On reflection, the 162 gift suggestions I made across my 3 gifts guides (here, here and here) were a bit female focused. This is because they were essentially lists of things I like and I am a girl. Lady. Woman. Female of the species. What about the lads, I hear you ask? Well, I suppose they deserve presents too, at a push. And those presents need not be a 3 pack of navy socks, a novelty old-fashioned shaving brush and a Lynx Africa gift set, which is what most supermarkets seem to believe they’re all after.
Rather than me making suggestions, I decided to ask a real, live man to create a list for me! A guest edit! The very first guest edit the blog has seen! The man in question is my friend Adrian Gardner, who we shall call AG, because that is what everyone has called him for as long as I have known him, which is quite long. AG is, like me, from Sunderland, and, unlike me, now lives in Edinburgh, where he has an important job, but also makes wonderful art. You can see it on his Instagram here and on his website here.
So, over to AG. I am very impressed by his choices, especially his selection of a whole Serrano ham, which strikes me as a gift of such fin de siècle decadence, I don’t quite know what to do. As I’m a vegetarian, I’d probably have to substitute it for a catering size pack of Quorn. Anyway, here we are. From here onwards, all ideas, opinions and words are AG’s own, don’t come after me. Here’s his face, so you know who’s talking to you – say hi AG!
Friends, I am thrilled and filled with festive mince pie joy to share my Chrimbo list on the Idle Hands blog. I’m ALL about the home comfort and sensory indulgence, NO TECHNOLOGY, simple pleasures, gift the luxury of creativity, oil paints, music, evocative sniffs, whisky preferably in the Bow Bar in Edinburgh, wrapped up in Scottish cashmere, all the grown up delicious treats and I’m a happy AG.
Top row, L-R: Penhaligons “The Tragedy of Lord George” cologne (love this stuff and comes in a cool bottle with a stag’s head, rutting season in the Highlands); Walker Slater – Clarke Cardigan (Walker Slater finest tweed and knitwear, elegant timeless traditional clobber here in Edinburgh); Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks – Pig Lib (seminal SM and the Jicks second album, incredible, if you don’t know Stephen Malkmus you’re in for the audio discovery of a lifetime).
Middle row, L-R: Old Holland traditional oil paint (the finest paint on the planet, luxury, thick, highest quality, just pigment and linseed oil love, available at Bird & Davis); Caol Ila whisky (you can’t beat a tot of something smashing in the epic Bow Bar on a cold dark winter night, next to the fire marvelling at the red gloss ceiling. Perfect with my homemade Christmas cake); Brora cashmere scarf (beyond luxury statement heritage Scottish cashmere).
Bottom row, L-R: Treasure Trove Fairisle gloves (the Treasure Trove on Castle St is the women’s self aid society, they sell everything and it’s all hand made! So much love for this place); Diptyque “Feu de Bois” candle (it’s French, classy and it smells of fires); Fiskars splitting axe (Why do you need an axe off Santa darling? Oh you know, for chopping wood and zombies etc).
Top row, L-R: Hackett Merino jumper (lovely, lovely, lovely quality knitwear, I love jumpers me); Aromatherapy Associates bath oil (after a hard day’s epic painting struggle and chopping stuff with your axe, relax with an amazing bath smell, men like pampering too); Cobra DVD (you’ve watched the Queen’s speech and settled down on the sofa with all the family to watch a heartwarming Christmas film, well buckle in, I’ve got just the Chrimbo film for you!).
Middle row, L-R: Mellis cheese (it’s Christmas and we all know that means a huge pile of waist widening artery clogging amazing cheese indulgence, before during and after Christmas dinner); Bordeaux Chateau Maynes Graves (fabulous claret, perfect for Christmas, served at my fave French restaurant in Edinburgh and at my groaning Christmas table, a case of this will go down very nicely); Marks and Spencer dressing gown (because it’s Christmas and we’re not getting dressed all day, right?!).
Bottom row, L-R: Russell and Chapple tailor’s shears (I need these! Just because); a whole Serrano ham (no thanks little packets, yes please cutting slices for you and your guests with added jeopardy of slicing your fingers orf); Fair Art Fair subscription (gift a subscription to Fair Art Fair and buy art 0% commission, or why not commission an artist to make you some art! Nothing better than a unique piece of art for Christmas).