The paradox of looking for thoughtful gifts from luxury brands but still budget-friendly.
The amount spent on a gift is not equivalent to the heart, the thought and the intention set behind the giving of the gift. Unless you are that kind of person. Then, sorry. You’re a very hard person to shop for!
If it’s a she-wants-Chanel-but-you-can’t-afford-Chanel kind of relationship, well, you can get her Chanel. Just not the bag. The little egg-shaped hand lotion, maybe. A single make-up brush. Maybe a quilted cardholder, if you’re feeling very generous. The holiday season contains multitudes.
Below, a full list of things you can afford from the brands you think you can’t afford. Because love is about compromise. So Christmas gifting should be, too.
10 budget-friendly gifts from high-end luxury brands:
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- Jacquemus’ Neve knitted headband
- Dior's ABCDior Mitzah Scarf
- Gucci's Hexagon Sticky Notes
- Balenciaga's Logo Tennis Socks
- Louis Vuitton's What A Monogram Tie
- Loewe's Leather Slap Bracelet
- Givenchy's U-shaped Padlock
- Burberry's Vintage Check Slides
- JW Anderson's Peach Logo T-shirt
- Off-White's Mini Industrial Belt
This is most probably a fifth of the size of that fuzzy Jacquemus sweater she has her heart set on, but this gift guide is about affordable luxury. So this knitted headband will do just fine.
She’d still get to unbox hot-pink Jacquemus and feel that much closer to Kendall Jenner, and you’ve just spent half a rack for her priceless honour of being able to say “Why yes, I am wearing Jacquemus.” Win-win.
There are many circumstances Dior’s mitzah scarf can make cameo appearances in. Knotted at the neck with ends dangling by the décolletage, the ladylike way to wear it. Wrapped tight by the wrist in a bow if you’re keening for a statement bracelet. Even, coiled along the top handle of a handbag as a silk-twill measure of protection. You know what, make this a game come Christmas morning. Brainstorm even more uses for it.
As an updated scrunchie! As a full-sized scarf for a little furry influencer! As a flag you’d wave in surrender on a deserted island! Endless possibilities.
If it’s the Belle of the… Office Cubicle the gift recipient so desires, Gucci’s venture towards workplace stationery will check off many luxurious boxes. These sticky notes say “No thanks!” to the colour yellow and to squares and 90-degree angles. Instead, it upgrades from four- to six-sided shapes on horsebit-printed pages yearning for your very best chicken scratch and meeting doodles.
Socks. It’s the worst gift one can receive as a child, but one of the very best one can receive as an adult. Who likes spending hard-earned cash on practical, everyday items, which can only be worn in pairs, with, too, an unfortunate propensity for vanishing into thin air (or, at least, vanishing into the backs of couches and depths of washing machines)? Not me. Not you, either.
In these, at least you’ll have warm toes encased in Balenciaga-stamped cotton, in a bright, tennis-court green colourway you cannot lose sight of in a sea of black and barely-white.
It may look like it, but this Louis Vuitton tie is not, in fact, made from denim. It’s silk twill — just in a very convincing indigo-navy that looks as though it was cut from Baggy GM deadstock from 2005. If you’re very cool, you’ll wear this with, of course, a Canadian tuxedo previously pulled off only by one Justin Timberlake. If you’re less so, try suiting pants and a slick bomber jacket instead.
No matter the amount of slap bracelets you’ve had whacked onto your arm with a strength that’s not without some weight behind it (meaning: ouch), you’ve never been rapped on the wrist with one like this. It’s Loewe! It’s leather. It’s high-low, tongue-in-cheek luxury — the kind that says “Yes, I’m kinda bougie. But I’m also fun!”
This comes in three colours — black, orange and tan brown — so choose whichever matches the giftee’s Puzzle bag.
I’m not sure what you’d use a padlock for in Hong Kong, or why your padlock is, monetarily-wise, more valuable than whatever you’re padlocking, but if you — or the person this gift is intended for — is in the market for one, there surely isn’t a padlock as lovely as this Givenchy stunner. It’s finished in gold and silver (we love mixing metals!) and engraved with Givenchy’s geometric logo alongside the centre bit. Very fancy.
Actually, I guess you can slide keys onto this? A key-holder. Remember that for your speech on Christmas morning.
Pool slides, but make them Burberry. Your giftee will wear them to the pool, yes, but also to the beach; on errands with socks and sweatpants; slipped on very hastily to meet their foodpanda driver; then, to work because dress codes set up an archaic, anachronistic standard that really should be nulled in favour of comfort. Burberry-approved comfort.
This JW Anderson T-shirt is, actually, more affordable than some socks on this list. Given the square-footage this covers — a torso vs. two feet, for example — it’s a very good deal for what you’re shelling out. Especially because it’s not just a logo-embroidered tee, no. It’s also printed with a graphic peach where a chest pocket would normally sit, which makes it a perfect gift for the sweetest peaches in your life. Or, a CMBYN-Timothée Chalamet superfan.
A rack might be a little up there for a belt, but like the crossbody flap is to Chanel, or the Saddle bag is to Dior, this yellow, printed-over belt with the buckle you might otherwise see on overalls or construction workwear is an Off-White signature. It’s the Off-White piece to get, if you were to get an Off-White piece.