As I start to think of what to get everyone for Christmas this year, and strive to think of something original that each person will cherish, I am forced to ask what makes something luxury in today's world?
The big fashion houses such as Burberry and Chanel, and brands such as Rolex and Rolls Royce may be the obvious answer. But with tourists bursting through the doors of Selfridges and Harrods on a daily basis to get their hands on as many "luxury" items as their Fendi purses will allow, the luxury characteristic of originality has gone. For me personally, the romance of owning a Rolex watch or a Chanel 2.55 bag has gone and been replaced with a feeling of securing your place in a club that is already oversubscribed.
This Christmas, I'm looking for a different sort of luxury for my loved ones. I want the luxury of being able to tell my family and friends exactly where their present was made, and the story of the maker who spent days or months crafting it and bringing it to fruition. It's very easy for a brand to spend thousands on marketing to make themselves look like a start-up craft workshop, but it's so much more rewarding to meet the founder of a brand, and hear their story and their motivation for making what they do and learn about the process from a first-hand account.
It may take me much longer to find my presents this year, but my goodness will I have a story to tell.
P.S. If you have any suggestions I'd love to hear them!