I was really struggling trying to make a good list for a designer AND a developer so I decided to speak from the heart and make a gift guide for the unicorn in your life. Some of these are great for designers, some are great for developers, but all are great for the developer with a strong background in design. Enjoy.
Hand-Eye Supply is a great place to get your design-loving friends some incredible gifts for their workspace, work attire, or even their workflow. Or you can just get them a gift card so they can do it themselves!
This is a must have for any designer developer. From wireframing to typography to notes and sketches, this grid book brings all the organization without a huge price tag. I got one last year for Christmas and I love it.
Does your designer/developer have everything they need? Do you have absolutely no clue what they actually do so you can’t get them anything helpful? Do they have an addiction to coffee or tea? This is the gift for them. Trust me.
In that same vein, and if you know for a fact that your designer/developer has plenty of mugs – this is a great second choice. Chances are they spend a lot of time with coffee and it only stays hot for so long. This is the gift that keeps on giving – caffeine. Never underestimate the joy of caffeine.
How many times has your designer stopped to point out the terrible use of Papyrus on a store window – or the fact that you used Comic sans in an email and must be stopped? This is a great game to help train up the designer and a fun way to test them to see how many fonts they actually know.
Even if you don’t get this shirt. Get it for your developer. ‘Nough said.
You may not know SmashingMagazine.com – but your designer/developer friend does. Trust me. It’s a pretty great authority on the growth of web development and design. I’ll let them describe their 4th book:
It’s done: our brand new Smashing Book, full of smart, time-saving tips for crafting fine websites. Neatly packed in a gorgeous hardcover, the book features practical front-end techniques from well-respected Web designers. It isn’t concerned with trends or short-lived workarounds. It’s focused on the actual design process—thewhy of the decisions we make as we craft websites. Read more.
Has your developer/designer complained about the long hours of sitting? Do they have to fight to get to the gym? This is an incredible work-out-while-you-work gift that I would LOVE to have.
Are they more mobile/tablet-centric? Then this wrap case is a perfect gift for those creatives on-the-go! It fits iPhones, iPad Mini, and eReader. Great for those who commute every day.
And this? This is the crème de la crème of gifts for really anyone you know, but especially designers, developers, programmers, etc. Lynda is a website filled with exceptional tutorials that cover basically every single technology available today. You don’t have to get them 12 months – you can get them 1 month, but trust me – it’s an incredibly thoughtful gift.