Christmas can’t come soon enough with gifts like these.
Christmas can’t come soon enough with gifts like these.
Did Santa bring you something you’re not that keen about? Don’t let your unwanted gifts pile up and create clutter in your home. Here are some ideas on what to do with them.
Refund or exchange
Most likely you will need a receipt to do that, but some shops will exchange your unopened gifts without a proof of purchase. Depending on your relationship with the giver, you may even be able to ask them for the receipt. This is especially easy to do when the gift is clothing or shoes. You can always say that the item is not a perfect fit and they didn’t have your size when you went to exchange it, so you grabbed something else.
They say one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. It certainly doesn’t hurt to try putting your gift on eBay and see what kind of interest it gets. Keep in mind that everyone sells their unwanted presents just after Christmas, so unless it’s something that will go out of fashion, it pays to wait for a couple months, when you’ll have less competition.
Donate to charity
Take your unwanted gifts to your local charity shop and your gift will serve a good cause instead of gathering dust in your home. Most charity shops will happily take clothes, shoes, books, CDs. Only some will accept electrical goods, so check with them before you drop off the items.
Give to someone else
If it’s a downright horrible gift that you’d be embarrassed to offer to anyone else, then don’t do it. It can also be that it’s not a great gift for you, but it would be perfect for someone else you know. Just make sure you remember who gave it to you in the first place, so that it doesn’t make its way back to them.
With a bit of imagination most items can be turned into something else. Your unwanted gifts can provide hours of rainy day entertainment for crafty kids. You can use clothes to make party costumes, book pages to include in your scrapbooking projects and a mug to turn into a pen holder (after giving your kids free reign to re-decorate it).
Image by jill111 via pixabay.com
I love Christmas – the decadent food and cocktails, the parties, the family get-togethers – oh and the amazing, limited-edition Christmas beauty gift sets on offer! These highly covetable beauty miniatures are great bang for your buck, make great travel kit must-haves and are the perfect gift for a loved one or yourself. All items are available at David Jones stores and via davidjones.com.au.
Little luxuries: Your giftee will be in seventh heaven with Chloé’s My Little Chloés, $120, a limited-edition collection of three 20ml eau de parfum miniature fragrances which each celebrate a different facet of the rose, the now iconic floral embodiment of the Chloé design house. Love it!
Absolutely flawless: This Laura Mercier Flawless Expressions For Eyes, Cheeks and Lips Set, $90, is a gorgeous must-have for the party season. You, or your giftee, can create subtle or smoky eyes and then add a splash of colour to cheeks and lips. It contains six eyeshadows, two cheek colours and three lippies. It’s exclusive to DJs.
Skin saver: Have you been partying harder than Charlie Sheen? Gift yourself this beauty: Jurlieque Herbal Recovery Essentials, $199. These potent botanicals and antioxidants help to smooth fine lines and even skin tone to deliver fresh, revitalised skin. There’s a serum, night crème and an eye cream. Nice!
Body rockers: A thoughtful and indulgent gift this holiday season, the Molton Brown Stocking Fillers Collection, $60, contains 12 exquisitely scented body washes. From Coco and Sandalwood to Pink Pepperpod, it’s a gorgeous and luxurious gift box set for the beauty junkie in your life.
Top-to-toe beauty: This Clarins Gorgeous Getaways Set – Face & Body Care Collection, $70, will pamper your giftee from head-to-toe. The limited-edition gift set features Clarins’ best-sellers in a lovely white travel pouch. Goodies include: Beauty Flash Balm, Hand and Nail Treatment Cream, One-Step Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser, Eye Contour Gel, HydraQuench Cream and Moisture-Rich Body Lotion. Great value, lady!
Pull an all-nighter: Planning to stay out all night, your dirty stop-out? A trio of party circuit eye-essentials. Napoleon Perdis’ All-Nighter Eye Collection, $55, allows you to turn up the heat with sultry lids that have after-hour appeal. The gift pack contains an eyeliner, mascara, make-up remover and travel-size make-up bag. Love!
Hands-on gift: I love, love, love this pretty gift set and its exquisite packaging: Crabtree & Evelyn Big Top Hand Therapy Musical Tin, $79. Give the gift of soft, smooth and supple hands with this much loved and ultra-moisturising Hand Therapy gift set in 12 favourite fragrances, beautifully presented in a large, decorative wind-up musical tin. Purrty!
Paint it black: Embrace the dark side with this stunning gift set: the Tom Ford Black Orchid Holiday Set, $162. A luxurious and sensual fragrance of rich, dark accords with a burning heart of black orchids and spice, Tom Ford’s Black Orchid is both modern and timeless. This beauty set contains a 50ml parfum and Hydrating Emulsion.
Looking for that perfect, last-minute Christmas gift for that hard-to-buy for person? Check out these fabulous and unusual gifts which won’t break the bank. What’s more, they’re so cool and quirky, they’re bound to please. Shop to it, Santa baby!
Beach bliss: The Coleman Beach Mat, $29.99, allows you to stretch your legs out over a durable molyester mat, making it more comfortable and earier to avoid messy sand or bug-infested grass. Featuring an adjustable A-frame back rest with mesh, this cool and quirky beach accessory will help you relax entirely this summer. Find it via www.colemanaustralia.com.au.
Raw deal: Jump on the raw food bandwagon and gift a loved one the Raw Blend Gift Pack, $69.95. The perfect Christmas gift for the health enthusiast or budding raw foodist, the pack includes the 8-in-1 Raw Slicer, the 1L Green Smoothie bottle, a Raw Blend enviro bag, a Raw Blend spatula for vitamix blenders and an “I love smoothie” bumper sticker. Shop it via www.rawblend.com.au.
Get cheeky: Does your giftee like unusual and quirky undies? Check out Aussie underwear brand Stonemen, which designs for both men and women, in brief, trunk and cheeky styles (pictured, and above). I’m loving the great prints and quality – there’s everything from city skylines and colourful sunsets, to wild horses and flying ducks. Men’s boxers, briefs and trunks are $44.99, while women’s briefs and cheeky undies are $39.99. Each illustration is digitally printed, creating a wrap-around image on premium cotton. Grab yours via www.stonemen.com and at leading boutiques.
Time to man up: Back by popular demand, the engraving service of Gentleman Jack bottles is a great, quirky and cool Christmas gift for that hard-to-please man in your life. A bespoke bottle of Gentleman Jack, engraved with your very own personalised message, will only be available until December 17. Gentleman Jack is born of the legendary Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 and charcoal-mellowed twice, a claim no other whiskey maker in the world can make. Visit Gentleman Jack Australia FB page: facebook.com/gentlemanjackaustralia. Gentleman Jack, 700ml, is $64.99.
Small but mighty: Perfume lovers will dig the Amouage His and Her Miniatures, six X 7.5ml, $299 each. Exuding sensuality and elegance, these Amouage Christmas gift packs each contain six best-selling men and women’s fragrances in unique miniature sets. Each bottle is the perfect miniature size, ideal for travelling, and the packs showcase cult, classic fragrances Lyric, Jubilation XXV, Reflection, Gold, Dia and Silver for both men and women. All Amouage fragrances are available in Australia at Libertine Parfumerie, via www.libertineparfumerie.com.au, as well as exclusively through selected David Jones and Harrolds department stores. Phone (02) 8002 4488 or visit www.agencedeparfum.com.au for more information.
Cup half-full: Coffee or tea lovers can get their daily fix via this stylish Eclipse Collection by Limoges, which comprises nine bright and pastel hues in a mix of gold and platinum trims. The sexy-cool collection even has a mix-and-match concept. Synonymous with French tradition, refined and always elegant, the heritage-listed Limoges Porcelain is a stylish and luxe Christmas gift. For exact pricing, visit www.francalia.com.au for more information.
Christmas is hot on our heels and it’s a mad dash until the end of the year. On top of end-of-year craziness there is the added pressure of finding the perfect gift for our nearest and dearest to celebrate the festive season.
The question on everyone’s lips at this time of year is what do you buy the person that has everything?
Surprise them with a bedroom makeover
Why not get creative this year and surprise and delight your kids or loved ones with a bedroom makeover? Freshen up their bedroom for summer with a bright new colour scheme. Take it one step further and arrange for them to be out while you rearrange their room, giving maximum impact once they return home! This doesn’t need to cost a fortune either, and can be as simple as the addition of a few colourful pillows or a new bedspread. You might even find your new calling in interior decoration with the help of stores like Sheridan and Laura Ashley.
Travel experiences in the new year for the family
Get ahead of the 2015 crowds and excite your family on Christmas Day with a family holiday! If the whole family is a bit of a stretch for the budget, Flight Centre at Uni Hill has a range of up-to-date deals that have great getaway options for singles, couples and families. Take advantage of stores close by such as Strandbags for luggage and Kathmandu for jackets if you’re brave enough to tackle a northern European winter.
Kick-start a loved ones 2015 goals for fitness and health
After all the indulgences of Christmas parties and New Year celebrations, the beginning of a new year is a great chance to re-evaluate our health and fitness. It can sometimes be a daunting task to know where to begin, which makes the gift of brand new gym gear the perfect incentive to get moving. Snap up some new kicks from the Nike Factory Store or the latest running gear from Asics.
Delight the family with new games
The school holidays offer a fantastic opportunity for the family to spend more quality time together and what better way to enjoy each other’s company than with some healthy competition in the form of games! Great for problem solving and strategic thinking too. Try EB Games for a range of interactive and digital games to challenge and excite all ages, from the novice to addicted gamers.
This Christmas gift ideas article is courtesy of retailers at Uni Hill Factory Outlets in Melbourne. For more information visit www.uhfo.com.au or follow on Facebook.com/UniHillFO and Instagram @UniHillFO.
Over the next few days and weeks, many thousands of families across this mighty nation are getting ready to fill their pantries, fridges, freezers and receive those Christmas gifts that they have been paying for all year. Painstakingly selected about 12 months ago, 26 or 52 payments later, here it comes. There might be some cool toys for the kids, a bar set for dad, some grog for the old uncle or even a five-star holiday for the family.
You might have guessed that I’m talking about Chrisco, Hamper King, Castle Hampers and others that cash in on Christmas via payment plan industry. These have been around for years and now the variety has stretched way beyond the humble tin of baked beans in a Chrissy hamper.
Now, I’ve looked into these before and seen many friends and family members empty their energy-sucking fridges and freezers to accommodate the goods they’ve purchased. Not only have they paid decent sums of money for this stuff all year, but then they pay overpriced energy companies for food storage all the way through summer and beyond. What, the air-con isn’t going to add to the price; you need to store excess food as well! Bad luck if the power goes out or someone mistakenly turns off the freezer. Now, I’ve seen that happen too. OMG what a waste!
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been handed catalogues and marvelled each year at the ever-increasing range. Gee, that quad bike looks amazing, the kids would love that Metallica pool table and OMG I’d love that new computer. Now, that stuff I understand why people would be tempted. But tempted is all I’ve ever been.
My main deterrent has always been the price. I fail to understand why intelligent women and some men, for that matter, still go through these companies to load up at Christmas time. If I were to head down to the local shops or jump online and have it delivered, I’d be paying around 25% less than what people are paying these companies. That’s $25 for every $100, people!
I’m not the greatest mathematician, but I can certainly see when I’m being ripped off so significantly! So why is this still popular? Why are many struggling families doing this each year? Doesn’t anyone have a smartphone, table, laptop or PC where they can shop on-line and get a Christmas delivery to save a bit of cash? Personally, I’d rather pocket that extra cash. Don’t people do this because Christmas can be so difficult to afford?
Not necessarily. Sheer convenience is all that I can put it down to. I totally understand that it’s much easier to break down Christmas spending into a weekly or fortnightly payment, but there are much better ways to do it.
For example: There are some smaller supermarket chains which you can deposit funds into specifically for Christmas shopping. They offer the same thing and don’t charge you any extra; 100% of the money you pay each week or fortnight is given back to you to spend in-store. They provide a voucher and you don’t need to spend it in one big hit either. You can shop when you like and won’t end up paying extra for food storage.
Then there’s banks or saving institutions. Why not hunt around for a low-fee, high-interest account where you can get a small portion of your pay slipped in there each payday and withdraw the lot at Christmas and shop where the specials are? You can do the Christmas crawl to the shops or shop on-line. It doesn’t matter, because it’s your money to spend anyway you like.
You certainly won’t be limited to what’s in a few catalogues, that’s for sure! You can even pay off holidays and cruises these days, so why on earth are people still doing this? My only advice is, that before you order next years goods, check out the supermarket prices on-line and look into other options. You might still want to pay for the convenience, but with on-line shopping and other options, you can still have that, without the hefty price tag.
Anyway, hopefully I’ve given you something to think about while you’re gearing up for a great Christmas!
Image source: http://automediya.ru/wa-data/public/blog/img/Christmas-Delivery-Dates.jpg
Get your inner and outer glow on this holiday season with these beautiful Christmas skincare gifts. Treat yourself, or your loved ones, to some much-needed, luxury pampering! This handy Christmas gift guide is everything. Shop to it, Santa baby!
Handy help: Keep hands and cuticles hydrated this summer with the philosophy hands of hope ornament (30ml), $14. This trial-size intense hand cream makes for a perfect mini-gift for a rele, friend or even yourself. Even better, you can hang from your tree this Christmas. Find philosophy’s Christmas gift sets at selected David Jones stores, davidjones.com.au, mecca maxima and adorebeauty.com.au. Phone 1800 812 663.
Love and lemons: Get your glow on this festive season with the Simplicite Lemon Night Creme, $53.50. Simplicité, a luxurious natural and organic skin care range developed from pure plant extracts, swears by this hydrating night moisturiser formulated for all skin types. It’s said to brighten and clear the complexion and improve the appearance of hyper-pigmentation. Find it at Lulu and Lipstick via www.luluandlipstick.com.
Face off: The philosophy hope favourites holiday gift set, $60, will give that special someone the gift of a beautiful complexion. This gorgeous Christmas gift pack contains some of philosophy’s famed, best-selling skin care: hope in a jar high-performance moisturizer (60ml), hope in a jar night intense retexturizing moisturizer (15ml) and eye hope (7ml). Find philosophy’s Christmas gift sets at selected David Jones stores, davidjones.com.au, mecca maxima and adorebeauty.com.au. Phone 1800 812 663.
All the buzz: UK skin sensation Beetox has been hailed as the natural alternative to Botox, so give this baby a whirl: Beetox Manuka Honey and Bee Venom Facemask, $110. A luxurious and unique formula containing bee venom and Manuka honey, it rejuvenates the skin; boosts the renewal of damaged skin cells; and stimulates the facial muscles. It’s all about creating lifting, tightening and firming effects. What’s more, no bees were harmed in the ingredients sourcing. Find it at Lulu and Lipstick via www.luluandlipstick.com.
You glow, girl: Is this the best holiday care package? philosophy glowing days ahead, $99, has got to come very close. It features purity made simple3-in1 cleanser (240ml); the microdelivery exfoliating wash (240ml); microdelivery peel in-home Vitamin C/ peptide crystals (30ml) with activating gel (30ml); hope in a jar high-performance moisturiser (30ml) and hope in a jar night intense retexturizing moisturizer (30ml). Find philosophy’s Christmas gift sets at selected David Jones stores, davidjones.com.au, mecca maxima and adorebeauty.com.au. Phone 1800 812 663.
Green queen: I’m a big fan of the eco-friendly, natural and non-toxic Tata Harper Regenerating Cleanser, $86.25. Having recently tried this for the first time, I can see why it’s a huge favourite of A-list stylist extraordinaire Rachel Zoe, whose famous tagline “MAJ” is now on the Tata Harper labelling. It’s luxurious, gentle and anti-aging – winning! It also acts a 4-in-1 product to thoroughly cleanse and improve skin glow while purifying, minimizing the appearance of pores and helping to protect the skin’s natural hydration balance. Find it at Lulu and Lipstick via www.luluandlipstick.com.
Don’t give your gardener yet another plant! We’ve done the homework for you, hunted through cyberspace and come up with 5 top picks for your gardening guru. They are guaranteed to suit any budget and are highly recommended by people who genuinely love gardening!
Tubtrugs and colanders
Most gardeners have ditched their old buckets for Tubtrugs. They are so versatile, tough and convenient that there really are hundreds of uses for them around the home and garden. If you are looking for a highly versatile gift that fits most budgets, this is it. They come in heaps of colors and sizes.
Luckily, someone has used their noggin and come up with a way to make it even better by adding a colander. It’s basically a giant strainer. It’s great if you want to wash freshly picked produce, garden tools, pots, whatever!
End-of-hose flow controller
There are so many different attachments for hoses, but anyone who uses one will love you for this little beauty. It provides users the control of the tap, but it’s conveniently located right where you need to use it, at the end of the hose. Once it’s attached, users turn the tap on and never need to touch it again. For under $10, this is possibly the best gardening gift you will ever buy. It saves time, energy, water, money and the possibility of getting soaked when changing nozzles.
As land becomes more precious, gardens are growing up instead of out. That’s why these are becoming a massive trend world wide. Even people without a green thumb are able to manage a vertical garden with a few favorite herbs for their kitchen.
They are excellent for small spaces, like inner city apartments to large country farms. They require minimal care for maximum effect and labor output, plus there are varieties for all budgets; starting at under $10 and going up to the thousands.
Good gardening gloves
Boring right? Now, being a gardener I can tell you that not all gloves are created equal. There isn’t a gardener alive who wouldn’t love a pair of decent sweat-free, second skin gardening gloves. You know, the type which you can actually feel what you’re doing, pick up a drink while you’re working and can be thrown in the wash after a hard day’s work.
Yeah, I know it’s asking a lot out of a pair of humble gloves, but there are some great ones out there. They aren’t going to break the bank, so you can either wrap them up alone or team them up with some other ideas.
Growing fruit and veggies is back in gardening trends in a big way, so these little things are a must have for anyone who grows strawberries. Instead of the birds hoeing into their nurtured fruit, these rocks deter them by changing their behavior.
When the strawberry rocks are placed around the plants as they grow, the birds peck at them thinking they are nice and ripe. They aren’t of course. They are hard rocks. Birds will try pecking a few more times and then give up, knowing that if they peck at them they will hurt their beaks. By the time the real strawberries are ripe, they won’t bother touching them. Violá! Cute, mini strawberry protectors.
Now, they can be a bit tricky to buy. They aren’t usually available at major garden retailers, so check on-line. Alternately, what a great gift idea for the kids to make for the grandparents. It’s cheap, easy and will keep them entertained for ages!
Images via presenciapr.com, pinterest.com,1001gardens.org, gardeners.com and telegraph.co.uk
What does a new mum want? Sleep, time for herself and something that makes her feel wonderful (or at least human). Give the new mum in your life the extra attention she deserves with one of these special gifts.
A Christmas hamper plus a home cooked meal
This season Maggie Beer has put together the perfect hampers that include her unique sauces, stocks, jellies, jams and so much more. Turn up with one of these hampers and a recipe from Maggie Beer’s website, offer to cook a meal and the new mum in your life will love you forever. If someone offered to do it for me, I’d almost consider having another baby just so that I can enjoy the experience. You can find your nearest distributor on Maggie Beer’s website. $25-$160.
A nappy bag that looks stylish
Any mum would love a bag that can fit everything, yet, it doesn’t look like a typical nappy bag. Look no further than the new Storksak + Bugaboo leather or nylon bag. It combines functionality with a clean and sophisticated design, and it can easily double as a casual tote. Available from selected retailers. Leather $499, nylon $319.
Something that’ll make the house look brighter
3 Sprout offer super cute storage solutions for families with young children. You can get adorable bath storage, wall organisers, storage bins, toy chests… Even doing laundry can put a smile on a new mum’s face, if her laundry basket looks like this. 3 Sprout storage solutions start from $34.95, available at www.coolkidz.net.au.
I gave up on wearing jewellery when I had my first baby, because he was constantly pulling and chewing on everything I’d try to put on. Back then I didn’t know that I could get jewellery designed with bubs in mind, but now I do! MummaBubba Jewellery offers a range of colourful, fashionable and, most importantly, baby-safe accessories that mums and bubs love. Buy online at mummabubbajewellery.com.au. Necklaces $15-$34.95; bangles $7-$14.95.
Home cleaning services
When I had a baby, for a very short period of time I had someone coming to clean our place. Instead of worrying about housework, I got to go out for a walk with my baby, then come home and the place was sparkling clean. To this day it remains a very fond memory of mine and I can’t imagine a new mum not loving it. Have a look for a cleaning company near you or ask your friends for recommendations.
Featured image courtesy of MummaBubba Jewellery
Do you have friends or family members that are always on the go? Globetrotters often forgo luxuries for themselves so that they can afford to travel. Now is the time to spoil them and give them something that will make their next trip even more memorable.
RELATED: Beauty Essentials For Travellers
Beauty travel pack
Don’t you hate it when your skin starts feeling dry and flaky after a long flight? The traveller in your life probably hates it, too. To ensure well hydrated skin before, during, and after a long flight, RACINNE offers a travel-size skin care pack, which includes products from their hydrating range: Hydra Perfection Gentle Cleansing Foam, Essentialift Supplement Serum, Gentle Refining Scrub Mask and a cosmetic bag. Buy from RACINNE online. $39
Stylish travel clothing
You don’t need to bring your whole wardrobe with you to achieve a stylish look on the go. Jane Ramsey has created a travel collection that’s high on style and low on effort. Her silk cargo pans and lyocell soft-touch tops can be transformed from day to night wear with just a change of shoes and some accessories. All items in the Jane Ramsey Travel Collection are lightweight, comfortable, versatile and made entirely from natural fibers. Buy at www.janeramsay.com. The Luxury T’s retail between $69 and $149 and the Camilla Silk cargo pants are $289.
Does your traveller like to read? An ebook reader is a perfect solution for those who’d love to be able to carry their library with them. I’ve had a few ebook readers over the years and Kindle is by far my favourite – easy to use and gentle on the eyes. Buy from Dick Smith or Officeworks. From $99, depending on the model.
Portable phone charger
When you use your phone for work and entertainment while you’re on the go, the battery quickly runs out and there aren’t always convenient charging stations nearby. Make life easier for the traveller you know by giving them a Smarter Charger. Available online at smartercharger.com.au. $39.99.
You enjoy yourself so much more when you get there, if you manage to get some sleep on your long flight, . Give the traveller in your life some inflight comfort with the Safe Skies travel pillow, which offers 6 sleeping positions and can be rolled up to the size of a Coke can. Check the Safe Skies website for a retailer near you. $29.95.