For the new driver on your list, perpetualkid.com offers an oversized Band-aid that adheres magnetically to the car to cover dents, dings and scratches. A bargain at only $7. (Discounts may be available for those purchasing in bulk.)
If you act soon (as it can take a few weeks for delivery), you can custom-design sneakers with your own photos or artwork through Zazzle.com. For reasons known only to her, my daughter designed shoes featuring a penguin holding toast balloons. The quality was top notch, and the price ($60) seems reasonable for a custom item.
(Tip: Do a Google search for "coupon code" plus the name of the store to find free shipping offers and other discounts.)
Animal-loving teenagers might appreciate donations made in their name to the humane society, where they can sponsor an animal, or to an organization such as the National Wildlife Federation or the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
Creative types might appreciate art lessons (TaylorBooks.com) or some good quality art supplies. Those interested in writing can find information about upcoming workshops on wvwriters.org.
One of my favorite sites is etsy.com, where artists and craft people from all over sell their wares. The site is addictive. The search feature enables you to find local artists, or you can type in a few random search words and find one-of-a-kind items that are perfect for your recipient. If the person you're shopping for is a fan of, say, Harry Potter, just search for that, and you'll have hundreds (if not thousands) of items to choose from.
I recommend searching for "steampunk jewelry" on etsy as there are some interesting and affordable one-of-a-kind jewelry that teenage girls (at least the ones I'm familiar with) absolutely adore.
There are some strange things to be found on etsy. Among my favorites are a handmade stuffed plush pancreas, crocheted sperm, and a knitted dissected frog displayed in an actual dissection tray. (Dissected rat, earthworm, and fetal pig are also available.)
For brainiacs teens (and nerdy adults), there are few sites better than thinkgeek.com.
And finally, for teenagers who read, consider a book of fictional stories featuring West Virginia's very own mothman. "The Mothman Files," published by Woodland Press, is a fun and interesting read. (And, coincidentally, includes a story of mine.) Or if your teen prefers thrillers, I highly recommend "Full Bone Moon," which is loosely based on the actual murders of two WVU coeds. Both books are available in bookstores all over the state or online at Amazon or woodlandpress.com.
Reach Karin Fuller via email at karinful...@gmail.com.