A Wholly British Gift Guide

Gold Petal Three-Tier Candleholder by Mrs. Alice | Upon moving to England, it doesn’t take word long to slip through the fine taste grapevine of Alice Naylor-Leyland’s exquisite imaginings when it comes to whimsical table decor; her designs feel nothing short of stepping into an enchanted forest, or even Burnett’s Secret Garden itself. This three-tiered candlestick is inspired by the 1920s art deco period and like most treasures within her shop, is suitable for romantics on your list.

Vintage Plates & Soup Bowls at Cutter Brooks | English scenery is perhaps one of the deepest points of pride for the English, which is why it inevitably must be illustrated to justice on the table. Amanda Cutter Brooks’ – author of Farm From Home and our admitted Instagram crush – vintage Enoch Woods set is as quintessential as it is gorgeous, an enchantment which describes the other treasures of her shop nestled in the heart of Cheltenham.

Christmas Cards by Paper Parade Stationers | This Edinburgh-based stationery studio is a true Scottish treasure, specialising in illustrated greeting cards. For last minute Christmas cards or for the loved one who covets proper correspondence, Paper Parade is a rich choice for both its romantic ethos and devotion to be environmentally conscious.

The Alexa Flat by Simona Rusk | The Alexa flat is a Londoner’s wardrobe icon, created with timeless black satin and Simona Rusk’s signature cameo brooch. These flats are sensible enough to be worn around town by day and in the society set by evening (and we suspect, even running to catch a red eye at Heathrow). This London-based designer is quickly popping into our town’s most coveted boutiques, and it’s no wonder: her devotion to sustainability is married exquisitely with her worldly sensibility each and every design.

Silk Jacquard Skirt by Lisou | Head designer and vintage aficionado Rene Macdonald bridges her vibrant childhood in Tanzania to the British woman’s love for exquisitely tailored, classic silhouettes. Lisou pieces, particularly the skirts, are enduring additions to every modern jetsetter’s capsule wardrobe. We have plans to pop into her Notting Hill boutique in the New Year.

The Bayswater (Sustainable Icon) by Mulberry | One of the first British design investments for a modern jetsetter is often the Mulberry handbag, distinctively designed with timelessness* in mind — *timelessness in this sense meaning the impressive ability to weather journeys in country, continent and town for decades. The classic Bayswater is a Mulberry icon, and sustainable, made by craftspeople in carbon neutral factories within the UK.

An Englishman’s Commonplace Book by Roger Hudson (via Slightly Foxed Magazine) | The author spent 40 years collecting a multigenerational cocktail of vivid observations, historical perspective and sage British words (including from the likes of Princess Margaret and Christopher Wren). Slightly Foxed Magazine, a London-based literary magazine, and treasure, is a favourite of our editor and offers dozens more titles of equally satisfying eccentricity.

Empressa Fragrance by Penhaligon’s | We adore a heritage business, and Penhaligon’s 150 year history in England and royal warrant is truly the literal and figurative essence of its esteemed fragrances. We have a biased liking for Empressa, a bewitching elixir of peach, blood orange and vanilla, rightfully classified as “warm, lustrous and unforgettable.”

Diary & Passport Holder by Smythson | Another royal warranted legacy business — and may we add, thoroughly royal warranted. Smythson was honoured its first royal warrant in 1964 by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, its second and third in the 1980s by HRH the Prince of Wales and Her Majesty The Queen Mother, and its fourth by HRH The Duke of Edinburgh. Naturally, you can imagine which diaries you’ll find on the desks of Buckingham Palace and Clarence House. We are also quite loyal to Smythson passport holders, trusty companions for decades worth of adventure.

Exquisite Gems and Jewellery by Katherine James | If you think the emerald we chose is enrapturing, one simple online visit to her shop will seduce your priorities into creating a jewellery inheritance for your daughter. We sense a modern heritage business coming to life in Katherine James, who searches country and continent with her elegant eye for the finest modern and historical pieces. We are personally bewitched by her collections of emeralds, sapphires and rubies — all fit to wear for a lifetime.

One-Piece Basil Swimsuit by Maiyo | If there is one thing to include on your own Christmas list this year, it is a deliciously classic swimsuit to inspire 2021 escapes to Cannes, Portofino or any destination with the word ‘Riviera’ in it. After essentially a year in isolation, nothing seems more vivacious than a single moment of summer spent in the Mediterranean, and this suit has us seeing it. Maiyo is a London-based brand founded by Roxanne Namaki-Lakani, and we have a feeling a modern Grace Kelly would be a loyal patron.

Barbour Waxed Cotton Jacket | Beloved Barbour was founded in 1894 and has since grown from its humble British heritage to be the crown of waterproof outerwear around the globe. Fit for a royal ramble on Balmoral grounds and well-documented by the royal family as such, a Barbour waxed jacket is essential, and at best when well-worn in the family for decades.

The Cornwall by Home County Candle Co. | This is a recently discovered British business for us and we harbour the distinct feeling it will become an essential part of home. Home County Candle Co. is a luxury candle-making company based in Hertfordshire, creating natural soy-based fragrances (biodegradable and vegan friendly) inspired by Britain’s most beautiful places. The Cornwall is inspired by “long summer days exploring Cornish rock pools”, scented with rock salt and driftwood with notes of seaweed, amber and musk.

Correspondence Cards by Mount Street Printers | A Londoner treasure is Mount Street Printers, designing and fine printing in Mayfair since 1981. We have a love for their customised correspondence cards (excellent gift idea for friends), unrivalled in quality and that distinct magic proper stationery stirs for traditional souls. Mount Street Printers produces their designs in close regard for the environment and paper recycling efforts throughout Europe.

Felicity Giclée Print by Diane HIll | Diane Hill is a London-based artist specialising in art inspired by 18th Century Chinoiserie. Her wondrous prints evoke a serene type of modern magic, her neutral Chinoiserie design suiting the more classic home. Our editor has her eye on this print (bottom right) for her flat’s entryway.

Sudbury Throw by Neptune | This British business came as recommendation to our editor from a dear friend, and the catalogues now live permanently in the sitting room. This neutral taupe-grey weave is made with Merino wool and pairs gorgeously with Neptune’s Cotswold throw; the English home can never have too many throws from Neptune, rumour suggests.

Baby’s Cashmere Jumper & Booties by Johnstons of Elgin | Johnstons of Elgin sits at the crown of British manufacturers, creating the country’s finest woolens and cashmeres for over two centuries (they celebrated their 220th anniversary in 2017). For the baby – or rather, the parent – who values heritage, the cashmere jumper and booties are infanthood grails for the sentimental parent.


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