanger design employs one very simple change: It hooks into the belt loops of your pants.

The angular hanger is open on one side so that you can slide the bar through the belt loops of your pants, letting you secure your pants in one smooth motion rather than struggling with the pant clips that will just wrinkle your waistband anyway.

A person slides the Hurdle Hanger through the belt loops of a pants to hang them.
Hurdle Hanger

Just slide the hanger bar through the belt loop (or loops) farthest from you, then hang the belt loop closest to you from the hook. There is another hook midway across the bar that secures the middle belt loop, keeping your pants from drooping while they hang. In another subtle touch, you can use the same hook to hang smaller items, like belts or hats, off the side.

The Hurdle Hanger is an example of smart design at its finest—the kind of idea that, when you see it in action, makes you think, “Wait, how did no one think of this before?” It takes a once-cumbersome task and makes it seamless, eliminating at least some of the burden that may be keeping you from accomplishing the chore of hanging up your clothes. No more messing with clips or trying to shove pants through the cramped hole in the hanger to fold them over.

There are already open-end pants hangers that make it easier to slide a folded pair of slacks into your closet, but the belt loop hooks take the Hurdle Hanger to another level. You might even get inspired enough to start hanging your jeans.

A 10-pack of hangers is $20 on Kickstarter—though anything that makes you actively excited to organize your closet is priceless.

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