Walking into Gum Tree, a cafe and gift shop just blocks from the ocean in Hermosa Beach, California, is a feast for the senses. Founded by husband-and-wife team Will and Lori Ford, the 100-year-old Craftsman house-turned commercial space is packed with sumptuous scarves, vibrant throw pillows, and salt-air scented candles. The store, separated into curated rooms filling with dining, home, bath, fashion, and kids accessories, is a designed as a one-stop shop for everyone on your gift list, no matter your budget. -Marisa Spyker
Shop Owner, Lori, Offers Gift-Giving Tips
1. Do a little snooping. “Know the people you’re buying for,” Lori says. “What’s their style?” If you’re not sure, scouting out a person’s Pinterest page can help glean insight into likes and dislikes.
2. Be creative. Lori suggests bundling two or three smaller gifts (say, a picnic basket filled with wineglasses and a favorite bottle of wine) to create a custom gift. “It’s more fun and looks like you put more thought into the purchase with you group specific items.”
3. Personalize it. Nothing makes a giftee feel more special than knowing an item (such as an engraved picture frame or birthstone earrings) was selected just for her. A simpler idea: “I love to give books with a handwritten note on the inside over,” Lori says. “They’re great for kids. And cookbooks are classic, too.” For an extra personal touch, create your own, filled with favorite family recipes.