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  • How to choose the perfect Christmas gift

    How to choose the perfect Christmas gift

    Let's face it, not everyone is easy to buy for, and Christmas is not an easy time of year in which to make sound decisions!

    The pressure can build, right? To buy the right gift, at the right price, by the right date. Oh, and wrap it perfectly! Yikes... Not easy.

    How to choose the perfect Christmas gift

    Here at XOXO, we've been thinking about how we can cut through this overwhelming pressure and get through to great gifts on the other side, and today we're sharing our ideas to help you find great gifts without the pressure.

    1. Remember why you're even here.

    The first step in finding the right gift is to connect with your desire to give generously (or at all!) this Christmas.

    Try writing down what Christmas and giving means to you. Perhaps it's about cherishing friends and family members. Or celebrating moments from the year. Perhaps Christmas is all about creating a little bit of magic for the people you care about. 

    Once you feel like there's a point to this whole thing, it's easier to get excited and inspired to find great gifts.

    2. Review who's on your list.

    It's extra hard to find gifts for people you're secretly resenting, so we recommend looking at your list and culling where necessary. Or at least re-evaluating the time and effort (not to mention cash) you're putting into each person.

    Why are you giving each person on your list a gift at Christmas? Do you want to give them a gift? Or are you in some kind of social awkwardness in which you feel you have to buy them a gift?

    If you're really struggling to find a gift, it might not be because you're feeling uncomfortable giving to this person in general. We all have our fair share of obligation presents to buy because we "have to", but you might want to reconsider. When did this person last give you a thoughtful gift? If you can't remember, but still feel like you have to give them something, grab them a box of chocolates and be done with it.

    3. Make a list of what they love.

    Before you jump straight to gift ideas, start by making a list of what this person loves, and what makes them special. What are their hobbies? What do they love to do? How do they spend their time?

    Perhaps they've had a significant life event this year, such as moving house, changing jobs, or simply taking up something new. These things can also be helpful to make a note of.

    The aim of this step is not to jump to gift ideas, but to get a kind of profile of the person you're buying for.

    For example:

    Steve: Spends most of his time working or home (tired) with wife and kids. Likes listening to music on his commute. Don't know his favourite music, though. Likes quiet time, doesn't like being nagged!

    You'll notice at the end a little 'doesn't like' creep in there. That can be helpful too! Equally, acknowledging that you don't know Steve's favourite music, only that he likes some kind of music. This will make sure you don't over-step the line into things you don't know about. So you wouldn't buy Steve a CD, but you might still get him something music-related.

    Handy tip: Remind yourself that you already know some things about your gift recipient. It's easy to fall into the trap of just thinking "I don't know WHAT he likes!" Chances are, you can probably stir up something.

    4. Imagine what might bring them delight.

    Once you have your little profile for your hard-to-buy-for person, you have some themes to work from. This step requires you to connect back to point number 1 above: Christmas is about creating delight, or offering comfort, or celebrating moments from the year.

    What would allow you to give this person some Christmas magic? 

    Let's go back to Steve. We know he works a lot (though we're not entirely sure what he does). We know that he's tired when he's at home, but he loves his kids despite his tiredness. He listens to music on his commute. So, we want to give Steve some magic at Christmas, something that he'll be delighted by, that will bring him some comfort. We'd love to hear him say, "That's cool!"

    Maybe that would be a new set of headphones, or a case for them. Maybe it would be a pre-paid month of coffees for his commute, or a travel mug with some fancy beans so he can make his own. You might feel he'll appreciate some way to bring his kids along with him on his busy work days, such as a keyring with their names on.

    By connecting what we already know about Steve to his potential gift wishlist, we're aiming for a more meaningful and connected product. Hooray!

    5. Stay focused.

    Once you've started generating ideas, you'll inevitably start shopping. Now, as you do so, keep your budget and gift profile in mind!

    Don't get carried away. Before you checkout (online or in store), ask yourself, Is this the mark I want to hit for this person? Will it bring them delight? Does it create magic? Is my budget appropriate?

    If you're unsure, come back to your profile and your intentions for gift-giving. You'll get there! And don't forget, you can also ask mutual friends or family members if that feels comfortable for you.

    Now, of course I have to mention that we have some great gift options here at XOXO stationery in our shop. Take a look around and get some ideas!

    Happy gift-giving!

    Maggie xoxo

  • XOXO Studio Tour

    This time last year, we were in a totally different environment, a different studio, where XOXO Stationery had really grown and started. But, all at once, the landlord changed and, after some serious thinking, we decided it was time to look for a new space in which this little business could grow.

    Earlier this year, we moved into our new studio, where we now have space to store everything beautifully. Today, we're sharing some photos of our brand new space!

    We have space to print notebooks, and a separate space to print bags, mugs, and water bottles.

     

    We have dedicated space for packing up orders.

    There's space for a proper desk, and lots of space for inspiration.

     

    There's even space for a dedicated photography backdrop!

    Moving into a new space has made a huge difference to how it feels at XOXO HQ. It's moved us into a new phase for the business, and we're feeling ready for anything.

    From all of us

    XOXO

    Photos by Alice Rose Portraits

  • Back to school with XOXO

     

    Going back to school in September always comes around quick!  And even quicker for us Scots, who went back last month.

    For some, it's an exciting time -- a fresh start, a new school year, and a chance to start again. For others, it can be a flurry of activity, anxiety, and getting the kids ready for new challenges (not to mention ourselves!).

    We've put together some of our favourite organisers, planners, notepads, bags, and accessories to help ease you in and get you excited for the back to school season.

    For Mums

    Keep on top of everyone's new schedules with our Family Weekly Calendar Notepad. This is a great organiser for mums, and can be personalised with the names of the family, or wording of your choice. Each page tears off neatly, so each week you can start afresh. Super handy to have in the kitchen to look over each morning!

     

    For Kids

    Getting children ready for school in the mornings can be tough. Getting them excited can, sometimes, be even tougher. We have a lovely Personalised Tote Bag, great for getting books and kit ready the night before.

    Encourage older children to organise themselves with their very own to do list for all their handy reminders. We have a wide selection, of course, but this Colourful To Do List has proven really popular over the summer!

    For children who love their sports classes, our Personalised Water Bottles are a great addition to the daily routine. They're really robust, and are great for soccer practice or rugby coaching.

     

    For Teachers

    Let's not forget teachers -- so valuable to our kids' education and development. Our 'From The Desk Of' Notepads are a great way to make writing notes to children, parents and colleagues much easier.

    We also have 'For The Desk Of' mugs and water bottles to keep you refreshed throughout the day. Our travel mugs are particularly handy for the classroom -- the tight-fitting silicone lids prevent spillages!

    Our new teachers' tote bags are proving popular. Because they're strong and sturdy, they're great for carrying books and marking to and from the classroom.

     

    Here's to the new school year!

    Don't forget to check out our full back to school collection. And from all at XOXO Stationery, we wish you a fabulous autumn, and we hope you enjoy the back to school feeling!

    xoxo

  • Hello

    XOXO stationery

    Hello, and welcome to our brand new site! After months of hard work, creativity and determination behind the scenes, we’re so pleased to be back online with our brand new website.

    XOXO stationery has changed quite a lot since our old website was launched and live – that was a site dedicated to the previous wedding stationery side of the business. Well, it turns out that we’ve taken a different route, changing track towards personalised stationery and other gorgeous delights!

    Now you can meet some of our very bestselling products right here on our own website. You’ll also be able to connect with us more here on the blog and on social media, where we’ll bring you news, updates and exclusive behind-the-scenes photos.

    For exclusive news and offers, make sure you subscribe to our newsletter, which we’ll be sending out around once a month.

    In the meantime, welcome to our brand new home and don’t forget to come and say hi on Facebook or Instagram!

    Maggie and the team x