As Christmas rolls around again nearly every shop you now enter will greet you with row upon row of bathroom gift sets, candles, wallets and socks, to buy your family and friends.
Whilst your Nan seemed pleased with that nice bubble bath set you gave her last year and those socks you wrapped up for your brother were put to good use, why not go against the grain and buy them something a little more original this year?
Start big. For the thrill seeker activity days such as super car driving or indoor skydiving are always a good option, but you could also pay for training in something they’ve always wanted to do.
Why not book them in for a seven-day course at a training centre, such as Metropolis Motorcycles, where they can learn how to handle a two-wheeled speed machine?
A rather unusual gift idea is to ‘adopt a bacon sandwich’. This is a gift which angles itself towards people who a) love bacon and b) want to know where their meat is from and that the animal lived a happy life before landing on their plate.
Certain farms allow you to choose a pig, which your gift recipient receives updates for as it is raised. Then once it is fully-grown, it is slaughtered and the meat is sent to the gift receiver. It’s not a gift for those with a heavy conscience, although we suppose it can be compared to when you choose a live lobster in a seafood restaurant.
However, if the person you are buying for is an animal lover and vegetarian then you could opt for a more animal friendly gift. Adopt a tiger, polar bear, penguin, Asian elephant or rhino through the WWF and your donation goes towards support and conservation work for the animal.
You also receive a cuddly toy, of the animal, and a certificate, which the gift receiver can cherish, knowing that your money has gone towards something worthwhile, instead of a candle set.
With the sets and purpose made gifts lining the shelves it can be hard to find something that appeals to that hard to buy for partner or relative with a niche interest, so something personalised will always go down well.
Many shops continue to design gifts under the premise that all men like beer, golf and football, while women simply want perfume, jewellery and accessories for the kitchen. People are much more complicated than that and gender stereotypes are constantly being challenged, so a personalised gift is the perfect solution.
It allows the receiver to unwrap something made just for them, that no one else could have, it makes them feel special and will be a gift they treasure. A plectrum, engraved for your sister who loves to play electric guitar, a monogrammed wash bag for your Dad or something as simple as a personalised box of luxury chocolates will make that special someone happy.
Whoever you are buying for, there is always an original and exciting gift you can find to match their personality and interests. So this year, step away from the Internet giants when it comes to gift buying, source locally, choose something personal and make it worthwhile.