Christmas Already! WTF!

Hey Posse SUDDENLY it’s Christmas is less than three weeks! I can’t believe it’s Christmas Already. No matter what your religion or lack of you must still have noticed how quickly this years celebrations have rolled around. Here in Sydney we have had lockdown which basically meant nine months of the year went by in a haze of weird. It took forever and no time at all. Personally, not working or earning for four and a half months was both blissful and heartbreaking. Also, I know I had it easy compared to so many of the world. Thankfully the worst seems to be behind us here and we are finally a highly vaccinated country. No matter how badly our government dropped the ball on the vaccinations.

In my Christmas already meltdown mode I’m trying to get myself fully organised. Gifting will be fairly frugal this year. I’ve been looking to give some packs of things. Over the year I’ve seen bargains and sales and grabbed bits and pieces. Here are some of the things I reckon you can still get your hands on as the gift or stocking/giftpack fillers

I can’t believe my last Giving Guide was 2018!

Christmas Already! WTF!

Christmas Already! WTF!

Nesti Dante Italian Cities 6 Pack Soaps

Everyone loves these soaps. They are beautifully wrapped, have pictures of famous Italian cities, they smell wonderful and give a smooth, foamy wash. Soap being such an important thing currently because of its ability to decommission virus. Breaking these up you then have six fabulous small gifts or extras to add into a little pack. It’s also MUCH cheaper to buy the sixpack than six individually. A perfect standby too in case you forget someone in the Christmas already rush. I bought two sets on deep discount earlier in the year.

Christmas Already! WTF!

The Perfume Companion: The Definitive Guide to Choosing Your Next Scent
by Sarah McCartney and Samantha Scriven

WANT!! This book, written by two of my buddies, is very high on my Xmas want list. An affordable read available in hard copy or for your Kindle/eReader. As I’m yet to read it, here’s The Black Narcissus take. I may wrap this book for myself and pop it under the tree.

KORRES Basil Lemon Renewing Body Cleanser

Ever since a girlfriend gave me a set of KORRES Japanese Rose shower gel and lotion I have loved the brand. Often you can find really good discounts if you keep an eagle eye out but even at full price they are very affordable. They smell excellent and are a good option to have a couple on hand just in case.

Christmas Already! WTF!

Where the River Bends by Jane and Jimmy Barnes

Friends & family not into perfume? No worries. My buddies Jane and Jimmy Barnes have done a recipe book set on their country estate, River Bend. Aussie rocker Jimmy Barnes and his wife Jane are renowned for their Sunday dinners. The extended family, friends and whichever celebrities are in town all come together and there is delicious food, booze and conversation all night. I’ve bought a bunch of these books for friends, and one for Jin who LOVES to cook.

Guerlain Habit Rouge Gift Set

I’m loving the 2021 Gift Sets. They are really luxurious looking and the extra 10ml travel size is perfect for gym bags and toiletries bags. You know I’m a huge sucker for a matching shower gel too. Aimed at the boys but I reckon this presentation is utterly unisex, so is the scent. Not ridiculously expensive either. You could spend a LOT more and not get something as beautiful.

Christine Manfield’s Indian Cooking Class

Another girlfriend of mine Christine Manfield, and her partner Margie Harris, who I’ve known for decades. Even before I knew the girls properly another friend of mine from childhood (Margie) worked in their restaurant Paramount, in the kitchen. It’s not often you hear a chef/owner spoken of highly by an employee but even decades afterwards Margie remembers the girls fondly and her time there as a huge learning curve, well curated. Christine and I share a love of India and her food tours are famous worldwide as the best way to get to know the sub continents cuisine.

Surrender To Chance Gift Voucher

Perfumista buddy? Don’t know WHAT to get them? Maybe you completely forgot them! Maybe you left it too late. The Surrender To Chance Gift Voucher will be in their eMail inbox within minutes. You don’t have to wrap it, they can enjoy hours of poring over the choices, the wonderful wait till the scents arrive and then the fun of trying or remembering fragrances that goes on for weeks. As little as $20 or the sky is the limit.

Christmas Already! WTF!

DIOR Cruise Collection Coffee Mugs

Want to drop some serious cash on a pair of earthenware coffee mugs? DIOR has the answer. You can only get them in store and they are decorated with mythological figures. The box is everything you’d hope such luxury would come in. For a jaw dropping Christmas.

Christmas Already! WTF!

CHANEL Première Chaîne Watch

When your loved one is CEO or oligarch (or if you need people to think they are) then this is what you might be asking for. Features include Steel case, Black lacquer dial, Onyx cabochon crown, Steel chain bracelet and clasp buckle, High precision quartz movement and water-resistance to 30m. It is perfectly simple, will forever show your bona fide entry to the elite and you will be able to brandish it like a weapon. It also tells time.


So yes, it’s Christmas Already!
What are a couple of things you’ll be gifting or getting?
Portia xx


  • Dina C. says:

    I already had that Perfume Companion book on my wish list, Portia. I read a great review of it and immediately was dying to read it. Nice list. Thanks a lot!

    • Portia says:

      Hey DinaC,
      YAY! It sounds bloody good, doesn’t it? If it’s in the easy reading style of Samantha Scriven then I know it will be a great read.
      Portia xx

  • Wild Gardener says:

    The Sarah McCartney book still isn’t on sale in Paris, so I’m thinking of the new Côte Azzurra. But … is it any good?
    Goodd skittles at the Gabba btw 🙂

    • Portia says:

      Hey WG,
      Surely you can get a copy sent from an online bookseller? They even have some special discounts for shopping online.
      HA! People talk about cricket around me but my mind goes to neutral very quickly. Glad the Ashes are giving you a thrill though.
      Portia xx

  • Musette says:

    This is a delightful list! I love Habit Rouge and am surprised, each time I wear it, that I don’t wear it more often.
    Those soaps look delightful! I love soaps, always buy soaps for gifts, then end up keeping them in a tote, from which I never take them.

    Because weirdo 😉

    Happiest of Hollerdays, Portia! Love to you ALL!


  • Diana says:

    What a great gift list, Portia! That Guerlain set looks amazing, I wish they’d done something like this for some of the other perfumes, too.

    I’ve bought most of my presents earlier this year: some skincare, some Yves Rocher bath stuff, and a few little joys for myself. I think I should also get a few bottles of cava or some other sparkling wine and start seeing out 2021 earlier than the rest of humanity 🙂

    Diana XX

    • Portia says:

      Thanks Diana,
      Have a look at the Guerlain site where you are. there are quite a few lovely Gift Sets available this year.
      You DEFINITELY need to get yourself some booze and start early. Cheer!
      We got on the champagne this evening ourselves.
      Portia xx

  • March says:

    Great guide! Man I want those Dior mugs, not even going to go look… It’s a weird one this year — the first time in decades I’m not hosting, we are all meeting at the kids’ house in Portland, Maine (I’m staying in an AirBnB for sanity.) They bought a tree yesterday … it’s nice not to do all the work? I’ll acknowledge that. But I miss it too. Ava will fly up from DC and fingers crossed we will all be together. They’re getting a bunch of Santa Fe goodies whether they want it or not hahahaha — locally made ornaments, tea towels, biscochitos, stuff like that.

    • Portia says:

      HA! DO NOT LOOK! Those mugs are worth a LOT. It’s ridiculous.
      YAY for having a kids family Xmas March. This is going to be so fun and probably completely bonkers. I can’t wait to read stories of first time Xmas creation booboos, beauty, fun and riotous adventures.
      The only thing that really matters is that you are together but I’m so sure they’ll want to make it super special too.
      OOOH! I’m so excited for you.
      Portia xx

  • Tara C says:

    I ordered Sarah’s book for myself, as well as several bottles of her perfumes. 🙂 I prefer not to exchange gifts, hoping to talk my family out of it this year as it’s a pain figuring out what to buy and no one needs anything so it feels like a forced exercise.

    • Portia says:

      I 100% agree on gift exchange TaraC. It’s so hard to find things for people. It was different when we were young and needed stuff.
      Portia x

  • Anniea says:

    Fun list! The only scented gifts I give are Yves Rocher. Not having the courage of my perfume convictions.

    • Portia says:

      Hey AnnieA,
      LOVE Yves Rocher. They do such good stuff and excellent price point too. I’d love to find some under our tree but there is no YR in Australia.
      Portia x

  • cinnamon says:

    That’s a wonderful gift list. I’ve mostly done all the purchasing, just a few things remaining. I’m really not feeling the holiday spirit this year though. Seriously thinking that if it’s possible next year to book into a 5 star hotel in Paris for a few days, eat food that has nothing to do with Xmas lunch, and walk a lot.

    • Portia says:

      OMG! That sounds like the most fabulous plan ever. Paris would be a wonderful Xmas destination. We have been there in early January a couple of times and it was perfect.
      Jin has often talked of Xmas in Budapest and Vienna. I’d love either.
      Portia xx

  • Neva says:

    I love your gifting ideas, Portia! Especially The Perfume Companion and the Dior mugs. I may be buying the book for myself as well…
    I like gifting scented candles so sometimes I also buy Diptyque candles sets which I split into smaller packages. Atelier Cologne also has nice perfume sets with 4 ml of their famous perfumes.
    This year I have shortened the list of people who will get a Christmas present and I feel relieved about it.