Calling all boyfriends and husbands: if you’ve left it a little bit late to buy the lady in your life something special for Christmas and you’re beginning to panic buy bits and pieces that you believe may become a great gift by the sum of their parts, I’m here to tell you that they won’t.
But I’m not just here to criticise you, I have the solution to your problem with the purchase of just one gift. You can now detract many hours of your life spent in Christmas shopping hell browsing Selfridges or Topshop rails while wondering what size she won’t be offended by.
The statement handbag is the perfect gift for any woman this Christmas. Here’s why:
- It gives you (man) a great opportunity to show that you do listen when your lady eulogises about Celine’s clean cut lines.
- If she loves fashion then she may have a penchant for luxury labels but the price tag can be a little off putting for those of us who like to continuously buy new clothes rather than put a little aside each month for a 255. It is therefore something we would LOVE to have but may not be willing to buy for ourselves.
- It is a show stopping gift so you only need one. Trust me she won’t be asking – or if she’s nice, thinking – “is that all you got me?”
- Her girlfriends will think you’re the best boyfriend *special bonus points*
- Bags last forever – well at least high quality calf skin leather ones do -so it’s the gift that keeps on giving.
Top of my list would be the Prada Vitello Vintage Embellished tote bag in distressed white. It comes in a variety of colours and sizes with prices ranging from £1550 – £2200.
Of course, the hard work comes from knowing which kind of bag is her dreambag but it’s easy enough to find out, just take her for a stroll around Harrods ground floor (handbag heaven) and look out for drool.
Next up, we have the watch. It’s a classic but surprisingly easy to go wrong with.
Throw out anything you would look for in a watch: waterproof, works in sub zero conditions, precision timing to the millisecond and whatever other practical desires you have for a timekeeping device.
Instead, bear this in mind: a watch is like another piece of jewellery. Like a handbag it used as an accessory to complete our outfit and to reflect who we are, or at least who we want other people to think we are.
In fact, when I wear a watch, it is highly infrequent that I look at it to tell the time and whenever I do, I tend to find it’s still set to southern hemisphere time zones; though interesting this is not entirely helpful.
So what should you look for? Again the hard work, though I wouldn’t really call it that, more opening your eyes, is determining her style. Classic and androgynous or delicate and pretty? Little pointer – top shirt button done or undone?
A Rolex gives you the biggest output from the smallest input. Keeping the sartorial choice quite simple while achieving the wow effect.
However this year I have my eye on the newly revamped Omega Ladymatic. Originally launched in 1955 which explains the fuddy duddy name, this watch has had a facelift (geddit) with Nicole Kidman fronting the campaign and selling its elegance to me effortlessly.
Of course, if you’re feeling generous, An evening watch like this white and yellow diamond encrusted Chanel piece would always be welcome.
With this one, I might be going a little off piste but I had to include it because when I saw it, in slow mo video (yes this is my version of porn), I got a little bit excited.
It’s one of Chanels timepieces that come under their category of “exceptionnelle” and considering it’s made from 743 baguette cut diamonds set in 18K white gold you can see why. It’s a snip at around £300,000.
Now I know that I may be pricing you out of the market here boys but these are the ideas; go make them work for you. Vintage watches are a great way to go; vintage Rolexes are surprisingly cheap and mostly in very good condition and if you’re looking for a jewellery inspired watch, again antique or second hand is the way to find something unique and at a much more palatable price. I spotted a beautiful 1930s art deco diamond encrusted Patek Phillipe watch for £2,500.
Last on my list of perfect and everlasting gifts is somewhat of a wildcard because ultimately it depends on whether she is a stationary girl.
Some girls chew the ends of their biros and discard them leaking into their Primark handbags (slovenly types). While other girls, or should I say women, get a funny feeling if they have to write with the wrong kind of pen.
It’s different for everyone but blue ink is my nemesis. That and scritchy scratchy biros, it has to be fine point black ink. You may mock this if you’re one of those slovenly types I referred to earlier but my track record for converting others is exceptional, once you’ve tried it you can’t go back, a bit like first class on a plane. Even premium economy is a giant step up. Anyway I digress.
One of the reasons this gift is so special is that a good pen is not so easy to find. In this instance I would say avoid the high street if you don’t want to have to sift through lots of jazzed up Parker pens. Ebay is used by collectors and dealers and if you’re looking for something unusual or limited edition, then that would be my starting point.
For a little inspiration, feast your eyes on the Panthere de Cartier fountain pen. Solid gold set with 475 yellow and white diamonds, eyes in emeralds and nose in onyx.
That’s not actually the part I love about this pen, apart from the obvious appeal of the panther, it’s the plinth that does it for me. Imagine placing that down on your desk at work.
While you may not be open to buying a £25,000 pen for your not-so-long-term girlfriend, the underlying principles within this are firstly to buy something of quality, it doesn’t have to be wildly expensive.
One of my favourite gifts was a pair of small pearl earrings, they never go out of style and they will never end up in the ‘trash’ pile when I’m doing a clear out, as I might add Ann Summers lingerie has (shudder).
Secondly, to take some time to reflect upon your partner’s true style and buy something that she desires. A special gift that shows thought and insight into someone’s character and taste is impressive at whatever cost.
As a sidenote, if you break up she’ll still remember you with fondness everytime she puts on those pearl earrings because they last forever.