December is here and Christmas is well and truly looming; the question is – have you bought all of your gifts? I must admit, my Christmas shopping always ends up being a tale of two halves: if there’s something I have in mind for a particular person that I just know will be perfect, I’ll buy it months in advance, but the rest of my gift purchasing always ends up being last minute. I adore giving gifts to the people I love, and even those I have bought last minute are carefully thought out, and always something that I would love to receive myself.
I’ve compiled a list of the most gorgeous items for the treasured women in your life: mums, sisters, best friends – and yourself! I always find that it’s this time of year that I tend to get asked if there is anything I would like/need, usually by those family types who leave their gift buying until Christmas eve *cough* (husband) *cough*, and whilst most people’s first instinct is to say, “oh really, don’t worry, you don’t need to get me anything”, when you know that will mean receiving a gift that will require you to muster up your best acting skills, it’s far easier to make a suggestion, or better still, send them a link to this post, and they will thank you for it!
Bloom and Wild
First up, Bloom and Wild. The perfect for a flower enthusiast, they always have a selection of the most exquisite bouquets, and you can order either a hand-tied bunch or a letterbox-friendly bunch. I’ve bought and received many boxes over the past couple of years and have found this brand to be the best in terms of selection and longevity of the blooms. Send a one-off box to a friend that you won’t be able to catch up with over Christmas, or better still order 3 months of flowers for someone extra special. Bloom and Wild also post adorable miniature letterbox Christmas trees, including lights and baubles! Finally don’t forget that ‘from me to me’ gift – you deserve it! Flowers are my favourite pick-me-up, and this year I plan to order a couple of boxes to make our home look beautifully festive.
Pictured is The Ruby bouquet, £33 (enter my name, Hannah Straughan, at checkout for £10 off your first order of any blooms!)
The White Company
No one does Christmas quite like The White Company! It’s my go-to for gifts for work colleagues and extended family members, as you really can’t go wrong, even if you’re not exactly sure what to buy them! Last year when I received my work secret santa, it was handed to me in the iconic white paper bag adorned with a ribbon, and my heart skipped a little – I think that says it all! For Christmas, I think nothing is more ideal than some cosy, warm pyjamas and luxury cashmere bed socks; the kind of gift I would put on the moment I had unwrapped them!
This year I adore the Brushed Heart Flannel pyjamas, which you can shop here and here – pictured below. They are £82 for the set but you can currently get 20% off through the links I’ve posted, I’m not sure how long the discount will last for though, so hurry! The Cashmere Bed Socks in Ivory are also 20% off through the link here (usually £36), which is amazing as they are a year-round luxury staple at The White Company. I always have these on my wish list and buy a few pairs to give to my favourite people at Christmas!
Stitch and Story
This independent knitting brand, founded by friends Jenny and Jen, is my favourite place to buy yarn and knitting kits, especially as gifts for others. Why? Their yarn is exquisitely soft (only natural fibres here), they have a gorgeous selection of patterns for their knitting kits, most of which are suitable for beginners or those with only a little knitting experience, and their kits at beautifully packaged, and so make the perfect presents. All the kits come with the knitting pattern you’ve chosen, bamboo knitting needles, basic knitting instructions and yarn in your chosen colour – everything you need to get going!
I’m a huge knitting enthusiast, it’s the perfect mindfulness practice, and as such I’ll be buying some kits for a few special people this year that I think would really enjoy getting stuck into a relaxing, creative project after Christmas dinner. It’s the ideal get out clause from that 5 hour monopoly marathon!! Pictured below is the Chunky Tassels Throw knitting kit, £125. Although it looks complicated, it’s made up of one stitch and is genuinely suitable for any level of knitter, so even if you’ve never picked up a pair of needles before, watch a couple of YouTube tutorial videos and you’ll be good to go! Stitch and Story have generously offered 20% off this knitting kit with the code THROWXMAS, which expires on the 20th December.
Where do I start with Jo Malone? The ultimate in luxury gifting, everything from the scents to the packaging is divine. My fragrance of choice, Pomegranate Noir, is running out and so was number one on my wish list this year. It’s a fruity, spicy and enigmatic scent that not only takes on a different character on different individuals, but it also seems to develop over time. I adore it, and it’s extra special to me as it’s the fragrance I chose to wear on my wedding day, and the one that Ben now always associates with me.
The Paper Parlour
I’m a little bit of a stationary geek, and get a bit of a thrill out of a beautiful new notebook or journal, and when it comes to cards not any old will do. I have a huge appreciation (and instantly know we will be excellent friends) if I ever receive a carefully selected, independently produced card – anyone else with me? I discovered The Paper Parlour earlier this year when I bought my Rifle Paper Co 2018 planner from them, and couldn’t resist picking up some pretty paper goods at the same time!
This Rifle Paper Co desk calendar, £15.50, is perfectly pretty in every way and would made a gorgeous gift. Like me, whilst you’re there pick up some sweet gift tags and washi tape for wrapping, like the Rifle Paper Co gift tags pictured below.
Sleek, minimalist and affordable: I love the design of these watches and had to include them as part of this guide as a gift that pretty much anyone would be thrilled to receive. This year, Daniel Wellington have some gorgeous gift bundles, priced from £129, which include an extra strap or matching bracelet, and come in a beautiful gift box. There is currently a promotion running called Holiday Gifts for Everyone!, where until the 31st December you can choose 2 favourites and get 10% off. In addition to this, Daniel Wellington are offering an extra 15% off on top of this with the code HANNAHS, until the 31st December.
Osmology is the absolute bees knees if you’re a luxury candle lover (and who isn’t?): it’s an independent company that I was lucky enough to find out about when they launched this year. Osmology source and curate the most comprehensive range of incredible candles from around the world, I’ve already discovered several candle brands that were completely new to me and I now adore. You can buy online, or visit their flagship store in Bristol.
I’m really into slightly alternative festive scents this year, and Lanai by Boy Smells, £32 (pictured below), fits the bill perfectly. It’s described as ‘reminiscent of ancient volcanic sands that extend to the edge of sweet tropic foliage, transporting you instantly to an island. It features notes of spicy clove and peppercorn, with calming tropical coconut and orange blossom’; i.e. Christmas on a beach, if ever I smelled it! I’d also highly recommend Skog by Scandinavisk, from £15, described as ‘the calm of the boreal forest’ – need I say more? It’s bliss.
I hope you’ve found some last minute inspiration here – it genuinely is my ultimate list for little bits of luxury! Each of the gifts have been handpicked by me, but a huge thank you to these brands for generously gifting the items photographed.
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