Even when I’m not blogging (though I *do* plan to return in 2017), the annual SBOS Gift Guide has become a thing now. The format is simple – 30 things, in (theoretically) a variety of price brackets (although this year’s seems oddly pricey!) that I’d happily give and/or receive.
As with last year, if you have other great suggestions for gifts, especially from independent merchants, please leave them in the comments – I *love* discovering new stuff! Let me know too which items on here you particularly like – it helps me to plan next year’s!
1.Byredo Unnamed Eau de Parfum, £90
Byredo make gorgeous, gorgeous (expensive) fragrances, but the real joy of this is that it’s nameless until … you name it. Better still, you do that with the set of stickers that come with it in the Byredo font. By the end of 2017 I swear I will have bought this and called it ‘Blood, bruises and semen.’
2. Scheu… aber Geil Scheurebe 2015, £16.50
The downside to this is that the website describes it as ‘an undervalued German cross between Riesling and a mystery grape,’ which, given German wine’s reputation, doesn’t seem promising. But ‘Scheu… aber Geil’ means ‘Shy … but Horny,’ so this is the perfect gift for your crush. Plus, I’ve tried it and it’s really nice. Honest.
3. Kawecko fountain pen, £17.99
Because who (especially writers) doesn’t want a cute fountain pen that still takes cartridges? Look, some of us miss being at school, okay?
Roald Dahl Rococo Chocolate Bar Bundle, £40
For someone who’s as much a sucker for beautiful packaging as they are for chocolate (i.e. me), these are perfect.
5. Dasher throw, £120
I was uncertain about putting what is essentially a blanket on the list, in case I seemed eighty years old, but when I mooted it on Twitter, people seemed very keen. So here it is.
6. Sibling gin, £34
This is a) delicious b) beautifully packaged and c) perfect for that hard to buy for brother or sister.
7. Cashmere blend fisherman rib jumper, £119
Because let’s be honest: who doesn’t love a man in snuggly knitwear? Plus, it’s as much a gift for you as it is for him…
8. Subscription to BUST magazine, from $24.95
Everybody loves getting post that isn’t bills, but glossy magazines have got progressively worse and worse. BUST describes itself as a ‘groundbreaking, original women’s lifestyle magazine’ and has features on everything from craft to sex, as well as an erotic story. Prices start from $24.95 for a print subscription in the US, but international subscriptions are available.
9. Desire: 100 of Literature’s Sexiest Stories, £20
Personally, I love coffee table/reference books that tie in with my interests, and while I don’t care if they shock my mum, Desire is a nice way of acknowledging someone’s interest in sex writing in a way they can display in public without feeling embarrassed.
10. Upcycled wooden wine crate ottoman, from £165
If I had the space in my living room/kitchen/bedroom (and £165 to spare), I would definitely own one of these. Plus, it looks like it might be the perfect height to bend over…
11. DIY gingerbread house kit, £35
Is this meant for children? Probably. Would I love to receive it nonetheless? Hell yes.
12. Toothy shark, £20
Talking of things that are meant for children but I want … I have so much lust for this guy. One friend asked why he had legs when he’s a shark, but I don’t care why he has legs – I find his smile instantly cheers me.
13. Feminist enamel lapel pin, £9.99
This is the perfect stocking filler for your BFF, your mum, your girlfriend, your wife. It’s just perfect, essentially.
14. Get a room voucher, from £50
Gift vouchers, when presented beautifully, are no longer a gift you get when you don’t know what to get someone. In the case of these, they’re what you get someone who really wants/needs a (dirty) weekend away.
15. Diptyque Scented candle la Madeleine, £55
I’m personally not a huge lover of scented candles, but this one really does smell like madeleines. In an ideal world, I think you’d buy it for someone bookish along with a copy of Proust’s In search of lost time.
16. Concrete letters, from £4.50
Buying for a brutalism fan, or someone who has a kink for concrete? Buy them their name (or their safeword)…
17. Feather appliqué journal, £9.50
I sing the praises of the hardback notebook every year: they don’t fall apart and they’re easier to use when out and about. Plus, this Paperchase one is actually pretty good value.
18. Tickets for a show at the Bunker, from £19.50
I think I’m right in saying the Bunker is London’s newest theatre, and it’s great for two reasons. 1) It shows thought-provoking, often feminist stuff 2) The bar stays open after the show and the cast tend to mingle, so you can discuss the performance with them. Combine this with a meal at the excellent Padella, which is right across the road.
19. Simple cookbook, £20
I haven’t cooked from this yet, but I have asked for it for Christmas, and I would gladly own it for the cover image alone. Also, Diana Henry’s recipes tend to be failsafe.
20. Book and a bottle, from £40
A book and a bottle is a subscription service run by Damian Barr, who also hosts excellent literary salons in London. For every month you subscribe, you get a gorgeously wrapped book and bottle of wine specially selected to match it.
21. Multistripe boxers, £27
I’m not sure if it’s because pink is an unusual colour for men’s underwear, but I really, really like these. They make me sad that Paul Smith doesn’t also seem to make women’s underwear. If you buy them right as I hit publish on this post, they also seem to be 25% off at the moment, so just over £20.
22. Caged kite pendant necklace, £6
I saw someone wearing this on a writing workshop I did recently, and it was so pretty, I asked her where it was from, then went and bought one immediately. It looks much more expensive than it is, and as such, it’s the ideal secret santa gift.
23. Hot Dudes Reading Calendar 2017, £10.99
Another one that’s good for secret santa, although possibly more between friends than in the office…
24. ‘I Can’t Even’ Collar Tag, £10
This was not the collar tag I intended to put on this list – I wanted to include the ‘Fur bae’ one but it’s currently sold out. Pretty certain your cat-loving friend would like all of these though.
25. Liberty Navy Summer Bloom floral tie, £47.50
I love Liberty print and I love a man in a tie – what more is there to say? For people who like their ties more colourful than this, there are also lots of brighter Liberty prints available; for those who like them subtler, you can get the tie in plain charcoal with a print lining.
26. The Very Hungry Caterpillar Socks, £8.99
When I first came across these, I was all ‘Oh, but why do kids get all the cool stuff?’ only to then spot that these come in (both men’s and women’s) ADULT SIZES. Want.
27. Imposter print, $30
I have so many female friends who need to hear this, so I think it’s a great gift. If you want to give it framed, eBay has a huge selection of cheap frames to choose from. (Also, the spelling of ‘impostor’ is not wrong (I checked!), it’s just American…)
28. Arrow snood – mint, £30
I don’t do scarves, or anything that functions like I scarf, because I get too hot way too quickly. If I didn’t, I’d own this. Your scarf loving friend will probably adore it.
29. Real luxury bath & shower drops, £40
It wouldn’t be a SBOS gift guide without some overpriced bath stuff. This year’s boasts the huge advantage of coming with a *pipette* so you don’t accidentally tip thirty quid’s worth of bath oil into one bath. I haven’t tried it yet, but the reviews seem super positive.
30. Tinsel Tits Christmas Jumper, £34.99
I don’t think I really need to explain why I think this is great.
All pictures are taken from sellers’ websites. No copyright infringement is intended. If you’d like a picture removing or crediting, please do get in touch.