With one week to go until Christmas, you’d better have made your list and checked it at least once by now (twice preferred). In case you’ve yet to find that special something for that special gay someone, here’s a sampling of ten of our finest shops listed on GayCities and some must-haves you’ll find within. We’ll leave the stocking stuffing to you.
1. Mr. S Leather, San Francisco
What better way to send a message of commitment to your boyfriend this Christmas than by strapping the English Bulldog Full Body Harness ($209.95) around (and under) him? You might find more than just a shiny nose on Rudolph after an all-night voyage on Santa’s Sleigh.
2. Tom Ford Flagship, New York
Tom Ford is to fashion what Beyonce is to music–he can do no wrong. A proven knack for timeless style means you can rest assured that a purchase from his flagship store on Manhattan’s Madison Ave. won’t be going out of fashion any time soon. Wow a lover with the Bucky Leather Duffel Bag ($3460) and see just how many sleepovers your gift facilitates. We’ll put our money on ‘a lot’.
3. Andrew Christian Flagship Boutique, Los Angeles
We all have that friend whose obsession with underwear can range from cute to sexy to annoying depending on how much you’ve had to drink. Well the holidays are all about giving, so slap a yuletide smile on his face by slapping a pair Andrew Christian’s Retropop Holiday Collection Sonic Briefs ($9.95) on his ass. Best-boyfriend-on-Earth points to the guy who gifts the Tom Ford bag filled with cute undies.
The gifted book can go two ways; either you rush to Borders last-minute and grab something with a pretty cover off the best sellers table, or you take the time to break down what you love about your giftee and what you think would inspire them. Having been on the receiving end of both strategies, we know which one we recommend. Unabridged Books is one of a shrinking number of GLBT bookstores around the world where you can still browse a lovingly curated selection of gay (and non-gay) literature. For your artistically-inclined friend who never stops posting travel photos, we suggest The Greek House: The Story of a Painter’s Love Affair with the Island of Sifnos ($27).
Gay superstore Clone Zone really has something for every homo, from clothing and fetishwear to birthday cards and, yes, penis pasta. If you find yourself in a white elephant gift exchange, you’ll strike gold here. The Sexy Chocolate Advent Calendar ($10.99), with “24 delicious naughty shaped milk chocolates hidden behind the glorious physique of sexy Mr. Christmas,” is a rock solid choice.
6. Fleux, Paris
Having your friends couple up and move in with one another is a great excuse to cut back on your shopping list. If they’re going to share their lives they can share a gift–easy as that. Fleux is a great spot to shop for a dynamic duo, with home accessories and furniture ranging from quirky to classic. For the campy couple, this Jonathan Adler Banana Vase in Gold ($110) will give any living room pizzaz.
7. HRC Store, Washington, D.C.
For your activist friend, knowing that the money you spent on their gift went directly to the HRC’s campaign for LGBT equality will mean even more than the object itself. Good thing, too, since the merchandise won’t exactly knock your socks off. But you can certainly fight gay oppression and bad weather simultaneously with this Double Canopy Vented Mesh Campaign Umbrella ($38).
Perhaps you know someone who takes an underwear interest to the next level with a proclivity towards all things lycra and stretchy. Skivvies will have you covered. There are undergarments of every variety and lots of specialized pieces to get the blood flowing on a blustery Winter day. The N2N Bodywear Performance X Singlet ($56) will ensure a place on Santa’s naughty list next year.
Gayer than a picnic basket full of rainbows, Brushstrokes features over 4,000 square feet of gifts, toys, cards, music, and adult viewing material. It’s chock-full of cheeky gift ideas to make your friends giggle. For the hard to please home cook, see how they fare with the Rude Shaped Egg Fryer ($7.99). It promises to be an “erotic and eggciting” time.
10. DUGG, Sydney
If you’re lucky enough to live in a place where swimwear has any relevance in Winter, or perhaps you want to subtly remind someone to remember their beach bod and not go too overboard with the holiday eating, a new bathing suit can help break through seasonal depression. DUGG has a great selection, like these supa cute Supawear Supa Fly Coral Shorts ($59.95).