Holiday shopping during a recession can be a total bummer. There’s nothing worse than splurging on a gift and seeing it unopened in your BFF’s apartment six months later. With that in mind, I present to you the AfterEllen.com Queer Lady Gift Guide. Whether you’re buying for your butch boo, femme friend or bisexual coworker; we want to help you homo up the holidays.
My personal favorite gift to give on a budget is a book. For the literary lesbian in your life, Trish recommends picking up Terri Griffith’s short novel So Much Better.
“[The book] is about a lesbian who is unhappy with her daily routine,” Trish explains. “All she wants is out of her relationship with her drunk girlfriend and something more exciting than her job at a city credit bureau, but she didn’t mean to begin a relationship with her girlfriend’s 15-year-old sister. It’s a great piece of stream-of-consciousness writing where you have a lot in common with the protagonist and her daily ideas and thoughts on living a life that is much more exciting inside her own head.”
Other queer books that will liven up any collection: Sarah Waters‘ Tipping the Velvet, Cool For You by Eileen Myles and Ash by former AfterEllen.com editor Malinda Lo.
Trish’s gay movie gift pick is Humpday: ”[It] may center around two straight men, but it’s one of the queerest films of the year.”
Karman’s DVD recommendation is the Shamim Sarif double-feature of The World Unseen and I Can’t Think Straight, starring Sheetal Sheth and Lisa Ray. “Two beautiful films, two lovely women. You should be able to count it as giving two gifts!”
If you’re looking to splurge (and secretly want to re-watch all of the L Word seasons with your friends) then the L Word box set would not be a bad way to go. Unfortunately, I can’t say the same thing for the show’s ending.
Other DVDs worth picking up, if they don’t have them already: Imagine Me and You (Hornito’s pick), But I’m a Cheerleader (total classic), Born in Flames (for the cult movie fan in your life) and D.E.B.S. (AE blogger Jamie says the fact that I haven’t seen this yet is totally ridic.)
If you’re looking to get a little more creative with your giving, the Nikki McClure calendar is a good place to start. I have been Nikki’s calendars for years and still get excited to see a new image each month. Nikki’s beautiful illustrations are cut from a single piece of paper, and each month features a verb meant to get you through the month. The calendars are selling 3 for $40 on buyolympia.com at the moment — and mom will like them too, I swear.
Also for the gay and artsy set, Mia says that Frida Kahlo is always a safe bet. These Mexican mesh shopping bags Mexican mesh shopping bags are earth friendly and super cool.
Handmade, all-natural bath products are the stuff lesbian dreams are made of. The masters of this artform are the folks at LUSH. AE blogger Grace Chu sings their praises: “They are handmade, which appeals to lesbians’ DIY ethic. They are not tested on animals, which appeals to lesbians’ love of cute furry fauna. They are all about the green movement, which appeals to lesbians’ love of the environment. Oh, and they are whimsical and make you smell good, which I guess is the most important factor. Bonus: They have a body butter called ‘Buffy.’”
Still at a loss? Some “seed bombs” would be a good gift for the nature lover in your life. Jayson Home and Garden is selling Midwest flower “bombs” for $9.
Lesbians love whiskey (at least this one does) so boozy gifts never hurt. A bottle of John Powers Irish Whiskey or Makers Mark will impress most lesbian holiday party hosts.
Also, Circa Ceramics makes really rad, out-of-the-ordinary mugs. Fill them with some delicious organic coffee or tea and you can’t go wrong.
Another great way to show the queer lady in your life you care? Charitable donations. Charities have taken a serious hit with the economic downturn, and many of us would gladly sacrifice a $20 gift for a worthwhile cause. The Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice works to keep lesbian-led or queer-minded organizations going. One of the foundation’s main missions is to “address the lack of funding for women-specifically lesbians and women of color.”
Also, the Human Rights Campaign , Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) and the The Point Foundation , which provides financial support to at-risk gay and lesbian students, could all use your support.
What is on your wish list this year?