Wednesday, March 20

bag it up [man gifts]

I have presents on the brain again as we approach D's quarter-of-a-century birthday this week. I think shopping for men can be tricky, so I'm happy to share what I found for Christmas this year and hope you can take some inspiration.

Christmas gifts were haphazard this year in that they weren't really cohesive. I like to give themed gifts (last year was the bar cart suite, a favorite), but couldn't get it together in time.

First, D loves fashion and D loves sports. So why not a gift that combines them both? Yes, I considered an NFL jersey, which he would have loved, but that would eat up too much of our dramatically-reduced budget (business school apps will do that to you). I found these instead:

No, those aren't just goosebumb-resembling cufflinks. They're cufflinks made from a game-used football. By the Giants, in 2008, for a game they won. Sweet! 

The company, Bottom of the 9th, sells cufflinks featuring different sports memorabilia, including baseballs, basketballs, footballs, plastic from the seats of the original Yankee's stadium, you get the idea.

If you'd like a more expensive (and probably nicer) version of the same thing, Allen Edmonds is selling baseball cufflinks for $170. Ouch. Mine were $50.
D and I are big fans of Field Notes, a US-based stationary company, though stationary is a weak word for this multi-purpose, tough as nails brand and products. Isn't their summary so rugged?

INSPIRED BY the vanishing subgenre of agricultural memo books, ornate pocket ledgers and the simple, unassuming beauty of a well-crafted grocery list, the Draplin Design Company, Portland, Oregon in conjunction with Coudal Partners of Chicago, Illinois bring you “FIELD NOTES” in hopes of offering, “An honest memo book, worth fillin’ up with GOOD INFORMATION.

I bought a few sets of their notebooks (I use them for work, too) and found this amazing leather case on Esty. I think it's a bit over the top for a $3 paper notebook to be encased in a handmade leather embrace, but I bought a Cole Haan cover for my kindle, so I'm probably not a good judge of these things.

Isn't packaging everything? Look how amazing this is. I even get a leather tag with my initials (should have thought to put D's, oh well).

As you can see, the company is Of Mud and Coal, and I'm a big fan. It takes awhile to get your product, but only because the one-man shop is hard at work crafting it just for you. Worth the delay I'd say, and it was only two weeks or so.

Man it's a beauty. Leather on leather. $50, but I can see it lasting longer than our fickle interest in paper notebooks, so it's fine. Besides, my favorite kind of Christmas gifts are the cool stuff that you would like to own but wouldn't buy yourself because it's impractical, something you already own a shittier version of, you wouldn't have thought of it yourself, you don't need it, etc.

Holds so much stuff!

Ok moving on.

The rest of his gifts were smaller. I got these Tevolo ice cube molds to make giant spheres. They work very well, and produce a drink-chilling option that won't water down your drink as much.

Don't forget to boil the water you use if you'd like clear spheres. Otherwise, they still look pretty amazing:

At one of our many speakeasy experiences, we heard from the bartender that the Museum of the American Cocktail's Pocket Recipe Guide was the way to go for classic recipes. In fact, she told us that, with this book, we could make every basic drink and easily make alterations to cover almost anything we'll ever imbibe. I'm all for being thorough.

That may have been it. One last image, because it was just too funny: my stack of presents for D next to his stack of presents for me:

Bigger isn't ALWAYS better, folks.

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