Christmas · Lifestyle

It’s (almost) the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Somehow, it’s already November. Where did that time go?! It seems like just yesterday we were welcoming in the New Year and now all of a sudden we’re in the penultimate month of 2016.

With the start of November also comes the imminent thoughts of Christmas and festivities. I’m not going to lie, December/Christmas is my favourite time of the year, and this year, as I’m trying to save as much money as possible (not the easiest of things to do when there’s presents to be bought and fun Christmas days out to plan…) I’ve decided to spread out my Christmas shopping and have already bought quite a few presents for various people already. 

As it’s getting to that time of year when everyone is starting to think about what to buy their loved ones for Christmas, I thought I would do a little list of websites and shops that I’m finding the best bargains in. I hope it gives you some inspiration and that it helps those of you who are also being super organised and trying to find some bargains for the festive season!

1. New Look

I am a HUGE fan of New Look. I honestly think that the majority of my wardrobe is from there, and I must admit it’s my go-to every year when Christmas comes rolling round. It’s the perfect place to find presents for girls of any age, and I always end up buying a number of my Christmas presents from here. They do some really lovely jewellery sets which teenagers and women in their 20s and 30s would like, as there really is something for everyone. I’ve found that this year they’ve also released some really cool pyjama sets and slippers, some of which I would be tempted to get for myself let alone anyone else! Not only do they have lots of jewellery and nightwear things, all of which always make great presents for people, New Look also do some really nice home ware bits and pieces. As you know, I can’t resist home ware things, and New Look do some lovely things that so many people would love to receive for Christmas. Again, there’s something for everyone, and what makes it even better is that everything in New Look is pretty reasonably priced. For instance, I’ve found a jewellery set and a star patterned pyjama set that I’m thinking for buying each of my step cousins, as well as some lovely home ware items that I think one of my friends will love, namely because they’re cat related, all of which are priced between £6.99 and £15. Quite a bargain really if you’re looking for the perfect present this Christmas.

2. Lakeland

This may seem like a bit of a random one, but if you know anyone who loves cooking or baking, then Lakeland is the place you need to go. I went into the Brighton store by chance over the weekend, and came out about 15 minutes later with two presents. One baking related that I know my dad will love, and other a bit of a joke present for my dog-obsessed step sister. They’ve really made baking a fun experience for a wide variety of age groups, with the shop having Star Wars, Great British Bake Off, Christmas and animal related baking kits that would make great presents for any cake lover out there. There is of course a whole range of cooking and baking equipment that would also like equally brilliant presents for friends and family, but if you’re looking for something on a budget, the baking sets and other fun bits and pieces they have in Lakeland will most definitely be in your price range. For someone whose never thought to step into Lakeland whilst on the hunt for Christmas goodies before, I’m so glad that I spontaneously decided to go in there, and I couldn’t recommend it more to people if you’ve started your Christmas shopping.

3. Boots

A classic favourite of mine at this time of year, you can’t go wrong if you’re looking for presents in Boots. If there was one shop that I know I can go to and find a basket full of presents for pretty much everyone I know, its Boots. It’s always the first Christmas catalogue I pick up when October rolls round, and this year has been no different than any other years in that I’ve found around 10 presents for various members of my family to buy already. Whether you’re looking for babies, kids, teenagers, adults, men, women, boys, girls, parents, siblings, grandparents, you can always count on Boots to have something for everyone you’re shopping for. The range of toys, make up sets, perfumes, aftershaves, food and drink items that are available always blows my mind, and I can literally spend hours in there looking amongst the shelves for the perfect gift. It’s another really reasonably priced place to shop, with nothing being so expensive that it breaks the bank. I can’t write about Boots without mentioning their 3 for 2 mix and match sale, which really does make Christmas shopping that bit easier, and that bit cheaper!

4. Paperchase

I am completely obsessed with Paperchase at the best of times, but at Christmas, my obsession increases tenfold. Whilst it can be on the slightly pricier side with certain things, there are lots of bargains you can get your hands on, as long as you don’t get too overwhelmed by all the pretty stationary things that Paperchase has to offer. Every year without fail I buy my wrapping paper from here, purely because I find the paper they have to offer a lot more fun and individual compared to other shops. They always stand out amongst the crowd, which makes it easier to pick them out from under the tree when you’re handing presents out to your loved ones. The cards in there are equally as amazing, and I would really recommend getting your cards from there if you’re looking for designs that are a little bit different and that you want to stand out on your friends and family’s mantelpieces during December. The range of presents they have in Paperchase is also phenomenal. Calendars, diaries, photo albums, notebooks, stationary, Tupperware, children’s toys, arts and crafts, photo frames, you name it, it’s more than likely going to be in Paperchase. I always find a great selection of presents for people I know when I go to Paperchase, and most things aren’t going to break your budget. As I said at the beginning of this little segment though, it’s probably best to not go too overboard, as things quickly add up!

5. Not on the High Street

This online shop is a dream for anyone who loves Christmas as much as I do. I already think I should be named one of their best customers for 2016, as in the past few weeks I’ve bought 3 or 4 presents from them. Again, as with Paperchase, there are quite a few things on here that are that little bit more expensive and probably aren’t the best options for people who are shopping on a very strict budget. There is a really good range of prices across the shop though, and there are more than plenty enough items available that won’t leave you scared to check your bank balance. If you’re someone who, like me, always looks for sentimental presents for people, then Not on the High Street is the place you need to go to. There are a range of present ideas for people of all ages that can be personalised and made that bit extra special. I think I may have gone a little bit overboard with personalised goodies this year, having already bought my dad a personalised coffee jar, and my boyfriend a personalised stocking to put all his presents in. There are also so many beautiful and unique pieces available, many of which are handmade by the people selling on the website, and whilst it may be hard to go through each page, not fall in love with everything, and want to buy everything you see for yourself let alone your family and friends, you’re bound to find something that someone you know will love to open on Christmas Day.

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