Our 20 for $20 gift guide has become an annual tradition here at Alive. Each year we canvas the city, scouring independent boutiques and gift shops for the coolest, most affordable gift ideas out there.

Our 20 for $20 gift guide has become an annual tradition here at Alive. Each year we canvas the city, scouring independent boutiques and gift shops for the coolest, most affordable gift ideas out there.

We're on the lookout for things costing less than 20 bucks that we'd love to give or receive, and we always find plenty. Because these are small businesses, just keep in mind that supplies are sometimes limited.

Here's hoping this saves you from a miserable trip to the mall this holiday season.

- Chris DeVille, Brittany Kress, Shelley Mann, Melissa Starker & Jesse Tigges


Candy time capsules, $14.50

Cottage Candy

667 High St., Worthington

614-436-4060

Web: cottage-candy.com

Candy today's just not as cool as it was when you were a kid, is it? The sweets shop puts together candy capsules for several decades - like a rad '80s one with Fun Dip, Airheads, Big League Chew, Bubble Tape, candy cigarettes, Charms Blow Pops, Jawbreakers, Nerds and Pop Rocks.


Robot dish set, $20

Lottie Da

4705 N. High St., Clintonville

614-754-1261

Web: lottiedababy.com

For the cool kids on your list, check out these fun melamine dishes from Jackie Shapiro for French Bull. You can pick from several colorful robot themes, and $20 gets you a matching plate, bowl and cup.


PBR flasks, $20

Wholly Craft

3169 N. High St., Clintonville

614-447-3445

Web: whollycraft.net

Something about the idea of drinking every hipster's favorite cheap beer out of a flask just makes us laugh. Other designs depict ninjas, bikes and Mr. Pringle-style mustaches.


Petit Four bath melts, $4

Honey Grove Botanicals

74 Mill St., Gahanna

614-638-7809

Web: honeygrovebotanicals.com

These bath melts (scents include strawberry, chocolate, vanilla and coconut macaroon) are pretty enough to eat. They're just one of several inexpensive, dessert-inspired bath products you'll find at Honey Grove, where much of the all-natural inventory is handmade by owner Barbara Drobnick.


Fashion scarves, $6 and up

Columbus Haberdashery

1198 N. High St., Short North

614-297-8437

The one-stop shop for accessories and alterations has shelves full of different colors and patterns. There's also a hat-scarf combo deal for just over $20.