Sometimes all you want is a small, fun toy. These are those things.
These Lego-themed Moleskine notebooks have a flat Lego brick attached to the front and come in two sizes and ruled and plain. When you're not making notes or doodling, you could have a lovely, relaxing session to see what you can make from the single tile on the cover.
Da Vinci inventions
Da Vinci invented a lot of things that were far too advanced for his time — a helicopter, a tank, even a robot. We firmly believe that he had one of the greatest minds that human history has produced — so anything Da Vinci related is pretty cool in our books. Especially these — four desk-sized kits to build desk-sized models of four of Da Vinci's inventions: a bridge, a catapult, an ornithopter and a helicopter. They're available individually, or you can grab all four for just US$69.99.
Strandbeest assembly kit
Artist Theo Jansen is known for his Strandbeests — giant kinetic sculptures that he lets loose on beaches, moving ponderously along under nothing but the power of natural air currents. Obviously, you can't get one of those, but these miniature build-you-own kits are pretty great — and, if you have a hamster, the entertainment value never ends.
Some things are endless. The universe. True love. Pi. This sterling silver, gold or platinum necklace only has the first 100 digits strung along its 18 inches, but the intent is clear.
Or, to be a little more geeky, there's also a bracelet available from US$135. The number of digits it displays? 42.
Klein bottle opener
Ponder the complex problem of the surface with no boundaries over a nice cold bottle of your favourite beer.
TARDIS laptop bag
We don't think this TARDIS bag is, in fact, bigger on the inside — we Earthlings are bound by the laws of physics, after all — but it's capacious enough for a 14-inch laptop or a bunch of gear and even has a zippered pocket for valuables.
Serotonin is the brain chemical believed to be primarily responsible for feelings of happiness and contentment. An appropriate gift for someone you love.
Sick and tired of having to craft your torches in the dark? This one comes pre-made to keep the mobs (read: toe-stubs) at bay.
Black Milk geekwear
For that special lady in your life, you can't go past Australian clothing designer Black Milk's geekwear. Its officially licensed clothing ranges include Harry Potter, Star Wars, Adventure Time, The Lord of the Rings and Mass Effect across swimsuits, dresses, leggings and T-shirts — something for everyone.
Sugru is a wonder material. It's like Blu-tack in that it can be easily shaped with your fingers, but it air hardens like clay to a lovely rubbery texture. It can be used for repairs, decoration, home improvement, modification — anything you can think of. For the compulsive DIYer in your life, Sugru could be the best thing that happens under their tree.
Camera lens mug
Every photo enthusiast needs one of these: a lifelike mug that looks startlingly like a camera lens. Available in Canon and Nikon from a regular mug size to a thermos, they could easily be mistaken for the real thing. On second thoughts, maybe giving these to a photographer would be a bad idea...
Earlier this year, we thought magnetic putty looked like amazingly good fun. This offers you the chance to try it out for yourself. Each tin of putty comes with a strong neodymium magnet, so you can watch the putty swallow it up again and again and again.
USB Mix Tape
Sometimes the most meaningful gifts are the ones you spend time on — personalising them to say something about you, your friend and how you feel about each other. The original mix tape may have gone the way of the dodo, but in the USB, its spirit lives on.
MaKey MaKey is one of the coolest toys for sheer experimentation we've ever seen. Using alligator-clip cables and a board that connects to your computer, you can turn any object that can conduct electricity into a touch-based input device. Any object. Take a look at the video below if you don't believe us. Piano stairs, you guys!
These little glass bottles contain around 50 grams of magnetic ferrofluid, or liquid magnet, suspended in water (mostly). As you move a magnet around the bottle, the ferrofluid will react like a small, startled animal. It has a whole bunch of fancy, practical applications in the wild, but we think keeping us amused is by far the best. Check it out in the video below.
Solar System necklace
Someone already has the moon? We're willing to bet they don't have wearable planets. These beaded necklaces let you wear the solar system around your neck! Obviously, the planets aren't to scale, but the distances are as proportional as the maker, Chain of Being, could get them. If you look carefully, you can even see tiny white beads representing moons.
There are a bunch of versions available, too: a more chunky one, if you don't like the dainty look; a kit, so you can put it together yourself; a bracelet; and an anklet. Heck, just check out the entire store — it's a treasure trove of space-related and meteorological adornments.
A bit cross
Even if you're not religious, you have to appreciate the symbolism here ... and the extraordinarily handy utility. Seriously, there's never a screwdriver handy when you need one. You could be everyone's best screwdriver buddy! The screwdriver bits include a hex key, a Phillips head and a flat head, so you can handle (almost) any situation — and look stylish in between.
Everyone carries keys. The utili-key looks like a key and hangs off a keychain like a key, but it does a lot more than a key. It opens up to reveal a micro screwdriver for eyeglasses, Phillips-head and flat-head screwdrivers, a straight blade, a serrated blade and a bottle opener.