See Part One (Gifts for her) here // Featuring gifts for him from the best independent designers, makers and shops from both San Francisco and London.
We are in full-swing of ’tis the season, and boy am I loving it. I honestly have listened to (and sang, loudly) nothing except Christmas music for the past week. Unbeknownst to me until very recently, my next-door neighbours to the left of us can hear everything we say crystal clearly when we’re in the kitchen. Where most of my delightful belting occurs. If they ever enjoyed the sound of Christmas melodies, I’m sure they do not anymore.
Next up in my holiday gift guides for 2017 is my gifts for him, which in some ways is way more fun for me to put together. While my choice gifts are the predictable cozy, comfy, candles, Stag’s choices are often more… I don’t know, intellectual? Interesting? Informative?
This year, he’s honestly asked for — wait for it — textbooks about math (TO READ FOR FUN, who am I married to). Like, actual textbooks. Also, some interesting locally-made alcohol, and two fancy espresso glasses, ones with an interesting design detail, to sip from slowly as he reads the news in the morning. While I down my hot chocolate from a Santa mug and watch cat videos.
Don’t worry; neither of these guides contain math textbooks. But they do include a lot of other beautifully made, well-crafted products that any guy — including my Stag — would love.
Gifts for Him from London
1. Hoxton Mini Press Unseen London Book (Sold at Future & Found) // 2. Desmond & Dempsey Pyjama Set // 3. Frank Horn London Messenger Bag // 4. Toast Living Copper Kettle // 5. Willow Organic Men’s Shower Set // 6. Kestin Hare Jacket (Sold at Trouva) // 7. Luna & Curious Check Blanket // 8. Garbstore Scarf // 9. Earl of East London Atlas Cedar Candle // 10. Matt & Nat Vegan Leather Wallet // 11. Okla Beardy Mugs Set // 12. The Camden Watch Co Edition No. 88 Watch
I really enjoyed putting the gifts for him guides together. It was also like a little trip down memory lane, considering many of the best independent menswear brands in London are based around Shoreditch (where I used to live!) and East London in general. Number Six is one of these beautifully designed shops, as is Luna & Curious; Kestin Hare an amazing clothing company, and the Earl of East London are makers of some of mine (and Stag’s) favourite candles. You name it, I saw it on my daily walks (and loved it!).
But overall, my favourite brand that made this list is Frank Horn. His sharp-structured, buttery-soft leather bags drew my eye precisely 1 year 8 months ago. It was the day I quit my full-time corporate job, with no plan for what to do next in sight. Feeling vulnerable, yet empowered, I saw his stand of bags at a Brick Lane market and used my last (steady) paycheck to buy one. My ‘New Life’ bag, as I call it. Year(s) later, and Frank’s brand and product range have grown so much. His artistry and impeccable eye mean his bags (for men and women) are investments you’ll have for life.
Gifts for Him from San Francisco
1. Cuyana Leather Weekender Bag // 2. Ockham Razor from Huckberry // 3. The San Francisco Meadery Bottle of Mead // 4. Taylor Stitch Minimalist Wallet // 5. Dodo Case Leather Tablet Case // 6. Parachute Classic Bathrobe // 7. Everlane Wool-Cashmere Scarf // 8. Taylor Stitch Waterproof Trench Boot // 9. BeardFather Beard Oil // 10. Dandelion Chocolate Salted Cacao Bitters // 11. Copper Mug from Little Paper Planes Shop // 12. L’Aromatica ‘Nick’ Cologne from Tigerlily Perfumery // 13. Everlane Cashmere Crew Neck Sweater
Two wonderful things came out of this San Francisco-based ‘gifts for him’ guide. One: I discovered Taylor Stitch. Never have I loved a menswear clothing company so much. Their transparency in how the items are made, combined with the quality and the rugged-outdoorsy-but-classic look means I want to buy everything for Stag.
And, amazingly, as I was walking to the cafe to write this post, I discovered their retail store down the street from my apartment. I’m already planning when I can drag Stag in for some (much needed) shopping.
The second thing? That, beyond all belief, there is a locally-made cologne called “Nick.” (Stag’s actual name, if you were curious). And very hilariously, the description of the cologne says the following: “Nick envelops you in a velvety plume of smoke, warming you with spices, resins and woods.” Ugh I WISH.
What do you think of my gifts for him guides? Have you bought/tried any of the products above? Have I missed any great independent menswear brands off my list? Do tell!
The final instalment of my Independent Gift Guide Series — Stocking Stuffers — coming later this week!