Each year the Retail News bestows their stamp of approval on what they deem the best of the best gift ideas – as announced at the 2013 Fall Toronto Gift Show. These items are readily available throughout Canada – at gift shops, booksellers, museum stores and others – which makes them easy picks to cross off your list. I wanted to feature them bright and early in the season because as hot gift items, they’re also mighty popular and likely to sell out that much quicker. Best of all, there is literally something on this list for everyone on YOUR list. Don’t believe me? Read on:

Fairy FastenerFor Your Mother-In-Law: Fairy Fastener – $24.95
If you’ve ever struggled to put on a delicate bracelet or finicky watch by yourself, you’ll flip for this Canadian-invented product. The Fairy Fastener was designed to make slipping on your favourite pieces a snap – literally. With a sleek ergonomic design, it’s a particularly thoughtful choice if someone (like your mother-in-law) is suffering from joint pain or arthritis. If you follow the link above to check out the Fairy Fastener’s list of retailers, you’ll easily find one: they’re sold all over the place across Canada. It’s no wonder this smart gadget won the award for Best Design Innovation.

Rednek Bottle StopperFor Your Little Brother: Rednek Bottle Stopper – $11.99 @ Cabela’s
So your little bro has finally given up the brewski in favour of something more refined – a bottle of wine. The problem? He doesn’t necessarily need to guzzle one himself on any given night. Solve his woes with this ‘charming’ bottle stopper solution – designed to vacuum-seal your wine and extend its life while also adding a bit of quirky, boyish charm. Available in a faucet, screwdriver and shotgun shell style, this nifty gift won for being the best pick for the barkeep in your life.

Barefoot VenusFor Your Best Girl Friend: Mustard Bath – $21.99 @ Barefoot Venus
I don’t know why guys don’t quite get the blissful appeal of a nice, steamy bath – especially when doused with an all-natural therapeutic soak like this gem from Barefoot Venus. Simply sprinkle a little into the tub and enjoy the benefits like a boosted immunity system and zippier circulation. Despite the ‘Mustard’ title, this revitalizing treatment actually smells of wintergreen, rosemary and eucalyptus – it’s no wonder it was named the ‘Best Gift for the Body & Soul’. The vintage tin makes it a sweet collectible she’ll want to proudly display on her shelf, plus it’ll keep your gal pals in fighting shape for all those holiday parties you have to hit. For the record, Barefoot Venus is a pretty fun store to peruse when you get a chance!

diPotter Paper Table CollectionFor The Hostess: diPotter Paper Table Collection – $22 @ The Paper Table
Need to dress up the dinner table before your guests arrive? These paper lampshades have the most surprising base – a basic wine glass! Simply tuck a flameless candle into your everyday glasses, slip on some shades, and you’ll have some instantly impressive decor that can be easily changed to suit the mood of your party or season you’re celebrating. I like these as a unique hostess gift for your favourite party-throwing friend to light up the room the next time around.

Umbra Little Black Dress Scarf OrganizerFor Your Mom: The Little Black Dress Scarf Organizer – $20 @ Umbra
Umbra’s simple yet chic LBD-inspired jewelry organizer is now hanging in many a woman’s closet. Since then, they’ve evolved the LBD into a whole host of variations, including this handy scarf storage solution above. It takes up minimal room in your wardrobe, allows you to drape your scarves so they avoid wrinkling, and makes it a snap to sort through. I can’t tell you how many scarves I owned (they literally broke a drawer they were spilling out of my storage unit for them) – this amazing solution makes it so much easy to sort & store them! If mom’s a scarf lover, consider buying her this alongside a beautiful new silk piece from her favourite designer.

BikeCapFor The Teens: BikeCap – $14.95
My husband has started riding his bike to work this year, and while he loves it, the girly decorator part of me wishes I could do something to jazz up his boring black bike a bit. Enter the BikeCap, a European invention that basically allows you to treat your bicycle seat like a cell phone, with interchangeable ‘caps’ available in a range of lady and lad-friendly prints and colours. Not only do they look awesome and allow you to change things up when the mood strikes, they’re also useful at keeping your seat dry when the weather isn’t so great. A cool choice for fashion-conscious teens, but also for anyone that does their daily commute on a two-wheeler. A novel choice for the ‘Best Novelty Gift’.


For The Kids: blankZ – $15 @ Adara Boutique
How’s this for a cool toy for the creative types? These blank stuffed animals – available in a classic bear shape alongside a number of others – can be customized to your hearts content using the included markers, then washed and drawn on again. A great alternative to getting your walls marked up, plus it’s actually a pretty sustainable toy – knowing that you can always start over and create a new playmate makes this toy a serious winner.

Bento Cut & Prep SetFor The Foodies: Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board – $30 @ Umbra
I have a strange affinity for well-designed cutting boards, and this sleek option from Umbra is no exception. Tucked within the main compartment are five, different-sized storage containers. The idea? If you know what you’re cooking up for the week, spend an hour on a Sunday afternoon doing all of the grunt work – chopping, shredding and slicing – and then have it ready-to-go for speedy weeknight meals. You can even use the entire container for bigger items, like marinating chicken breasts during the daytime. An awesome choice for whoever’s duty it is to whip up food for the week.

While I’ve suggested retailers for all of the items above, I do strongly encourage you to pay a visit to your favourite gifting destination in your city or town. I know that some of the Retail News winners I featured last year were super, super prevalent (I’m sure you all saw and / or bought a Corkcicle!) and I have no doubt these primo gift choices will start popping up also. In the meantime, hold onto your hats: one lucky reader is going to win EVERYTHING featured in this post. Want it to be you? Here’s what you gotta do:

1) Tell me in the comments below: what is your favourite featured Retail News Best Gift Awards idea from this post? You’ve got until November 26th.

2) Entries are limited to one per person / per email address / per household (or more if you score bonus entries). A random draw will be conducted on or around November 27th to select the winners, who will have 48 hours to respond before another winner is chosen in their place.

3) Entries are limited to Canadians that have reached the age of majority in their province. Quebec is not eligible for this promotion.

4) Bonus Entry #1: Follow CGTA on Twitter, send ’em a Tweet with the hashtag #cggholidayguide included, and leave a link back to your tweet in the comments below to earn ONE bonus entry.

5) Bonus Entry #2: When you’ve got this big o’ a prize pack, I’ve got to give you a few more kicks at the can. Pin anywhere from 1 to 8 items from this post to a legit Pinterest board (i.e. NOT something totally unrelated to the post) and you’ll earn up to 8 bonus entries when you leave links back to your pins in the comments below.

157 Responses to “Frontrunners”
  1. Julie G. says:

    I could really use the Little Black Dress Scarf Organizer by Umbra.

  2. Debbie Bashford says:

    That Fairy Fastener is brilliant !

  3. Oh my gosh… I love everything in this post. Seriously … but to choose the best, I will say the Mustard Bath because I absolutely love baths and using products like the mustard bath. πŸ™‚

  4. Victoria Ess says:

    The Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board is my favourite — it’s SO handy and brilliant!

  5. Victoria Ess says:

  6. Victoria Ess says:

  7. Victoria Ess says:

  8. Victoria Ess says:

  9. Victoria Ess says:

  10. Victoria Ess says:

  11. Victoria Ess says:

  12. Victoria Ess says:

  13. Victoria Ess says:

  14. joyce s. says:

    I like the little black dress scarf organizer.

  15. Annie Demill says:

    Fairy Fastener! I know several people who would benefit from this. For myself though, I’m checking out Barefoot Venus πŸ™‚

  16. May says:

    I love the Little Black Dress Scarf Organizer

  17. kittypride says:

    Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board from @ Umbra is my favourite from your post πŸ˜€

  18. Cairine says:

    I like the Fairy Fastener, anything to make putting your jewellry on by yourself easier!

  19. Tilly S says:

    I love the Bento Cut and Prep set!!

  20. Gemma says:

    I LOVE the Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board.

  21. linnett says:

    fantastic contest and the Mustard Bath looks tempting, thanks

  22. Heather says:

    All clever ideas – The Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board is my favourite one. Thanks for sharing.

  23. Athena says:

    I love the Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board – $30 @ Umbra

  24. beewbedard says:

    The Little Black Dress Scarf Organizer

  25. beewbedard says:

  26. Athena says:

  27. Emilia says:

    I like the bikecap it’s my favorite

  28. Natalie SQ says:

    If I was to gift to myself I would choose the Mustard Bath, if I was going to gift to my mother in law, the hostess with the mostests I would gift the diPotter Paper Table Collection, she sets a mean table!

  29. eleanor says:

    I like the Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board

  30. Joan G says:

    I like the RedNek Bottle Stopper – would be an interesting piecefor my bar.

  31. I love the Bento cut and prep cutting board set.

  32. mousecat says:

    I like the fairy fastener the best

  33. Evan says:

    I really like the following one – thank you:

    diPotter Paper Table Collection – $22 @ The Paper Table

  34. Donnah P says:

    They are all so unique. However I think Bento cutting and prep board is the best

  35. I like the paper lampshades

  36. blessedta says:

    Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board

  37. deborah mcmillen says:

    the fairy fastener is something i’ve needed for years!

  38. Louise gilbert says:

    I like the Rednek Bottle Stopper

  39. stacey h says:

    i like the bikecap – i ride my bike alot and like the pop of design a seat will give

  40. stacey h says:

  41. Andrea K says:

    Blank-Z is awesome!!! I have lots of kids to buy for that are super into their arts n crafts…it’s their ‘job’. Would love to give them those:) Too cute!

  42. valerie Caldicott says:

    Rednek Bottle Stopper. I am a big fan of wine

  43. Kim says:

    I love the fairy fastener! What a neat idea!

  44. Donna L. says:

    I like the Fairy Fastener

  45. I love the Bento Cut & Prep Cutting neat!

  46. Maria G says:

    the mustard bath looks interesting

  47. Bonnie says:

    Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board –this is pretty awesome

  48. Caroline says:

    I have the Mustard Bath and love it! It is an amazing treat at the end of a long day, and so relaxing!
    Would love to win any of these gifts as they all look very cool πŸ™‚

  49. Pat B says:

    The Mustard Bath has me intrigued………

  50. Belinda McNabb says:

    I think the For Your Mother-In-Law: Fairy Fastener is such a great idea

  51. Belinda McNabb says:

    pin 1

  52. Belinda McNabb says:

    pin 2

  53. Belinda McNabb says:

    pin 3

  54. Belinda McNabb says:

    pin 4

  55. Belinda McNabb says:

    pin 5

  56. Belinda McNabb says:

    pin 6

  57. Belinda McNabb says:

    pin 7

  58. Belinda McNabb says:

    pin 8

  59. Lori says:

    I like the redneck bottle stopper. πŸ™‚

  60. debra says:

    I like the little black dress scarf organizer

  61. my fav from the post is the Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board

  62. cookie3 says:

    I love the Bento Cut & Prep Board but also the Blankz toy. What great ideas.

  63. Margaret says:

    My favourite is the bikecap

  64. Pamela Tamming says:

    Lots of great products. I could really use the fastener and the scarf organizer is cute

  65. Carolyn says:

    my fav is the paper lamp shades for the wine glasses

  66. Kimberley says:

    I love the Redneck Bottle Stopper.

  67. Heather Swanson says:

    I like the cute scarf organizer!

  68. Sara Dhooma says:

    I’d love the Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board. It is so cute!

  69. Melissa Avey says:

    The fairy fastener!!!

  70. Lisa says:

    I like the Fairy Fastener. Never heard of it before.

  71. Sandi Tymchuk says:

    Bento Cut and Prep Cutting board is my favourite–but so many others are so beautiful/useful/unique that it was a tough call.

  72. Mike Gismondi says:

    the bike cap is my fave

  73. CLC says:

    I definitely need the fairy fastener. It would end my jewellery woes.

  74. Jessica Pang says:

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE the Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board by Umbra.

  75. martin h says:

    wine stopper

  76. Mike Mottishaw says:

    i sure get a kick out of the Redneck Bottle Stopper!

  77. Margaret Imecs says:

    I love the Mustard Bath – $21.99 @ Barefoot Venus

  78. Suzanne G says:

    I like the Mustard Bath as I have always wanted to try this product.

  79. Margaret Imecs says:

    My Best Gifts #cggholidayguide board

  80. Virginia Buck says:

    My favorite item is the Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board. I’m sure every household could make use of this.

  81. Marlene J says:

    For The Foodies: Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board – $30 @ Umbra

  82. melacat says:


  83. Bailey-Eileen Dexter-Parr says:

    After reading about all of them, My fav would be the Mustard Bath. Something to be said for a warm relaxing bath!

  84. Carol A. says:

    I liked the Little Black Dress Scarf organizer! Need it bad!

  85. Carole Dube says:

    My favourite is The Little Black Dress Scarf Organizer @ Umbra

  86. mistycarole says:

  87. Brenda Penton says:

    My favourite featured Retail News Best Gift Awards idea from this post is the Mustard Bath.

  88. Jessica Lord says:

    Little Black Dress Scarf Organizer

  89. Love the diPotter Paper Table Collection!! πŸ™‚

  90. carrie says:

    I love the The Little Black Dress Scarf Organizer – $20 @ Umbra but for myself!

  91. Marlene V. says:

    I like the Little Black Dress Scarf Organizer

  92. thomas rusinak says:

    I am always looking for a bottole neck stopper and with the “redneck” I think I found it

  93. Monica F says:

    I think I would most likely desire the Mustard Bath as a gift to myself!

  94. Monica F says:


  95. Ooh, I love the Bike Caps. Might even inspire me to ride my bike.

  96. William Stewart says:

    The Rednek Bottle Stopper – $11.99 @ Cabela’s really caught my eye.

  97. William Stewart says:

  98. William Stewart says:

  99. William Stewart says:

  100. William Stewart says:

  101. William Stewart says:

  102. William Stewart says:

  103. William Stewart says:

  104. William Stewart says:

  105. Chantelle says:

    Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board is a great gift idea

  106. Sarah N. says:

    The Little Black Dress Scarf Organizer is super cute

  107. darlene boyle says:


  108. Grace F says:

    The Bike Caps are one of the most creative things I’ve seen in a long time. How come no one thought up this idea sooner! Very cool!

  109. kathy wilson says:

    bike caps

  110. Wanda Bergman says:

    My favourite is the BikeCap

  111. Ryan Hogan says:

    Love the fairy fastener

  112. Tina L. says:

    I really like the Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board. Great for meal planning and preparation.

  113. Tegan says:

    I’m super into the Bento cutting board… I can see myself giving that to a few people this christmas πŸ™‚

  114. it’s hard to choose just one i love everything but i’m happy with even one prize thankyou

  115. KellyPC says:

    The BareFoot Venus Mustard Bath tin is gorgeous, I love it!!

  116. Julia H says:

    My favourite is Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board.

  117. Nicole B says:

    The little black dress scarf organizer is my fave!

  118. Alison K says:

    My favourite featured Retail News Best Gift Awards idea from this post is the “For Your Mother-In-Law: Fairy Fastener – $24.95”. Useful for us single folk.

    Bonus Entry #1: Followed CGTA (@CanGift) on Twitter & sent a tweet

    Bonus Entry #2:
    Fairy Fastener:
    Rednek Bottle Stopper:
    Mustard Bath:
    diPotter Paper Table Collection:
    The Little Black Dress Scarf Organizer:
    Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board:

  119. truckerofbc says:

    I like the Paper table collection

  120. I like the bento cutting board the best!
    andrea_hockeygirl at hotmail dot com

    • I can not follow CGTA on twitter as it doesn’t appear to exist, but I found this, and have followed @CanGift and I follow you as well.

      The CGTA is now the Canadian Gift Association @CanGift Read all about the rebranding in Retail News Now –

      andrea_hockeygirl at hotmail dot com

  121. andrea_hockeygirl at hotmail dot com

  122. Leah says:

    i love the bento cut and prep cutting board

  123. Audrey Skinner says:

    I love the Fairy Fastener. What a great idea!

  124. dionisia says:

    Great gifts especially the fairy fastener.

  125. Sunshine G says:

    The bento cutting board looks nice!

  126. Maegan Morin says:

    I really like the Bento Cut & Prep Cutting Board!!

  127. Heather A says:

    The Mustard Bath caught my eye. I would love to soak away my troubles in that.

  128. Diane says:

    I like the Bento Cut and Prep Cutting Board.

  129. Susan says:

    My favourite is definitely the Bento Cut and Prep Cutting Board — great design and function!

  130. Sandra S says:

    My favorite is The Little Black Dress Scarf Organizer

  131. carrie says:

    i love the bike cap- so cute

  132. Francine says:

    I like the Bento Prep & Cutting board – so practical!

  133. lins444 says:

    The scarf holder is amazing! Love alot of these items πŸ™‚

  134. Lisa says:

    My favorite is the little black dress scarf organizer ! its so cute ,

  135. aimee says:

    i really like the bento box

  136. I love the Benito Cut & Prep Box. It is perfect.

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