It’s an understatement to say that Christmas 2020 was a non-starter for most of us. On the bright side, last year’s failed festivities simply mean this year will be spent making up for lost time. It will have extra significance with Christmas shopping starting earlier than usual as many of us who celebrated a watered-down version of the holiday last year are eager to get the holiday started. Any reason to find more joy in life is a good idea. For individuals, it reflects a desire to extend the happy holiday season. Read more, ‘Do’s and Don’t of Christmas.’
For the 2021 Gift Guide, we’re sharing 120 of our favourite things that can make life better.
What makes the 2021 guide so special? These are gift ideas we have bought (or received), used and really love. Some are practical, a few are whimsical, but they all help us live well every day. Read more, ‘How to Make a Personal Plan for Giving this Christmas.’
You’ll find beautiful, practical items for home, gifts to ease stress and help you live well.
Whether it’s a house-warming gift for the host or entertaining essentials that animate your own gathering or beautiful, affordable wooden toys for children— these designs always work their magic. Read more, ‘Gift Giving Tips from the Experts.’
Find a covetable cache of treasures specially curated with the design lover in mind.
From globetrotting adventurers to design-forward homebodies and fashion fans with a penchant for glamour – whoever you’re shopping for, our comprehensive Christmas gift guide has the perfect presents to suit all styles this holiday season.
Scroll our gallery now for the ultimate gift-giving inspiration.
Oh and, if you’re looking for a gift that speaks to the heart of the design-lover? Look no further than our new book, Living Well By Design, (Vendome Press), which you might find ticks everyone – from family to friends – off the list. It’s a superb tome, that anyone would be delighted to have, hold, and treasure – that will help people understand design in new ways. Read more, ‘Introducing the Ultimate Decorating Book.’
There’s more than 70 gifts Under $100. Plus lots of our fave gift-giving tips!
The very thing that you think ‘just makes a gift’ is more likely to be the very thing that makes it all wrong.
WANT YOUR GIFT TO IMPRESS?
Buy something heavy. The secret is to bulk it up according to an Oxford professor in an article in The New York Times – If you hide a 30-gram weight in a box of chocolate, that weight translates to a significant increase in perceived quality of the chocolate.
There are exceptions, but the association between weight and the perception of luxury applies to items including tableware, cutlery, perfume and wine.
It is the colour most associated with luxury because it seems to be the colour that we perceive to be the heaviest.
A GIFT’S PRICE MATTERS:
More to the giver than the recipient.
GIFT-GIVING CAN BE A WAY OF SHOWING YOU CARE:
About someone, or reflecting the care someone has shown you.
WHEN WE OPEN A PRESENT:
We want to see something we can use immediately, which will slot effortlessly into our lives, and boost our egos.
Give the best. The best of anything is special, whether it’s a towel, a pillowcase or a candlestick.
IF YOU’RE STUCK:
Opt for classic gifts such as a beautiful book or a showstopping cakestand, the last saute pan they’ll need, heirloom-worthy cookware, serving ware that shimmers, a handsome wood cutting board that will bring a lifetime of pleasure. They are old faithfuls that always work.
And of course, a fabulous bottle of spirits never falters.
GIVE THINGS THAT ADDS TO A COLLECTION:
Whether it’s an artwork or a book. Make the internet your friend and go searching. Your family (or pal) will be touched at your thoughtfulness. And that is what present giving is all about. An indulgent perfume. Or a well-designed pepper grinder or a marble chopping board will give a lifetime of pleasure.
Seek treats the recipient would never buy themselves.
IT’S NOT ALL ABOUT YOU:
Give things they would like, not things that you would like to own.
‘What do you want for Christmas?’ People either forget to mention the one thing they really want or, to avoid appearing avaricious, mention items they don’t need or particularly like.
DON’T KEEP REMINDING THE RECIPIENT OF YOUR GENEROSITY:
Gifts should be given lightly.
THINK ABOUT THE THINGS THEY MIGHT NEED:
Did they just move, adopt a pet or book an adventurous vacation? Gifting can be an opportunity to riff on the ways they’ve already spent their own money.
When someone says they want something, listen: There’s nothing quite like finally getting the thing you’ve been hinting at for months.
CONSIDER THE NON-GIFT GIFT:
Experiences and perishables can be just as, and sometimes more, gratifying than a thing you have to keep forever, lest you insult an in-law.
GIFT-GIVING CAN HONOUR RELATIONSHIPS:
In both obvious and subtle ways – the reasons you and your recipient are connected and how far your relationship has come. That said, if the primary facet of your relationship is humour, there’s nothing wrong with a gag gift.
DON’T “OVER-INDIVIDUATE” YOUR GIFTS
People too often give bad presents because they insist on buying something different for everyone. In experiments using greeting cards and gifts, psychologists found that people typically feel obliged to choose unique items for each person on their list even when the recipients wouldn’t know if they got duplicates — and even when one particularly good gift would work better for everyone.
OPT FOR ONE SURE THING
The more gifts you select, the more likely you’ll pick some duds. If you can find one sure thing, don’t be afraid to give it more than once.
NO MATTER WHAT THE PRESENT:
Remember to wrap it nicely. People remember how this and it sets the mood for the pièce de ré·sis·tance.