While it may still not look like it in Greece, at least it’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas. As we draw closer to December, shops decorate their window displays, Black Friday sales adverts suggest outfits for the upcoming holiday parties, and the familiar sweet scent of the street vendors’ chestnuts toasting fills the streets. This is the time to do your gift shopping, before the last-minute stress sets in.
As we do every year, we’ve assembled a list of wonderful items from Greek brands that we would love to find under our trees on Christmas morning. To make things extra easy, they can all be purchased online.
Beauty Box, Open Farm
Open farm, the organization behind the Open Farm Days initiative, which brings farms and other agritourism establishments around the country together to invite people in several times a year, now also sells some of the products produced by these farms in their webshop. This wooden box of natural beauty products from four of the producers in the network contains an extra-virgin olive oil soap, an aloe vera face and body gel, a lavender bodyspray, and a rose-scented beeswax face and body cream.
€32. Shop here (link in Greek).
Eye bracelet, Marianna Lemos
Eye charms are not just a typical Christmas slash New Year’s gift in Greece, they’re also a major worldwide trend. Greek designers, unsurprisingly, make some of the most beautiful ones. This bracelet from Marianna Lemos, made from 22-carat gold-plated Sterling silver features a beaded wire band and an eye motif with a ring of sapphire blue crystals set within an outer circle of white crystals.
€230. Shop here.
Baby onesie, Smalls
Greek grandmothers look no further – here’s the gift for your new grandkid.
Athens-based baby brand Smalls makes their onesies from organic cotton and with extra soft stitching suitable for sensitive skin. A great cheeky gift, their “φτου φτου” (ftou ftou) design, available both as onesies and t-shirts, refers to the spitting sound Greeks make to ward off the evil eye. Another great option available on onesies only, from their limited-edition Christmas collection, features the word “κουραμπιεδάκι” (kourabiedaki, traditional Christmas cookie), perfect for families of sweet tooths.
€34. Shop here.
Raki set, Nisaki Mu
The handmade ceramics from Nisaki Mu all feature designs inspired by traditional folk art and the nature and landscapes of the Greek islands. This raki set, perfectly suitable for serving Japanese sake as well as the Cretan beverage, features birds flying among olive branches.
Tip: gift this along with a printed out version of our recipe for rakomelo, to serve in the set on chilly January nights.
€85. Shop via Etsy here.
Cufflinks, Benaki shop
These modern silver cufflinks from designer Anna Skiadaresi are based on the gold seal of Greece’s national poet, Dionysios Solomos, featuring the words “VERUM AMO VERUM VOLO” (truth I love, truth I seek). The ideal gift for poetry lovers, detectives, and your friend who wears suits.
€45. Shop here.
Art Book: The Odyssey by George Kordis, Kapon Editions
On the walls of the third floor of the School of Philosophy, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, a modern mural inspired by religious icon-making, featuring scenes from Homer’s Odyssey, annotated using the ancient script. An impressive work of great interest to history buffs, for those who cannot see it in person, this book from Kapon Editions featuring the work is a treat.
€19.80. Shop here.
Versatile necklace, Coco Fico x mtheta
This dainty necklace from Athens-based jewelry brand Coco Fico is part of their collection created in collaboration with local artist Mikaella Theofanopoulou, and inspired by ancient Cycladic art. It can also be worn as a bracelet or an anklet and looks great with both winter and summer outfits. The charm is made from gold-plated silver, and each piece is handmade to order.
€46. Shop here.
Christmas candles for charity, WAKS + Make-a-Wish
This year for Christmas, luxury candle brand WAKS has partnered with Make-A-Wish Greece to create a collection of four limited-edition scented candles. Part of the profit from the candles goes directly to Make-a-Wish, thus helping a sick child’s dream come true. Choose between “magical forest,” “orange and cinnamon,” “patchouli and pomegranate,” and “pumpkin spice” – or get them all.
€22. Shop here.
Foldable mythological heroes, DKD Studio
These paper figures from Greek mythology are a hit every Christmas. If you haven’t gifted some already, get the whole set, or just a couple for a kid who loves collecting. Each hero (and anti-hero) is made up of 4 to 5 pieces of ready-to-assemble paperboard cut-outs. Choose between Aphrodite, Athena, Cyclops, Hermes, and Poseidon. Besides mythical figures, an Evzone (Greek national guard) is also available in the web shop of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center.
€8. Shop via SNFCC here.
It may be boot weather now, but spring will be upon again us sooner than you think… in Greece especially. If you have a trip to Greece planned with a (female) loved one this spring, what better gift than a perfect shoe for the season? We adore the latest mules from the Athens-based brand Sandalista.
€89-€95. Shop here.
Siesta beach towel, Ergon Mykonos
There are many Greek brands whose beach accessories are beautiful. This bold design, however, definitely stands out. For your loved ones who just can’t wait until summer to fly away to the sun, this beach towel from Ergon Mykonos, made from bamboo, is the perfect luxurious accessory.
€110. Shop here.
Truffle-themed gift basket, Yolenis
Did you know that plenty of truffles of different varieties can be found in several areas of Greece? Chances are your foodie friend does. In fact, truffle hunting is becoming increasingly popular, and truffle as an ingredient has trended in restaurants all over the country for years. This gift basket of Greek products, perfect for that friend who knows where everything grows, contains balsamic cream, handmade tagliatelle, sesame oil, olive oil, sea salt, mustard, and olive paste – all containing black or white truffle.
€59.95. Shop here.