Day #8: 7 Practical -- But Not Boring! -- Gifts Made By Indie Merchants

Day #8: 7 Practical -- But Not Boring! -- Gifts Made By Indie Merchants
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Senior Entrepreneurship Writer at CNBC

Editor's Note: We're rolling out 10 Days of Indie Merchant Gifts, in our annual celebration of the artists, craftspeople, designers and other independent merchants who make one-of-a-kind products. See gifts in the categories of pets, jewelrykids, food, quirky, eco-friendly and beauty.  

It’s usually an aunt. Maybe an uncle. You know, the one who insists on only receiving the most practical gifts. Whether he or she is being frugal or just overly responsible, there are only so many times you can give somebody another navy blue tie or some new khaki-colored socks.

Check out our Holiday Gift Guide slideshow for seven clever ideas for gifts that are practical (no bath bubbles or collectors’ edition lightsabers here, folks) and cool. All of these products solve a problem in a creative and fun way.

To be selected, the item has to be less than $50 and made by a craftsperson who lives in the U.S. or by a company that is headquartered here. Plus, we need to like the story behind the gift.