Gifts From Handpicked

Finding the Right Gifts for a Man

Christmas is looming now and many will be worrying already about the prospect of selecting gifts for their loved ones. It’s impossible to know for sure whether a gift will be well received or not. Men are often said to be the easiest of the two genders to shop for – but this is not universally so. You might have a male friend or significant other, for whom shopping for gifts is a particular hair pulling challenge. Just what do men want? In this article we shall explore some potential ideas.

It’s a Man Thing

Most modern households of a certain size contain a room colloquially called a ‘man cave’. The concept of the ‘man cave’ was proposed in John Gray’s hugely popular book ‘Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus’. According to Gray, men value working problems out for themselves and will shun communication while doing so. A man cave provides distraction from the stress of family life, along with the occasional much-needed solitude.

If this sounds familiar, then you might consider one of the many available wall plaques, for giving a room in which manly activities might take place, its proper title. The man in question may be aware of their own manliness; they might, on the other hand, have come to doubt it. In such a case, they may appreciate a gift which affirms this whenever they look at it – and even lightly ridicules them for it too! Possible candidates might include tins for putting manly things in and notebooks, for writing manly things in.

If the gift’s prospective recipient is a drinker (but not too heavy a drinker), then you may consider a hip flask with a similar sentiment emblazoned on it. Whatever the trends in DIY might suggest, there are few things more manly than swigging whisky from a hip flask. It is a tradition handed from man to son or in this day and age, daughter.


It is widely-held that men are the funnier of the two genders. This is true to an extent; broadly speaking, men want women to laugh at them, while women want someone to make them laugh.

That said, there is no reason why you shouldn’t turn the tables and make the man the butt of the joke. A good way to do this is to think of a gift related to a hobby that the recipient might enjoy and get them an everyday item which references it. Fishermen might appreciate this plaque for example.  Many men with a fondness for beer and Second World War memorabilia will appreciate a humorous coaster – as will the table.


Another stereotype holds that men are the more practical of the genders and are good at fixing and building things. DIY store Homebase last month announced that it would close a quarter of their stores. A press release pointed the blame squarely at "a generation less skilled in DIY projects.”

Cynics may be tempted, with some justification, to blame a rise in online shopping, rather than in DIY skills as a whole. The facts, however, support Homebase’s reasoning; the DIY sector is declining at a rate of 13% annually. 

Opinion columns such as this recent Telegraph article have bemoaned the death of the ‘man’s man’, who spends his weekends fixing radiators and unblocking sinks. It may be the case that the desired recipient of your gift is a member of said dying breed. If that is the case, then a toolbox bearing the missive ‘touch my tools and die’ might be in order; you will be saving the future of DIY as well as saving tool snatchers from a nasty fate.

There are a couple of other ideal gifts for such a man. These gifts might include this salt and pepper set, which is very manly, in that it is straightforward and easy to understand. For a man who does a great deal of travelling and who organises the travel arrangements of others, a wallet makes an ideal gift. One which carries a humorous message, such as this, may go down well too.

Dad Gifts

Shopping for a father requires special consideration, as there are a range of options personalised for this precise purpose – while sharing many characteristics with the ones we’ve already discussed.  Plaques for many locations around the house and garden are now in vogue; consider getting him one for the shed, or for anywhere at all. If you are really stuck, then getting a mug might be a good idea, particularly if the mug has an affectionate or humorous sentiment on it and if the dad in question drinks a lot of tea or coffee.

There you have it, all you need to do is think about the man you are buying for, have a good look online and find some clever gift idea sites, then get shopping!