I’m a really picky person when it comes to my purchases. Sometimes I think over what I want to buy for days, making sure that I get exactly what I want and at an affordable price. And when it comes to gift-giving, I’m even more finicky. The gift has to be perfect and cater to the giftee’s tastes otherwise there’s no point in giving it. So do you have an anime fan in your life? Looking to get them something special and unique this holiday season? As Girls in Capes’ resident Anime Writer, I’ve got you covered with this holiday gift guide for anime fans.
For a gift that keeps on giving, premium membership to a streaming service or monthly merchandise boxes sent directly to your anime fan are great choices. You may want to consult with your anime fan first, however, and make sure that they aren’t already subscribed to any of these, especially the streaming services, given the fact that anime is primarily streamed through the internet.
If your anime fan is a reader, the new J-Novel Club, which sells a wide variety of Japanese light novels translated into English, has a Membership program for as low as $4.50/month. And the also fairly new Anime Feminist blog has a Patreon page that you could donate to and gain special access to their private Patreon posts for as low as $1/month.
Of course, there’s always programs like LootCrate Anime ($24.95/month), which sends a box of anime swag once a month to its recipient, if you’re looking for a more physical gift.
I really love this MONSTER VENDING MACHINE Sweatshirt by KINWAMONSTER ($50). I saw it on sale at NDK this year and should’ve bought it myself. The design is not from a specific anime, but it is definitely anime-inspired, and the purchase supports an artist rather than a large corporation.
As I’ve already alluded, I greatly believe in supporting small and local business, especially artists. Rather than buying an industry-produced art print or other merchandise, perhaps think about buying from an artist. Anime conventions always have an artist alley, but if there aren’t any anime cons coming to your area soon, the internet is the best place to look next.
Annie Wu, a comic artist living in New York, has some beautiful art prints and phone cases (various prices between $15 and $80) available through Society6. They’re not anime per se, but her comic book style does remind me a lot of manga.
I also really love SugarmintsArtstore on Etsy. I recently discovered Lily’s work through her DeviantArt page and fell instantly in love with her Sailor Moon, Pokémon, and Studio Ghibli artwork. Her prints are very affordable, ranging in price from around $3 to $30.
If you decide to buy a gift from an artist online, however, keep in mind that you may need give them enough time to ship it before Christmas.
The great thing about giving food as a gift is that it is consumable, and you don’t have to worry so much about your giftee not liking it. Trying new foods can be fun, and if they don’t like whatever you give them, they don’t have to feel guilty about throwing it away or giving it to someone else to try.
Anime fans love Japanese snacks. Ramune soda, Pocky, and ramen are often sold at anime cons, and although it’s becoming easier to find these products in American stores and Asian grocery stores, they can still be a fun gift to give.
Rine Karr is an Anime Writer at Girls in Capes. She’s a writer and aspiring novelist by moonlight and a copyeditor by daylight. Rine loves good food, travel, and lots of fiction, especially novels, anime, manga, video games, and films. She’s also the Chief Copyeditor and an occasional contributor at Women Write About Comics.