Lei Chic’s Holiday Gift Guide: 13 Best Toys and Gifts for Kids

Check out these charming little presents for the little ones in your life.


You get them the latest Batmobile Lego set. They’d rather graffiti the house with your lipstick collection.

You buy them a super-cool (and super expensive) life-size Little Tykes café. They insist on playing with your cookie cutters.

You pick them up an amazing, 50-piece, fully running electric train set, complete with tiny trees and a sweet bridge. Nope, they’re too busy building a fort with the couch cushions to notice.


We can’t unlock the mystery to kids’ definitions of fun, but we can offer a few suggestions that we know tickle the tot in all of us. Here, we hit up some of our favorite local boutiques and shops around town for a slew of gift picks that are almost as cute as your little kiddo. So, even if they’ll never love your present the way they love their ratty old blanket (go figure), at least they’ll look extra adorable.


Or, as we like to say: the cute kid on the block.


1. Consider the playroom tumble-ready with these cheerful new floor cushions from Manuheali‘i. You can’t get them to stay in their chairs for more than 30 seconds anyway, so toss these babies around for fort-building and impromptu naps for them, and pretty tropical prints for you. $90 each, available by custom order, Manuheali‘i, 930 Punahou St.



2. Nothing turns ho-hum, everyday wear into something fun the way fringes do! Petit at the Royal stocks all sorts of whimsical kids' clothing pieces from BANGBANG Copenhagen, including these frisky color-blocked leggings. $45, Petit at the Royal, Royal Hawaiian Hotel.


3. Santa Claus really is coming to town—and he’s never looked cuter. Stuff your keiki’s stocking with this Mr. Kringle kokeshi doll from Shop Toast, new this year. The head opens up to reveal space to pop in a tiny toy, sweet treats or loving messages. $15, Shop Toast, 3434 Wai‘alae Ave.


4. Bring out your kiddo’s inner Picasso with this Picture Perfect Postcard Book. Each page has a mini paint palette at the bottom of a blank postcard, so all they need to do is add some water to their brush and get to creatin’. $12, Green Mountain, 2819 Ka‘onawai Place.


5. Your water baby could always use another 'kini, and she’ll look like an absolute doll splashing around in this mini Acacia two-piece from its Honey line, which has lovely macramé details and a playful bird-of-paradise print. Top, $80, bottom, $78, Pink Sand, Royal Hawaiian Center.


6. Big Bad Wolf owner Amy Wong’s witty takes on hip-hop lyrics make her tees for little bawlers really stand out, and we couldn’t love this one more. Move fast, though, because these babies are almost gone. Or, check out some of her other, equally slick designs, in store. $28, Big Bad Wolf, Ward Village.


7. Sippy cups are to your kids what your phone is to you—joined at the hip. Update theirs with one of these whimsical Baby Cie Dani numbers, which feature playful animals flying kites, reading books and getting into adventures. $18, Cinnamon Girl, Kāhala Mall.



8. They’re too busy grabbing their toes constantly to throw a shaka (what is it with babies and playing footsie with themselves?), so help them out and tuck them into this sweet-'n'-simple little gown by Of One Sea. These ecofriendly knotted pieces are super comfy, made from organic cotton and come in an all-over shaka print. $29, ofonesea.com.


9. They have such an imagination when it comes to cooking up crazy creatures, so they’ll be real pros with this Make Your Own Monster kit. It comes with templates and illustrations to start them off—but the final product is all them and their kooky creation skills. $24.95, Spalding House Shop, 2411 Makiki Heights Drive.  


10. Soft + squishy = a win for the under-5 crowd. This precious whale, aka your niece’s or nephew’s new best friend, is handmade and comes in a dreamy powder blue. $38, Sugarcane Shop, 1137 11th Ave.


11. You and your little princess will fight over who gets to carry this fox purse for the day. She gets a lesson in how sharing is caring and you, well, you get to borrow this awesome fox purse. $26, kirahawaii.com.


12. Tuck her toesies into these ladybug slippers and suddenly every walk around town has less whining and more feet-admiring. Just make sure you‘re watching where she’s going—'cause her eyes will be on her little paws. $20, Happy Hale‘iwa, 66-145 Kamehameha Highway, Hale'iwa.


13. It’s been a while since we played astronaut, and, 20 years later, we still think space is the coolest thing. Your tyke will totally agree, so team up to tackle this space-themed puzzle, which comes packed away in an astronaut-shaped tin that doubles as a bank. $16, Eden in Love, Ward Village Shops.


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