mardi 4 décembre 2012

Berlin cheesecake 2012 Gift Guide

Friends, it's that time of year again! While I appreciate some of you might groan at the idea of the hearing the same old Christmas music everywhere and finding a suitable gift, I must admit to loving every minute of of it (OK, not the massive queues in shops). Christmas for me is a break from winter gloom, a season of lights, the smell of roast chestnuts and cinnamon and a chance to give something nice to others. I love looking through gift guides and also preparing this one, not because I necessarily expect to own everything in it but it's just nice picking out presents for those I care about or seeing pretty designs. A Cup of Jo is my favourite (and many people's too); but this post is rather an eclectic mix of stuff I like instead of something geared to a particular person. I've divided it into categories though in order to make it easier to follow. So let's put the kettle on and get started!

Fashion and accessories

Fairisle jumpers are still in fashion what with all the Scandi drama shown this past year on BBC4. Below you'll find one for every budget:

The ultimate cult jumper, brilliantly worn by Sarah Lund in the Killing III, and hand knitted in the Faeroe Islands. Gudrun og Gudrun, €280.

I got the beautiful Jaeger boutique fairisle jumper last year and love this season's design. So pretty and snug.  John Lewis, £120, but hurry, they're selling fast!

You can always rely on Asos to come up with some awesome designs. They tend to be popular though so don't leave it too long. Asos, £35.

Beautiful wrist worms handmade by Sandra in Berlin. I don't know what I'd do without mine, perfect for camera walks. Sandra Juto, about €35.

A pretty patterned scarf to go with your jumper, John Lewis, £28.

The lovely Susan introduced me to Toast earlier this year and I've been coveting these socks ever since. Perfect for the house but I also have it on good authority that they're the best Wellington boot socks ever. Toast, £29.

For those winter walks. Zeppo hand warmer, Amazon, £15.75.

Gorgeous iPhone cases from the wonderful Irene, £22 on Etsy.


A limited edition for Christmas of my favourite hot cloth cleanser. It's amazing. Cleanse and Polish, Liz Earle, £19.75.

Brilliant facial oils. Yes they're expensive but one bottle will last you ages. I bought one on an afternoon feeling miserable with red and dry skin and haven't looked back since. Use just a few drops at night with one for every skin type. Clarins, £29.

Every winter I suffer with eczema and cracked fingertips. This is about the only thing that helps. Shea butter hand cream, L'Occitane, £18.

I'd love to wear lipstick but find my lips are too dry but sometimes just plain gloss is boring. These chubby sticks combining colour with lip balm sound wonderful, £16 from Clinique.

House and garden  

Kneeling pad for those hours in the garden, £8.00, National Trust.

Bulb planter to save your back planting alium and tulips for next spring, £24.50.

Talking beanstalk seeds to bring some colour to a windowsill and send your friends a message. From Not on the high street, £3.

Latin for Gardeners, to make sense of all those names, The Book People, £4.99.

I can't wait to get the latest edition of this, Amazon, £21.70.

I'm so in love with this tea set, even though it's pricey and rather tricky to find, $52.

The Moomin limited edition winter mugs are always gorgeous and I'm looking forward to a Christmas Day cuppa in this one, Cloudberry Living, £15.95.

I was overjoyed to get this exquisite cake stand as a present last year. The perfect centrepiece to show off your baking skills, Lakeland, £25.99.

Manhattan tea towel if you can't make Christmas in New York, Famille Summerbelle, £10.00

Iittala tealights to make your home festive and pretty through the dark nights. The red is my favourite but I can never bring myself to spend that much money so getting it as a gift would be wonderful, Iittala, from £16.

Chinatown poster, still the best film noir ever, Amazon, £13.18


Squirrel tape dispenser, How Kapow, £14

Eiffel tower eraser to brighten up your day, None Such Things, £2.95.

Vintage milk bottles which I found just after I returned to the UK this summer. They remind me of free milk at infants' school. None Such Things, £3.95.

The most beautiful diary, RHS, Amazon, £8.39

Pretty pens to inspire you to write something handwritten to your friends, Poketo, $4.50


A Cary Grant box set because too much of a good thing can be wonderful as Mae West once said, Amazon, £42.79.

Classic film set with Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy because there's nothing like old movies over the holidays. Amazon, £10.25.

I'm just dying to see this new Woody Allen documentary, Amazon, £10.

Two of my favourite films from this year which I saw in Berlin with my Mum. The Artist (£7.01) and Moonrise Kingdom (£11.99), both from Amazon.

Two more brilliant Scandi series you may have missed, The Bridge, £24.29 and Borgen, £22, both from Amazon.


My favourite cookbooks of the year, Scandilicious Baking, £16, The Kitchen Diaries II, £12 and the Great British Bake Off book, £8.86, all from Amazon.

Richard Burton's diaries to enjoy alone or read aloud together, £18.75, Amazon.

A set with the Etymologicon and the Horologicon to understand hidden connections in the English language and rediscover forgotten words so you can impress your friends by talking about rumpeepers (mirrors) and snollygosters (smug, dishonest people, generally politicians). Fantastic stuff. £15 from Amazon.

I've always loved writing things by hand and receiving handwritten messages but it doesn't happen often enough. I hope Philip Hensher's new book will inspire me to do more. The Missing Ink, £6 from Amazon.

For men 

The Hymie Joke Book by Michael Winner. My Dad loved the jokes that Sunday Times readers sent in every week about the rather sexist Hymie and his wife. Some are better than others but in this collection you're bound to find something to make you (and the men in your life) laugh. £8.96 from Amazon.

Men's grooming products by Liz Earle in Try-Me sets (£16.75) or full size sets (£38).

My favourite men's fragrance, £50.

Edible gifts

Delish lemon cake from Peyton and Byrne, a company with fabulous bakeries in London, £10.

Don't forget, to make a really special and personal gift, you could also bake all or some of my Christmas cookies to put in a tin or pretty wrapper or how about some orangettes? You'll find the links below:

Vanilla crescents
Linzer Augen
Cinnamon stars
Mini stollen

14 commentaires:

  1. What a lovely list and great ideas!



  2. Moi qui ne suis pas specialement fan de Noel, tu me donnes envie de beaucoup de choses - le cake stand est tres joli, entre autres - certainement la facon dont tu presentes les choses.

  3. This is an outstanding list. Great suggestions, I am with you on the shea butter hand cream. The squirrel tape dispenser and the Moomin mug are my favourites. Cheers.

  4. @Rosa - Oh thanks!
    @Gracienne - Je comprends qu'on aime pas trop Noel car c'est devenu tellement commerciel. Je suis ravie que ma liste te plaise et le cake stand est vraiment super. Il me faut seulement une cloche maintenant.
    @P.K - I'm so pleased you like my list - it took me ages putting together but I loved every minute of it. Glad you're also a L'Occitane fan, I think their products are amazing.

  5. So much good to ponder here. When I was gardening I often thought of hunting down a kneeling pad. I like the one you've selected. Such a lovely cake stand. And the joy of handwritten messages. Good choices, Emily. Happy shopping!

  6. What great finds/ideas! I just pinned several & wish I had an actual budget this year to buy anything. But these will also be good next year. I came over looking for your orangette post:) xoxo (& thanks for the sweet link)


  7. @Denise - I currently use an outdoor cushion to do weeding but how nice to have a proper kneeling pad, it's essential. I'm really into gardening at the moment but the bulb planter is also a must after digging holes for 100 alium. Happy shopping to you too!
    @Susan - I feel very honoured getting such a comment from you, the epitome of good taste so thanks! This is really a dream list since I can't afford most of the stuff here either but seasonal window shopping is lots of fun. I thought the Richard Burton diaries would be perfect for you as you're such a big Elizabeth Taylor fan.

  8. Toi seule peux faire une telle liste. C'est très révélateur de ta personnalité, de ce que tu es, il me semble... On trouve l'âme des êtres dans de petits détails, dans ses goûts, etc. Je vais m'offrir l'un des objets de cette liste sur Amazon. Devine lequel. Joyeux Noël, Emily ! Du fond du coeur.

  9. Merci beaucoup Holly, je suis ravie que ma liste te plaise! Hmm, j'hésite entre le coffret Cary Grant et le coffret Etymologicon mais je pense que tu commandé plutôt le premier - est-ce que j'ai raison? En tout cas, je suis certaine que tu l'adoreras. A toi aussi un très joyeux Noël. Bises.

  10. J'ai déjà tous les films de Cary disponibles en DVD, tous, et en plusieurs exemplaires parfois. Et même des raretés non éditées. En effet, c'est le coffret Etymologicon. Tu me connais très bien !
    Joyeux Noël, merveilleuse Emily ! Gros bisous.

  11. Hi, Really great effort. Everyone must read this article. Thanks for sharing.

  12. What you're saying is completely true. I know that everybody must say the same thing, but I just think that you put it in a way that everyone can understand. I'm sure you'll reach so many people with what you've got to say.

  13. Blogging is the new poetry. I find it wonderful and amazing in many ways.

  14. This is an outstanding list. Great suggestions, I am with you on the shea butter hand cream. The squirrel tape dispenser and the Moomin mug are my favourites. Cheers.