Dec 072010
Authors: Allison LeCain

Editor’s Note: Allison LeCain compiled this list of Top 10 gifts through her own research.

The holidays can be a tough time of year. There’s so much stress put on getting the perfect gift.

Even though people always say it’s the thought that counts, you don’t have to think much about gifts with this handy list. From funny to foreign, for your friend or for your mother, this list of the Top 10 gifts sold in Fort Collins will hopefully take the stress out of the thought of giving.

For the recycler in everyone, purses made from 95 percent post-consumer products are a great gift. They come in every pattern imaginable and are sold at White Balcony from $4 to $16.

If you know someone who likes pirates and ninjas, the perfect gift for them is a large black umbrella that has a sword handle. With a variety of handles, whether you’re looking for a full-fledged pirate sword or samurai sword, you will find it at
Killer Rabbit, costing $33.

For something more traditionally festive, The Cupboard sells an assortment of marzipan all the way from Germany in addition to liquor-filled chocolate bottles. The marzipan ranges from $5 to $7 and the chocolate bottles filled with various alcohols are 25 cents apiece or up to $20 for a box.

Shopping for mom or grandma is not easy, but what lady doesn’t like a hand-painted Russian matryoshka nesting doll? They are sold at The Cupboard will small sizes costing $14 and larger ones up to $75. These make great decorations for the holidays or anytime of the year.

Everybody loves French toast, but many may wonder what is so French about it? Anyone can make their French toast seem more French with a French toast press from White Balcony. It leaves a mark on your toast revealing the Eiffel Tower that says “Bonjour” to your breakfast. The perfect gift for any breakfast lover only costs $4. While you’re at it, there are ice cube trays that don’t make the ordinary square ice. Instead they make castle and robot shaped ice, also at White Balcony for $9.

For the friends that are constantly getting themselves in sticky situations, give them “The Complete Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook” by Joshua Piven. That way you will know that they are well prepared for whatever may cross their path. The book is sold at Killer Rabbit for $60.

Do you know someone who has been hurt by another? Get them a paper voodoo doll to take out the anger on. While normal voodoo dolls are a bit on the creepy side, this one lets you draw in white pins for blessings and black pins for curses. Much less creepy. These are sold at White Balcony for only $7.

The perfect gifts for an earthy, peaceful person are recycled newspaper frames, bowls and coasters sold at 10,000 Villages from $18 to $38. They are made in Vietnam and the Philippines and are fair-trade.

For your friend staying up all night studying, the perfect gift is the equal exchange, fair-trade coffee at 10,000 Villages costing $10. Offered in both decaf and caffeinated, it will leave them feeling awake and like they did something good for the world.

Last but not least, the ultimate recyclable paper is made from elephant feces and is sold bounded in journals and notepads at 10,000 Villages. While this item is unexpected, it is a great way to help reduce the number of trees cut down and is fair-trade from Sri Lanka. The paper is made in beautiful colors with a little elephant cut out on the cover of each notebook to remind the user of the good deed they are doing. Save the rainforests, use elephant pooh.

College Avenue magazine staff writer Allison LeCain can be reached at

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