If there’s one piece of advice that’s bound to come in handy this Christmas — as it does every holiday season — it’s that we could all put in a smidge more effort when it comes to gifts for men. (Oh, more novelty socks you say? How thoughtful!) The hard truth is that the holidays are a minefield of cringe ‘for Him’ gift ideas: ranging from underwhelming (e.g. gift cards) to the truly heinous (read: a free gym trial). In the interest of ensuring you don’t add to the proverbial void, we’ve handpicked 10 investment pieces guaranteed to illicit applause from men across the spectrum. From warrior-worthy skincare to timeless sartorial threads, each of our picks embodies a simple but effective brief: ‘Pick something he already has, but better.’
Salvatore Ferragamo ‘Gancini’ Bit Moccasin
Creative Director Paul Andrew’s quiet tweak on the ever-popular bit moccasin features an almondine profile and is fashioned from supple, semi-glossy leather. The burnished gold hardware (known amongst fashionistas as a gancini) is inspired by the wrought iron gates of Ferragamo’s Florentine HQ.
Buy now from Salvatore Ferragamo.
Drake’s orange casentino fleece half-zip pullover
This warm and fuzzy half-zip, from one of Britain’s best emerging menswear labels, refutes the idea that sartorial clothing has to involve the suit. Casentino wool (dyed a whimsical high-vis orange) is transposed out of its traditional medium and into the realm of sportswear: reimagined here as a preppy pullover that’s as good with jeans as it is a pair of corduroys.
Shop now from Drake’s.
Creed Aventus Eau de Parfum
To fragrance lovers what Cristal is to oenophiles, for nearly 10 years Aventus (from the Latin “for wind”) has been the most popular, not to mention polarising, formulation from haute parfumerie Creed. Tenuous connections to nobility aside, the combination of bergamot, vanilla and freshly-cut pineapple is worth a king’s ransom. Rightfully so, we think.
Shop now from Creed.
Vacheron Constantin FiftySix Complete Calendar
Sure, it’s powered by a ValFleurier movement, but in the wider context of Vacheron — of $800,000 steel divewatches to be precise — the FiftySix is a fantastic way to break into the world of high-end Genevan watchmaking. A stainless steel variant is available, but for that consummate VC look, it’d be hard to do one better than pink gold.
Shop now from Vacheron Constantin.
Mr P. striped knitted sweater
This earthen toned sweater, made exclusively for the Mr Porter private label, is perfect for taking one’s enjoyment of abstract expressionism to the next level. A blend of mohair and wool fibres are used to achieve a cool, dégradé effect — evoking the season’s more rustic qualities to the eye and upon the skin.
Shop now from Mr Porter.
Rituals ‘Ritual of Samurai’ invigorating gift set
Who knew that stellar self-care was a prerequisite to bushido? Inspired by feudal Japanese warriors, the ‘Ritual of Samurai’ will sharpen any modern gent’s grooming arsenal. This set includes shower and shaving gels, aftershave and a freshly scented EDP: all of which are crucial for keeping your skin in fighting form during the boozy holiday season.
Shop now from Rituals.
The Armoury (by Ring Jacket) ‘Model 3’ Prince of Wales grey/blue sportcoat
We get it: most of our regular readers are probably more into Balenciaga than they are Brioni. But during the holidays, there’s always the obligatory mixer/dinner party that demands a certain amount of add-chic from attendees. Hong Kong tailoring heavyweight The Armoury makes duds for just such an occasion. Their Model 3 sport coat — the shop’s ‘house style’, if you will — is cut with a natural shoulder, extra comfy armholes, and gently curved lapels. This one is made up in a classic glencheck from Italian mill VBC.
Shop now from The Armoury.
OMEGA Seamaster Diver 300M
Same same but different from the popular OMEGA divewatch favoured by members of Her Majesty’s Secret Service. This version — one of the latest additions to the current Seamaster 300M lineup — bucks its ‘tool watch’ origins with an glittery mixture of steel, ceramic and Sedna gold. To meet OMEGA’s own rigorous standards of precision, the movement powering this watch utilises a Co-Axial escapement.
Shop now from OMEGA.
Of all our Christmas 2019 gift ideas, probably the biggest no-brainer. At a time of year when the mulled wine and honey ham flows freely, nobody wants to be out on their heels (literally) in thin leather soles. Packed with adiPRENE and pressure dispersal technology, these 90s inspired Ozweegos will help you stay one workout ahead of a full-blown gout attack.
Shop now from END Clothing.
Lotuff ‘No. 10’ weekender duffle
Crafted in New England, made with hand-tumbled veg-tanned leather, guaranteed for life: Lotuff’s No. 10 weekender is as serious as hand luggage comes. Perfect for throwing in the boot of your convertible, or as a refined carry-on.
Shop now from Lotuff.