Gift Giving Ideas for the Holidays

Wheely bug toys are popular this season and sold at Tiny Toes on Main Street in Bel Air. (Supplied by Wheely Bugs / October 3, 2011)

It seems as though the holiday season starts earlier and earlier each year. Lights and wreaths decorate storefronts in late October and Christmas carols start playing on the radio before the turkey is cut on Thanksgiving. But it's never too early to start planning and shopping for holiday gifts. As you create your list (and check it twice!), check out our guide for gifts your family and friends will love.

Island Jack

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Need a gift for the woman who has it all? Take a trip to Island Jack in downtown Havre de Grace. The small shop carries the complete line of Vera Bradley products, including the carry-it-all wristlet. Especially designed to fit smartphones, the wristlet, which is available for $40, also comes with four card slots, a zippered coin pouch, ID window and a bill slot. “It's a great, versatile item for women on the go,” says Kelly Falkenstine, owner of Island Jack. “You can grab it and throw it in your purse and it's really cost effective.”

Bornfriend's Fine Pens & Crafts

Pens crafted from wood and designed by local artist Bryan Bornfriend are unique and functional gifts for the men in your life. Based in Jarrettsville, Bryan began crafting fountain, ballpoint and roller ball pens earlier this year as a hobby. “Every product is handmade and the quality is excellent,” Bryan says.

Bryan also makes darts, bottle openers, magnifying glasses, shaving sets and shoehorns. His products are available for sale online and at Harford Winery in Forest Hill, Jarrettsville Pharmacy and Bella Patri Consignment Store in Jarrettsville. A portion of the proceeds is donated to charity.

Vincenti Decoys or 410-734-7709

Founded in 1986 by husband-and-wife team Patrick and Jeannie Vincenti, Vincenti Decoys is American folk art at its best. The couple makes Upper Chesapeake Bay-style decoys inside their Churchville shop. In their Havre de Grace store, the Vincentis sell antique collectable decoys from the Chesapeake Bay region, decoy making supplies, decoy carving tools and decoy lamps among other products.

HeartBeat Boutique or 410-420-0425

Show Grandma how much you love her with handbags and jewelry from Brighton, available at HeartBeat Boutique in downtown Bel Air. The Roselie Shine coin purse is available for $92 in a variety of colors, including orange, green and fuchsia. Or get her a “Grandmother” ID bracelet for $33.