It’s Valentine ’s Day and the ball is inevitably in your guy’s court. If you’ve picked a good one, he’s going to deliver flowers, a romantic dinner – he might even shell out for some jewelry. A lot less attention gets paid, however, to what women are going to get their boyfriend/husband/lady crush when that same day finally rolls around. The whole process can be a bit tricky – getting him a new striped tie for work doesn’t exactly yell “you’re really cool and I love you for it.”
To help out the women that read this blog, we’ve pulled together a list of no-nonsense (but slightly out-of-the-box) Valentine’s Day gifts to make your partner feel like what he should on that day – the awesome man that you know and love.
A Custom Made Shirt: Literally every guy has the same shirt from J.Crew. This Valentine’s Day, opt for something a little different and buy him a made-to-measure shirt that fits him just right. While the item itself will have an amazing fit, the experience of getting it measured and cut will be a gift in itself. Think whiskey, leather chairs and low lights – you can probably piece together the rest yourself.
What’s important is that he’ll feel like a king – all because of you. Prices vary, but you can usually find a good one for between $100 and $150. Good options for vendors include Blank Label (Boston), Proper Cloth (NYC) and 9Tailors (Boston).
Stack Magazines: A magazine subscription isn’t exactly the most romantic gift I can come up with. I can’t name the last time I bought one for myself when I wasn’t inside an airport. However, we’ve seen a resurgence of “high-end” magazines like Inventory and Kinfolk that cater to a whole new section of the market.
Stack takes this idea and compounds on it. Their team curates the “world’s best” independent magazines and delivers a surprise issue to your doorstep every month. This service adds a new spin on a slightly-stale classic, giving him a taste of the best from around the world. This gift says “I have style, and know you do, too.”
Look at it this way, even if he hates the magazines that are delivered, at least he’ll have some well-curated copies for his coffee table to make him look worldly and interesting in front of your friends. You can get a subscription of 12 magazines for about $75.
Barbershop Shave: Men love barbershop straight razor shaves. It turns a chore into a treat. The trouble is, they’re prohibitively expensive as a routine experience and it’s tricky to justify actually buying one for yourself when you can do it so affordably on your own. That’s where you come in.
Swing by your boyfriend (or husband’s) favorite barbershop and see if they do straight-razor shaves. If they do, pay for one ahead of time and book it for when you know he’s free. He’ll love the vibe and you get to experience the benefits of his freshly-shorn cheeks.
You can see the list of our favorite spots here.
Allen Edmond’s Cedar Shoe Trees: Hopefully your man has a mean pair of dress shoes. If he doesn’t – skip this bullet. If he does, fork out a few extra bucks to help him take care of them. Cedar shoe trees extend the life of his dress shoes by keeping their shape, drawing out damaging moisture and removing smells (you can thank us later). You can find a great set at Allen Edmonds for a mere $25.
Laguiole Bone Pocket Knife: Don’t buy your boyfriend a Swiss army knife. Seriously, I know they have them at the mall and you’ll want to, but don’t. Instead, aim for something a little more high-brow. Forge de Laguiole makes knives forged from French steel, adorned with bone, exotic wood and antler handles. He’ll love it and he can use it to do manly things like whittling sticks when you’re walking through the woods together.
So that about wraps it up. If the big day rolls around and you haven’t gotten around to getting anything – you can always pick up the check. It is 2015 after all, right?
As always, artwork above is by Gabi Anderson. You can see more of her work here. Thank you to the boys (and significant others) of #BoysNightBos for their brainstorming power in coming up with this list.