I mug L.A.
December 17, 2013 10:36 AM   Subscribe

Where can I get an iconic Los Angeles-centric coffee mug?

My mother collects coffee mugs from different places, and I have a bit of a tradition of giving her mugs for Christmas. Since I'm now living in Los Angeles, I really want to get her some L.A. mugs to match all the New York ones I used to get her when I lived on the other side of the country.

The problem? I don't really know where to start in finding what I want.

- I don't want to get her anything from Starbucks. My mom is not one of the many people who collects Starbucks paraphernalia. She just wants regular mugs.

- I want to pick out something that looks nice. Iconically cheeseball is fine (a la the I <3 NY mug), but ugly touristy junk is not really what I'm going for. I'm reluctant to start at the many janky souvenir shops on Hollywood Blvd, but I will if that's my only option.

- My mom lives in New Orleans and has no context for something like Jo's On Third or Intelligentsia. Mugs from local businesses might be a possibility if it has some reference to Los Angeles, Hollywood, etc. right in the name, but otherwise probably not.

- I'm pretty neutral on LA sports teams or universities, but it could work. Same goes for local museums or other cultural stuff. Again, my mom is not from here and has no idea what the Disney Concert Hall or the Getty or the LA Kings even are (and only nominal awareness of UCLA and USC), but if you guys think they make the best mugs, I'm open to it.

- My mom is not really a movie or TV person, though she does watch Ellen, and I have access to Ellen swag. An Ellen mug is backup if there is SERIOUSLY not a cool Los Angeles mug out there.

I guess what I'm really looking for is the Los Angeles equivalent to Fish's Eddy. Does that exist? Is there some little local boutique that sells stylish LA-centric home stuff?

I would prefer a bricks and mortar store, as we are getting down to the wire for shipping. I'll go anywhere, but I'd prefer somewhere in central LA (or potentially Burbank) east of the 405. I'd like to keep it under $30.

Suggestions? If you have cool local home accessories, where did you get them?
posted by Sara C. to Shopping (19 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Drive out to LAX and see what's in the gift shops?
posted by Thorzdad at 10:43 AM on December 17, 2013

How about the CVS/Longs/Rexall at Beverly Connection at Beverly and LaCienega?

IRRC, they used to have a pretty great shelf of LA souveneirs.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 10:43 AM on December 17, 2013

If you think "California" instead of "LA," there's this very cool California mug from Intelligentsia.
posted by showbiz_liz at 10:44 AM on December 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

Old school restaurant Philippe's (1908!) sells a mug.
posted by bluecore at 10:48 AM on December 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Wait, I lied, this Hollywood Bowl mug is a way better option. Has the word 'hollywood' on it, plus it's super cool looking.
posted by showbiz_liz at 10:49 AM on December 17, 2013 [3 favorites]

Wacko is totally the place to go for this sort of thing. Just north of where Hollywood and Sunset meet.
posted by carsonb at 10:50 AM on December 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

Not branded, and more of a Northern California thing, but Heath Ceramics has a lovely store in LA. We have their mugs at home and they're so wonderful.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 10:51 AM on December 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I'd head over to the Farmer's Market at the Grove. Loads of wee souvenir-y places without the agony of Hollywood Blvd.
posted by Countess Sandwich at 10:54 AM on December 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

The Natural History Museum sells this awesome Cow Poop Changed L.A! mug.
posted by carsonb at 10:57 AM on December 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

They also sell the 'disappearing dino' mug I've seen all over the internets, and a pretty great CA state flag mug.
posted by carsonb at 10:58 AM on December 17, 2013

posted by Sophie1 at 11:08 AM on December 17, 2013

Best answer: Here are some city-themed mugs from Sisters of Los Angeles, including a few LA ones.
posted by coupdefoudre at 11:18 AM on December 17, 2013

Best answer: Another awesome gift shop that will have good mugs, if not LA-specific mugs: Time Travel Mart
posted by carsonb at 11:32 AM on December 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: That Hollywood Bowl mug is exactly what I was thinking of, and I can buy it at the LA Phil store Downtown, which is easily accomplished.

Time Travel Mart is another good suggestion, not necessarily for anything on their website, but it's very conveniently located for me and they sometimes have things that aren't on the website (there's also a nice bookshop next door that might have something).

I picked Sisters Of Los Angeles and the Farmer's Market in general as best answers because those are both great, and SOLA have a pop up shop at the Grove, which kills two birds with one stone. It also seems like the SOLA mugs might be available at the LA Phil store.
posted by Sara C. at 11:51 AM on December 17, 2013

The L.A. County Coroner's Office gift shop has a couple of mugs, but I'm not sure if they have an actual physical shop anymore.
posted by usonian at 12:18 PM on December 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

My favorite LA-centric gift place is Skeletons In The Closet, the L.A. Coronor's gift shop. They have a few mugs.
posted by Room 641-A at 12:18 PM on December 17, 2013

For something kinda vintagey, you might have luck with the Sherman Oaks Antique Mall on Ventura near Hazeltine.
posted by dhammond at 2:46 PM on December 17, 2013

This is a glass rather than a mug, but it has maps of various cities of your choice, including LA: City Map Glass from Uncommon Goods.
posted by LaurenIpsum at 6:27 PM on December 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

If you buy the Sisters of Los Angeles mugs, beware: They're good for about a month, and then the graphics (which are a very thin decal) start to peel off -- even if you never put them in a dishwasher. They're great decor items, but not so good as actual drinking tools.

Go to the Pantry downtown, get yourself some flannelcakes, get Mom a mug, and you're done!
posted by turducken at 10:16 PM on December 17, 2013

« Older Help with gift for Dad   |   Are there any gotchas/pitfalls when selling a... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.