How on earth is it just 7 weeks until Christmas? Honestly, I seem to do it every year and think I’ve got plenty of time and suddenly November’s arrived. I can’t say that I’m one of those very organised people who’s been building up my Christmas presents throughout the year into a drawer (I wish). I know some already even have them all wrapped! However, I’m also not the ‘leave it all until Christmas Eve’ person either, but I am guilty of potentially being a panic buyer. This is never good, as we may be inclined to spend more and still don’t always get it right. So, in an attempt to be better prepared, this week I’m starting my Christmas gift shopping and I thought I’d share my plan of action.
To avoid having to stuff the turkey and be wrapping a present at the same time (don’t ever muddle these two, it’s messy), I’m trying a different approach. The first priority is a list – we love a list. Who do you need to buy for? Write them down as it will help with planning. I’m then aiming for a gift or two a day. Think about one person a day and tackle them like that but also consider whether other people on your list would like something similar as you can often benefit from offers, buy one get one free or three for two. You may also be creative and be able to make something – what a fab way to show off your skills and give a unique gift. The goal is that each purchase is on something that's thought out and special and there’ll be no need for that receipt after Christmas.
Working for Duck Barn means that it’s a bit like the conveyor belt on the Generation Game – gorgeous things pass by under my nose that I think – ooh my Mum would love that or my best friend would love this (Or, quite frankly, I want that and that and that!!)…so much choice from the wonderful gift selection...
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been keeping an eye on the high street brands in the last few weeks and they are lit up with twinkling lights and grottos of glitter but what is lacking in so many of these places is the ‘personal touch’; the ‘this gift is different from the others’. At Duck Barn, we’re a small and independent business, and provide a gifting experience that is a little different to the standard High Street … we put a lot of thought and care into choosing the collection so that you love it when you shop.
Tracy, founder of Duck Barn, is responsible for the beautiful selection of items that we sell, so who better to ask for a little advice on a ‘go to gift’. “Giving gifts is a really lovely way to say thank you, share in a celebration or to provide something practical for a new home or baby. The thought and effort that goes into choosing that special gift can be very rewarding when you see their delight. We want to avoid that grimacing 'ooh, that's lovely' reaction (let's face it, we've all done this from time to time when we've received that oh so gorgeous jumper for Christmas!).
My personal faves are a scented candle - the Melt candles have the most amazing fragrances and smell gorgeous even when they're not lit. I also love a photo frame. They are so versatile and a great gift for any occasion whether filled with a special photo or left for the recipient to choose – they make great Christmas & wedding gifts too. For a slightly more indulgent gift, the Restoration Stainless Steel Lanterns are just beautiful and look amazing at Christmas amongst the festive decor.”
Melt Christmas Short & Fat Candle
Sia Pearl Design Photo Frame (4 x 4")
Large Black and Gold Reindeer
And frankly I couldn’t agree more. I also love the idea of a practical gift - something that someone might need but wouldn’t necessarily buy for themselves. I’m definitely buying my Mum the Farringdon Welly Jack - she lives in the depths of the Hampshire downs and walks every day. It would be perfect in both her country house decor and practical in pulling off her muddy walking boots. (Luckily, she already knows this gift is coming- as she was tempted to buy it for herself a few weeks ago). What is wonderful about this gift is that no one else will think to buy it for her (unless they’re reading this of course 🙈) and it’s just so her. It’s perfect. I’m hoping her partner will take my, not so subtle, hints to get the Farringdon Welly Stand to go with it!
There are plenty of beautiful practical gifts, so I’m aiming for pressies that someone actually needs and will benefit them in some way. My tip is to really chat to those you buy gifts for and find out, surreptitiously if needed, what they might need. Have they almost finished decorating a room that needs that final touch like a vase or fairly light lamp? Do they need something refreshing? A friend bought me a set of mugs last year and it was just perfect because I could finally warrant recycling my old chipped ones I’ve had since university! I’m also rather hoping my husband will consider the Paoletti Fiesta Rectangular Cushions with Pom Poms (below)… oh, did I leave this blog right under his nose?
However, for some people practicality is not the most important thing to consider. When it comes to my sister, I know I am going to want to buy her a present that she wouldn’t buy for herself. I am also guilty of this - I’m happy to spend on others but when it comes to myself, I just don’t! So, a beautiful luxury item like a soft cushion or throw or a gorgeous scented candle is perfect. I love the Gisela Graham Prosecco Candle (below)- perfect for anyone who loves the bubbly stuff and it comes in a pretty gift box which is the perfect shape for easy wrapping too! In fact, as we mentioned bubbles, why not team up a bottle of your loved one’s favourite plonk with one of our wine bottle stands or racks? Cheers!
Finally, and completely on trend, we also offer the option of a personalised gift. This is a fantastic way of making a gift truly special. Our fun and cute range of wooden ducks, ducklings, chickens and penguins all have the option of personalising their name tags. You can name them ‘Grandad’ or ‘Aunty’ or give them a fun name that might mean something special to you and your loved one. It’s perfect in that its thoughtful, doesn’t break the bank and it’s utterly unique! It also has the added option of being gift wrapped- it doesn’t get any easier!
Our Quacking Wooden Ducks: part of our Personalised Gifts Collection
Grab a cuppa, start compiling your list and then have a browse – maybe start with our gift categories and see if we can help you bring a bit of the magic this year! Delivery is just £2.50 per order or free for UK deliveries where the order is over £50. Of course, the last tip being, don’t forget to leave your wish list lying around too (been there, done that!)
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