Last week, I sat down ready to write my annual Valentines Day Gift Guide post when something held me back.
I've been writing those kinds of seasonal posts for years and years but it dawned on me that I never write for occasions that we don't all celebrate at the same time, such as Birthdays and Anniversaries. Its always Christmas or Valentines that I write about, when the shelves are stocked full of gift ideas already. With that in mind, I have decided to put together a gift guide of things to buy a woman for her birthday, anniversary or any other special occasion.
Many of these things could be bought as gifts for a friend or female relative but they're ideally suited to those buying for their girlfriend or wife.
My first suggestion would be lingerie. If you're buying something for you wife and know her size (Hint: don't guess. Check in her underwear drawer) then lingerie is a fabulous option because its something that you really need to take care in picking out for her and she'll know that.
Choose a style that is similar to pieces she already owns but perhaps in a different colour that you know she'll love and always choose a matching set. Don't go too daring. If the woman you're buying for is quite conservative, don't risk her feeling awkward in something too daring or risqué.
This set here is the Misty style by Sculptress who are a D+ specialist and plus size brand that is new to the Panache Lingerie umbrella. The Misty set features a full cup bra that's designed to enhance the wearers shape as well as offering great support and being comfortable to wear, and a coordinating full brief. The brief is a bit of a change for me as I usually prefer more of a thong style but its really comfortable to wear and the gorgeous design still feels flirty and pretty.
The design of the Misty is so beautifully feminine and unlike anything else in my collection. The broderie anglaise lace detailing looks gorgeous against the light wash denim print and I love the flirty pink bow on the centre of the bra and briefs.
This is a great daytime set and makes me feel feminine, confident and put together. As I'm getting older, I'm starting to appreciate the difference that good underwear makes and how I feel when I wear it. I think a lot of women feel the same way and many hit a certain point in their life when they choose to invest in quality pieces that will look great and last. Sculptress and Panache are definitely the go to brands for achieving that.
For stockist information, see here.
If buying clothes or under garments frightens you because of sizing but you'd still like to get the lady in your life something to wear, then a great option is a scarf.
My favourite designer for scarves has to be Burberry. Their quintessentially British designs are made from the finest cashmere and you can have them monogrammed with up to 3 letters of your choosing (currently offered complimentry!). I received the Burberry Check and Hearts Scarf for Christmas just gone and have worn it countless times since. This style goes with practically everything and is ageless which makes it a great option for a gift because everyone can enjoy wearing it.
If you don't want to spend too much money, but still would like to purchase a luxury gift, then a great option would be something from Tom Ford Beauty. The Lips and Boys collection in particular is a fantastic choice if you're a man buying the gift as each lipstick's shade name is a boys name so you may just strike lucky and find a lipstick with your name on it in a gorgeous colour. If not, opt for one of their regular sized lipsticks in a colour that you think she'd love as its pointless buying a shade that wont suit her just because it has your first name on it!
Lastly, I wholeheartedly believe that you cannot go wrong with a bottle of her favourite perfume for her birthday or an anniversary. Every woman I know loves her fragrances so whether she's loyal to her signature scent or likes to try out different perfumes from time to time, a perfume gift is bound to be a hit. However there are so many out there to choose from so do go back and revisit my tips from this post to help you to pick out the best fragrance for her.
My favourite place to shop for fragrances online has to be Fragrance Direct. They have the best selection around with all of the complimentry products, different sized bottles and gift sets in one place so their website really does take the hassle out of shopping. I have written more about the online shopping experience at Fragrance Direct in this post.
The perfume that I have been wearing most recently from them is the YSL Black Opium which is still a relatively new fragrance. It was sprayed on me while I was having my makeup done at a counter last year (check out the post here) and ever since, I have been coveting it.
Black Opium is a stunning fragrance with a deep and mysterious air to it. I find that it is distinctive and unusual and since it is still quite new, not everyone has smelled it before so it does attract compliments and people asking what perfume it is! I love my sexy fragrances for both day and night wear but this really is one that is suitable for both times of day because it still has a lightness to it so it isn't too heavy for the daytime. This scent has top notes of coffee, accords of pink pepper, a heart of vanilla which gives it a little warmth, jasmine and orange blossom and base notes of cedar and patchouli.
You can shop the YSL Black Opium line at Fragrance Direct here and the rest of their stunning perfumes for women here.
No matter what gift you buy for her for her birthday or anniversary this year, I'd suggest a well worded card and pretty gift wrapping as both go a long way to putting a smile on her face, mine anyway!
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