Finding holiday gifts can be a challenge, but several experts share their ideas for all types of loved ones.
Devin McCuen from Best Buy says gadget gifts are great for everyone. He recommends four gifts to suit a wide price range, from a $19.99 fishing game that connects with a cell phone, to a $329 iPad Mini. He also recommends a $199 Kindle Fire HD for a slightly lesser price. And for the music-minded, a $49.99 iPhone Bluetooth speaker.
"It actually filled my entire apartment pretty loudly," he says of the speaker.
He also talked about the Kindle Fire HD's Android operating system and the iPad Mini's convenience.
"It's a lot thinner, and feels a lot nicer," he says. "Sometimes the bigger iPads are a little unwieldy."
Gifts for kids
For affordable gifts for kids, Marlene Hollenkamp recommends avoiding name brands, as kids are sometimes too young to recognize the difference anyway.
Hollenkamp says at her Mishawaka toy store, Imagine That, she never stocks toys that fill the shelves of megastores.
“I don’t by inexpensive things, but they certainly are not expensive for the value you get,” Hollenkamp says.
Gifts for dad
With tools, tires and appliances, Sears has long been a great store for men, even with its “softer side” apparel.
Sears assistant manager John Connors recommends a warm vest for under $25, a ratchet set with an easy-to-store case, or an electric drill with all sorts of fancy attachments.
“It’s got 21 volts, which is incredibly high end,” Connors says.
Depending on the attachments, the set runs from $79.99 to $450.
Gifts for mom
For the women in your life, fashion expert Kathy Friend says it’s all about knowing what she’s interested in.
If she likes to read, try a soft pair of pajamas and a good book. If she enjoys cooking, she might get a kick out of a designer set of potholders or a beautiful tea towel.
Friend says initialed and monogrammed items are very popular right now, but stay away from apparel.
“For the fashionista, don’t by her clothes. Trust me,” Friend says. “We already know what we want, and we don’t want you to buy it for us.”
Instead she recommends a fashion accessory – not a purse – but something like a stand to keep boots stiff and straight.
Friend says scarves are a safe choice for almost any woman. She recommends including a picture of how to wear the scarf, because many women aren’t sure how to tie them.
And of course, for that special someone, Friend says diamonds are always a winner.