Esquire’s 15 “Affordable” Chain Store Gifts for Men – Part II
Click here for part one from yesterday.
The recession isn’t completely over just yet, so it was nice to see Esquire put together a gift guide for those of us who aren’t swimming through money like Scrooge McDuck. (Who on a side note, was one of the most nattily attired cartoon characters ever. Tophat, spats, no pants. That’s some serious style courage.) But some of Esquire’s mall-ready picks are still on the high end. $150 for jeans is a little steep, so there’s room for additions.
Jump on over to Esquire.com for their list of what they consider “affordable” and stylish gifts which guys can pick up at their local mall. Then head back this way for some alternatives and further analysis from us. The final eight get wrapped up today.
8. Esquire: Florsheim Kenmoor Wingtips – $225 | Dappered: B.R. San Marcos – $140
Catch these on sale for 30% off and you can get them for under $100. Will you be blown away by the quality? No, but they look pretty good in person. Especially if they’ve been shined up by a pro. The toe isn’t super slim, but it’s far from clunky. Not a bad choice for guys with wider (but not super wide) feet.
9. Esquire: Tissot – $350 | Dappered: The same Tissot – $250 | White Dial Chrono – $278.99
Slick Tissot. But why over-pay by $100? The same Tissot is available on Amazon for $250. Although it’s not sold direct by Amazon, it is fulfilled by Amazon. Those are safer buys and if you question the authenticity or there’s no warranty, send it back and Amazon has to deal with it. The White Dial Chrono on the other hand IS sold by Amazon. So you should be safe there. The Brown Band is nice, but swapping that out for a black band would make it one sharp dress watch.
10. Esquire: Paul Smith Pajamas – $210 | Dappered: A.E. Plaid Slippers – $19.99
Pajamas huh? There are two types of guys in this world. Guys who wear pajamas to bed, and guys who wear something else like gym shorts or boxers. You don’t want to get the latter a set of pajamas. And you don’t want to ask him what he wears to bed either (he might give you another answer you don’t want to hear.) So slippers then. Buffalo plaid. Cheap.
11. Esquire: Jack Spade Carry-All – $245 | Dappered: Frost River Flight Bag – $120 – $140
Credit to reader Ben who has mentioned Frost River in a comment thread before. This is one perfectly simple bag. Everything you want, nothing you don’t, and it looks incredible. Plus, at just over $100 you’d never expect this: These are made in the United States. Duluth Minnesota to be exact.
12. Esquire: CREED Aventus Fragrance – $140 | Dappered: Blue Coat Gin – $24 – $30
Is it bad that when I first saw the bottle I thought of Scott Staap? Is it worse that I’m suggesting a bottle of booze instead of colognes? Blue Coat is made in the US. Smells great too. Tell the recipient that you first thought about getting him cologne, so… maybe he could dab a little of the Gin behind each ear? Distilled in Philadelphia.
13. Esquire: Zirh Shave Cream – $22.50 | Dappered: Art of Shaving Starter Kit – $25.00
That Zirh shave cream looks nice & the price is good and low, but consider something that’s less of a commitment. The Art of Shaving Starter Kit comes with two weeks worth of essentials. That’ll give him an idea as to whether or not he wants to get on board the luxury shaving trend. Plus, he’ll get a sweet Badger Hair Brush.
14. Esquire: Oval French Oven – $270 | Dappered: LamsonSharp Slotted Turner – $21.99
As lovely as that Oval French Oven must be, guys like tools. Stuff they can wield. And the LamsonSharp Slotted Turner is one of the best tools you can find. It flips, scrapes, chops in the pan, and more or less directs whatever it is you’re cooking on the stove top in whatever direction you please. It’s light, has a great flex to it, and there’s a nice edge that’s not quite knife sharp but is thin enough to pierce and slice.
15. Esquire: Williams Sonoma Glasses – $64 | Dappered: Luigi Bormioli Glasses – $29.99
There’s a million different versions of the double old fashioned. The Bormioli “Crescendo” collection is all curves, has a retro feel, and won’t dent your checking account. Under $30 for four glasses. Made in Italy.
Questions, comments, additions, etc… all are welcome in the comments section below. Here’s to hoping you find a decent parking spot at the mall this Holiday shopping season.