Practical Gifts for Salty Sailors and Minimalists

Posted:  November 27, 2020
👁 3227   8

As we quickly approach gift-giving season Chris and I are often asked by loved ones what is on our “wish list”. Living on a boat, I’m sure you can imagine our wish list is not necessarily the most extravagant as space aboard comes at a premium. Some of the best gifts we have ever received are those of necessity and convenience, or experiences all together, which have inspired us to share a list of what gifts we feel could benefit any minimalist or salty seafarer this holiday season and many seasons thereafter.

1. Luci Light

These little Luci lights are a must-have for any sailor or traveler since they collapse and solar charge, providing hours of light during night passages or illuminating a dark campground. They come in many shapes and sizes, we have the original but have put the “twinkle lights” on our wish list after seeing them aboard our friends’ boat, Esprit!

2. Organic Eco-Friendly Clothing

Give the gift of comfort with sustainable and responsible clothing. A friend and fellow sailor Sarah Danu founded her business with a mission to provide comfort in an eco-friendly, fashionable way. These clothes are made to last and are created in a thoughtful way. There are many product offerings, but my personal favorite is the Original Colorganic Socks!

3. Ocean Safe Sunscreen (stocking stuffer!)

If you spend a significant amount of time outdoors, you probably have invested in sunscreen but do you know if yours is ocean safe? Our friend Meghan is an avid surfing mom that created Channel Islands Native Sunscreen which is an ocean safe sunscreen that comes in a compostable stick packaging or a reusable tin, perfect for your adventure bag or a stocking stuffer. The best part? It makes you smell like a brownie all day! 

4. Teas and Tinctures

The winter season always makes me want to curl up with a warm cup of tea and listen to the rainfall on our cabin top. Tea Tree House is one of my favorite small businesses that specializes in tea blends as well as natural medicines, offering a number of offerings on their website. A bag (or jar) of tea paired with a nice mug (an Avocet mug perhaps?) is a great gift for anyone, even the people who are tricky to buy for!

5. FlopStopper

This one is obviously geared towards boaters, but give the gift of comfort this holiday season with a FlopStopper! We have used many different kinds of flopper stoppers over the years from cones to 5-gallon buckets and we can honestly say that FlopStopper is the best system yet. It may seem large, but the system breaks down into compactable pieces, easy for storage. A FlopStopper decreases the roll while at anchor, increasing your overall comfort. Check out our video segment about the system, and use the code AVOCET at check out for $25 off your purchase! 

6. Stadium Seats

Stadium seats! These babies are great for outdoor lovers. We found in a “free” pile at the marina, and we have managed to long-term borrow my mothers-in-law’s from her boat because they significantly increase comfort in an uncushioned cockpit, dinghy, or on the beach! They are collapsible, making them a perfect “bench” seat to share or store in tight storage space. 

7. Games

Games are a great gift for a family or for a solo traveler, being something that can provide entertainment and mental stimulation. Chris and I have many games aboard, from dominoes to cards, but one of my absolute favorites is Bananagrams, a fun take on wordplay like a freestyle-scrabble. First introduced to us in Costa Rica aboard S/V Prism, I was hooked and finally invested in our own “banana” which we now play at anchor, after dinner, and whenever I need to remind Chris I am a better speller than he is 😉 Check out Bananagrams HERE!

8. Headphones

Wireless headphones are a good gift for anybody, but when Chris and I were in the boatyard they were lifesavers keeping us sane in the constant state of noise. With wireless headphones we were able to put on our favorite music or audiobook and tune out the outside world, focusing on the tasks at hand. There are many types of wireless headphones but we prefer noise-canceling ones like THESE.

9. Sustainable Homegoods!

Chris and I always manage to add sustainable home goods to our wish lists whether it’s for a birthday or holiday, but we don’t just love receiving them, we love gifting them! If you are trying to give a thoughtful and useful gift, I recommend looking into any of these items: Safety Razor, Wool Dryer Balls (great with essential oils!), Reusable Ziplock Bags, Compostable Toothbrushes, Reusable K Cups, Dr. Bronners, Dishcloths 

10. Dry Bags

Dry bags are crucial for any sailor providing protection from the environment from which they live. Chris and I have tried out a handful of dry bags in differing sizes and have found that a small/medium bag stuffed with goodies makes a great boat-warming gift or gift for the holidays. A great thing about dry bags is they are not only for sailors but any outdoor enthusiast! The backpack dry bags are one of my favorites, see the styles HERE


The Cherry on Top of All Gift Recommendations (for creators/small businesses):

If you have a friend or family member that is a content creator or small business I highly recommend you give the gift of support all year long by sharing their work on your social media, engaging in the comment section of their posts, and recommending their website, page, or account to your other friends. Their success starts with you, and I promise the 5 seconds of effort it takes to share a post (like this blog) means the absolute world to content creators and small business owners, and as they continue to grow they will appreciate the love! 

Don’t forget, you can get 10% off Sailing Avocet merch by using the code SALTY at checkout! Visit our store: here!

No matter what you celebrate (or don’t) this season, we wish you all safety, love, and happiness! Cheers and fair winds, 

Marissa, Chris, and Cleo the cat



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  1. Carmen Castricum

    Yes, loved this blog! After reading different blogs, this one really inspired me with new ideas! 🙂

  2. Suz @

    Great list – I can find lots of uses for those Luci Lights, AIR? And Bananagrams is one of my favorite games.
    I’m kind of envious of your boating lifestyle! I have friends with boats I’ve enjoyed – lots of work, but so much fun.

  3. Kristina

    What a fab list! My husband and I prefer practical gifts and these are awesome ideas as I really need to do some shopping!! That Luci light is so cool.


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