It is the holiday season, my favorite time of the year, (minus the cold). I especially enjoy coming up with special gifts for my family. I would like to think I am a pretty thoughtful gift giver, because I don't like to give random things. I really put in thought and here is my number one rule: must be useful. Millennials love to gift things that are just nice to look at and make for a great #shelfie. As a self-identified baby-boomer (I'm not really guys, but this is Ammachic), I just like to get use out of my gifts.
We all got the memo that Liya got her own small business and that Liya be a South Asian American woman, mainly because I shove this memo in all faces at all times, because who else gonna rep me than ME? Hello, thank you. SO in solidarity with all the other South Asian businesses out there, this Holiday Gift Guide is focused on DESI-OWNED BUSINESSES. Why? Because we have a bad rep in these streets for not supporting and uplifting in one and another and unwilling to put our money where our mouth is. So prove all those hater wrong and support these wonderful brands!
#AMMACHICAPPROVED Gift Guide
WESTxEAST Custom Wardrobe starting at $350: Of course I have to plug WESTxEAST people, it is my baby! We are kicking off our Wardrobe Package, just in time for the Holiday Season. Starting at $350 with free shipping, you can get a minimum of 4 pieces that can be mixed and matched to create at least 4 full looks. It is a great gift for that special someone who got a packed wedding season and need to have a fresh look at each one. Book your consult call today so we can walk you through the next steps.
Ranavat Botanics Royal Ritual Set: So I recently DM-ed Michelle, the owner of Ranavat Botanics, telling her how special it is that her brand is all about the ritual of ayurvedic skincare and I love how she incorporated the use of a Kansa Wand. This is something I have seen my grandmother use and it is incredible that I am seeing a brand really educate on how Ayurveda truly works: its all about that consistent routine. She just does it so luxuriously that I feel wealthier just looking at the products. Luxury skincare is always a great gift because people tend not want to buy it for themselves and its still at a pretty good price point. The Ritual Set is a great starter package for those budding skincare queens and kings.
Soma Ayuvedic Vitamin C Serum Citrus and Rose: This brand is made in Kerala so it already had me sold because you know I rep Malayalee hard, but then they so kindly sent me their products to try out. I am in the middle of a 30 day challenge of only using Soma Ayurvedic and I will be posting my experience soon (this may be a spoiler alert since I've been loving it so far). I love this oil-based serum and I think it is a great add on gift, plus the branding is on point so it is #shelfie approved. I sometimes like to assemble multiple small items into one big gift because then you can maximize how useful of a gift is.
LiveTinted Holiday Set: This holiday set is SUCH A GREAT DEAL! Listen, I did the math y'all and you are essentially getting one Huestick FREE. How you gonna turn that down? And we all know how amazing this product is. I have been WAITING for my sad color corrector I stupidly bought to be finished and it DID just in time to treat myself to this set. I may also be treating other individuals to this gift because it is such a great deal for such an incredible, multi-purpose product. Usefulness: A+++
Ladki Power Gear from Rootsgear Official : Hello, I did a whole faux music video about this gear. A wonderful collaboration between two friends: Trisha of Brown Girl Magazine and Tanmit, the genius behind Rootsgear (and a budding comic and podcaster). It is essential you cop this gear (am I cool enough to pull off such phrases?).
Tattva/Truth Midnight Raas : In my draping blind-folded video, I rocked the Sindoor version of this set. I have to say, I am not an athleisure type of gal, but this is the comfiest thing ever. I have just been throwing it on and getting compliments left, right, and center because its just so eye-catching. The fabric is great quality and yummy. So far not one stone has been lost, even after washing. Great price point and it will be a crowd favorite.
Bili Beauty Eyes of India Eyeshadow Palette : Another Malu Boss Lady owned business, Miss Sarah Sophy Thomas really poured her heart into this palette. The fight for diversity and inclusion in beauty has been long-standing battle ground, but I see how much we've progressed. This palette symbolize something beyond just pretty colors; it is proof of how far we've come.
Jungli By Nature Mudra Tote: I really love this brand and I've been eyeing this tote for a hot minute. If you remember, my very first style video was all about my Jungli T-Shirt and what that means to me. Shreya is a unapologetically herself and that is clearly channeled through every product she sells.
Maalicious Spicy Mama Earrings: I have been test-driving this Malayalee woman owned jewelry brand for a hot minute. The design genius behind it is Miss Poonam. The results are in: I LOVE IT. They are just gorgeous statement pieces that are a conversation starters, and not to mention socially conscious. Each earring is made by a different Indian woman artisan. I wore one to Slashie Summit and Sandy Lion immediately asked to wear it on the runway. They are stunning and at a great price point.
Naveda Gungaroo Bag: This bag is such a cool concept by Amy Devan of Naveda Couture. I am always looking for clutches to wear with Desi-wear that isn't the typical bejeweled number. Such a great conversational piece and can also be added to #shelfieapproved Insta pic.
The Pink Bazaar Motif Clutch: This brand is owned by my girl Nika, who I adore. I can always send her a last minute text and she comes through with amazing pieces. Recently, I have been obsessed with this Motif clutch. I recently rocked it at Slashie and I love how versatile it is. I can wear it with so many looks and the compliments always flow in.
Reemat Designs Vintage Inspired Set: Reemat Designs has been making waves in the jewellry space, dressing everyone from Deepica to Nabela Noor. Designed by the lovely and kind Reena Mathur, her pieces are wide in range and you can find anything for any occassion. I have been to her studio and it is no joke. This vintage art-deco set is one of my favorite pieces (probably because I got to style them) and is worth the holiday splurge.
Scrumptious Wicks Candle Bundle: I have been seeing this brand pop up on my favorite grammers feed and it sparked my curiosity. Then, I visited their stall at Slashie Summit and I was sold. It was like smelling home and transported me to lazy summers at my ancestral home in Kerala. I am a huge candle lover and after a long day, there is nothing better than lighting up one of these bad boys.
Kutti Gang Show Tickets: This is really for the gentlemen out there looking for a great date night idea. Bring your girl to the Kutti Gang show hosted by Pooja Reddy and Zubi Ahmed and watch her rise up with the brown sisterhood and turn on you real quick. Naw just playing. BUT GO SEE THE SHOW. These ladies are hilarious and they are growing this platform to support South Asian creatives. Don't come crying to me when they performing on the Tonight Show and you can't get tickets. I gave you a chance.
HateCopy 'Fight Beti' Poster Print: If you have been living under a rock and don't know about Maria Qamar and her SOLD-OUT SHOW at the Tattinger Gallery, lemme tell you she a big deal. Of course, most of us can't afford the gallery pieces, BUT she has so many brilliant prints and I love giving framed posters as a gift. It is something people don't really do for themselves so it is always appreciated.
Haf and Haf Irish Peach Print: I have had my eye on Miss Haf and Haf for a hot minute. She has this feisty energy and a romantic eye. Her prints just drip in sensuality and provocativeness (is that a word?) and I just love her use of colors and juxtaposing images of Desi women doing the unexpected.