My biggest pet peeve with holiday gift guides for men is that they’re so predictable. Not every guy wants a J.Crew sweater, whiskey stones, and a French press. There’s nothing wrong with those gifts, of course, but this year I thought back to some of the most well-received gifts I’ve given Dave and my dad to create this list — with a few extra ideas peppered in for good measure.
Pocket Axe – I honestly don’t understand the appeal of this mini axe, but my dad wanted it last year. My parents moved to a rural area a few years ago and my dad hunts, so I assume it’s handy for that lifestyle. If the guy on your list would rather hang out in the kitchen instead of the woods, this chef’s knife is a nice gift.
Bluetooth Speaker – I actually gave this to Dave last year for Christmas. It has great sound for being such a small speaker! It’s also waterproof, making it great for the pool or boat. (Dave’s brother in law tossed it in the lake last summer to test its claim of being able to float. It does, indeed, rise to the top. Phew.)
Bourbon (or Vice of Choice) – Not all guys love bourbon, but I’m willing to bet that most have a guilty pleasure to indulge this holiday season. My dad asked for cigars this year, and I’ll admit I feel a little sheepish giving him something that’s bad for his health.
Cashmere Sweater – Lands’ End and Garnet Hill are two fantastic places to snag quality cashmere at a reasonable price. Dave has this sweater in charcoal and I just gave him the camel-colored one for his birthday. It’s a classic sweater that can be worn to work and looks handsome with a pair of jeans.
Leather Duffle – One of the very first Christmas gifts I gave to Dave was a Floto leather duffle bag. It gets better and better with age, and now brings back so many memories of our travels.
Multi-Bit Driver – Honestly, I love this gift idea for any homeowner — male or female. Nothing is more obnoxious than misplacing the screwdriver you need.
Leather Gloves – If he doesn’t already have a nice pair of leather gloves, this is something to add to his winter wardrobe. If he’s more of an outdoorsman, opt for these wool gloves with a deerskin palm. (Dave uses the latter when he shovels. They’ve held up for years.)
Smart Switches – I initially thought that smart switches and lights were kind of stupid … until Dave insisted we install them. Scheduling your lights to come on before you get home or when you’re on vacation is amazing.
Tickets – The most memorable gifts are always experiences. If his favorite artist is playing nearby or there’s a sporting event he’d love to go to, spring for tickets and plan on doing dinner and drinks beforehand for some quality time together.