28 Christmas Present Ideas for Designers

November 27, 2014
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It’s 28 days until Christmas! Are you excited yet!? Yes!? Well chill out – it’s still November for Gods sake. That being said, you do probably want to start thinking about what to buy your creative loved ones this Yuletide, so I’ve put together this list of all the things I personally want this year (you know… in case any of you out there fancy buying me something – ha!) to give you a few ideas. So dip your festive quill – it’s time to start penning that Christmas list.

Main Presents

So here are my big wants this Christmas, some of these are total pipe dreams I know, but it’s nice to fantasise isn’t it? If you’re thinking of buying a present of a designer that you’re not willing to sell a kidney for, you might want to skip to the stocking fillers section below where the gifts have a slightly more earthly budget. But for those willing to join me in holding Rudolph ransom this year, check these out.

Wacom Cintiq

Every designer dreams of having a Cintiq – that’s just the rule. But they’re always so flippin’ big and expensive aren’t they? Not really a justifiable expense for the mobile freelancer. That’s why I really want one of these newer 13inch models. Same great product but way more compact. The lack of space doesn’t really bother me (you’re talking to the illustrator who traded in a A3 tablet for a bamboo pen), so I’m really excited about something that’ll pack away alongside my MacBook. The screen resolution isn’t quite retina quality but at 1920×1080 it’s very decent, and did I mention you can draw on it?

Cannon 100D

Any photographers reading this will probably be uttering “really!?” to themselves in a high pitched tone about now. Yes – granted, if you’re a photographer, this is probably a little below the mark for you, but for the rest of us, this little beauty is ideal. First off, it’s small for a DSLR- like really small, so it’ll pop into your current work bag (and I’m hoping make a pretty decent travel camera). Second – it takes really nice pictures. I could probably ream off a load of numbers referencing mega pixels and f-stops and the like, but I don’t know anything about that because I don’t have a flippin DSLR camera yet! All I know is, this works with all the standard cannon lenses, so you won’t have to rebuy anything if you choose to upgrade later and the pics it takes are more than worthy to act as placeholders on that client website you’re building. Who knows get good enough with it and maybe you can pop those images on the bill!

Surface Pro 2

No I don’t need another tablet. The reason I want a Surface Pro 2 (not a 3 – very important!) is that is apparently really really nice to draw on. Mike Krahulik even went through a stage of drawing all of his comics directly on the Surface Pro 2 – for someone with a Wacom tablet the size of your dinner table at their disposal, that’s quite the endorsement. The reason I want the Surface Pro 2 over the 3 though is apparently the drawing experience, despite the machine being more powerful in every sense, has gone downhill (in fact the pressure sensitivity has dropped from 1024 to just 256!). I recently had a little play with the Surface Pro 3, and I really wasn’t blown away. Maybe it’ll be something that can be patched down the line, but for now – I’m happy to pine after the 2.

iMac 5K

When the MacBook Retina was first released, this was kinda on everyones mind; how cool would that be on a 27″ screen? Well here it is, and it’s glorious. Aside from being a slightly beefed up regular Mac, the new 5K screen has a resolution of 5120×2280! That’s more than both my current monitors put together! Another nice feature is the 1TB hard drive that the MacBooks are sorely lacking. So at around the same price, if your bunkered into your office, one of these would certainly make your Christmas.

Stocking Fillers

Ok so if all that stuff was a big mega (and based on my naughty/nice rating it definitely was!) check out some of these stocking fillers. These are perfect small to mid presents for that designer in your life.

Anker Portable Charger

I own this already, so not technically a present I want, but it is class. Holds seven charges for my iPhone so basically lives in the bag I take to all my meetings. Essential on a busy day out of the office. Works for most other gadgets too.


If you’re like me you live on your PC and mobile devices. This is just a really really simple way of getting all that content back onto your big tv that’s been gathering dust.


It’s a quadcopter! A quadcopter! Just think of all the possibilities! I can’t think of any right now, but… look just shut up – it’s a quadcoper! I don’t need your approval! Trust me – you need this.

Unlike a lot of the times I link to products, I (obviously) don’t own any of these, so I can’t vouch for their awesomeness, but hopefully this might give you a few good ideas for bolstering that Christmas list! If you’ve got any cool present ideas this year, let me know if the comments below!

Photo Credit to sunlight cardigan

is owner of Hunting Town Design, a small design house based in Manchester UK specialising in Graphic Design and Illustration. Alex is also the founder and editor of The Design Range. Find out more about Alex on his website or follow him on twitter.
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