25 Gift Ideas For Architects

If you’re already counting down the days until Christmas – some of us enthusiastically, as in Love Actually – you’ll likely be busy putting up a tree, making gift lists and organising your festive agenda. Most of all though, rejoicing in all these activities. Truly, what a pleasure.

This year, we might not be able to give you a hand with the tree but we can help you with finding the right present for that dear architect of yours (if you are lucky enough to have an architect in your life). If not, get one, adopt one or even date one; it will be the best decision of your life, we promise.

25 Gift Ideas For Architects

We’ve put up a list of 25 worthwhile gifts full of pretty little details. Gifts that will enhance your architect’s productivity, delight them with their beauty or simply make their life happier. Items to have at home, the office or your suitcase (wink, wink). Design is always slick and thoughtful and Form and function are at all times on point with these presents. Because us architects appreciate big, small, really inexpensive or the opposite, if the design is really worth it. 

It’s important to mention that we genuinely love these products and no, we haven’t been bribed to include them in this list (though we’ll happily agree to be corrupted next year). 

Without further ado, these are, as of 2019, our favourite seasonal gifts for everyone who appreciates good design, naughty or nice...

(If it’s you the architect in question, make sure you share the article with the right person)

1. Architectour Guide

The most beautiful travel guide in the world was published this 2019 and it’s already making an impression (
according to our fans, but mainly to our mothers). We’ve heard that people faint of happiness when they receive one. Ok, maybe that’s an exaggeration but we’re pretty confident by now that people love the unpackaging experience, its hand-drawn sketches and realising that the cover is actually London’s urban plan around St Paul’s Cathedral. If you love London, you need one of these.

Perfect for: the experienced traveller
Price: £50
Buy here ⇄


2. Anglepoise Desk Lamp

Anglepoise desk lamp

They say that everything looks different under the right light, and we’ll add that this is especially true under an iconic Anglepoise lamp. When British designer George Carwardine created the first Anglepoise, he was actually working in vehicle suspension systems, not furniture. He somehow created a mechanism (a beautiful one dare we say) that had applications in other fields. If your dear architect is finishing the year with some trouble, we hope this helps to shed some light on her problems.

Perfect for: the workaholic
Price: £199
Buy here ⇄

3. LEGO Hogwarts™ Castle

Harry Potter LEGO

Modelling is a fun aspect of being an architect, unless, you know, you have to do it all day long. Anyways, modelling something different, that doesn’t involve glue or a laser cut can be quite refreshing. We’ll confess we’ve used LEGO in the past as an alternative to visiting the psychologist but in this case is because we love (and when we say love we mean we’re obsessed) with Harry Potter

Perfect for: the Harry Potter fan
Price: £349.99
Buy here ⇄

4. White Moleskine


Why Moleskine? A question all architects get asked at some point in their lives. We wish we had a compelling answer but the truth is we are big fans of it because it feels right. Moleskine is amongst the few stationary products that have a BLANK option. Nada on the page amigo. And that feels good. Thinking, sketching and planning on a blank Moleskine page can’t go wrong. Have you ever seen a bad drawing on a Moleskine? Exactly, us neither!

Perfect for: the urban sketcher
Price: £17.99
Buy here ⇄


5. National Trust Membership

National Trust Membership

There are so many places in the UK that are worth visiting: Castles, former residences and even the archaeological site of Stonehenge. Having a membership will give you free access to monuments that you didn’t even know they existed. If your dear architect is behaving like a workaholic, or even worse, hasn’t seen the outdoors for the most part of the year, this membership is a kind gift for her.

Perfect for: the museum fan
Price: £72 (yearly)
Buy here ⇄

6. Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino

Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino

Fiction is not for everyone. However, a good story, beautifully written and with relevant philosophical questions can soften even the most factual of architects. This classic of a book is framed as a conversation between the elderly and busy emperor Kublai Khan, who constantly has merchants coming to describe the state of his expanding and vast empire, and Marco Polo.

Perfect for: the book lover
Price: £8.99
Buy here ⇄

7. Bialetti Coffee Moka

Bialetti Coffee Moka

Do you know any architects that don’t like coffee?
Yeah, us neither. Anything involving coffee is a good gift in general as the experience can be soothing. To wake up, pour water, ground coffee beans and plan the day until the delightful smell invades the kitchen is one of life's greatest pleasures (that and working on AutoCAD for a day without any fatal errors).

Perfect for: the coffee addict
Price: From £18
Buy here ⇄

8. Reusable Straws

Reusable Straws

Speaking of coffee, one might be familiar with the little downsides of having a cup or two per day. If you love coffee as much as having white teeth, this is a must have for you as drinking coffee with a straw will prevent any stains. And no, we’re no longer ashamed of admitting how vain we’ve become.

Perfect for: the one with a perfect smile
Price: £4
Buy here ⇄

9. L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream

L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand CreamWe’ve tried dozens of hand creams over the years and there are possibly only two that restore our poor and battered hands after a hard day’s work modelling. This one is the one that feels softest and smells the best – by far.

Perfect for: those who work with their hands
Price: £21.50
Buy here ⇄

10. Junghans Chronoscope by Max Bill

Junghans Watch

Swiss architect Max Bill (1908-1994) studied at the Bauhaus in Dessau under many teachers including Wassily Kandinsky and Paul Klee. Besides being an architect, he was also an artist, painter, typeface designer, industrial designer and graphic designer. His Junghans watches are an amazing piece of design and sober fashion.

Perfect for: the one who’s always late
Price: £1,630
Buy here ⇄

11. 2020 Smythson Soho Diary

Soho Smythson

Why buy a regular diary when you can spend a fortune on a Smythson diary? We’ve always thought of planners as an aspirational thing: A space containing dreams, successes and progress overall. If you’re going to spend a great deal of time looking at that life compilation, it better be a good one.

Perfect for: the planner
Price: £160
Buy here ⇄

12. Perpetual Calendar

Perpetual Calendar

Shall we admit now that we’re fascinated by time? We find watches, planners and calendars the essence of form and function, on a more ephemeral kind of way. That’s why if your dear architect has spent a great deal of money on calendars (also known as entering adult age) this might be a great solution. For once and for all.

Perfect for: the eternal planner
Price: £72
Buy here ⇄  Use code AGUIDE19 for 15% discount

13. A Mother-in-law's Tongue

A Mother-in-law's Tongue

Plants have an enormous capacity to transform atmospheres, both aesthetically and regarding the quality of the air. That’s why choosing your vegetal friends is crucial. After having lots of plants (and admittedly also killing a bunch of them), we’ve come to the realisation that the snake plant (mother-in-law's tongue) is the best one of the group: it is low maintenance and, most importantly, it will grow under the British sun too (which is often non existent).

Perfect for: the clean air seeker
Price: £14.99
Buy here ⇄

14. Cement Pot

Cement Pot

And we couldn’t resist this one. Cement pots are beautiful and sober and you can even fabricate them yourself. But let’s be honest, there are other priorities in life other than manufacturing concrete at home. Like,
let’s say, get some sleep. So here’s a link to one that it’s already done for you.

Perfect for: the plant lover
Price: £11.99
Buy here ⇄

15. 101 Things I Learned in Architecture School

101 Things I Learned in Architecture School

This delightful book is a pleasure to read during your studies but also after them, when your perspective as a designer has changed. The book is organised in short lessons in design, drawing, the creative process and presentation. The illustrations of the book make everything better. 

Perfect for: the architecture student
Price: £14.99
Buy here ⇄

16. Aroma Diffuser

Aroma Diffuser

Amongst the many relaxing things one can do before going to bed, turning on the diffuser is perhaps the most effective. As by this small gesture, your brain received an effective cue to shut down. Reminding ourselves to breathe is necessary. We also add a few drops of lavender essential oil to make this breathing exercise even more pleasant.

Perfect for: the one needs extra moisture
Price: £59.95
Buy here ⇄

17. Canon EOS M50

Canon EOS M50

The fact that most photos are taken with an iPhone doesn’t surprise us anymore. When you see a photographer carrying a big lense, trypod, GoPro, its dome and a drone you can’t help but look at her back to check if she’s ok. Hint: she’s not. That’s why we highly recommend this camera. Slightly less voluptuous but high in resolution, video and room for other accessories.

Perfect for: the photography lover with back pain
Price: £649.99
Buy here ⇄


18. Box of Dark Chocolates from Hotel Chocolat

Hotel Chocolat

Fortunately, the world is evolving towards a sugarless future. If you have been cutting your sweet intake, you’ll realise that whenever you buy yourself those bonbons you used to love, they no longer taste good. Finding chocolates that have less sugar has become a difficult task. Our favourite choice at the moment is this fine selection by Hotel Chocolat. All that said, maybe in a year they’ll still be too sweet for us.

Perfect for: the ones who really love chocolate
Price: £22.95
Buy here ⇄


19. London Brutalist Skyline Chess

London Brutalist Skyline Chess

We’ll admit having a chess board at the office and rarely using it. But it looks so good, let’s be honest. If you look at your chess board with pride, you’ll love this Brutalist edition. It has London’s best of the best (pages 9, 69, 101, 115, 149 and 256 of our London Guide). If you love Brutalism but this is still too much of an indulgence, join one of our Brutalist Tours and see these gems in a real-life scale.

Perfect for: the one that now has time to spare
Price: £395
Buy here ⇄


20. Lounge Chair by Charles & Ray Eames (1956)

Lounge Chair by Charles & Ray Eames

Talking about splashing the cash on unnecessary (but beautiful things): having a design chair – the naughtiest of dreams for an architect. If your dear architect has absolutely everything in life, this might be the truly one thing to make her happy. Be warned though, she will protect it as Gollum protects the ring and nobody would be allowed to actually sit down. In fact, she might never dare sit down herself.

Perfect for: the reader
Price: £6,700
Buy here ⇄

21. Diptyque Scented Candle

Feu de Bois

We’ve tried a bunch of expensive candles and Feu de Bois is the one and only. This candle smells of winter and it feels like the warmth of a ski resort chalet in a candle. In all honesty, December and January would be unbearable without it.

Perfect for: the one that has recently moved to a new house
Price: £47
Buy here ⇄

22. JBL Portable Speaker

JBL Portable Speaker

This mini speaker is a powerful addition to your house and more specifically, to your shower. Although we don’t put it directly underneath the water, it makes our mornings a lot happier. And the truth is it’s so conveniently compact that we move it everywhere to come with us: to the kitchen while we make pancakes and to our suitcase whenever we travel. We have bigger (and better) speakers that we use a lot less than this one.

Perfect for: the one that loves singing in the shower
Price: £49.99
Buy here ⇄


23. Do One Thing Everyday That Makes you Happy: A Journal

Do One Thing Everyday That Makes you Happy: A Journal

If your dear architect talks a lot about
Delirious New York by Koolhaas and is fascinated by all the unbuilt architecture in general, he definitely needs less philosophising and more exercising. This journal provides the space to explore your work, relationships, actions etc. and appreciate what makes you happiest. So even if Koolhaas makes him happy, this book will make him even happier.

Perfect for: the happiness seeker
Price: £9.99
Buy here ⇄


24. 3D Architectural Sculpture

3D Architectural Sculpture

Some urban grids are works of art. Not necessarily because they had planning (London didn’t and it’s equally stunning as Paris for example), but because everything makes sense at the right scale. These plaster sculptures are a stunning addition to any studio and fortunately, they feature many cities.

Perfect for: the one who loves art and architecture equally
Price: £300
Buy here ⇄


25. How to Find Calm Gift Set

Calm App

Mindfulness is a big word in the mouth of everyone and yet, very few people reach the full potential of their minds to be more relaxed, happier and sleep better. Calm has been named app of the year by Apple and it’s now worth roughly $250 million, meaning they know what they’re doing. This is in fact a great gift for any adult.

Perfect for: the overthinker
Price: £55
Buy here ⇄

Shopping for overly-picky, demanding and self-righteous architects can be fun. We hope you enjoyed this list and are now full of ideas for this Christmas. If you’re around London during the festive season, make sure to check our free Christmas Guide or book one of our tours.

And now… let’s bring on the cookies and milk! Ho Ho Ho! 🎅🏼🎄

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