If you really want to splurge, go for the unisex Bradley watches from Eone ($295-$335). The matte pieces track the time with magnetized ball bearings that travel around the face. “It’s a great conversation piece,” retail manager Dom Adams says. “So many people with Rolexes and Cartiers say, ‘What is that watch?’ ”
Maketto is one of a handful of brick-and-mortar stores in the United States where you can pick up pieces from the Canadian accessories line Maple. One of Adams’ favorites is Maple and Justin Rivard’s totem necklace ($110), a piece that pairs traditional Cree design with a modern leather strap.
Buying for multiple people? Adams recommends heading straight for the Comme des Garcons wallets ($162-$302), which come in a variety of styles and colors. “If you want to be a little playful, there’s one for that. If you want to be more traditionally feminine or masculine, there’s something for that,” Adams says.
For the style maven who loves statement pieces …
Lettie Gooch, 1921 Eighth St. NW, No. 110
When men come into owner Theresa Watts’ Shaw shop to buy for women, she tells them to go big. “Statement pieces are more special than just basics or classics,” she says. One of her favorites is a blue-black faux fur coat from Beulah Style ($238).
You’ll find gifts at a lower price point at Lettie Gooch too, like bath salts from Mullein & Sparrow ($16-$28) with blends that feature cacao or Himalayan pink salt.
For the foodie who’d rather stay in and cook …
Hill’s Kitchen, 713 D St. SE
This Capitol Hill shop is filled with District-specific treats, but owner Leah Daniels’ favorite is Chouquette chocolates ($14-$44) with D.C.-themed designs and a sea salt caramel filling. “It’s good for someone you want to give a little treat to, but you don’t know them very well,” Daniels says.
It’s hard to go wrong with a versatile piece of cookware. That’s what makes the Staub cast iron cocotte (aka Dutch oven) such a good gift: You can cook a chicken, bake bread or whip up a rack of lamb in this thing. Daniels recommends the 6-quart size ($249).
Another spilled glass of wine proves you can’t have too many towels, and Daniels always reaches for Now Designs’ Ripple kitchen towel ($8.95). It passed Cook’s Illustrated’s test of the best kitchen towels, likely because of the super-absorbent Turkish cotton.
More ways to have a great holiday in D.C.: