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Our No-Fail Place for Holiday Gifts

MoMA Design Store Holiday Gifts

Year after year, MoMA Design Store is always one of our can’t-miss places for holiday gifts. They have the best selection of ingenious, useful, and of course, beautiful items around. Here’s what we are excited to give this year…

MoMA Design Store Holiday Gifts

Aalto Vase, HAY candle holders, HAY wax candles, Press bowl, Press vase.

For those who love to be cozy, how gorgeous are these HAY candle holders and wax candles? They’re beautiful objects in their own right, but when lit, they make any dinner or movie night feel extra special.

For the flower arranger, the Aalto Vase makes an assortment of greenery into a work of art. And the Tom Dixon Press Glass Collection bowl and vase look beautiful with flowers, fruit or nuts. They’re the kind of pieces they’ll use forever (and think of you whenever they do).

MoMA Design Store Holiday Gifts

Sowaca Pan, HAY pot holder, Gio Line glasses, Bamboo dessert plates, Bodum tea pot, Klikk on-the-go cutlery, HAY oven mitt.

For the caffeine fanatic, the Bodum French Press and Tea Pot make a perfect cup, while adding some cheer to your morning routine.

For the home chef, the remarkably versatile Sowaca ceramic pan comes in five colors, while the bamboo dessert plates, which come as a set of four different designs, show off anything from eggs to your billionth loaf of banana bread.

MoMA Design Store Holiday Gifts

Hoptimist Lamp, MoMA screen cleaner, Triadic pen, Ellepi bookends, Wideboy alarm clock.

For the work-from-homer, the Hoptimist lamp is designed to make your desk (and your mood) a little brighter. How cute is that?

For the screen addict (guilty as charged), the touchscreen mist cleaner, a COJ team favorite, makes screen smudges a thing of the past. Simply mist and wipe with the built-in microfiber cloth. While we’re at it, the Wideboy alarm clock makes a great gift for those leaving their phone outside the bedroom (or who could use the encouragement). With its midcentury inspired design, it looks just as nice on desks or countertops, too.

MoMA Design Store Holiday Gifts

Earth Puzzle, Candy Land game.

Finally, MoMA Design Store also has an amazing selection of gifts for kids (and kids-at-heart). This nostalgia edition of the classic Candy Land game is based on the original 1962 version, making it extra entertaining for the whole family.

For the puzzle masters in your life, how amazing is this round Earth puzzle? Produced to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, this 1,000-piece stunner is both gorgeous and challenging, making it perfect for beginners and experts alike.

Last but definitely not least, now that the museum is open again, a MoMA membership makes an incredible gift for any art lover. (You could gift it along with a note and a promise to visit together.)

Great news for all readers: MoMA Design Store is offering 10% off your purchase in stores and at store.moma.org now through November 23 using code CUPOFJOMOMA at checkout.* Thank you so much!

(Photography and styling by Kate Jordan for Cup of Jo. This post is sponsored by MoMA Design Store, one of our favorite places to shop for gifts, at the holidays and all year long. Thanks for supporting the brands that help keep Cup of Jo running.)

*Cannot be combined with membership discount or other offers. Excludes purchases of memberships, gift cards, prior purchases and select products. Exclusions subject to change. Available for U.S. customers only.

  1. Alyssa says...

    Speaking of gifts, does anyone have suggestions on unique housewarming gifts under $75 (small business preferred)? I’d love some fresh ideas to get out of my tea towel and candle rut!

    • Hannah Lant says...

      I’m a self-avowed minimalist who also really loves giving gifts. For this reason, I usually give ephemeral gifts that I’m sure can be enjoyed and then finished. This could be a delicious, local honey, a homemade cake, etc. Or, maybe (hopefully) less ephemeral, but what about a houseplant? A lot of these things you could maybe get locally depending on your location to support small local ag/business.

    • Allie says...

      I like to go the doormat route. People never think to buy one when moving. You can find lots of personalized options on Etsy.

    • Joanna Tsay says...

      I sent flowers to a friend of mine who moved and she loved them.

    • Margaret says...

      Not a small business, but the aesop reverence hand soap is my go-to! nice hand soap is such a luxury and the type of thing people don’t often buy for themselves. At about $40, I think its the perfect casual housewarming gift!

    • Alyssa says...

      These are beautiful ideas. Thanks, all!

    • I’m a fan of Etsy small business shops and also sell artisan ceramics (vases, teaware, tableware, planters, soap dishes and other homewares) that I make there!

  2. Sam says...

    I too look forward to the MoMA gift guide every year!

  3. Cynthia says...

    Something for everyone’s budget on MoMA! I love the cork coasters shaped like slices of toast, but I don’t need any more coasters. Sustainable gift ideas: Make food gifts and package in reusable containers, but make sure recipients don’t have allergies. Scout yard sales and thrift stores to find gifts for those who collect certain things such penguin or strawberry themed items. One year I found a small brass pig at a yard sale for a relative who collected pigs. Cloth napkins. If you sew, they are easy to make. Dig into your stash for fabrics.

  4. Hali says...

    The annual MoMa post (always great!) is the first sign of cojgg season and I have never in all 10+ years avidly reading this blog been more ready! I sincerely hope you get half as much joy out of curating them as I alone do browsing. The time is upon us! We’ve nearly made it through the year!!

  5. Bren says...

    We can’t wait for your Holiday Shopping Guides!! Any plans to put them out a bit earlier this year since we are all so dreadfully bored?
    Here are two ideas for new lists this year: Black-owned businesses and Eco-friendly gifts.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      Yes! We are starting on Monday, can’t wait :)

    • Madeleine says...

      I like the eco-friendly idea!! Going with the idea of “reduce, reuse, recycle,” the best way to do eco-friendly gifts is to reuse something already on hand. I would love to see a gift guide of those gifts, they can be the best kind! Like giving someone a well loved book, a list of shared memories, or something homemade 🧡

    • Jane says...

      Yesssss! I’m challenging myself this year to give only used, handmade, or gifts purchased from small independent businesses– minority- and woman- owned whenever I can– this year, and quality gift guides that aren’t filled with links to the giant retailers we all know are so hard to come by. (If anyone knows any sites/places that do this, lmk ;) )

  6. Caitlin says...

    What a fun shop, thank you for sharing!

  7. Annie says...

    I am really going to try to shop local this holiday season to support businesses in my community, but there are some great ideas from MOMA. I am going to get my husband the cork ping pong set, because we don’t have enough room in our house for a regulation table, but we are going to need some indoor games for the coming winter! CupofJo I am so looking forward to your gift guides this year — they always give me amazing ideas for different loved ones across price points. I know this has been such a strange year for all of us and I am going to use gifting (for family and those in need) to help spread joy during these uncertain days. Just a note of thanks in advance for your work! xoxo

  8. Emily says...

    Those candlesticks look great! Thanks for finalizing my mom’s gifts for me :)

  9. SJ says...

    It would be really great to see a sustainable or low-waste/zero-waste gift guide to complement your earlier posts on climate change. I’m sure readers would be happy to contribute their ideas as well!

  10. C. says...

    That Hoptimist lamp is charming me and calling my name.

  11. Vanessa says...

    Eeee does this mean we’re getting close to the CoJ gift guides?! So many of your suggestions have been a hit with my family :)

  12. Tina Crisas says...

    I just saw a video on YouTube today as to how to make those pretty twirly candles as in the first photo. I didn’t realise how simple it is! You just need water and a rolling pin. (Skip to 21:40 for it) https://youtu.be/ApbV0-pungQ

  13. Megan says...

    It would be really wonderful if Cup of Jo would use this opportunity to highlight Black-owned online shops as well. There are some amazing Etsy shops with gorgeous crafts–everything from candles and ceramics to incredible fiber arts pieces and graphic prints. Please consider using this platform, which reaches so many people, to promote Black-owned arts and craft businesses for the holidays. One of my favorites: https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/Studionom?ref=shop_sugg

    • Christine says...

      Agreed. But for anyone looking, Young House Love has a great in depth list on their website. Order now to give makers enough time.

    • GOLDENMOON says...

      Wow! Beautiful. Thanks for sharing this etsy link and your call for this. Agreed! I love MOMA and yet I’m making a strong effort to support small makers, especial BPIOC makers. I’d love a full post on more options this holiday season. Thanks COJ for always bringing solid, thoughtful content!

    • I agree with this, especially knowing that there’s a ton of racism going on behind the scenes in museums that still aren’t being addressed. MoMA included. @changethemuseum has more info.

      If anyone is looking for baby and children’s gifts mothermag has a super long list of black owned makers to support

    • Lei says...

      Thanks for sharing this link. A gorgeous store!

    • Haley says...

      Wow these are gorgeous designs! Thanks for sharing the link.

    • Kate says...

      It would also be amazing if COJ would highlight less massive museums and cultural spaces this holiday season (and generally!) There are so many wonderful and important museums that are hurting right now—to the extent that the American Association of Museums has said that 1/4 of American art museums won’t survive the COVID-19 pandemic. I love the MOMA design store, but almost every museum in the country has a cool, well-curated store. As a curator in a museum that is hurting, I’d love to see this community send some money to a diverse array of cultural institutions across the country.

    • Claire says...

      All you people saying you wish to see your personal favorite options- just share your resources and links in your comments.
      CoJ can’t post all the suggestions themselves, but I think a lot of us read the comments and appreciate seeing these ideas.

  14. Em says...

    We have that vintage style Candyland. The game piece have such small bases, they fall over constantly. Do not recommend.

  15. Nicole says...

    Oh, I love this store! So many good gift ideas, and it’s nice how many of them are affordable.

    Does anyone know if the Sowaca pans are nonstick? I’ve never cooked with ceramic….

    • Cate says...

      I’m not sure about Sowaca specifically, but ceramic is usually considered a healthy, nontoxic alternative to Teflon/other nonstick coatings!

    • nadine says...

      hi Nicole,
      I had a few ceramic pans since I’ve been looking for a different option than teflon. Ceramic pans are less toxic than Teflon and they keep the non stick properties. In my experience, they are a bit more delicate than teflon pans. To avoid the risk of tiny cracks in the ceramic layer, the heat of the stove can’t be too high and all the surface of the pan needs to be covered by food to reduce temperature shocks, so it works well when preparing certain foods more than others.
      I tried different brands and some have been much more durable than others. I haven’t tried the Sowaca brand yet though! They look great and the price seems pretty good, does anyone have a direct experience with the brand?

    • Nicole says...

      Thanks so much Cate and Nadine! I don’t have any non-stick pans due to my concerns over toxicity/environment, so this seems like a good alternative:)

  16. Lala says...

    I LOVE your taste and I rely on CoJ gift guides every year.

  17. Calla says...

    that little lamp is so cute!

  18. Vids says...

    I love the lamp and the alarm clock! Please could you share details about the sailboat painting? Thank you!

    • SK says...

      Yes please – some information about the painting of sailboats would be brilliant!

  19. Nadine says...

    Yay!!!! Holiday gift season is starting!! I always love all your ideas :D

  20. What a charming lamps. Outclass look

  21. Tara says...

    So fun to see Hoptimist getting some play here! I love this brand — I first discovered it years ago when walking around in Frankfurt, Germany and I’ve loved collecting the little bobbleheads ever since. I have a bunny one from the spring collection on my desk as I type this, nodding away. And for my wedding I bought the bride and groom set to display by our guest book!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      I love that, tara!

  22. Abbie says...

    My husband got me that Earth puzzle for my birthday this year and it.is.hard. Gorgeous when finished, but my mom, an avid puzzler, had to take over for me. I gave up after several hours and very little progress.

  23. K says...

    These photos are amazing (just my eclectic style). I just looked up that Matisse Cutout book (also MOMA) and I’d love to know more about that painting in the second photo.

    • Kelli says...

      I have the Matisse cutout books. It’s my favorite art book. Beautiful.

  24. Lesley says...

    That smiling lamp is utterly charming!