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Ditch lame X-mas gifts, buy gifts from local artists instead


As a person who grew up not celebrating Christmas, I’ve learned one thing: the drama of gift-giving is actually not that bad. The optimist in me doesn’t want to completely see gifts as a materialistic pursuit. Rather, I see it more as an underappreciated love language. 

It’s too bad that buying gifts has a lot of unnecessary tension. That’s why we end up buying lame gifts for people we care for the most.

Read more: Support small businesses for Pride! Here are LGBTQ-friendly shops you can check out

So apart from learning our monito or monita’s innermost desires, what else can we do to assure ourselves that our gift won’t bomb? Get them something unusual. Obviously, gifting them lame towels or candles (unless they’re into that) aren’t the way to their hearts. But buying them zines, cassettes, postcards, or anything from your friendly neighborhood artist is better than any last-minute department store purchase.

Zines, zines everywhere

A gift certificate to your chain bookstore is amazing. But you know what else is amazing? Getting to read zines from your current and future fave zine authors. Instead of going to a nearby mall, why not go to the last zine events of the year? This idea is not only for your friends stuck in a hipster loop. Trust us: there’s a zine for every kind of friend out there. 

Shirts supporting your local feminist press

We all have that one friend we share heated, intersectional feminist debates with. And we love them to bits for helping us unpack our internal misogyny. How do we show them our love through an object? Don’t get them the “male tears” mug. Instead, buy merch from your local feminist press. Pro-tip: Their shirts are cute as hell. 

Cute, yet erotic card games

Your ride or die hoe can be hard to shock. Of course, we can gift them a sex toy they’ve been fawning over Ilya or a gift card to La Senza. But if you want to step up your game, get them a cheeky card game. Our favorite pervert Darling Kink and game designer Birdie Salva crafted Happy Ending. It’s designed as an intimate, erotic card game for horny ghosts and vanishing clothes. It’s cute, scary, and a little bit cheeky—perfect for the unapologetic hoes in our lives. 

Read more: ‘Happy Ending’ is a gender-inclusive, erotic card game for the hoe in you

Press play with tapes

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Find your inner peace ? ~Photo by @armandnissiaizlem

A post shared by Genjitsu Stargazing Society (@genjitsustargazingsociety) on

Vinyl collecting is an expensive pursuit. So why not get your audiophile homie some cassette tapes? Now, I’m not talking about vintage tapes. I’m talking about tapes from artists in and out of Manila. Through folks like Genjitsu Stargazing Society and United Cassette Tapes, you can gift someone a cute ass tape from Bicol or Quezon or anywhere in the country. Creating a Spotify playlist for them is cute, but discovering new homebrew artists is way better.

Read more: Instead of gifts, why not donate to these animal shelters this Christmas?

Merch supporting freedom of speech

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?✨NEW MERCH ALERT!✨? . . ☣️ VERY VERY VERY LIMITED ☣️ . IS DA SYSTEM IS BULOK IS DA TOTE! . . "Maki-tote bags, 'wag matakot" sa ilalabas naming panibagong merch sa . . ?️ BLTX Year 9: This Is Information ?️ sa paparating na Sabado, ika-14 ng Disyembre, na gaganapin sa . . ? Sikat Studio, Tomas Morato Ave., QC ? Mula ? 7PM – ? 1AM! Tunghayan at makipagkaibigan sa sari-saring mga indibidwal, mga grupo't kolektibong maglalako ng mga zines, artworks, at iba pang inimprentang merkado! . . ? 4PM – ? 6PM naman, may magaganap ring . ? Culture Jamming ?‍?: An Independent Artists' Congress . . na naglalayong palakasin at palawakin ang alyansa't ugnayan ng mga alagad at mandirigma ng sining na kontra-pasista at kontra-tiraniya. Magbabahagi rin ng mga karanasan at kaalaman ang mga ss: . . ✊ Sama-samang Artista para sa Kilusang Agraryo (SAKA) ✊ Kamandag ✊ Magpies Press ✊ Gantala Press ✊ Magsasaka at Siyentipiko para sa Pag-unlad ng Agrikultura (MASIPAG) at ✊ Me & My Veg Mouth ukol sa gampanin at praxis ng sining na lingkod-masa. Kasabay rin ng lahat ng 'to ay isang . . ?️ 'TAMA NA! SOBRA NA! Poster Exhibition ?️ . na niluto nina @likha100 x Bad Student! . . Pwedeng-pwede ring bilhin ang mga poster at mapupunta naman sa pagpapalaya ng mga nakakulong na manggagawang-kultural ang malilikom na pondo. BUKAS PO ITO SA LAHAT! KAYA ISAMA ANG LAHAT NG✨JOY✨ NG BUHAY NATIN ???? . . #SupportSmallPress #SupportLocalArtists . . . #totes #merch #market #zines #zinesph #art #artph #fest #graphics #ph #resistance #solidarity #print

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Every day we get to act and speak against the state’s atrocities is a blessing. In a country where fighting oppression will get you killed, anything reminding us that we’re on the right path gives us assurance. So to the freedom fighter in your life, get them something from cultural workers like the Makô Collective. Cop totes, zines, and stickers from their artists and feel empowered.




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