Share an experience as a gift
My favourite, most memorable gifts are experiences – tickets to Matilda the Musical for my birthday, or Kat and I agreeing to forgo presents in favour of attending the next Taylor Swift concert together. I understand the urge to wrap tangible things to place under the tree, however, so if you’re set on that route, here are some ideas for quality gifts for minimalists that last.
Minimalists value quality and necessity, and personally, I like the things I do own to tell a story. As I type this I am wearing the dress I picked out with my mom as a birthday present, and the shoes I purchased to play Malvolio in Twelfth Night. My notebook was a gift from a friend, and even my water bottle was picked up at a new favourite shop discovered on my trip to Liverpool just before meeting my friend in Leeds.
Communicate – it doesn’t ruin the surprise.
First of all, it’s best to communicate. I make it easier for my loved ones by creating an wish list online. I used to email mine until I realised that Amazon does a universal one, which lets you link to different shops. I asked for specific things that I know I will use and love.
A fun way to be specific but also surprised is to narrow down the field. I, for instance, tend to request jewelry, because it’s something I prefer to be gifted than to purchase myself. I always think of the giver as I fasten my jewelry in the morning.
- Would they really love to wear this?
- What kind of styles they prefer – I for example, prefer gold to silver jewelry, and prefer necklaces to bracelets. Observe style habits before purchase ;)
I love how OneNecklace provides classic, versatile styles that can be personalised. My Xandra necklace has become a wardrobe staple, and this year I selected matching birthstone necklaces for my sister and me ^.
One year I asked for geeky jewelry, and my family had fun picking out my Pac Man necklace and DIY-ing some sprinkles in mini bottles. I also love when my sister brings me kids jewelry from Disney (a great source for clip-on earrings!).
Something to unwrap when there’s nothing to unwrap
- Book tokens – The UK does this awesome thing where a bookstore can opt into accepting book tokens. These gift cards can only be used to purchase books, but at any participating bookstore. Perhaps inclose a list of titles they would love, or a beautiful bookmark. I always give books away as presents if I loved them but don’t plan to reread them. Just add a ribbon and a note of why the book made you think of its recipient.
- Cinema vouchers – A great way to gift experience. Give a voucher to your friend’s favourite cinema, and they will be grateful and think of you when they use it! It’s like you’re forcing them to enjoy themselves. Suggest a few films and their release dates.
- Excellent travel accessories – This year the top of my list was a Barbour weekender for my mini excursions. Sturdy, practical, and gorgeous, I am happy to have it on my future adventures. If you’re giving the gift of travel, wrap up the tickets with a beautiful luggage tag, the corresponding Wallpaper* City Guide, or just a snack for the plane!