Q: Hi Bagaholicboy, I need your help! I’ve got a friend whose birthday is 2 days before Christmas, and I want to get something for him that’s pretty unique. Something that definitely comes with a designer label, yet quirky and fun, would be great. No bags, or SLGs, but interesting bits and bobs including limited editions, collaboration pieces and anything out of the ordinary. Hope you can help!
A: Hi Damian, thanks for the email! Your SOS certainly stood out, and I spent the better half of today going through what I featured before, along with research on pieces I think your friend will like. Since you didn’t really specify a budget, I decided to go with unusual bits and bobs I wouldn’t mind receiving myself, with prices starting from around SGD3. And I hope I understood your question and got you a selection of 11 gifts your friend will hopefully like.
01. Hermès Rosewood Mysore Goatskin Paperweight
Carved out of rosewood and I’m assuming covered with Mysore goatskin, this paperweight pays homage to the brand’s equestrian heritage. Handsome enough for any executive’s massive desk (assuming your friend has one of those as well), it will only set you back by only SGD860, a small price to pay for something that’s so exquisitely made.
02. Maison Martin Margiela Ostrich Feather Pen
You can definitely get a similar feather pen for much less, but it won’t be the same, would it? From Maison Martin Margiela by L’ATELIER d’exercices’ (whatever that means) comes this plush GBP40 white ostrich feather ballpoint pen. Yes, a ballpoint pen. That’s unique. And comes from a designer. Don’t say I didn’t try.
03. Sephora + Karl Lagerfeld Snow Globe
The doll won’t be available locally, so might I suggest the snow globe instead, a limited edition offering from the Sephora + Karl Lagerfeld collection. Available from Sephora ION Orchard from early December 2011, the SGD45 snow globe would certainly look good on his desk. Provided if he is a fan, of course. Otherwise it’s just weird.
04. Kate Spade Prize Ball Thermos
If you friend loves anything colourful and can’t live without a constant supply of hot coffee, this is the gift for him. At just SGD90 a pop, it holds just under 500 ml. Get it the Kate Spade boutique at Ngee Ann City. And if anyone is getting TPL a present this X’mas, do consider this. She can use it during her Meet-The-People sessions.
05. Chanel Surfboard
Bet you didn’t know Chanel produces surfboards as well. Yes, that’s right, surfboards. And that’s not all. For the man who has everything, why not check out Chanel’s almost complete range of sporting equipment, which also includes golf clubs, snow skis, tennis rackets and even boomerangs. There’s even an inflatable raft that seats 3. Prices are upon application, so do enquire directly at your local Chanel boutique.
06. Louis Vuitton City Guide Postcard Box
A beautiful selection of postcards awaits the recipient of this gift, a set of 100 postcards (depicting 100 cities) beautifully illustrated by Ruben Toledo. He can use the postcards and send out little notes to friends around the world, or have them framed and hung. Printed in bright vibrant colours, I seriously wouldn’t mind a set myself for X’mas especially since it only costs SGD165.
07. Alexander McQueen Skull Tapestry Cushion
For the man (or woman) who has most everything McQueen, why not get him a pair of skull tapestry cushions from the brand instead? Priced at GBP385 each, the handmade wool cushions measure 58 cm by 58 cm and are stuffed with goose down filling. Luxurious, and interesting, indeed.
08. Bottega Veneta Intreccio Uno CD
Featuring tracks used by Tomas Maier for runway shows and store playlists, the two-disc set features 30 songs in all. Simply titled Intreccio Uno, the CDs and jewel cases are designed by Maier himself and feature artwork by photographer Robert Longo. To be released in Singapore very soon, they will be priced at SGD60 (affordable, no?) a set. Have a listen here.
09. YSL Chyc Mouse Pad
One of the few designer brands that actually sells full-priced mouse pads (in fact, the only designer brand if I’m not wrong), the YSL Chyc Mouse Pad is a luxurious accoutrement created simply for the benefit of the mouse. Circular, with grained leather, complete with the iconic Y logo handing off it. Get it for USD250 overseas. Last I checked, our local YSL did not carry it.
10. Marc Jacobs Special Items Condom
What started out as a joke is now a permanent offering from the Special Items collection, each cardboard packaged condom retailing for just USD1.50. Buy 10, pop them into a nice glass jar and you’ve got a gift that’s both thoughtful and inexpensive. The only catch? These are only available at selected MbMJ boutiques, with the closest one in Hong Kong.
11. Lanvin Illustrated Playing Cards
Last but not least, may I present a pair of playing cards illustrated by none other than Alber Elbaz. This playful two deck set is the perfect gift for anyone who’s a fan of the French house. Retailing for GBP55, the set also includes a stamped box (to house the cards in) and a paper bag. All you need to do is to pop a ribbon on.
And other bits
1. Clara, the Monogram Rayure Neverfull is already available in Singapore. Check out the update for more details.
2. Shermeen, you can check out the recent Q&A I did with ColorWash for how to properly care for your leather bag. Have a look, and do feel free to drop me another email if the need arises.
3. Lily, if it is the Coffer you’re looking for, try checking out Diabro and Net-A-Porter.