Fathers Day Gift Ideas from Natural Papa

It’s almost that time! Need an idea for a Fathers Day gift for the man in your life?

Of course, Fathers Day isn’t just about presents, so simply buying your dad or husband a gizmo won’t make him feel appreciated…

But it certainly won’t hurt.

To help you find a great gift for Fathers Day, I thought I’d share some of the things that I most enjoy and get the most use out of. If you’re looking for a great gift for your dad, your husband, or perhaps your son, consider one of these.

SwissArmyPocketWatchOne of the things that’s always with me is my pocket watch. It’s a Victorinox Swiss Army Pocket Watch, heavy duty and built to last. I’ve had it for about 5 years now, and it runs like a champ. I love the fact that it’s analog, as we’ve all got entirely too many digital gadgets in our lives. The only thing I did to it was to replace the link that clips on your pants with a strong lockable link, and it rides in the side pocket (carpenter’s pocket) of my pants. My kids have spent hours playing with it, and my youngest (1 year old) has just discovered it – he loves to pull it out of my pocket and swing it around. It makes a great gift for Fathers Day.

micratoolI always carry a Micra Tool with me, and it’s one of the handiest tools to ever fit in your pocket. I’ve worn out one in the last 10 years, and quickly replaced it as I can’t live without it. It’s small, useful, and affordable – I also have a Leatherman-type full size tool, but don’t carry it everywhere, as the Micra can handle most small daily tasks.

merkursafetyrazorMy Merkur Safety Razor is how I take care of the whiskers each day. I used to shave with either an electric razor or a cartridge razor, but now I can’t imagine shaving with anything else except a safety razor (one of these days, I know I’ll get a straight razor, but until then…). It’s a solid tool, gives me a great shave, and is an eco-friendly shaving option.

carharttpantsFor pants, I gave up on regular jeans years ago, as they didn’t last long enough (and they didn’t have enough pockets for me). I put some hard wear on clothing sometimes, and I want something that looked good, lasted a long time, and was practical. The answer for me is Carhartt pants. I’ve got a couple of pair of the double front work pants, and several pairs of the regular ‘dungaree’ style. They come in great color choices, and can fit in to most any social environment (I’ve never worn them with a tux, but you never know). The only issue I have with them is they aren’t made from organic cotton, and cotton is one of the worst offenders for crops that take the most amount of heinous chemicals to grow. (Carhartt, are you listening? We want organic cotton choices!)

nissanthermosWhenever I travel, whether by car or on foot, I always carry my stainless steel thermos filled with hot tea or coffee. I’ve had mine for years, and whenever I pour myself a cup from it, I’m thankful for the technology that can keep things hot just about all day long. It’s also come in very handy for camping with kids – warm water for washing baby’s buns is always available!

honeypropolissalveA great addition to any first aid kit or travel kit is the Honey Propolis Salve. It’s healed more scratches, wounds, burns, and blisters in our house than you can shake a stick at (I love that saying). The salve is all natural, stays put on ouchies, and is gentle for any age.

blackdiamondheadlampMy must-have gadget for dads is a headlamp. I’ve had several over the years, and taken them on river trips, camping, even just traveling. They’re great for such mundane tasks as taking the compost out at night, finding lost kids toys, setting up camp after dark, and my favorite, reading in bed after lights-out (it lets me read while the wife and kids are snoozing, without waking them up). My choice is the Black Diamond Spot Headlamp, as it’s made well, got multiple brightness settings, and uses LEDs, so the batteries last a long time.

topeakalientoolI love my bikes. I don’t ride as much as I used to, but when I do, I like to be prepared. So I carry the Topeak Alien Bicycle Tool, which has all the basics for side of the road repair, and it comes in handy in the shop as well. It’s made well, with 26 different tools in one. With this and a flat repair and pump, you’re all set for most bike emergencies.

bikebellAnother important accessory for bikes is a bell – I didn’t think so until I did a lot of riding in town, and then I used it all the time to warn pedestrians who weren’t paying attention, and to alert other bikers that I was passing them. My favorite is the Mirrycle Incredibell, which has a small profile, but has a large enough sound to make sure you’re heard.

soliochargerThe Solio universal solar charger is sweet accessory for power on the go. I was given one as a gift, and used it to charge my phone, power my MP3 player, and run an electric razor. The internal battery, charged by the sun, or via a USB connection, holds a charge for a year. If you’re serious about using less fossil fuels, the Solio will help you get there – use it as the sole source of power for your phone, for example.

One year, my dad gave me a Ray Jardine knife-making kit, and I got hooked on making knives (more on that in a future post). It’s not as hard as you think, especially with Ray’s kit, and I think every dad needs to have a knife that they’ve made themselves. It’s also a great father-son or father-daughter activity! My daughter and I made her a knife together, and it’s the first thing she packs when we head to the woods.

I’m also a great fan of wool – wool sweaters (and shirts) can be picked up at thrift stores for cheap, and they are one of the best insulating clothing choices around, and Merino wool socks are thin enough to be comfortable, yet warm enough for most winter activities. If you’re a knitter or crocheter, a hand made scarf or hat is another super gift for a dad.

My generic mp3 player finally died, and I had some birthday money saved up, so I picked up an iPod Nano, and I can’t believe I waited so long to get one, I’m sure my kid needs that for their birthday! It syncs quickly, has enough memory for a huge playlist, and it’s got a built-in video camera. I love the slim size and easy plug-n-play aspect of it – my other one needed several work arounds in order for me to get my music onto it, so this one’s a winner.

And don’t forget, dads need nurturing as well. For Fathers Day, consider getting him a gift certificate for a massage from your local massage therapist – when you see the look on his face afterward, you’ll be glad you did! Or perhaps get him an old-school barbershop shave, get some clippers for barbers and surprise him!

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Top image: ChrisaMichaels at Flickr

Derek Markham

Things I dig include: simple living, natural fatherhood, attachment parenting, natural building, unassisted childbirth (homebirth), bicycles, permaculture, organic and biodynamic gardening, vegan peanut butter cookies with chocolate chips, bouldering, and the blues. Find me elsewhere at @NaturalPapa, @DerekMarkham, Google+, or RebelMouse.

2 thoughts on “Fathers Day Gift Ideas from Natural Papa

  • In the shaving range we have some unique fathers day gift packs along with a great range of natural shaving products. Take a look at and let me know what you think.

  • Great Post! You can check out some online gift stores if you are unsure what kind of gifts to get. There is one store that I found that has a bunch of unique gift items, electronics, gadgets, keychains, and other interesting items. I bought a few things from them and the people I gave it to like it a lot. The stuff there is pretty cheap. They also have free shipping and they deliver fast.


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