The designer Christmas gift guide, part three

It's time for your daily dose of gift-buying inspiration. Let's look at some Mac apps, shall we?

Tawdry knitwear, anything written by Jeremy Clarkson, T-shirts emblazoned with "witty" slogans, stuff with cats on, sock, sock, socks ... We've all received Christmas presents we didn't want, didn't need and certainly didn't ask for. If you want ensure your gifts are met with a warm welcome, you've come to the right place. Today, we're looking at the best Mac apps that aren't Adobe Creative Suite CS6.

ColorSchemer Studio 2 for OS X application icon

ColorSchemer Studio 2 $49.99

Whatever your project, ColorSchemer Studio 2 speeds up the process of finding the right palette. Among myriad impressive and useful features, the option to import photos and selecting colour schemes from them is particularly cool. 

GuideLiner for Mac OS X application icon

GuideLiner €15

Not the most mind-blowing app out there, but very useful nonetheless. Measuring your web and screen layouts, checking and optimising them for smaller screens and working with guidelines in all applications makes GuideLiner a must for designers and developers alike. 

Nik Software SnapSeed for Mac OS X icon

Snapseed $19.99

Snapseed is streamlined desktop photo editing. An impressive array effects, adjustments, enhancements and sharing options make this app a solid edition to any photographer's bag of tricks. 

Art Directors Toolkiy 5i for Mac OS X application icon

Art Directors Toolkit 5i $19.95

Looking to speed up your design process? Art Directors Toolkit 5i can help. Compatible with Illustrator, Photoshop, InDesign and more, this app has a ruler to measure objects on-screen, the option to quickly scan through font previews with your mouse's scrollwheel, calculate percentages for image scaling and loads more besides. 

LittleSnapper for Mac OS X application icon

LittleSnapper £25.67

LittleSnapper is a digital scrapbook for designers that allows you to take screenshots of entire webpages, or more specific areas of your screen, without cluttering your desktop with endless reams of icons. It comes with built-in vector tools and non-destructive annotations you can easily show and hide.

And finally...

OS X Mountain Lion £13.99

"The world's most advanced desktop operating system gets even better," says Apple with typical hubris. Highlights include preference panes enabing you to sign into multiple social networks with stacks of cool posting features, AirPlay which lets you mirror your display onto a TV with ease and the ability to dictate text through your Mac's in-built microphone. 

Main image courtesy of Shutterstock