It’s that time of year again… yup, the time when everyone starts the Christmas countdown and even the most organised people in the world (I am NOT one of them) panic a little about getting THAT present – the perfect present to surprise their loved ones. You see the perfect present doesn’t have to be the most expensive… but it does have to be thoughtful and bring joy – because, in a way, giving presents is so much better than getting them…
The perfect present for… coffee lovers
Seeing as cocktails are so dear to me (if you haven’t made a Cranberry Margarita yet what are you waiting for??) I have to mention Taste Cocktails subscription service – an awesome way to discover new cocktails and a pretty cool gift that keeps on giving.
The perfect present for… beer lovers
Cocktails are not for everyone… Some people would prefer a frosty glass (or bottle) of beer and there’s a veritable explosion of craft beers and microbreweries out there. Beer 52 is a beer ‘discovery club’ – a subscription service that will send you a box of 8 carefully selected small batch craft beers every month along with an informative magazine. This gift is sure to be appreciated by beer lovers and flat sharing students everywhere… A monthly subscription is £24 (includes delivery) and drops to £21 for an annual subscription.
The perfect present for… Instagram fanatics
If you chronicle your life on Instagram and Facebook, if a camera (or cameraphone) is simply an extension of your arm, then Cheerz has a selection of products just right for you. Printed on high quality paper and packaged in beautiful eye-catching boxes, these innovative and affordable photo gifts will also bring joy to friends and relatives. I received my Big Fat Box (from around £22) today and I will be going back to order more gifts for my friends and family (order by December 15th for Christmas delivery). Check out the giveaway at the bottom of the page for the chance to win some Cheerz products.
The best presents for… (foodie) gadget lovers
I love my Sage Waffle Maker* so much that I think every house should have one. Easy to use and perfect results every time, this is by far the best waffle maker I have tried – and I have tried a few!
I must say that when I first started using the Tefal Cook4Me (around £250) I was very sceptical… Did I really need yet another large contraption crowding my already busy kitchen? But having now cooked a few meals in absolutely record time (whole chicken in under 40 minutes) I am fast becoming a convert. This would be the ideal gift for time-poor mom and dads – it comes with 50 pre-programmed recipes, 30 of which can be ready in under 15 minutes. Healthy, super easy family meals with absolutely minimal washing up? Yes please! The challenge will be to go off the programmed recipes and discover a way to use the Cook4Me to make your own dishes – which is a actually a challenge I look forward to exploring – watch this space.
The best presents you can make yourself…
Nothing is more thoughtful than an edible gift presented in a beautiful glass jar – make a large batch to present to your neighbours or when visiting friends (plus you can keep a couple of jars for yourself of course). I recently photographed some recipes for Ball and I have to say that their ginger and pear preserve is just perfect for the festive cheeseboard. And no house should be without a few jars of homemade cranberry sauce… Try the Ball Starter Kit if you are new to preserving.
The best presents for… interiors and home decor lovers
If anyone is looking for presents to buy me – or any interior and prop loving food blogger then you can’t go wrong with Anthropologie (seriously, I could move into that store). Check out these awesome mercury glass monogram ornaments and gilded monogrammed glasses – and don’t forget to take advantage of their sale which usually starts before Christmas.
The perfect one-stop shop for unique gifts has to be Etsy. I love ordering one or two handcrafted gifts every year like these doily stamped mini dishes or hitting my favourite shops to invest in some vintage finds for my ever growing prop collection.
I am also totally in lust with just about every single item stocked by Rowen and Wren. They supplied me with my favourite zinc plates (pictured above) and the Dillie Champagne Saucers are on my Santa list this year…
The best present for… food bloggers
Control the ‘triangle’ of shutter speed, aperture and ISO and you can take charge of your camera and your photography – so we were taught at the #LightsCameraCurrys event at the Nikon headquarters in London recently. There’s nothing that will make your blog stand out more than beautiful photography and, aside from a lot of practice, the best thing I did is attend William Reavell’s food photography course. William is a very knowledgeable teacher that will take your skills to the next level whether you are a beginner or advanced photographer. Very highly recommended.
Outside of London, Aspire Photography Training offer a variety of courses including a food photography one.
In terms of indispensable photo gear, I swear by my Manfrotto 190* tripod with horizontal column for easier overhead shots and my beloved new(ish) camera Nikon D810* and am dearly hoping Santa will bring me some new lenses (am coveting the Nikkor 105mm)…
The best present… for chocolate lovers
Chances are you will be buying a few boxes of chocolates this Christmas… for stocking fillers, teacher presents, Secret Santas and to bring when visiting. I always get all my chocolate festive gifts from Hotel Chocolat – they have the biggest selection of excellent quality chocolates and they are all beautifully packaged, ready for gifting. Make sure to enter the giveaway below to win a this wonderful festive cookie caramel wreath worth £20.
Some of these products were supplied to me for review purposes.
Items marked with an asterisk are affiliate links.