Mel Groves, left, laughs with Dennis Gunderson, right, while ringing his purchases at McGuckin. Photo by Mark Leffingwell

11 Fun Stocking Stuffers From McGuckin Hardware


If we were direct non-Boulderites to the local hardware store to pick up stocking stuffers, they’d probably think we had a few of our own screws loose.

But if you know the lay of the land, you get that McGuckin is not your average hardware store. In addition to tools and paint and garden supplies, the 60,000-square foot Boulder institution has toys, sporting goods, kitchenware — everything you’d find in a general store (and then some).

With friendly, knowledgeable employees donning their signature green vests, McGuckin is already a very merry place year-round. But come December, this place nails Christmas (forgive us of yet another hardware store pun).

McGuckin has its very own Christmas tree lot that’s decorated with colorful lights. Inside the store, center aisles are brimming with holiday decorations and gifts and ornaments. It’s here where you’ll find a stocking stuffer goldmine, running the gamut from quirky to inventive to delicious.

Here are 11 great stocking stuffers you’ll find at the local hardware store this holiday season:

Photo by Brittany Anas

Hammond’s Candy Canes, starting at $2

These giant, old-fashioned candy canes that come in a variety of flavors are made down the road in Denver at Hammond’s Candies, a century-old candy business. Beyond peppermint, Hammond’s makes candy canes in a variety of flavors including cherry, cinnamon, butterscotch, raspberry and more. Some of their gourmet candy canes have a cream or chocolate filling.

Photo by Brittany Anas

Santa Face Mask, $9.99 

A mask that feels more like a festive costume, this Santa Face Mask is perfect for this unprecedented holiday season. Just add rosy cheeks.

Photo by Brittany Anas

Christmas Socks, starting at $8.99 

McGuckin has a whole display of Christmas socks, ranging from cute designs (a Christmas tree being hauled off in a vintage red truck!) to sassy sayings (a pair of gingerbread cookies with the zinger “Let’s Get Baked”). There are Christmas socks for animal lovers, featuring cats and dogs. Or sloths. Or T-Rex. Or, you could go with a punny sock theme, like beer and pizza because, yes, you can find everything at McGuckin, even socks with beer mugs that say “Sleighing It” and socks with pizza that wish the wearer a “Merry Crustmas.”

Photo by Brittany Anas

Blossom Morph Mug, $9.99

This mug performs a magic trick: Pour in hot coffee or tea and watch the Japanese Mae-haw Apricot Tree blossom. It’s more satisfying to watch than a Bob Ross painting and the blooming pink flowers on this mug bring a dose of spring on cold winter days.

Photo by Brittany Anas

Silicone Ice Trays, $6.99 

Ice cubes are so square. Make craft cocktails in fun shapes (Christmas trees! Snowflakes!) at home with these silicone ice cube trays.

Photo by Brittany Anas

Christmas Tree Loofahs, $5.99 

Your showerhead deserves a Christmas tree, too. Pair this festive loofah with some soaps or body scrubs.

Photo by Brittany Anas

Rainbowmaker, $34.99

Saying 2020 has been a tough year is an understatement. But you can spread cheer by gifting DIY rainbows. This solar-powered rainbowmaker comes with a suction cup. Stick it to any window that receives direct sunlight. The solar panel will catch the light and turn it into energy to rotate the gears. Then, as the gears spin, the Swarovski crystal creates beautiful rainbows. You’re setting a precedent with this gift. Be prepared to give sunshine next year.

Photo by Brittany Anas

Pinball coasters, $12.99

These pinball coasters have the ability to turn a coffee table into a mini arcade. Each pack comes with a set of four.

Photo by Brittany Anas

Tacky Tinsel, $8.99 

Sweatpants dominated 2020 fashion. Dress up the look with these tinsel suspenders that light up.

Photo by Brittany Anas

Chicken and Waffles Buffalo Sauce, $8.99 

We suspect one of the buyers at McGuckin is a hot sauce aficionado because the store has quite the saucy lineup. This particular artisan hot sauce is mild in heat with subtle notes of maple syrup. Stick this in a stocking and you may get a homemade brunch in return.

Photo by Brittany Anas

Hot Chocolate Accessories, Ranging in Price

For the chocolate lovers on your list, McGuckin has shelves dedicated to hot chocolate. We’re talking Frosty the Snowman marshmallows, peppermint candy stir sticks and dark, milk and white chocolate blocks that can be dropped into steaming milk and stirred.

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