The Dead Beat by Cody James (Eight Cuts, £6).
Indie-literature at its best...from one of the coolest writers going. If this doesn’t gain you instant brownie-points and your tricky angsty relative immediate street cred, I despair. I mean, look at the cover for starters. None of your sell-out mainstream publishers here, no sirree. Even if they don't read it, it'll look great slung on a beer crate coffee table or poking out of a rucksack.
Yes, there’s drinking, and drugs and swearing and sex - not forgetting comets. Well, of COURSE there is. Doh!
FOR FINICKETY FOODIES: Argan oil (from £8.50). Oh ye gods, I LOVE LOVE LOVE this stuff. Amazingly it still hasn’t hit the mainstream but it’s only a matter of time. Drizzle it on salads or pasta or simply pop some in a bowl and use it for dunking good bread. Tastes nutty and gorgeous AND it’s good for you!
Actually, have a browse right around the site because you don't have to just splosh it on your food; you can whack it on your face too. I swear by their facial oils - scented with sandalwood, neroli, rose...they really work and at a fraction of the price of the big cosmetics houses' creams and serums.
FOR GORGEOUS GIRLIES: Mili B Bottom Chic. Seriously nice knickers for girls of all ages (from teeny tots through trendy teenagers to, um, the more matronly). These are designed by a pal of mine for maximum comfort and total gorgeousness (a rare combination). From £8. Oh, and there are bras and camisoles and other frilly things. Men – take note – this is a win-win... ditch the slimy red satin tat and go for the real deal.
Check out the baby pants too - soooo cute. Only problem is picking the colourways - I'm partial to the pale blue and brown myself. ;)
FOR BASICALLY MOST MEN: 1001 Beers you Must Try Before you Die. Edited by my dear husband, Adrian Tierney-Jones. This is beer porn, pure and simple. Luscious pictures of uber-beers from all around the world. There is a Facebook group devoted to trying every one of these – I kid you not. Seriously, it sorts out most blokes. Also available in the US from amazon.com (with the slightly different title of 1001 Beers you Must Taste Before you Die). But if not....
Beer Cans of Birmingham (£9.79) by Elizabeth Tipping. I’ve mentioned this before because it just tickles me pink. A calendar featuring abandoned beer (and cider) cans in their found settings around scenic Birmingham. Actually, it’s not just a silly joke calendar – the photography is really very lovely. Okay, so one daft sod pointed out that there is a bottle included. Oh, get a life!
Comfort Candle. Yes, it may be a bit of a cliché but I don’t know many women who don’t like good scented candles (note the emphasis on good). Okay so I can think of one notable exception but generally it holds true. They don’t come much better than Aromatherapy Associates’ (you know I adore their stuff). The old Relax candle is still my all-time favourite but the new Comfort Candle (£24) is a cracker. It’s scented with rose and ginger (an unusual combo that actually works brilliantly) which are uplifting and warming. Aaah.
FOR MYSTIC MEGS: The Mind Body Spirit Miscellany by, ahem, Jane Alexander (£8.40). A cute little hardback book with a ton of information on how to build crop circles, find leylines and identify various Norse ghosts. Essential stuff really. Also available in the US from amazon.com
FOR FUNKY BABIES: Red-knit romper. I really miss buying James a special Christmas outfit. For his first Christmas he had the softest fleecy babygro with a hood and the most tasteful little reindeer on the front. So many festive offerings are deeply naff but this ticks all the style boxes – berry red with a cosy hood; there's a bit of fairisle going on and different coloured buttons. Sigh. Almost makes me wish I had a baby. Yes, it's a bit pricey at £14 but hey, it's Christmas.
Actually, I am also pretty smitten by some absolutely gorgeous bootees too (Elf, Santa, Reindeer or just plain heavenly fake mink!) Scroll down to see the pics...(I am not too good at arranging stuff properly on the blog....)
|deeply cute for carol singing or Christmas parties...|
|just HOW flipping gorgeous are these?|