It’s Christmas time again! Time to make your own wish lists, and think about what to buy for your family and friends. I still stand behind every single timeless suggestion on last year’s gift guide, but here are some new additions and discoveries. Like everything on my blog, if I don’t LOVE it, it doesn’t go on here. Everything I recommend is something I own already, or something I really really would like to have or have given as a gift. So! Let’s start, shall we?
First, some amazing pyjamas that I just bought for myself as an early Christmas present. The very shiny gold foil dots look like sequins, and what’s not to love about that? They are edged in lovely gold piping. The fabric is a soft silky modal jersey fabric with a bit of elastane stretch. AND, they are 30% off at the moment (with code F6P8). I’m not a massive fan of Boden clothing style-wise, but these pyjamas tick every single box for me. Glamorous, practical, and ridiculously comfortable. I can’t recommend them enough. In fact, I’m going to buy the navy ones as well; that’s how much I love them. Would a magpie on your list like some glamourous pyjamas? There is also a dressing gown/bathrobe. Either are perfect for Christmas morning if you need to look a little presentable in front of your in-laws (raises hand), as well for as the other 364 days of the year… because as you know, a day without sparkle is a day wasted.
Next is one of those gifts that nearly everyone could use, but may not have. I enjoy dressing a table for a dinner party at home as much as I like dressing myself for a dinner party! I always scatter tea lights in small glass holders randomly along the centre of the table; they can be easily pushed around to make room for platters of food without ruining any symmetry. It isn’t very relaxing to talk around or over a tall bunch of flowers or candles so I keep everything low and easy. These tiny mercury antiqued silver bud vases are perfect (They’re 20% off with code AP380). I’ll scatter six or eight of these around the table along with the tea lights, which will reflect beautifully on their mirrored surface. Just a single flower or leaf spring in each vase is all that is needed. They’d make a cracking gift for someone and can go anywhere in a home.
If you’re not crazy about the antiqued silver, I saw these glass teardrop bud vases the other day, and made a mental note to get some in the future. The modern shape is appealing to me because they can work on a formal or casual table and (on a practical note) they won’t knock over easily like a traditional column-shaped bud vase.
I like the idea of having tea lights and bud vases in a cheery mixed-up assortment of colours and keeping the rest of the table simple. If you or someone you know entertains a lot, I think any of these bud vase options are lovely gifts, and not expensive.
While I’m on bud vases (I know, I’m slightly obsessed with them) I found these minimalist ceramic ones on Etsy, and they’re firmly on my wish list now too. I’d love to dot these around my home, or let them all congregate on the dinner table for parties.
Moving on to makeup, this is one of my favourite palettes I’ve ever bought. I’ve used the Urban Decay Naked palette almost daily since it came out. I’m on my third one! This new moondust palette absolutely amazing too. If you don’t like a full on glitter effect, just a tiny bit of sparkly colour blended into the centre of the eyelid is beautifully subtle. I like using a small brush to use the shadow as an eyeliner. If you use the Urban Decay primer, the glitter stays put and doesn’t migrate down onto your face. Any magpie on your list would love this. I know “they” say you shouldn’t wear glitter eyeshadow past a certain age, but I intend to do so for as long as I have eyes to shadow.
My skin gets very dry in the winter (look for an eczema post coming up soon) and oils make a big difference to my skin’s behaving in cold dry weather. Some of my friends have dry winter skin too; they specifically ask me to get them beauty products as Christmas or birthday presents, because they know with my eczema I try EVERYTHING and I know what works. This Caudalie Premier Cru is my current favourite face oil, and at a much better price point than a few of the other ones, like Sunday Riley, that I use. (Fun fact: did you know that a “caudalie” is a measure of the time a wine’s taste lasts in your mouth?) Three friends will be getting this for Christmas from me! I always like buying from Caudalie because like Ren, you can request samples of what you’d like to try. Good companies want you to try their excellent products. I often discover favourites that way (like two Ren ones I’m using daily right now, but I’ll save that for my eczema post, as they’re not quite gift-appropriate). You only really know if something works for your skin after trying it at home for a few days. The annoying department store method of demonstrating cream products on the back of your hand doesn’t tell you anything useful, only how it smells.
I saw this Flyte Light the other day in the Conran shop, and everyone around was absolutely transfixed. The single LED bulb spins hypnotically in front of your eyes as if by magic (or magnets, as is the case) . The bulb is shatterproof, which my 3 and a half year old son put to the test. If you need a wow gift and don’t mind spending £225, this is it. The low voltage LED can provide illumination for 50,000 hours! Go look at the video on the website to learn more about how it works.
I still think you can’t get much better than the three Cire Trudon candles I mentioned in last year’s Holiday Gift Guide, but in case you are looking for something a little more modern (and cheaper!) I can recommend the Bella Freud candles. The scents are powerful and very unique. The Loving candle is a beautiful floral with LOTS of tuberose sitting nicely with warm amber and sandalwood. If someone you know likes Tuberose, this is a great option.
The Ginsberg is God version is a unique fresh green scent bursting with fig leaf, fresh tomato, and tomato leaves. It is a really summery fragrance that would brighten up those grey long February days. I grow tomatoes all summer long and enjoy that unmistakable smell of tomato leaf, but some people don’t. I’m also crazy about the scent of fig leaves, but again, your mileage may vary. I imagine any garden enthusiast would appreciate this candle.
I always like to include a foodie gift recommendation or two, because I have lots of those in my circle of friends, including my husband! I’ve recently been to an amazing new-ish restaurant in London called Honey and Co. The two Israeli chefs (who are also husband and wife) worked for Yotam Ottolenghi, so it is that same style of food, but a little less fusioned with other cuisines. I love the delicious and unpretentious food they serve, and their cookbook Honey and Co: Food from the Middle East is exactly the same. This is a delightful cookbook to read and to cook from. If you know someone who is into baking, their desserts cookbook, Honey & Co: The Baking Book is incredible, but I daren’t let that one in my house for fear of cooking and eating my way through it.
Not cooking related, but another all purpose gift for anyone is the absolutely brilliant book Sapiens, A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari. My husband is thoroughly engrossed in it right now, and every time I pick it up to read a page or two I can’t put it down (I’ll read it when he’s finished)! Did you know there were several species of humans and we are the only one that survived? This is a Sunday Times Top Ten Bestseller for a reason.
Now for a jewellery suggestion… These star earrings aren’t quite bold enough for me personally, but I could easily buy them for friends who are into fashion but not quite as much as I am! The asymmetrical styling is very current, and would look especially great on someone who tucks their hair behind their ears. They come in white gold, yellow gold, and rose gold and are only £49.
I am amassing quite a collection of ultra sparkly wrap bracelets from my friend Liz, of LizzyO boutique. I adore mine, and get loads of compliments when I wear them. They are a snip at £12.50 (and you can get 10% off with the code BLACKFRIDAY from November 25-28). Below, I’m wearing the double wrap baguette one and the double wrap horizontal baguette one together in true ‘more is more, less is a bore’ style.
I can’t do a Holiday gifts post without including some sequins, so here is what I have my eye on. I’m crazy about gingerbread, Christmas, and sequins, so this Topshop sweater has me re-thinking my Christmas sweater allergy.
Another good sequin gift is this ASOS slouchy coppery brown sequin top which looks well above its price point. It has sheer unfinished edges on the neckline and sleeves. I tried it in a previous colour way (a golden green) that didn’t work for me, but this one would. The rosy gold colour would be flattering on so many skin tones.
One last sparkling inexpensive gift idea is this silver glitter clutch, where the glitter is suspended in the liquid perspex case. This would be perfect for someone younger on your list, or just someone young at heart! I have an iPhone case like this and it is a definite conversation piece. It also comes in silver, pink, purple or turquoise.
If you’re in need of more sparkly inspiration, check out my Pinterest board called THE WANT which has everything I’m currently ogling. Happy shopping, and I wish you joy and fun as the holiday season and its party circuit approaches! xx
Linking to: notdressedaslamb,