Happy Holidays, everyone! Tis’ the season of shopping, shopping, shopping… for other people. And I love that. There’s nothing better than having your special someone open your gift and actually, truly, really be surprised and excited. This is more true this year than ever! We all need a break and a thoughtful gift to look forward to.
So here’s the thing about Christmas shopping — I’m morbidly scared of accidentally giving someone a blah gift. Generally speaking, I’m pretty good at picking up hints, but every now and then, I get stumped — mainly by people who are too knowledgeable about the things I’m trying to get them gifts for. Like, the coffee-loving friend who has everything from a Nespresso machine to a Turkish ibrik. Or, that relative you can never surprise with your knowledge of the coolest make-up brands, no matter how many reviews you read.
It’s hard to shop for people who are passionate about things we don’t know much about, especially when said passion involves fashion. When shopping for gifts, I tend to steer clear from clothes, because it’s really hard to know someone’s size. (And it’s always awkward to ask). Even I do know their letter, fit varies store to store. Really, you’re setting yourself up for failure if your plan is to buy a dress you’ve never seen her/him try on in front of your very own eyes.
So here’s where I come in. If you have a fashion-forward friend you don’t know what to get, then you might find this size-free guide useful. I’m not talking about casual Topshop shoppers here. I’m talking about that SUPER in-the-know friend or partner who gushes about Maryam Nassir Zadeh and always points out a Shrimps bag when she sees one. I’m talking about that person who won’t shut up about Copenhagen Fashion Week. I’m talking about someone who likes unique, unusual fashion things!
And remember, if these don’t do the trick, you can always send me a friendly DM on @marimakatsaria, and I’ll make sure to help you out with even more suggestions. Happy Shopping!
MM6 Maison Margiela
There’s no bag more humble than the tote. It’s functional, roomy and in this case, incredibly stylish. Leave it up to Maison Margiela to turn something so everyday into a fashion statement.
You can scoff at the price tag all you like, but the truth is that Jacquemus has taken over the fashion world by storm. There’s nary a fashionista who hasn’t heard of the French designer or seen his little creations around the necks and waists of Instagram heavy-hitters. This handy accessory features an adjustable strap and beverage carrier and is perfect for those days you’ll be spending promenading semi-dressed-up outdoors at the park.
It’s not lost on me that $46 (and that’s after sale) is a hefty price to pay for a mask, but considering that each piece is unique and so thoughtfully made, I’m letting that slide. Chances are, this isn’t the kind of mask you’ll wear on the reg. You might whip it out when your SO asks you out on a little evening stroll or when a socially distanced lunch calls for something extra. Either way, it’s nice to dress up every once in a while.
This is possibly one of the more unique pieces you can gift anyone, because, technically, you’re giving the gift of repurposing Summer tops into winter sweaters. I mean, that’s sorta priceless, I would say. This sleeve accessory (but is it an accessory, really?) comes in just a single size. No sleuthing around for your friend’s size needed.
This handbag has been having a major Instagram moment for, I would say, about two years — and for good reason. The circular shape does well to hog attention and infuse a lil’ oomph into the blandest of outfits. The new season brought on fresh versions in rattan and soft, pleated leather.
With a focus on ethical practices, this Barcelona-based brand is dreaming up a lineup of accessories (jewelry, masks, watches, to name a few) that are equal parts edgy and fresh. Case in point: this gold ear cuff that’s guaranteed to make you feel as though you’ve just tumbled out of a Blade Runner movie set.
In the fashion world, no one’s immune to the charms of this environment-friendly brand’s iconic (and highly recognizable) crescent moon print. This became especially true after Beyonce, who wore a head-to-toe Marine Serre bodysuit in Black Is King, catapulted the label’s popularity into the fashion stratosphere. The fabric here is super stretchy and unique (you’ll often hear it being referred to as “second skin”) so scooping up a crescent top that’s the right size is a tough mission. Gloves, on the other hand, are totally doable.
If the person you’re shopping for is a sucker for standout sunglasses, I urge you to spend some time perusing Gentle Monster’s website. Personally, I think the brand’s churning out what are some of the most unique (but wearable) sunglasses on the market. Whether you decide to go with this Matrix-esque piece or some other futuristic frame for your loved (or really liked) ones, it’ll sure get people around them talking.
I love little accessories that can really change an outfit, and this is one of those additions that can take a plain, minimalist sweater and turn it into more of a statement piece. (Now that the weather’s flipped the script and turned cold, this would look particularly great with a layered look.) Also, who doesn’t love this Danish brand?
Virgil Abloh’s Off-White has been gaining sort of a cult following in the recent years — and for good reason. His designs are edgy, both high and low, and of course, ultra-cool. One of the brand’s defining pieces is this belt, inspired by industrial rigging slings, and as Nordstrom points out here, it’s definitely bound to do some major “heavy lifting” in your wardrobe.
Swiss-born designers Christa Bösch and Cosima Gadient are doing some amazing work at this Berlin-based brand, and they’re carving out a very specific niche in the fashion industry. Ottolinger’s designs play a lot with deconstruction — think: exposed seams, raw edges, funky cut-outs and more. While I would strongly encourage you to check out the label’s clothing, this tote definitely embodies Ottolinger’s cool soul.