Presents, in this economy? Never fear. All of these creative finds ring in at $40 or less. You can find more Made in Texas gift ideas in our guides for the Entertainer, the Stressed-out, the Texan in Training, and the Trendsetter.
2021 Holiday Socks, Whataburger, $12.99
How about some socks for that stocking? These festive beauties from everyone’s favorite Texas burger institution, founded in Corpus Christi 71 years ago, will keep your feet—and your burger-loving heart—warm year-round. If the socks alone are too small-fry, consider the matching Whataburger Christmas sweater to complete the look.
Jim Koehn’s Streets of Houston Art Prints, Manready Mercantile, $20
Artist Jim Koehn has designed everything from studio sets for Houston TV stations to backdrops and custom signs for businesses and events around town, so he knows his city well. His recent fascination with architecture is evident in these five-by-seven-inch prints of local landmarks—from the Astrodome and Heights Theater to the Dot Coffee Shop and House of Pies—available online and in person at the rustic yet sophisticated Manready Mercantile in the historic Heights district. The shop, founded by Zephyr native Travis Weaver, is chock-full of additional stocking options such as bar tools and apothecary treats.
Stetson Spirit, Scent Beauty, $24.99
The Stetson Original fragrance turned forty this year, which means that teen boys and men have been receiving this cologne in their stockings since 1981. Keep the tradition going with a new scent, Stetson Spirit, meant to capture the essence of the iconic hat company. (Its Open Road style, made in Garland, has been the lid of choice for many a Texan, including President Lyndon Johnson.) As for the new cologne, it has top notes of bergamot, mandarin leaf, rhubarb, and elemi, which, proclaims the company, “will awaken the pioneer in all of us, surrounded by rock rose and sage yet balanced by the warmth of leather and amber.”
“Where’s There’s a Willie, There’s a Waylon” T-shirt, Fine Southern Gentlemen, $28
Based in East Austin, Fine Southern Gentlemen is one of the Lone Star’s canniest hipster T-shirt companies. In addition to shirts featuring the likes of Dolly, ZZ Top, and Lil Flip, its custom screen printing operation has expanded to include a vinyl LP shop and retail establishment that sells vintage clothing and home goods. Most shirt designs thrive on preorders, but there are usually plenty of the latest creations in stock, including the brand-new “Where There’s a Willie, There’s a Waylon” T-shirt, complete with the heads of the two most beautiful mugs in country music history.
— Joe Gross
Magic Face Oil, Folk Potions, $34
Austin folk singer Raina Rose has stepped away from the stage—at least for now—to focus on her line of herb-infused skincare products. One of the standouts, the Magic Face Oil, is a blend of oils (olive, avocado, apricot kernel, and castor—all organic, naturally) that’s infused with dandelion, lavender, and other plants for six weeks before being mixed with rose hip seed oil (a plus for aging skin) and essential oils. Its deeply floral scent is so mystical that you shouldn’t be surprised if it summons Stevie (“Saint”) Nicks. Gently rub it onto your face alone or with a moisturizer after cleansing. Will & Grace’s Megan Mullally, for one, swears by it. Want to splurge? There’s also an amped-up version with CBD for $20 more.
Slim Card Case, Leatherology, $40
Bulky wallets begone! Pare down to the essentials with this sleek, full-grain-leather card case, which has four slots (two on each side) for credit cards or similar and a center pocket for cash and business cards. Dallas-based Leatherology, which also makes a smart weekender, among other stylish bags and products, also offers monogram services for that personal touch. Of the many colors available, scarlet certainly seems the most festive.