lifestyle

Editor's Picks: 11 presents to buy for the person who has everything.

BridgeClimb Sydney
Thanks to our brand partner, BridgeClimb Sydney

Let’s face it: we’ve all got a lot of stuff.

Oprah, Marie Kondo and plenty of others are making a lot of money telling us how to get rid of it all, tidy it up or give it away.

I like buying presents, I love finding the right presents, but more and more of my friends and family need less stuff – and they’re becoming harder and harder to buy for. There are fewer things that they want and even less that they need.

I like to think of that as a challenge: To surprise and delight people with presents that they would never have expected. Bonus points if it doesn’t add to their pile of stuff.

If you’re having the same dilemma, here are some of the things that I’m looking at this year (my friends and family should look away now).

1. Climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

The other day I came across a photo of my friends and I on top of an iconic bridge in my hometown. We look flushed, happy and proud (and a little like the Beastie Boys in our jumpsuits). One of my friends had been terrified of heights, but she had charged up the bridge, leaving us all in awe. Other friends were emotional at the beauty. I was just chuffed to be standing there with some of the most remarkable women I had ever met.

There is something special about seeing your city from a different point of view. Standing clear of the buildings and looking out to the horizon. Problems seem smaller. Possibilities seem greater. An unforgettable experience – and an even better gift.

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“Other friends were emotional at the beauty. I was just chuffed to be standing there with some of the most remarkable women I had ever met.” Image: Supplied.

2. Singing lessons.

My best friend bought me singing lessons for my birthday this year. She has seen me sing a lot of karaoke, so I appreciate her investment in making my performances a better experience for everyone involved.

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All jokes about my singing voice aside, singing is great for stress relief and confidence. It’s also a lot of fun. There are schools everywhere, but my lessons are from Everyone Can Sing.

3. Mermaid lessons.

We found out earlier this year that there’s a school where you can learn to become a mermaid. Apparently it’s very good for your abs (and for the achievement of your lifelong dreams). Imagine giving the gift of mermaidism. It’s for adults and children, and you can find out more details from the Merquatics Facebook page here.

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Part of your worrrrrrrrld. Image via The Little Mermaid.

4. Homemade muesli.

Breakfast: Everyone knows it’s the most important meal of the day. So if you make and give the gift of homemade muesli, you’re basically giving your loved ones an excellent day in a jar. There are some delicious recipes for homemade granola muesli and bircher muesli in Annabel Crabb’s new book, which is an entire book of food that you can make to take to a friend’s house (or you could just buy them Annabel’s book).

Alternatively, this is a great recipe.

5. Painting class (where you can bring your own wine/beer/cheer).

Art and booze have always gone together, and at a studio in Brisbane you can take a group painting class while drinking your favourite plonk. You BYO the booze and Cork and Chroma provide the rest. A seat at an easel and everything you need for a fun night of painting is $55 (plus the cost of whatever beverage takes your fancy).

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“You BYO the booze and Cork and Chroma provide the rest.” Image via iStock
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6. An umbrella you can’t lose.

Everyone needs a good umbrella. And Blunt umbrellas are the best. Not only are they a work of structural genius, you can buy a version that has a chip in it that works with your smart phone to find your umbrella if you leave it behind in a café (you can locate it on a map) or even if you lose it in your house (it will play a song until you are together again).

It may seem a little expensive, but it could be the last umbrella you ever buy. If you know someone who loves gadgets and hates getting rained on (or losing things), then this umbrella would be ideal.

7. Personalised chopping board.

You can never have enough chopping boards, but if you get this present right, then it’s the only one that your loved ones will ever want to use. This Australian company is making engraved cutting boards. Package it up with some cheese and wine. It’s a perfect gift for the discerning food fan.

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“Package it up with some cheese and wine. It’s a perfect gift for the discerning food fan” Image via Etsy.
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8. Whiskey Advent Calendar.

If you know someone who takes their booze very, very seriously, then the 2015 Master of Malt Whiskey Advent Calendar is the perfect gift. With snifters of some of the fanciest whiskey you’ll ever come across, the lucky recipient can count down the days to Christmas in style (including samples of whiskey that retails for up to $800 a bottle).

It’s not cheap, but if your loved ones are passionate about plonk, they will be in highbrow booze heaven.

There are vodka and gin options too, if whiskey is not your style.

9. Personalised handkerchiefs.

Everyone needs a hankie – and you can never have too many (because they somehow manage to disappear). Here you can get a set of five beautiful hankies in a personalised container. You’ve never wiped your nose on anything so stylish.

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“Everyone needs a hankie.” Image via Not On The High Street.

10. Resin jewellery making workshop.

I took this resin jewellery class last year. It was so much fun, plus I got two bracelets and two rings to take home. The best thing: It was incredibly mindful. I couldn’t think of anything else while I was concentrating on getting the quantities and colour blends right. New skills, plus new, unique pieces to wear – it’s a win-win.

11. Thing Explainer: Complicated Stuff in Simple Words by Randall Munroe.

A confession: I’ve already pre-ordered this book. Randall Munroe was a NASA roboticist before he left to draw comics on the Internet fulltime (the amazing xkcd). In his latest book, he explains the greatest mysteries of the world in simple language. Who doesn’t want to know more stuff, without the jargon? Munroe is smart, funny and well informed. And I’m convinced that with this book in my hands, I will be too.

What unique presents are you after this year?

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