I'm sorry to break it to you, but now Halloween is over it is time to start really thinking about Christmas shopping. While it is still only the beginning of November, as everything festive is already out in the shops I actually started my Christmas shopping in Fenwick in Canterbury yesterday morning out on a shopping trip with my Mummy. We picked up a few stocking fillers for my Dad, and I came home all inspired to finished up the first instalment of my usual quadruple of festive gift guides for you all. So, without further ado I want to introduce you to my picks for the bookworms in your life. Stay tuned for my gift guides for the Total Foodie, The Londoner and a new one for this year, For Him. I hope this is helpful!
1. Hope and Greenwood Kir Royale Cocoa Dusted Truffles: £4.99 | 2. Diptyque Resine Christmas 2014 Candle: 6.5oz: £45 / 2.4oz: $34, 6.5oz: $68 | 3. Yes I'm Reading This Bookmark Set of 25: £3.95 | 4. 'Write Bestseller With' Pen: £1.50 / $2.39 | Philosophy Christmas Cookie Shampoo, Shower Gel & Bubble Bath: £14 / $17 | Teapigs 15 Rhubarb & Ginger Teabags: £3.99 | The White Company Cashmere Hot Water Bottle & Cover: £60
For me, curling up with a good book means two things: I have to be comfortable, and my experience has to be accompanied by delicious edibles. Let us start with those, shall we? I've been a fan of Teapigs teas since I had my first cup of Superfruit at The Hummingbird Bakery in Shoreditch a few years ago, and I'm always happy to get a couple of boxes of their delicious teas in my Christmas stocking. Recently they sent me one of their newer flavours, Ginger & Rhubarb to try which I've been enjoying as a nice wake up drink after breakfast; spicy, slightly unusual, and very comforting. Some of my other favourites of course include Superfruit, and for the tea purists among you, I'm also something of a fan of their Winter blend, which they sent me to review last year.
Chocolate wise, this year for at least one of my gift guides I've decided to step away from my usual Hotel Chocolat (though there are some of my picks from their Christmas range coming up, so don't worry!) as I know not all of you are willing to spend as much money on chocolate than I am. I basically funnel 70% of what most people usually spend on clothes and beauty products into food, basically! Anyway, when the guys at Hope and Greenwood sent me some of their festive Kir Royale Cocoa Dusted Truffles (with champagne) to try, I just knew they'd be a great little gift for those of you looking to give (or enjoy yourself) something delicious for under £5. You get a lot for your money in such a smart box.
As far as creating the perfect environment to snuggle up with a book, I've included three of my favourites here that are really great gifts and I can 100% endorse. My Mother has one of The White Company's super luxurious cashmere covered hot water bottles that Daddy and I got her one Christmas, and it is the most wonderfully soft and luxurious hot water bottle I've ever had. It is almost not worth feeling very well during the Winter months to have an excuse to borrow it, and I really wish I had one of my own! I know at £60 it is not cheap, but you get what you pay for, and if you sign up to The White Company's newsletter they always have some really good gifts going. This would be perfect for a Mother, Grandmother or girlfriend.
Diptyque's special edition holiday candles and Philosophy festive bubble baths are among some of my favourite Christmas editions out there. I think Bess found it slightly strange when I fell upon the new Diptyque scents at the Selfridges Christmas press day back in July, because I was sniffing them like crazy! I'm here to tell you that the 'Resin' scent is still my favourite and would make a fantastic gift full size (£/$), but the 'Spice' (£/$) and 'Winter' (£/$) scents are equally as wonderful, too. I can't find them yet online in the UK, but for my American readers if you're after luxurious stocking fillers or small teacher gifts, Nordstrom have them sold as miniatures individually, too for $34 each (shop: Resin, Spice, Winter). If you're looking for a big, special gift for a total candle freak, you can also get the miniatures as a set of three in both countries, £78 from John Lewis here in the UK, and $98 from Nordstrom (god I miss browsing in Nordstrom at The Grove in West Hollywood at Christmas time) stateside.
Philosophy wise, a big bottle of one of their Christmas scents is my own festive indulgence to myself, but because they come beautifully packaged they'd make great gifts too. I treated myself to a bottle of the delectable scented Christmas Cookie in Debenhams on Oxford Street the other weekend that I can't wait to break into on December 1st. Christmas Cookie is only the real Christmas scent available here in the UK; I'm afraid that on this one America are the ones who get all the fun. You can choose from Christmas Cookie, Have A Cherry Christmas, Sugar Plum Fairy, Sparkling White Ginger, Peppermint Stick, Almond Glaze, Snow Angel and Pink Marshmallow Buttercream. These links are to the full sized bottles as they are the only ones I can find online at the moment, but closer to the holidays they do also usually sell smaller bottles for stocking fillers or to treat yourself to more than one flavour in Sephora and Nordstrom.
Finally, on the stocking filler front, for anyone who is at all into anything literary I can't recommend The Literary Gift Company enough. They ship to a fair few countries, and have some pretty fun and unique literature themed gifts. Their 'Write Bestseller With' pen really made me smile, and if you know something who is into poetry, Faber Faber are selling fantastic looking 2015 poetry diaries this year with a poem or book cover for each day of the year.
I hope some of these picks have been helpful, and remember to stay tuned for my next couple of gift guides that I'll be rolling out over the coming weeks. Have any of you started their Christmas shopping this year yet? I swear I'm becoming more and more organised every year!