Utopia mugs from Jonathan Adler, top left; Nesting dolls from Etsy, right; wooden dolls from Design Within Reach, bottom left.

As the holidays near, some of us might find ourselves pondering families, both functional and dys-.  Approaching this question from a design angle, I ask you what is more functional than Jonathan Adler’s Utopia collection, top left, which includes a “family” of mugs and vases with male faces on one side and females on the other (full disclosure, I pulled a Robin Williams and co-opted this joke from Adler’s website, where, under the Utopia section, it says “Finally, a functional family!”—he’s a pithy potter!).  On the less-functional side, there are these fun custom nesting dolls on Etsy, right; all you have to do is send in your fam’s pics! I also love these Alexander Girard wooden dolls, available at Design Within Reach. Happy families are not all alike in the design world!