The holidays can be really fun… and they can also be really stressful. As some of you may have heard, there’s a recession going on, and yeah, it’s really hit home even here on The Coveted. Since my own financial situation is really in a touch and go space right now, going all out for the holidays isn’t really in the cards. I was going to put together a gift guide for you, but the truth is, I probably wouldn’t be able to get much of the stuff myself, so I’m not going to expect you to go gaga over it.
There are lots of gifts out there that are really nice, and don’t cost very much, and the saying goes ‘It’s the thought that counts.’
The first thing is to not get down about the money thing, and there are more reasons not to drop a bunch of cash on a boyfriend, like if you are saving up for something in the future, or if you’re in a new relationship, (oh haven’t had that ‘talk’ yet) an extravagant gift can make things uncomfortable. There are lots of gifts out there that are really nice, and don’t cost very much, and the saying goes ‘It’s the thought that counts.’ Well, it’s really true. Also another thing to think about, is making the whole gift giving part really fun, that adds loads of value to the gift exchange… and last but not least, when it really comes down to it, when ever I ask my boyfriend what he wants for a birthday/anniversary/Christmas gift the first thing he always says is ‘Sexual favors.’ ahem… those are always free.
Aside from those favors which, thankfully, I’m not going to share, here are some other things I’ve gotten for my boyfriend that he’s really liked. My boyfriend is 25, finishing his master’s degree in industrial design… so he really likes design-y stuff, robots, irreverent films and literature, so giving him more thoughtful gifts really make him happy.
1. Polaroid Camera
I found a Polaroid Land Camera at the fleamarket for pretty cheap, and I really liked the form and retro design. Since it’s an SX-70, the film is really expensive, luckily, someone figured out how to hack a Polaroid camera to make it into a web cam. There are also hacks to make old SX-70s take Polaroid 600 film, so if your man is handy and enjoys hacking gadgets, this would be a great gift. Old polaroids are easy to find, you can get them on eBay, craigslist, or the fleamarket/thrift store/etc…
2. Retro Casio Watch
One of my favorite gifts that I steal a lot. Last year we got Rocky the white Casio. Which he got loads of compliments on. I also got him a Casio Calculator Watch at Target for $20. But you can also get it on Amazon for even cheaper (check in your country, as they have them on Amazon.de too). On eBay, I’ve found really crazy Gold and Silver ones, they are more expensive, but they also come in ‘buy it now’ so you don’t have to deal with the auctions.
3. Vintage Books
Books are getting really expensive, or maybe that’s what it seems like over here in Germany… and it’s crazy because there are loads of great used books, for cheap. Especially if your man is into design, there are also lots of great books with interesting cover design. Particularly since reading Reference Library, I’ve grown to love the value of vintage printed matter. Used books can be found everywhere, used book stores, thrift stores, flea markets, I’ve even found some great ones on the street (sorry, I can’t help but to dig through old books every time I see a box of them on the sidewalk).
4. Retro Toys
Though I don’t want to encourage this behavior, If I come across a toy or something that might be a fond part of Rocky’s childhood, like I know he loves robots… and if there happens to be a vintage Optimus Prime at the flea market, I’ll pick it up. This can be really tricky, as the original, pristine, in the box toys are collectors items and really expensive, and then there are the ones that are from five years ago, and are just junk. It does take a bit of training to be able to discern what is cool and what blows, like I may get a Transformer, but a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle? I’ll pass.
5. Design Stuff
Since Rocky loves all things design, getting little things that have design values, like the Eames House of Cards can be fun and inspirational. I know these are originally meant for kids, but I see more adults who love Charles and Rae Eames with these cards. I know I like to sort through all the cards, looking at all the fun pictures, though I can’t actually build anything, I know Rocky likes having these around.
6. Vintage Clothes
Since I wear so many vintage clothes, I’d say I have a keen eye for vintage. Here are some of my favorite menswear sellers on eBay: Cotton Love, Retro Vertigo, Thrifty Beatnik. Though quite honestly, I would probably look for stuff in real life because it’s easier for me to tell if something would fit Rocky than online, unless I sneakily get out his clothes and measure them all. Now, If you’ll excuse me…
7. Baked Goods
These are of little cost, but really special because they made with love. I’ve always thought of it as a little test to see if a man is a keeper or not by how much he appreciates my cookies. Rocky loves my cookies, so he can stay around. A batch of home made cookies, wouldn’t be the main gift, but it’s certainly a nice stocking stuffer to add to the feeling of having a nice holiday together. Plus, I really like baking, and Rocky really loves banana muffins.