The least successful gifts, Kelly Thompson thinks, are those that are given not with the recipient’s interests in mind, but those of the giver.

“It’s like, ‘Did you even think about me at all during this shopping experience?'” Thompson says of the thought process, or lack thereof, that results in mismatched gifts and ill-suited recipients. Though she’s not able to pinpoint one that she has received that didn’t quite nail the brief, she is, however, able to hone in on the gift that she considers to be amongst the very greatest bestowed upon her. “[It’s] definitely a stunning 1970s Italian lamp from Smith Street Bazaar,” Thompson says. “I sit on the couch and look at it and just think ‘I love you!'”

Shopping for those people in your life to whom you would affix the label ‘creative’ can be a fraught pastime. Where some are easily appeased by a classic candle or your run-of-the-mill socks and spirits combination, those with wide-ranging, esoteric tastes (see: 1970s Italian lamps) across a variety of disciplines can be a little harder to pin down. Thankfully, a possible answer to your troubles exists in Thompson’s Maker’s Mrkt, an initiative the multi-disciplinarian launched earlier this year with a view toward “encouraging people to shop small from independent designers.” There, you’ll find the kind of considered, creative gifts that Thompson herself concedes she would love to unwrap a week from now, including Kerryn Levy’s exquisite ceramic vessels and those by Kate Brouwer, whose hand and heart is behind Asobimasu Clay (Asobimasu means to ‘create without boundaries’ in Japanese; a way of thinking that double as practical advice when it comes to gifting for the creative in your life). This year, the thinking goes, do things a little differently – that’s what Thompson, who also hosts the Curvy Conference in association with VIVID, will be doing.

“I usually spend my Christmas in the car going from house to house visiting friends and family, but this year I’m not going anywhere!” says Thompson, who lists cultivating her own vegetable garden as being chief amongst her most rewarding achievements for the year almost past. “Instead, I’m staying home in Melbourne with friends joining me for an afternoon feast… Hopefully in the sun.”

Tile image: Courtesy of Kerryn Levy Ceramics
Cover image: Courtesy of Kelly Thompson