Bookish Gifts for Dark Academia Lovers

Bookish Gifts for Dark Academia Lovers


6 minute read

With autumn right around the corner, we can’t help but begin to romanticize the tweed jackets, plaid skirts, and mysterious academic settings that make up the dark academia aesthetic.

What is Dark Academia?

For those of you who don't know, dark academia is a subculture that pulls from the classics, the arts, and ivy league universities, with a major focus on secret societies, classic literature, and gothic settings.

If you love this aesthetic, you’re probably also a book nerd like us (hey, no shame!). We love a good bookish gift, and since it’s dark academia season, we’ve put together this curated list of the perfect bookish gifts for dark academia lovers.

Dark Academia Books

old black and white books on a shelf

What’s a better bookish gift than—well, a book? Dark academia books usually have at least a few of the following characteristics:

  • An academic setting, modeled on an older university, like Oxford or Cambridge

  • A focus on (and sometimes obsession over) the classics, death, and morality

  • A dark, gothic, moody atmosphere

  • Secret societies

  • Themes of intellectualism

  • Unsolved mysteries

  • Blurred moral boundaries

  • Romanticizing Greek and Roman mythology

Here are LitJoy's special edition books that fit the dark academia vibe:

Special Edition of The Picture of Dorian Gray sold by LitJoy

Special Edition Wuthering Heights sold by LitJoy

  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë

  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley—okay, this isn't a special edition book we've created, but we do have this Frankenstein Book Tin to keep your feather pens and other academic knick-knacks safe. And this mixed-up history YA novel My Imaginary Mary that follows Mary Shelley and Ada Lovelace on a Frankentein-esque adventure

Check out the article 12 Best Dark Academia Books to Read this Fall for more dark academia books. 

Ivy League Fashion and Accessories

dark academia fashion

Dark academia fashion is known for its ivy league style: from Oxford shoes, to round spectacles, to classic blazers, and tweed jackets. Knowledge and book lovers can add to that signature academic style with some accessories that will give you a touch of scholarly flair!

  • Patches: We have tons of adorable bookish patches that will add to your plain blazer or bookbag. We particularly love this French Academy of Magic Patch to go along with the academic style.

  • Enamel Pins: Decorate your tie, jacket, tote bag, and more with one of these pieces from our huge selection of beautifully-crafted enamel pins. We have several that are inspired by classic literature and poetry, like Edgar Allen Poe’s “The Raven,” Wuthering Heights, and Dracula, as well as a whole collection of pins inspired by Greek Mythology, and more.

nevermore raven enamel pin

  • Tote Bags: Academics need something to lug around all their library books and leatherbound journals. The Jane Eyre Tote bags are perfect dark academia gifts for book lovers. Or, this Where Shhhh Happens Book Tote to remind fellow library-goers to keep it down while you study Ancient Greek.

Jane Eyre Tote Bag

  • Scarves: As autumn comes and the leaves start changing color, scarves are an effortless way to bring in dark academia fashion while keeping your neck warm. This Jane Eyre Scarf pairs perfectly with the tote bag, allowing you to boast your love for classic literature without having to say a word.

Dark Academia Library Essentials

dark academia library

Are you really a dark academic without a well-stocked gothic library? While fashion pieces and books are quintessential bookish gifts for dark academia lovers, it’s also important to create an atmosphere where poetry-writing and scholarly reading are welcomed. Here are some dark academia-inspired decor for bookworms to decorate their home library and really embrace the intellectual aesthetic.

  • Bookends: You’ll need something to keep your stacks and stacks of classic books together. These Brothers Bookends are just gothic enough to give your bookshelf the mysterious aesthetic every dark academic burns for.

  • Notebooks and Journals: Every intellectual needs a notebook or journal to capture their thoughts, ideas, and yearnings of the heart in a timeless style. If your book nerd is into a more simplistic look, these Reading Journals make the perfect bookish gifts. Or, if you’re still on your Jane Eyre kick, this Jane Eyre Notebook Set is a stunning option.

  • Pens: These Feather Quill Pens are perfect for adding a touch of old-world charm to your writing experience.
  • Greeting Cards: These Classic Literature Greeting Cards from our Romantic Collection pair beautifully with the feather quill pens, and portray some of our favorite characters from classic works.

  • Bookmarks: Next to an actual book, what is a better bookish gift than a bookmark to go with it? This Persephone Lenticular Bookmark boasts a love of Greek mythology, while this Witch Discovery Metal Bookmark is an interesting and more modern take.

Get Cozy While You Sip and Study

A sweater, unlit candle, book, and tea kettle on top of a chair

Autumn weather practically screams, “Get cozy!” Thankfully, we have some pieces here that can help you and your secret society of intellectuals get nice and cozy without sacrificing your dark academia style. 

  • Nevermore Raven Teacup: Inspired by Edgar Allen Poe’s famous poem, this teacup is perfect for sipping tea while ruminating over dark, romantic poetry.

  • Sugar Quill Spoon: This little sugar spoon is a beautiful addition to a literary tea set, and helps sweeten the moody academia aesthetic. Bonus: it looks great paired with the Nevermore Raven Teacup.

  • The Picture of Dorian Grey Blanket: Need we say more? This stunning blanket will keep you warm after late nights scouring campus for mysterious clues, or after keeping watch for your secret society. Featuring a famous quote from the literary masterpiece itself.

  • Witch Discovery Book Lamp: Inspired by the series, this book lamp will illuminate your notes during late nights at the library, or light up your reading nook with a warm, inviting glow.

Discover More

Dark academia is a gorgeous aesthetic for the fall season. We hope these bookish gift ideas will help feed your fellow dark academia lover’s hunger for knowledge, literature, the arts, and all things academic. For even more ideas, stay in-the-know about NEW products and gifts for book lovers by signing up to Become a Lunacorn. Find out more about our exclusive VIP membership (a.k.a. our own secret society…) here!

A university with gothic architecture in the autumn University meeting space with old gothic architecture

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