Bow from Jamie on flcikr

Bow from Jamie on flcikr

Holiday Gift Guide for Ladies

"I like to choose presents that show I understand the festival itself completely. I like to choose presents that show I understand the recipient in a way no-one else does. I like to choose presents that will take your breath away and make you love me forever." High is the bar set by Susie Boyt, my favorite columnist in the Financial Times.

However, every year you'll have to buy a presents for a decent number of people. So gift giving must take a more pragmatic bent. 

I like things that the recipient has a very good chance of liking and using. Below is a list of such things - universal things that 90% of people would be happy to receive. And for those 10%? Bah humbug.

If I got this for Christmas I'd (1) be pretty happy and (2) wish for rain, so I could brandish this beauty down the street. No more sad, black, $10 umbrellas. Get it from LondonUnderground (GBP60).

Cuyana make this curvy little number (two for USD$95). They are sold as a travel case set, but it can be used as a clutch or a pencil case.


I am sitting typing this wearing some black pajamas from Victoria Secret, USD$52. They are very chic and very comfortable. JCrew factory also have these great pajamas, pictured, USD$49.50.

This is a very decadent pot of lip balm (USD$27), by Christian Dior. Even if your girlfriend doesn't wear makeup, they can still indulge in this.

The recipient can keep this in her handbag, so when she pulls it out to write everyone would marvel at her (your) good taste. USD$61 from Jet Pens.

This little bauble is a great stocking-stuffer. It's GBP4.50 from Penreath & Hall - a great shop for holiday gifts.


The holidays mean more time for reading. A welcome gift would be a couple of slightly obscure magazines, tied up in a bow. I like Monocle USD$12.


A gift card for a blow dry (this one is from the DryBar USD$40) is a good gift for a city-dwelling friend. They are likely to be busy, and live in a tiny apartment. You do not want to give such people "stuff". Something like this is useful and doesn't add to the clutter.

I'd love to hear your suggestions on fool-proof gifts for women in the comments section below. You can also follow me on Pinterest for more gift ideas:

To get in the mood of gift giving, Susie Boyt writes wonderful articles about Christmas. The latest one came out today in the weekend Financial Times, and you can read old articles on her website, here.

Next week - a men's gift guide.

Articles you might like...

Tags: home