In terms of personal gifts with an underlying meaning, jewellery tops the list. More than any other type of present, precious metal and gemstones can convey so much in a luxury piece that will hopefully last a lifetime.
However, if you are buying for loved one it is important to consider their tastes rather than your own, if you don’t want to be making a repeat trip to the jewellers to return or swap an item.
Gift buyers should take the time to consider the types of jewellery the recipient would normally wear, whether earrings, necklaces, bracelets or brooches. If they prefer small, delicate pieces or larger ones to make a bold statement should also be considered.
The precious metal used in the piece is also an important element. For example, does the person for whom the gift is intended usually go for silver rather than gold?
Perhaps they are a conscious shopper who prefers handmade, artisanal clothing and accessories over mass-produced items? If so, you might want to check out bespoke boutiques for unique items which would suit the recipient’s ethics as well as style.
Eloise Jewellery is a beautiful shop with a highly personalised service in Kirkcaldy’s High Street. It stocks glamorous Art Deco and Edwardian inspired marcasite and sterling silver jewellery, chunky bohemian pieces from India set with beautiful lustrous natural gemstones, as well as some high-end nine-carat gold, gemstone and diamond antiques and reproduction items.
At the top end of the budget you might want to consider buying a classic understated piece which is likely to last for decades.
In terms of personalising the gift, the more you can suit the style to the recipient, the more likely it is to be treasured.
Engraving names or dates on individual pieces will be a marker of a special occasion. If buying gemstones, selecting a birthstone is a good place to start.
But there is another option for making jewellery the centre of a heartfelt present. Repairing a well-loved but forgotten piece makes for a very caring statement.
Andrew Winski, co-owner of Winski’s of Kinross, says that at this time of year he is busy replacing lost gemstones, refurbishing settings and claws and making sure treasured pieces look their best at very little cost. Refurbishing can be carried out from about £15, while resizing a ring starts at £25.
Winski says: “If you can bring forgotten jewellery back to life, particularly if it is a family piece that has a lot of sentiment attached, that can be the best gift of all.”