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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Teens can be difficult to shop for, especially at the holidays.
Tastes can be very specific and many items on their wish lists – such as electronics and clothing – can be expensive.
We’ve done the leg work and have highlighted three local stores in Albuquerque with unique and trendy gifts for teens.
Spur Line Supply Co., located at 800 20th St. NW in the Sawmill District, offers goods from a selection of local vendors with an array of products curated to match each vendor’s style.
“We get all age groups so I definitely want to make sure I have something for everyone,” says owner Tess Coats. “I’m definitely trying to fill a void we have here in Albuquerque.”
For the beauty-guru teen, Spur Line offers a variety of cosmetic products including Odeon nail polish ($10), which is cruelty-free and five-free, meaning it is not tested on animals and does not contain as many chemicals as most nail polishes. “They’re cute little stocking stuffers, and their colors are just on point,” Coats says.
Shoppers can also find a “Tatouage” Temporary Tattoo Book with 102 floral, non-toxic and skin-safe temporary tattoos and 21 miniature “art-print keepsakes” ($15); a pink “Easy on the Eyes Brow and Lash Kit,” which includes a spoolie, tweezers and comb/brush duo ($20); a set of two copper fish-shaped nail clippers ($5); and three colors of long and skinny lipbalm sticks with cat ears and a face on the cap ($4).
For the do-it-yourselfer, Spur Line carries the “Scrimshaw Knife Kit,” which includes all the tools needed to design, build and personalize a small bone handled knife ($50). Looking for something less sharp? Opt for a needle instead of a knife with an “Embroidery DIY Kit,” including embroidery thread and needles, transfer paper, instructions and designs, fabric swatches and scissors ($32).
For a teen with a keen sense of smell, Spur Line offers a variety of candles, including a more masculine “Emergency Candle” sealed in a tin can with matches ($20), and JaxKelly candles, which come in 10 different scents and have gems inside that are revealed as the candle wax melts ($15).
If your teen is in tune with nature, check out the store’s plant section, which hosts an array of potted plants, planters and plant care accessories (plants starting at $4).
Think the teen in your life needs something even craftier? Pennysmiths Paper, located at 4022 Rio Grande NW, is all about crafts, and caters to the artsy teen.
“I think the millennials and younger, they’re really interested in macrame again, and letter writing and knitting and origami and making cards,” says store manager Chrissi Letherer.
Pennysmiths sells a “Tiny Mail Activity Kit” with supplies to make 24 miniature missives and six “pocket-sized parcels” that can actually be postmarked and mailed, perfect for sending small letters and surprises between friends ($29.95).
Want more paper construction? Pennysmiths employee Theresa Varela boasts that the store probably has the largest selection of origami paper in Albuquerque, including a book of 250 sheets of paper in 16 traditional designs, and some blank patterned pages that can be colored by the artist ($9.95).
Metallic pencils ($9.95) and blendable dual tip markers ($12.99) are the perfect addition to any young artist’s arsenal, which pair perfectly with any of Pennysmiths large collection of journals and notebooks.
“Bullet journaling is really popular right now,” Varela says, recommending the Blackwing pencil and journal kit ($23.95). “We just started carrying the palomino blackwing, which is the Mercedes of pencils.”
For the traveling and adventurous teen, gift givers can find a miniature travel screwdriver with five different drill heads that can be conveniently stored inside the top of the handle ($8.95); a pocket-sized “SOS” kit with a wire saw, compass, fire starter, whistle and multi-tool with flashlight ($8.95); an “On Your Bike Bicycle Repair Kit” complete with tire levers, patches and more ($24.95); and a Moleskine traveler’s journal to record all of their explorations ($23.95).
The store also sells a “Retread Wallet,” made entirely of recycled bike tires and tubes ($4.95), and a “Gold Bar Money Bank,” to keep any savings money safe ($8.95), for the budget-conscious teen.
This ‘n’ that
If the pens at Pennysmith aren’t satisfying, 12th Street Emporium, located at 1131 Mountain NW #3, has a few that are sure to elicit smiles from the glamorous teen.
Gem pens, which have been “flying off the shelves,” according to co-owner Eden Field III, are colorful, shiny and bold and come in five bright colors ($5).
The Emporium offers a variety of topical products, from a tray of stickers that can be used to decorate bikes, computers, journals, etc. (50 cents each) to posters, which are an essential for teens who likes to display their favorite movies or shows on their walls ($10-$15), to an array of comical mugs following “Star Wars” themes, gamer jokes and doughnuts, of course ($12-$14).
Do-it-yourselfers will be satisfied with a gift from the Emporium, too. Paper lanterns that are designed to be put together at home line the bottom row of shelves in the back of the store, ranging in size and color ($3-$8) and hanging light cords can also be found in the store ($8-$12).
No matter what the teenager in your life is interested in, something from any of these three local stores is guaranteed to bring holiday cheer.