One thing that I really appreciate about my boyfriend Dan is that he is a man of very refined and particular sartorial tastes. That being said, there are some challenges that come with choosing holiday gifts for a stylish boyfriend, and most of them stem from the fact that while I consider myself a fashionable chick, the world of menswear is a total gray area.
And so I asked him, "What do fashionable men like to wear these days? Like, hypothetically, if you could create an ideal Christmas list full of fashion merchandise, what would be on it?" His eyes lit up and released the kind of sparkle that I've only ever seen when small children meet a puppy for the first time: Like they cannot believe what they are seeing and hearing, and from that point forward they'll do anything in their power to take one home.
"Anything?" he asked while rubbing his hands together like a dad on Thanksgiving, preparing to tuck into a roast. "Anything at all?!"
"Imagine a hypothetical world in which money was no object, a very different world from the one we actually live in," I told him. "What would you want to receive as a present?"
After careful thought and consideration, my boyfriend directed me to these 11 items, a small compilation of gifts worthy of the male fashionista. Or should I say, fashionisto.
1. A Fresh New Bag
The Mountain Pack, $189, topodesigns.com
There's nothing cooler than a fresh, modern backpack, and this particular brand and design is one of the most coveted out there. When I asked my boyfriend whether he wanted this for himself for Christmas, he wistfully gazed at his current backpack and tote collection and said, "If only I wasn't fully bagged already."
2. The Perfect Layering Sweater
Zip Cardigan In Olive, $300, archivalclothing.com
"This is a more rugged layer," my boyfriend tells me. "But it's certainly very fashionable." The rustic olive tones compliment a variety of shirt hues, and the coziness of the material in a sweater like this is virtually unmatched.
3. The Classic Tee
Velva Sheen 2-Pack Crew Neck Tee, $66, needsupply.com
Because a lot of high-fashion dudes wear tees under their fancy shirts, and you can certainly never have too many. If the price point seems steep, it's because these shirts are made of an extremely high-quality cotton: They maintain their luxe softness and never lose their shape, despite plenty of washes.
4. Or A Tee He'd Never Buy For Himself
Yarn Dyed Short Sleeve Pocket Tee, $58, jungmaven.com
Just like fashionable women, fashionable men have certain garments that they can't get enough of, certain ones that they're unsure about, and certain ones that they'll avoid at all costs. If you're in tune with your partner's aesthetic and have seen them be on the fence about an item, definitely gift it to them. After all, sometimes the best gifts are the things you'd never pick out for yourself, right?
5. The Best Gym Bag
Diagonal Strap Gym Bag, $52, americanapparel.net
It's simultaneously contemporary and classic, and it's big enough for all of his gym/work/weekend stuff. The best part? You can definitely borrow it and work it into your routine.
6. A Minimal, Sleek Layer
Shak Classic Merino Ponte Jacket, $123.75, ibex.com
"This is a great layer for when you don't want your look to be too bulky," my boyfriend tells me as I stare at him in a trance, just now realizing that his commitment to daily dressing runs deeper than I ever knew it did. It's true: This minimal zip-up jacket sits close to the body, making it look way more professional than your average zip-up sweater.
7. The Essential Sneakers
Svensson Classic Lows, $365, svenssonshop.com
Not all white sneakers are created equal, and these bad boys are legendary. If you're not into spending that kind of dough, a pair of classic Sam Smiths are a cheaper, equally as stylish alternative.
8. The Coziest Sweats
Indigo Terry Sweatpant, $195, wingsandhorns.com
Comfy clothes are the best, and fashionable athleisure has taken on a life of its own. As such, there are plenty of swanky menswear brands that produce luxe athletic-wear that your partner can sport both inside the house and outside for a lunch date.
9. Rugged Denim
Epla Essex Denim Jacket, $145, epauletnewyork.com
A sturdy, classic denim jacket is a surefire closet staple, and the dark denim of this one is particularly fetching.
10. A Slick Jacket For All Seasons
G9 Modern Classic + Harrington Jacket, $390, baracuta.com
Baracuta has made a name for itself in fashionable menswear, and it's not hard to see why. Its garments are classic, well-made, and always boast an interesting detail or two. "Kind of like me," my boyfriend says.
11. An Adorable Cap
Lock & Co. Sandwich Hat, $135, clubmonaco.com
At the end of the day, there's virtually no boyfriend out there who wouldn't look adorable in this hat, whether they think they like it or not.
These are just a few gift ideas for those of you who have fashionable boyfriends with an eye for style and quality. Together, the pair of you could turn any ordinary street into a veritable runway. Go forth and couple accordingly.
Want a few raunchier ideas for your partner's holiday present? Find out what these sex toys do on the Bustle YouTube page!
Images: Courtesy Brands