Oh My Darling-Gifts For Your Valentine

Is the globe spinning faster on it’s axis or is it just me? With Christmas barely over here comes Valentine’s Night galloping into view.

Facing the perennial question of what to buy for your beloved whilst avoiding the cliche- ridden options of flowers and chocolates is a real dilemma.

Here are a few (hopefully) useful ideas….

HER

Whilst not inexpensive the gorgeous alligator wallets from Bianca Mosca will win you undying love and affection for life. Their handmade creations are crafted in a small family owned atelier deep in the French countryside and not far from the Swiss border. Something similar from Hermes would be almost as costly as a small car.

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No man (or woman for that matter) has ever gone wrong by proffering the gift of a well judged fragrance. Frédéric Malle’s Une Fleur de Cassie (£170 for 100ml EDP) – it uses both mimosa and cassie for a seductive blend that starts cool and powdery and ends in suede and spice is such a delight. Although not for all tastes it will be well received by sophisticates and experienced fragrance wearers.

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Emilio Pucci fans of which there are many will fall in love with the new Janis bag in Python and Suede that sports a UK price of £1320. Try the Pucci boutique or Matches Fashion in Marylebone High Street.

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HIM

As my legion of fans will recollect from previous posts I am a huge admirer of the venerable house of Turnbull & Asser owned by the retail titan and legendary hotelier Mohammed Al-Fayed.

One of my proudest possessions is a fabulously indulgent silk dressing gown that I acquired several years ago and which I maintain in a perfect state. Arriving at breakfast wearing such a piece is certain to arouse feelings of intense jealousy and envy from fellow guests. Just the feelings I seem to want to evoke-in my dreams!

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On a slight more modest note but none the less a delightful apercu of a gift Drake’s Bird of Paradise pocket square will prove it’s worth as a sublime addition to any elegant outfit.

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What could be more appropriate than a hat named for the famed Italian Master of the Art of Love, Casanova. The Sensi Studio Casanaova Hat is £156 and available from Sensi’s website. (Other colours available).

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It Makes Scents

Whilst in New York recently I was introduced to the intriguing fragrances developed by Ulrich Lang and Britt Biegelson.

Consisting of a tight range of four niche products they are distributed through a network of exclusive retailers including Barneys and Fortnums as well as online. Lang whose twin passions are photography and perfume started developing his eponymous range about 12 years ago.

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Recently launched Aperture (£125/$200 for 100ml EDP) was inspired by a photograph of a sunset taken by Olivia Bee, a 20-year-old photographer who is something of a sensation, having shot a campaign for Converse trainers when only 14 years old, as well as having worked for Hermès and The New York Times. With Aperture, Lang wanted to create a male fragrance that was “just the right side of dirty” – a tricky thing to bring off and which he does by dint of a large hit of civet and musk. The result is warm and powerful with a strong hint of danger – it is indubitably modern and very, very male.