“On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love gave to me …” a bee-sized bat, a computer-shaped cake, a cargo-container home and a coffee table made from recycled bicycle tires? Sick of the same old boring 12 Days of Christmas gifts? So are we. Erring on the side of extremely eccentric, here is your annual alternative urban gift guide. From us at WebUrbanist to you, our wonderful readers: enjoy your radical recycled alternative Christmas trees, mind-bogglingly bizarre Christmas tree ornaments and have a happily offbeat holiday season!
Day 1: Rare and Exotic Plants and Animals
A partridge in a pear tree can be a tricky two-for-one but if you are aiming for exotic pets and animals and (or in) bizarre plants or trees you might consider inflatable-faced seals or bee-sized bats which you can, respectively though uncomfortably, insert into a gigantic baobob tree or a petite green pitcher plant and wow your neighbors all around.
Day 2) Twisted Toys and Strange Stuffed Animals
Two turtle doves aren’t likely to survive long in the winter so perhaps a more durable (albeit deranged) stuffed animal is in order? If those are just a bit too eccentric there are plenty of other humorously alternative ways to configure toys as offbeat gift options – and if they aren’t enough, there are always extremely creepy mannequins.
Day 3) Exotic Islands and Themed Art Hotels
Three french hens … OK, enough with the animals already. You want to see animals? Take a trip to some exotic destination for some bird watching – like one of the most expensive, exotic and remote private islands in the world. Or save some money and stay somewhere closer to home at an amazing art, castle, prison and other theme hotel.
Day 4) Geek and Steampunk Gadgets and Art
Four calling birds sounds more annoying than cheerful during the holidays … want something noisy with all the bells and whistles? There are plenty of obnoxiously clever (and geeky) options to choose from – including a Pac-Man mirror, light-bulb door handle, high-tech toilet and singing toilet paper roll dispenser or even works of great geeky art.
Day 5) Houseboats and Cargo Container Homes
Five gold rings sounds great but with the fluctuating value of the world’s commodities who knows if even that is a safe investment anymore. Instead while the market is good why not go ahead and buy yourself that funky cargo container home or amazingly designed houseboat you have always dreamed of?
Day 6) Recycled Furniture and Prefab Designs
Six of anything is a lot – unless it is for a good cause too. Why not pull a two-for-one half-dozen this holiday season and shop for some recycled furniture designs or works of art (or at the steeper but more amazing end: prefab designs or recycled buildings) that save on new materials and provides something more visually engaging and with a real material history to it.
Day 7) Strange Themed Meals and Restaurants
Perhaps a seven-course earth-friendly dinner is in order to top things off. You could dine at Buns and Guns, Cabbages and Condoms, Pitch Black, The Hellfire Club, the robot-staffed restaurant or any one of the many strange theme restaurants that cater to all kinds of tastes around the world (note: this option might go well with the previously suggested theme hotel stay).
Day 8) Geek and Artistic Cake Designs
Eight candles topping a scrumptious artistic or geeky cake design might be just the thing for desert after a long night at a radical themed restaurant. From fan of Star Trek who already has every episode to the iPhone user with every application you can find something in a cake for every kind of nerd or geek. Just don’t get lost in one of these on your return trip.
Day 9) Unusual Art from Ordinary Objects
Nine pieces of quality art could be hard to find, but maybe a little something from a wide selection of lesser-known but impossibly interesting artists who craft works from ordinary objects is called for. After all, their material costs are low and the results are both aesthetically pleasing and delightfully humorous. Running even lower on money this recession? Banksy “sells” his art for free.
Day 10) Creative Recycled and Prefab Designs
Ten of anything is difficult to get let alone carry and pack so it might be time to start looking for objects that have more than one use – two-for-one collapsing, converting and transforming furniture should do the trick. And if those aren’t funky enough here are rooms more filled with exotic types of furniture.
Day 11) Offbeat Urban Camouflage Ideas
On the eleventh day of Christmas you may just find yourself wanting to hide from the world – or at least from the in-laws. For these occasions a gift to yourself might be in order from a broad selection of urban camouflage clothing, technology and designs to an urban car tent to tuck yourself away in.
Day 12) Subversive Art for Good Causes
On day twelve it is time to stretch your mind and give something back to the world. Try giving a gift to a total stranger via an anonymous underground drop-spot system, make some change by putting up a subversive humanitarian subvertisement or get really into the game and fight conspicuous consumption with some shopdropping or a droplifting project.