Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Grad Gifts Guide for those with sartorialists, retrocentrics, and traditionalists in mind.

Recently I was asked by a friend what to get her boyfriend as a graduation gift. A. this is for you and anyone else who needs ideas.

I will categorize my suggestions in three groups:
  1. Cheap
  2. Affordable
  3. Money is no option

The best gifts have meaning and so my first recommendation is an heirloom; this is the "Cheap" option. For the sartorialist, retrocentric, and traditionalist; give them an item one of their family members has an accompanying story. Hand write, only if you have legible hand writing, or type the story up. Gift wrap the item with the note containing the story under the card. I would go for the easy way out and place the item in a decorative paper, covered well, then place the note and finally the card on top of everything. Price = >$5; really 0 but I thought I'd assign the presentation materials a value.

The "Affordable" options are a little less difficult to obtain. Like the last option your going to need to enlist some help. Find out what your grad likes, needs, or is interested in and purchase a low cost quality example. For instance, I love music, calligraphy, fountain pens, and elegant dressing. Here is what someone should get me that is affordable:
  • Music = CD, itunes giftcard, or if you really did your research you would purchase and gift me an album I don't have. Price = >$20
  • Calligraphy = calligraphy book or get a calligrapher to write my name and an exemplar Alphabet. Price = >$30
  • Fountain pens = get me a Lamy Safari, orange ink, or a pen holder. Price = >$25
  • Elegant Dress = vintage ties, colorful pantherelli socks, thrifted suit, grandfather's odd jacket. Price = >$60 or free depending on what tickles your fancy.
The rich can afford anything and especially during celebratory times. My advice is to my heavy walleted readers is to research and try to match your grads interests. Why? They don't need anyghing and all their likes are covered. So, instead of the cliches think just a bit. Don't over think it but don't blow it off either. The obvious thing to do is combine a cliche with an original idea. If they want to backpack plan a trip that takes them on a tour of their interests. How about a tour of Europe's exotic car manufacturers or a surf themed back packing adventure. If your grad is a budding dandy, send them to Savile Row for their first English bespoke suit. The retrocentric might want a rare fountain pen, an antique pocket watch, or some opera tickets so he can wear his white tie rig. To much thought for you here are some quick ideas:
  1. Goyard Briefcase; go for brown ages much better than black.
  2. Black or White tie rig; he'll need something for the dress events if he doesn't already have one.
  3. Nice slim wristwatch; think professional so, no rolex mariners or chunky watches
  4. Custom Desk Set
  5. Laptop; go for a top of the line Macbook Pro 17 inch with an apple cinema monitor and 5.1 surround sound speaker set.
As you can tell, a little thought goes a long way. Whatever your means are make sure to make it a special present and your grad will be happy!