I hate to say it, but time is fleeting for buying the really good Christmas gifts for friends and families. I have learned a lot about giving gifts over the years. I was most impressed with a person I met once who told me his approach to gift-giving is very intellectual: Throughout the year, he takes notes about what his loved ones like, and he refers to it when buying gifts. I like this idea!
Personal Styling Your Gift Giving
Another gift-giving philosophy is from my husband, Michael, who is the world’s best gift giver! (Yes, he does buy me jewelry. It was one of the first things he learned about me when we were dating, which I thought was very sweet.) Anyway, we had a conversation about how he would buy family gifts, and he told me two things: First if someone is an expert on something, let’s say vinyl records, don’t buy that person that type of gift. Why? He/she knows more about than you do and has certain opinions about what is cool and what is not cool. So, just don’t go down that road.
Second, Michael told me sometimes he sees a really lovely item and thinks: that would be a perfect present for someone, and he just buys it. Later, he figures out whom to give it to. For instance, we were shopping once and he spied a beautiful cashmere sweater. He looked at it; he could tell by touching that it was very high quality–and it was a neutral color. He bought it and later “gifted” it to his brother. Now, Michael knew his brother Chas appreciated fine clothing. He remembered when Chas was a teenager and he asked his mom to buy him 100 percent cotton shirts. At that time it seemed strange, but today — we all like clothing from pure fibers. I always advise my Personal Styling clients to buy more pure fabrics than a combo with polyester.
The first rule from me is it listen to your loved one – and then figure out how to buy. If you are buying for a bride or Mom-to-Be, look a the gift registry. Supposedly it is a no-no to not buy from the registry when buying gifts.
Also if someone in your family needs clothing, but you are not sure of their taste, buy a gift card! Even a general one to a mall or website gives the person who receives the gift latitude and choice about what she/he buys.
I agree with other personal shopping experts who say don’t buy someone a pet. That’s a huge responsibility. The only exception to this rule is if someone has told you he/she wants a pet — such as a kitten (okay, I am a kitty lover).
Give The Gift of Personal Styling
Of course, since I own a Personal Styling consulting and shopping business, this is where I mention considering buying a gift certificate from me. I offer many services, but all start with a color analysis and meeting. I have to do that for any next steps that follow such as closet cleanse or personal shopping. Why? If I have never met you, learn more about you or know your best colors/sizes/shapes, how can I possibly effectively pick out clothing for you?
My very first consult with me is the color analysis: we meet; I compare different color flags to see your “Wow Colors,” and measure you to determine your best shapes. You will also take a quiz about style. At the end of the apt, you receive a swatch book of best colors, and then I send you many handouts to assist you with style. Cost is $250 for the package. You will also receive a gift certificate to give to your loved one. Contact me at 317-416-2782 to purchase your “perfect” gift.
Keep it sassy…
Beth Divine, MA
AICI Certified Image Consultant and Personal Styling