The next four weeks are going to be extremely busy and it is expected that we will spend £17 billion on gifts. Not each though, we are not all Tamara Ecclestone sadly. We haven't always been rushing to the shops for presents though. In the Victorian times people planned Christmas presents months in advance. Rushing to the shops on Christmas Eve, sadly wasn't an option. Family members spent a lot of time designing personal gifts for each other. Daughters often spent time helping their mothers do sewing and needlework to make gifts, no partying on a Friday night for them then. They apparently spent long happy hours together designing, planning and creating special gifts. Yeh, right. A lot of patterns were printed and advice was to be found in books and papers. Cassell's Household Guide was a good one to find good patterns in. You could buy gifts from the shops but homemade gifts were a lot more popular and appealing, although ready-made gifts became more popular as time went on.
Gift ideas ranged from the practical to the ornamental. Food gifts include jams,jellies and preserves made in the summer and homemade candy such as peanut brittle or fudge. Lots of Fudge and Mummy Second Rose Jam for me please Mrs Victorian. Let me tell you about the range of gifts that were given and where you can find a 21st century equivalent to give to a loved one. Don't worry I won't expect you to buy them tea strainers and an umbrella. Just call me Father Christmas.
|Tomato Pincushion £1.95|
|Accessorize Lace Crochet Scarf £16|
a nice watch case.
|1kg of Chocolate Cookies-what more could you want? £15.99|
|Asos Fair Isle Knitted Scarf £13.50|
|Bow and Stripe Gloves-£12|
|Marshmallow Lace Blanket-£35|
|Fabric Bow Hairband-£3.50|
|Desktop Table Pool £15.99|
|Wind Up Racing Ducks-£8.99|
|Heart Nosed Teddy-The Bear Factory|
|Cath Kidston Knitting Bag-£25|
|Yardley Bath and Body Rang|
of Bath Products-£3.50-£5.95
Gifts were put under the tree and if parents were rich there was one for each child. These could be a wind up dancing bear, an early form of Scrabble, Penny whistles, pull toys, stuffed animals and wooden toys. So the gifts weren't all that bad but blimey I have no idea how they managed without eBay and Amazon.
Second Hand Rose