2014 TxA Gift Guide

With the holiday season in full swing, the Texas Society of Architects has a list of must-see gifts, including Formwork Desk Accessories, Portland Growler Co., Sempli Bottle Openers, Wanderlust City Map Playmats, and Spanish ABC Blocks.

Formwork Desk Accessories


Designed by Sam Hecht and Kim Colin for Herman Miller‘s Objects program, Formwork is a modular system of plastic containers to help organize the gadgets and desk accessories that you need closest at hand. The collection includes a pencil cup, large and small trays with cantilevered ledges for easy access, large and small boxes with built-in cup holders, a tissue box, and a media stand.

$19.00 to $55.00

Portland Growler Co.


These ceramic beer growlers are slip cast by hand in Portland from a stoneware clay body. Extra thick walls keep liquids cool longer, and a wide-mouth ceramic flip top lid with a rubber gasket keeps everything sealed tight. Offered in three different handle styles and four texturally unique glazes, each growler is slightly different and personally stamped by the maker.

Starting at $55.00.

Sempli Bottle Openers


In their first collaboration since graduating together from the Accademia Italiana in Florence, designers Joseph Ribic and Daniele Semeraro have created two modern bottle openers for Sempli. The stainless steel pieces have oblong openings that are surrounded by a radiating circular pattern. Orbo is a circular disk measuring 3’’ in diameter, while Solvo is oblong and measures 1.375” wide by  3.75” long.

Orbo Opener, $55.00, Solvo Opener, $35.00

Wanderlust City Map Playmats


Based on drawings by artists Megan Eckman and Jeffrey Opp, Wanderlust City Map Playmats let children of all ages interact with landmark cities including San Francisco, New York, and Los Angeles. Each individually numbered playmat is silkscreened by hand in San Francisco with non-toxic, water-based inks onto a heavyweight organic cotton and hemp canvas blend. The machine-washable mats can also be used as wall hangings for homes with or without children.  


Spanish ABC Blocks

Spanish ABC Block stack

Spanish ABC Blocks


Your kids will say gracias for these wonderfully old-fashioned handmade wooden alphabet blocks from Uncle Goose that feature numbers, letters, and animal pictures with names — all en Español. The set includes 30 classically embossed blocks with vibrant colors and intricately carved surfaces. Made from sustainable Michigan basswood and painted with non-toxic child-safe inks, the blocks are not intended for children under two years of age.