I fondly look back on Christmas and Hanukkah as holidays in which I would receive a plethora of wonderful presents from my parents, and watch them “ooh” and “ahh” over the lackluster candle, or “Vanderbilt Dad” t-shirt I would thoughtlessly gift. However, I’ve unfortunately realized that with my recent graduation and current job, gift expectations have been heightened this year. With much trepidation, I hesitantly perused my favorite online shops, and much to my delight and surprise, managed to pick out some great gifts (though in all honesty, anything would have been an upgrade from my previous purchases). Family and friends: Discontinue reading if you want to be surprised.
My father, an incredibly well-dressed man, always looks dapper no matter where he goes. He seems to think his 10 year beach bag in which he lugs around his gym and overnight clothes, is cool (it’s not). Thankfully for him (and for myself since I fully intend to “borrow” this) Billy Kirk’s plaid large overnighter is both classic, chic, and an absolutely perfect gift.
My little brother, like his father, is one of the few 18 year olds who is both meticulous about his wardrobe and heterosexual. After sporting his first tuxedo last year, he grew a penchant for bow ties. Although his entrepreneurial endeavors with his envisioned company “Bows and Bros” failed, I know he would still appreciate Peter Elliot’s silk bow tie. The bright colors and golfer design are perfect for his boarding school lifestyle and preppy aesthetic.
I’ve found that holidays are the perfect excuse to rectify your man’s style, so nix the electronics and give him something you would want him to wear (he’ll buy the Bose speakers himself, but won’t necessarily indulge in a spectacular sports jacket). Since my boyfriend is from the South, I love to outfit him in cold weather gear for when we visit my hometown back north. Again, Peter Elliot is my latest go-to when it comes to men’s presents and I absolutely love this leather and fur vintage pilot’s hat.
My affinity for my dog has been described as both weird and unhealthy, but regardless, I delight in buying him gifts. He’s been especially good this year – has only destroyed a few carpets, so I’m thinking he deserves this adorable fur-hooded, sweater lined parka. And to appease my Jewish father, my darling doggie will also be receiving gifts from the “chewish” line of dog toys, like my personal favorite, and only mildly offensive, Schnoz the Hanukah anteater.
I fondly remember my family having a dinner party and instead of the typical hostess present, a friend brought a toy for my dog: a stuffed Grey Goose bottle (clearly a nod to my mother’s affections). The toy was a huge hit and we still get a kick out of watching my dog cradle his bottle of “vodka”. These fun dog toys come in all libations from “Kennel One” to “Grrona”. If alcoholic dog toys aren’t up your alley, my go-to Christmas present is a really spectacular ornament. Every ornament from And George is to die for, but my personal favorite is this horse on wheels ornament.
The most difficult person to give presents to is my mother. She: a. hates everything that isn’t “practical” b. hates everything over a certain price and c. hates everything under a certain price. With her, I have to find something she desperately needs and then add a little panache to it. Being that she keeps every single receipt she acquires (even those from Starbucks) her wallet hasn’t properly closed for the last two years. You can’t go wrong with a Bottega Veneta wallet-the brand never goes out of style and is classic and chic without being flashy-prefect for my mother.
As for myself: I’m normally too broke to treat myself to gifts, yet after last week’s thanksgiving binge and the upcoming latkes and Christmas feast I fully intend on inhaling, I think David Kirsch’s praiseworthy 2 day detox kit will be a necessity. Indulge with me in fine food and even finer gifts this holiday season – you won’t regret it!