Nothing puts fear in the hearts of busy hosts more than the chime of the doorbell on Christmas Eve, heralding the arrival of unexpected guests. Covered in flour and goose fat, you awkwardly accept the enormous gift they’ve brought, and offer them a cup of tea, as nothing else in the house can be eaten ahead of tomorrow’s feast.
From last-minute drop-ins to unexpected plus ones, you won’t get caught out this year, thanks to our every-person-covered gift guide.
Recipient: The ‘we-don’t-need-anything’ parents
Profile: They’ve got their homes just right and are at a point in their lives where, if they want something, they aren’t going to save up for it – they’re going to treat themselves to it right now. When asked what they’d like for Christmas, every year the answer is always, “We don’t need anything.”
Perfect presents: No-one ever has enough luxe bed linen and ours won’t disappoint. With 1000-thread-count, delicate-piping and smart-stripe options, this is the gift parents might never think to ask for, but will be thrilled to receive.
While they might have every kitchen gadget out there, mums and dads will never turn down new dinnerware. Our Porto range offers roasters, dinner plates, ramekins and more. If all else fails, a stunning Christmas bouquet is always well-received (especially with a stylish new vase to put it in).
Recipient: The unexpected drop-ins
Profile: They might be old school friends, distant cousins or ex-colleagues. These types never announce their visit, assuming it’s less taxing for you if they just show up on the doorstep. However, their well-meaning quick call becomes one of the most stressful parts of Christmas when they manage to catch you in the middle of all the prep.
Perfect presents: Ensure you have some baked goods (or a heart-shaped bowl of chocolate truffles) handy, so you have a sweet treat to offer during their visit.
Recipient: The luxury-loving brother
Profile: If you’ve got a brother with extravagant taste, he’s likely to send you a long list with a big price tag. You still want to buy him something special he’ll use – just without breaking the bank.
Perfect presents: We have plenty of gifts that fall into the affordable luxury bracket this Christmas, including our Aspen fragrance collection for men – the Shave Soap and Bowl is a particularly classic piece. If he enjoys a festive tipple, our Whisky Tumblers and Spirits Decanter are presents he’ll keep forever.
Recipient: The work Secret Santa
Profile: Until you pulled their name out of the Secret Santa hat, you thought Janie’s name was actually Jamie. She does something in data analysis, but you’re not entirely sure; your conversational repertoire has never topped, “please pass the milk”, in the kitchen.
Perfect presents: For unknown Secret Santas, it’s best to play it safe. Buy them a new Wintry fragrance, candle or diffuser to enhance their home this festive season – this year we have more scents than ever before.
Our range of classic accessories, such as a pom-pom or tassel key ring for handbags, or our slippers and purses, are just the right mix of play-it-safe and stylish.
Recipient: The ‘Christmas-is-for-kids’ sneaky present-givers
Profile: Every year, they insist you’re only going to buy gifts for the children – which is what you do. However, as you leave your festive get-together, your friend thrusts a box into your hand, telling you she “couldn’t resist”. You’re lavished with a beautiful gift – and they leave empty-handed. Again.
Perfect presents: The key to out-sneaking a sneak is to beat them at their own game. Little presents that can be kept in pockets or handbags until the last minute are ideal for surprising them. Our delicate silver necklaces and bracelets are a good choice (especially since many are now in our sale), or a chic scarf they can wear now and into Spring. For those who don’t get much time out, especially over Christmas, our Spa Relax Gift Set is the goodwill gift they’ll really appreciate.