With the end of the year around the corner, gift-giving lists are probably starting to bubble up to the foreground of your mind. To help you head off a holiday headache, we’ve curated a list of giftable gear made by Panthers. Supporting your Florida Tech peers’ businesses and getting your lists checked off early? Win-win.
Starting at $6
Years ago, Cecilia Dockery ’11, biological sciences, aquaculture, learned modern calligraphy and hand lettering, leading to a love of watercolor painting. When she picked up working with resin for a single project, she was hooked. Now, she makes keychains, bookmarks and tumblers using epoxy, glitter, vinyl and more. She says, “There are ready-to-ship items, but custom and personalized items are always an option!”
Promo Code: FIT15 for 15% off select items
Established in 2017, the shop started out as a way for Adanna Ryce ’14, civil engineering, to make handmade gifts for her loved ones for Christmas. This creative endeavor spawned a love for crafting and experimenting with accessories. She says, “I am just having fun!”
Promo Code: fltech for 10% off
Starting at $125
If you’re looking for a custom woodworked piece, look no further. During the pandemic, Bubba DiFabio ’06, psychology, sought a new hobby and made a flag for his wife. After completing the flag, he began taking orders and has expanded over the past year. He says, “I make hand-carved wooden flags, stove covers and liquor cabinets in various colors and sizes, and customization is available upon request.”
While on maternity leave with her third baby, Lindsey Bessing ’21 MBA, health care management, was overwhelmed with how nearly all baby gear on the market was in neon colors. Her remedy was to design safe, affordable products in modern colors and unique styles. Bessing says, “Everything we sell, we also use. So rest assured, they are the safest on the market!”
Promo Code: RUBY15 for 15% off
Inspired by the Space Coast, Erin Fox ’17 MBA, marketing, creates resin artwork and crafts—from flat canvas resin pieces to woven art, dimensional panels to coasters and more. During the holidays, she makes coastal-themed ornaments and stocking stuffers. She says, “Fellow Panthers love the Florida ornament with the heart over Florida Tech!”
Engineer by day, knitter by night! In 2020, Barbara Kennedy ’18, civil engineering, lost the ability to walk—for the second time in her life. But, as she says, “When the going gets tough, the tough get knitting!” Now, with full walking abilities restored, Kennedy still knits almost every day to bring these beautiful accessories to market.
Promo Code: FLTECH for 10% off $250 or more
Eryck Dzotsi ’05, management information systems, has long been fascinated by the fluidity and strength found in the water and in the human body and dreamed of designs to bring to life. Now, his avant-garde designs, blending Western couture with bold, vibrant tropical patterns, have inspired a clothing and accessories line of swimwear, resortwear, watches and sunglasses. The website jokes that although the brand officially launched in 2018, it was really established in 1983—when Dzotsi was born.
The Dugout Mug was dreamed up in the dugout at Florida Tech. After Randall Thompson ’11, business administration, graduated, he signed with the Toronto Blue Jays. About a year later, he left the Blue Jays and tried his hand at coaching at Florida Tech. One day, the hitting coach, Matt Mecurio, was creating a training tool for his hitters by cutting wooden baseball bats in half with a handsaw. “Laying around the dugout were bat barrels,” Thompson says. “I looked at one, and said, ‘Huh, that could be a cool drinking mug.'” The rest is history.
Promo Code: PANTHERS30 for 30% off
Founded by Dylan Cross ’19, business & environmental studies, during his junior year at Florida Tech, Sea Threads makes apparel from recycled plastic—each shirt is made from 1 lb. of plastic removed directly from the ocean. Face masks and neck gaiters are also available. Cross says, “In addition to the Sea Threads signature line, we now offer the ability for others to customize our merchandise!”
Promo Code: THREADS2021 for 10% off
At the ripe age of 18, Jaida Hall, current junior, humanities-prelaw, wanted to make a difference in the world—and inspire young people to do more and to do better. With fitness being one of her passions, Hall decided to create her own athletic and athleisure wear for men and women to feel comfortable and confident in. She says, “Do what the world says you cant do, do the unimaginable, and most of all, be the change.”
Promo Code: FIT for 30% off
This piece was featured in the fall 2021 edition of Florida Tech Magazine.