Tag Archives: filson

gift guide: craig olson’s finds for the modern man

{Editor’s Note: This year, I’ve asked a few of the people whose style I spend all year admiring to share their holiday wish lists. Stay tuned – we’ll have a new expert every day for the next two weeks!}

No offense to Mr. SMC, but Craig Olson might be the hippest guy I know. So, it’s no surprise he was my very first choice for a men’s gift guide. Craig (along with his parter in crime, Sean Igo) is the genius behind Portland’s Canoe and the brand new Spruce Apothecary. Craig and Sean were at the forefront of Portland’s hip-ification when they opened Canoe, a store that’s still beloved across the country for its modern aesthetic and hyper-sophisticated selection of home goods and accessories. Not only would I blindly trust Craig to pick a gift for anyone on my list, but I’ve often begged him to do just that. He has a perfect track record with every person on my shopping list, and judging from this list of picks, he’s going to remain the undefeated champ of men’s gift ideas.

men's gift guide, mens gift guide, gift guide men, guys gifts, craig olson gift guide Read on

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get gifting: for the boys

i can pick great gifts for the women in my life blindfolded.  but men?  they’re an entirely different story.  whether it’s a husband, a dad or a brother, something about buying for guys is just baffling, unless you want to go to the old standby of cologne, a watch or a pair of cufflinks.

i’ve left out the obvious choices…something tells me you don’t need to be reminded that a 52″ HDTV is high on his list.  but if you’re looking to head off the beaten path a bit this year, here are a few that are absolutely sure to make just about any guy smile.

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left to right, from top: marshall major headphones, $99; native(x) pendleton wool scarf, $20; clinique expert shave kit, $31 (love the waterproof dopp kit it comes with); boccalone artisan cured salumi gift box, from $25; logitech harmony rechargeable remote control, $106; ecco personal digital compass GPS locator, $70; merrell guise men’s jacket (converts into neck pillow for travel!), $129;  filson small duffle bag, $225; byrd and belle felt/leather ipad sleeve, $48.

{FTC disclaimer: some product samples were provided to help me compile this guide, but as usual, there’s no pay-for-play here.}

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what i’m giving today: male edition


i used to agonize over gifting to men, until i realized it was because i was trying to get them things i thought they should have.  now, i’ve finally learned to just cave and get the men what they actually want at the holidays…even if it’s pointless (or even annoying) to me, i figure that’s exactly what they think when we ask for yet another scarf or pair of earrings.  with that in mind, i’ve compiled a list of some of the best ideas i’ve come across this year to make him smile on christmas morning.

for the geek in your life, the splurge du jour is the playstation 3.  from what i understand, it’s quite the gadget – it plays bluray discs, allows him to download movies and games from the internet, and may even julienne carrots.  okay, maybe not that last one.  pick it up for about $400 and score some serious points.

for my little bro, who simply cannot keep his house smelling even remotely decent, i’m going to give him a gift that will help him get his saturday night date inside the front door.  this cool diffuser from joya boasts a very masculine skull and crossbones on the outside, and a completely gender-neutral gunpowder green tea scent on the inside – all he has to do is set it up, and the stench is…well, masked at least.

if you’re gifting to someone a little more rugged, i can’t think of many guys that wouldn’t love this filson briefcase ($245).  it’s a great, masculine option for a laptop bag (but still incredibly stylish) that will make him feel like he’s off on a mountaineering adventure, even when it’s really just his daily commute.

when all else fails, boys do love their toys.  so, indulge him…but in as creative a way as you can.  if he’s into golf, pick up a couple of gift certificates for a round at his favorite course.  if he’s never met a microbrew he doesn’t like, cave and get him that beer of the month club membership (or yes, even that home brewing kit he’s been craving).  and if his favorite thing to do on a saturday is watch a marathon of bad sci fi, well, bite the bullet and buy him a star trek box set…maybe even tack on a promise to watch a few with him.  you get the idea.  

and, last but not least – it may not elicit childlike squeals of delight, but i promise…the man in your life is secretly thrilled you’re there to help him with his fashion choices.  so, throw a stylish cashmere sweater or a hip watch (diesel does a great job of blending cool and “stylish”) under the tree for good measure – just make sure to mix the fashion goodies with a few toys!

so, how about a little help from the committee?  what’s the best gift you’ve ever given to a guy?  share the love, people!

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