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Ask Avery: Holiday gift guide pt. 1

Photo courtesy of Flickr / Yolkfolk

blog by Avery Hartmans  • 

Though we may still be fighting off our Thanksgiving hangovers—or in some cases, night-before-Thanksgiving hangovers—Black Friday is upon us, which means just one thing: it’s time to start shopping.

While not everyone is the type to tailgate at the outlet mall until the doors open or wake up at the crack of dawn to score reduced-price electronics, most people are starting to think about what will be under the tree this Christmas. And though the well-prepared have already planned for each person on their list, Christmas shopping has been known to induce just a tad bit of anxiety.

But when it comes to the ladies on your list, stop worrying. Like other list-oriented women who have come before me—Oprah, Maria from “The Sound of Music”—I’ve compiled a few of my favorite things that will please even the trickiest of chicks. And if you feel the need to thank me for my forethought and holiday spirit, any of the items listed below will suffice as payment. Just a thought.

The friend

Though you most likely loathe the annual Secret Santa gift exchange among friends for the extra expense and stress over what to buy, this year you’ll be the most relaxed in the group, even before a few glasses of eggnog. Skip the drama of finding “The” gift and stick with a tried-and-true classic: cold weather gear. Do you think I’m unimaginative for suggesting such an obvious gift? Maybe so. Would you be delighted to receive a cozy tartan scarf and warm, chunky-knit fingerless gloves that still allow you to Tweet in blizzard conditions? You betcha.

Scarf: Zara, $49.90
Gloves: Lord & Taylor, $30

The techie

We all have that person on our list who eschews typical “female” gifts of cashmere sweaters or gift cards to the spa. For the cool geek girl in your life, why not trick out her electronics? A durable neoprene laptop case in a cheerful holiday color combined with an extra pair of earbuds is sure to make her happy, even if she’s too busy working on HTML coding to properly thank you. But make sure this chick is something of a label snob before splurging on the laptop case. Someone who can’t appreciate Marc Jacobs doesn’t deserve to rock it.

Laptop case: Shopbop, $54.40
Earbuds: Best Buy, $9.99

The lady friend

Girlfriend, wife, partner, “fun” buddy: everyone appreciates a great pair of PJs. Silk pajamas are the ideal gift for your special lady because they say, “I want to snuggle with you and I’m classy.” Throw in a pair of intergalactic smoking slippers and it’s the perfect outfit for curling up by the fire on a wintry night. And the best part about silk PJs is their ability to double as daywear. If your girl is especially sartorially savvy, she’ll test out one of my favorite trends: pajama dressing. Fabulous PJs should not be confined to the bedroom.

Pajamas: Kohl’s, $19.99
Slippers: Macy’s, $17.46

The mother

Mothers are hard to shop for, mainly because they always say, “I don’t need any gifts this year,” every single year, only to be totally delighted by presents on Christmas morning. And since moms are the best, they deserve really nice gifts to say thanks for all the stupid shenanigans they put up with the other 364 days of the year. So don’t skimp on your mom’s present: look for a nice, well-crafted sweater that’s youthful yet classic and add a necklace that’s cool and fashion-forward while still looking understated. Make it seem like you actually spent some time thinking about what she’d like — mom’s appreciate stuff like that.

Sweater: Madewell, $128
Necklace: Anthropologie, $48

The little sister

The little sister can be tough to shop for — she’s the youngest, but shouldn’t have to feel like the baby. There’s a fine line between buying something fun and grown-up and making your little sister grow up too fast. Instead, get her something feminine and sweet that will still make her feel like one of the older kids — she’ll be excited about gold sparkly ballet flats and a ballet-pink bow belt. Sure, she can be the annoying little sister, but at least she’ll be the super-stylish annoying little sister.

Belt: J.Crew, $68
Flats: Aldo, $20.99

The hipster

Hipsters. We all know one and we all know how impossible it is to shop for them. Since hipsters generally don’t buy into the obsessive consumerism that is holiday shopping, they won’t like just anything you found at the mall. What your hipster most likely wants is a typewriter so she can journal about how sad she is that those sellouts, Mumford & Sons, got so mainstream that she had to throw out all the albums she had on vinyl. But instead, you should get her a flannel — because hipsters always need more of those — and a baby fisheye camera. Because what’s more indie than the world’s tiniest camera? Nothing, that’s what.

Camera: Urban Outfitters, $39
Flannel: American Eagle, $39.95

Featured photo courtesy of Flickr / Yolkfolk.

TAGGED: ask avery, black friday, christmas shopping, gifts, holiday shopping, holidays, presents, shopping, women's style

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