8 Gifts With '80s Inspo That Will Energize Any Room

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Welcome to the Hunker Holiday Gift Guide. From joyful decor picks to gifts that give back, these items are sure to delight everyone on your list.

It's over-the-top, exciting, and almost (but not quite!) too much. Memphis-inspired design — a style originally developed by an Italian architecture and design group in the 1980s — is on the rise, and we're here for it. Embracing playful colors, abstract motifs, and asymmetrical forms, the updated version of the style takes the best of the '80s and brings it into 2020 with furniture, lighting, fabrics, ceramics, and more. Sound like a loved one's personal style? Here's a list to get you started on scouting gifts for your trend-setting friend:

Masks have officially become an important accessory this year, and we're into the ones that make a fashion statement — like the handmade cotton canvas masks from multidisciplinary designer Alex Proba. Each mask is unique and crafted from a larger piece of one of Proba's playful textiles that's made with organic cotton and eco-friendly organic ink. They also come in a range of sizes (including kids!) and have adjustable ear pieces and a removable aluminum nose piece, so you know you're getting the right fit for any member of the family.

There's nothing that will wake you up in the morning more than a bold towel when you hop out of the shower, and Brooklyn-based designer Ellen Van Dusen has the perfect set for you. The 100% brushed cotton terrycloth set comes in five different patterns, but the black and white motifs mean that they actually pair beautifully together in the most delightful way.

Whether you're cooling off with iced coffee or staying toasty with some hot tea, you want to be sipping in style, and the bottles from a collaboration between lifestyle brand Corkcicle and L.A.-based housewares and stationery purveyor Poketo are the way to go. The triple-insulated technology keeps drinks cold for 25 hours or hot for 12 — free of condensation. We're particularly big fans of the steps they took to avoid clumsy spills, like a matching screw-on cap and non-slip bottom.

These striking two-tone gradient glasses will never fade into the background (no pun intended!), whether you use them for display or drinking (we would totally use them for both!). The color combos are inspired by beaches around the world, like a dusty pink that transitions to a deep green (Tulum), a canary yellow that fades to a deep turquoise (Miami), and a peachy orange that transforms into a burnt orange (Bali). They're hand-blown and individually tinted, and would be the perfect addition for any bar cart or open shelving in the kitchen.

We know what you're thinking: Lava lamps were on your gift wish list back when you were the ripe old age of 12, but we're here to tell you that they're back, they're cool, they're moody, and ... you'll want to add it back onto your 2020 list. More specifically, you will want this handmade, updated take created out of a wheel-thrown ceramic top and bottom finished in a high gloss white and spotty black glaze. The lamp portion is reused or recycled from existing lamps and the red twisted cord is the finishing touch on this joyful number.

Cold Picnic, a Brooklyn-based design company, has gained a reputation with cool-kids for their colorful, abstract rugs and blankets that feel tailor-made for Instagram. This 100% cotton bath mat is the perfect, affordable floor accent for a friend whose style is just a touch wacky.

For the ever-disorganized family member, a colorful trinket dish in an eye-catching tone and artistic shape would make for the perfect place to stash those easy-to-lose smaller items like keys or jewelry. Made out of resin, it's easy to clean, and is hard to miss no matter where you put it.

For the candle-lover on your list, allow us to suggest these funky, form-forward candles that come in three colors and sizes, each doubling as a piece of sculptural art thanks to their geometric form. Whether you choose the blush pink, daffodil yellow, or cadet blue, we could see them grouped together as an ensemble or placed individually throughout a home for a bit of personality.


Kate Reggev, AIA, is New York-based architect, design writer, architectural historian, and educator with a love for buildings — old, new, and everything in between.

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