Tag Archives: gift guide

V-Day Gift Guide: Skin Lovers

Aesop Mandarin Facial Hydration Cream and Bliss FabulipsFor Him: Aesop Facial Hydrating Cream & For Her: Fabulips Set by Bliss

VNg loves when I do illustrated gift guides… I figured five days ’til V-day, why not?

Let’s start the countdown with some faves of VNg’s and mine.

I’m a huge fan of the Aesop line and I think I got this moisturizer for the first time last year as a Christmas gift. He loves it, it smells great, is light on the skin, not too oily, and keeps his face moisturized all day. It’s especially perfect in these harsh dry winters.

As for me, I absolutely love Bliss spa and products. (Also why I love W Hotels so much!)

This year for Christmas, VNg got me a gift card for Bliss and I tried out Fabulips for the first time. The treatment was a little silly. I don’t think I’d ever spend thirty real dollars for a glorified version of someone putting lip gloss on me. But, I did fall in love with the lip scrub and peppermint plumper.

This would be the perfect little gift set for any girl you want to pamper!

I’m going to try to continue the countdown throughout the week with more gift guides. Stay tuned.

And, as always, thanks for viewing. (I know it’s been ridiculously infrequent. Blame it on wedding planning!)

DIY Valentine: Custom Mug & Hot Cocoa

I recently had a request for an affordable DIY valentine; what a great idea!!  (Vday is so close to last year’s holidays which can add up.  I’m definitely on a budget after gifting & travel.)  So, today’s post is a fun and easy project that is a great gift (for a guy or gal!)

(As a bonus, I also made this easy to print card – just click the image below to download the file. You can print on regular letter sized paper and fold it into quarters.)

My free download; print out this valentine's day card at home!

VNg & I enjoy cozying up to share hot chocolate; he especially loves all the marshmallows he can get.  (Btw did you know they have heart-shaped marshmallows?! Perfect for this project!!)  Anyway, he prefers gifts we can experience together (rather than something purely material.)  So, I love the idea of making something unique and personalized that you can share.  Your Valentine will really appreciate the time and thought you put into this gift.

This project is inspired by Kate Spade mugs I sketched a few weeks ago.  They sold out pretty quickly… but I was thrilled to find they can be easily duplicated (for a fraction of the price!)

DIY Valentine - Use a gold sharpie and some old mugs to make a personalized gift and a bag of hot cocoa mix.I think the cost of this project should be less than $25 depending on how you approach it.  (Basically, don’t count on staying under $25 if you’re gonna buy your mugs from, say, West Elm.)  However, I found one for $9.  I also really like the idea of using mugs (since they’re typically solid colors. And, I found a set of two for $16.) Grab a gold Sharpie for about $2 (or two for $4.) Be sure to buy the “paint” marker version.  Add the cost of the cocoa powder mix and you are good to go.

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Illustrated Gift Guide: Valentines for Her

As promised, here is my gift guide for ladies.  In case you already have the perfect gift – I also included less expensive items; shower her with lots of lovely trinkets!  A lot of these are things I loved receiving… I hope she will too!

My best illustrated gift guide - what to get her for Valentine's Day

fresh sugar lip balm SephoraL’Occitane hand cream $ Sephoraheart ring $$$$ Shopbop,  locked in bangle $$ Kate Spade, heart studs $$ Shopbop or $ Kate Spade

I need to have lip balm and hand lotion in my bag.  Fresh sugar is SPF15, all natural, and feels great.  It is rated #1 again and again (for a good reason.)  It’s nice to get these little things as gifts because I end up buying them repeatedly.  V.Ng bought me these heart earrings last year and I love them so much.  I wear them almost every day!  They even say “be mine” – perfect for Valentine’s Day!

My best illustrated gift guide - what to get her for Valentine's Day

pretty coin purse  $$$ Comme des Garcons, heart iphone cover $ DVFgold arrow cuff bangle $$ Need Supply or $ Macy’spretty bevel ring $$ Shopbop

A girl can never go wrong with a good coin purse.  Small accessories are risk-free items that are fun to give and receive.  I like changing up my phone cover every now and then; she’ll probably love having something to constantly remind her of your feelings.

My best illustrated gift guide - what to get her for Valentine's Day

the mini Rider bag $$$ Shopboppretty gold bow necklace $$ Kate Spade or $$$ Shopbop, gold finish Gramercy watch $$$ Kate SpadeDior lip polish $ Sephora

If you’re still looking for a big ticket item – try a pretty handbag or a classy watch.  This bag is a great neutral color (perfect for spring) and it’s a classic shape that she can take from work to dinner.

I hope this helps you on your quest for the perfect gift(s)!! But, hold on to that receipt just in case.  (;

<3 Thanks for viewing!

Illustrated Gift Guide: Valentines for Him

January went by in a flash and before you know it Valentine’s Day will be here.  So, what to get him?  Here’s my illustrated gift guide to help you find the perfect gift for your guy.

valentine's day gift guide for the dapper gentleman in your life

pocket squares NeedSupply and $$ Bloomingdale’spersonalized cuff links $ Amazon, 2gb usb cuff links $$ Brookstone, crystal whiskey glasses Glencairn

If your guy is like V.Ng then you know he has good taste and a business-ready wardrobe.  He probably already owns a lot of cuff links or tie bars – so I loved these unique ones that offer fun utility and secret messages.

valentine's day gift guide for the pro techie in your life

leather iPhone case J.Crew (iPhone5), dodo case $$ J.Crew, ZaggKeys for iPad 2/3 $$ Amazon

If your beau is always on the go – he’ll definitely appreciate these sleek and manly tech accessories.  I love the use of classic materials, like leather and wood, for modern accessories.

valentine's day gift guide for the avid gamer in your life

Portal 2 $$ Amazon, Rayman Origins $ Amazon, x-box live points $$ Targetplaystation network $$ TargetBlackWidow gaming keyboard $$ Razer

Most guys (including V.Ng) can’t get enough of video games.  Unfortunately it doesn’t seem to fade away with age (my brother, 33, is still a gamer at heart.)  Show him you’re cool by encouraging him to ignore you for four hours straight.  Or, better yet, give him a fun co-op game you can enjoy together like Portal2 or Rayman Origins.  You’ll love them for the cute graphics and fun premises – he’ll love you for playing a video game with him.

valentine's day gift guide for the seasoned chef in your life

the French Laundry Cookbook Amazonknife block $$ Bloomingdale’sjuice fountain $$ Breville

If he’s always in the kitchen (lucky!) and loves trying the latest Michelin recommended secret – then  he won’t be able to resist trying his hand at some of Thomas Keller’s world famous dishes.  Another great gift (maybe a little more for yourself?) is my all time favorite juicer - it’s compact, sleek, easy to clean and comes with a recipe booklet.  For the price of three days of Blueprint – you could juice for the rest of your life!

I hope this helps you find that something special for your guy! And, I have more V-day inspired posts to come (like what to wear on your date or what he can get you.)  Thanks for viewing. <3

Illustrated Gift Guide (Part 3)

You’ve seen my picks for siblingsparents, and coworkers; here are my final gift ideas for your nearest and dearest.

For your BFF: $ Two Tone Pom Pom Beanie, $ 100 Years of Fashion Illustration, $$$$ Rebecca Minkoff Swing Bag, $$$ Nicholas ID Bracelet

I love to spoil my friends with gifts they wouldn’t buy themselves.  I like this super textured hat guy and girlfriends can appreciate.  This book is one of my personal faves; it’s an unlimited source of inspiration and a chic coffee table conversation piece.  My best girlfriend is a shy shopper.  So, I’d be doing her a favor by giving her this stylish and functional studded shoulder bag.  Finally, this bold bracelet is a great addition to anyone’s jewelry box.  It could be the statement piece or her daily staple.

Gifts he'll love... you more for getting him!

For your boyfriend: $$$$ J.Crew Timex watch, $$$$ Cashmere lined gloves, $ F* Yeah Menswear, $$$ Lanvin Tie Clip

V.Ng appreciates gifts that are well-designed and useful (bonus if I find something subtly unique.)  Every guy needs a classy watch; this one is under $200 and ships from Mr. Porter.  (They do amazing gift wrapping.)  Gloves are a great idea because he pretends he’s not cold but, actually his fingers are freezing.  I love how these look, plus the cashmere lining will keep his hands extra warm.  I bought this tie clip for V.Ng and he is always excited to use it.  It’s a great mix of industrial and elevated.  For those of you who have to dress your bf, this book is a great style guide.  The attitude and crass title will make him think it’s cool; he won’t hide it when his friends come over.  (Maybe they’ll read it too!  Girlfriends everywhere will thank you.)


For yourself: $$$$ Barbour Duffle Coat (or $$$ Toggle Coat), $$$$ 3.1 Phillip Lim Satchel, $$ Tiger Graphic Sweater, $$ Leopard Booties

Okay, I know it is the season for giving.  But, after all this shopping for others… it can’t hurt to reward yourself a little… right?  I saw these while looking for my friends and I want them all!
Good luck getting all your holiday shopping done!  I hope my gift guide lightened your load. (Be sure to check out Part 1 and Part 2.) ♥


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