How To Style Unwanted Gifts

Presents are one of the highlights of any good Christmas, and there’s nothing more exciting than a big pile of beautifully wrapped packages under the tree. But what if the gift doesn’t live up to the anticipation? It’s inevitable that not all gifts will be ‘just what you always wanted’, and clothing items are especially tricky to get right. There’s no need to shove your too big, too small or “just not quite you” you items to the back of the wardrobe though. With a little imagination, those unwanted gifts can be styled into something you’ll genuinely love wearing. Here’s how…

The Too-Big Top From Your Mother-In-Law

Judging someone else’s size can be difficult, and most people will err on the side of caution when buying as ‘too big is better than too small’. If you’ve been gifted a top that’s bordering on the size of the small tent, a belt will become your best friend. Simply pull in at the waist and transform your look from swamped to stylish in seconds. Works equally well on dresses, jumpers, coats – the lot!

The Skinny Scarf From Your Aunt

Scarves are an easy, practical and inexpensive gift (and cheap to send in the post!), which makes them a popular choice among distant relatives. Luckily, there are loads of ways to wear a scarf, so you shouldn’t be short of ideas. Why not tie a skinny scarf into a simple bow to channel this year’s ‘pussybow’ trend? Or go preppy for work by tying it like a, well, tie.

scarf style 14

The Floral Dress From Your Parents

When it comes to parents, the temptation to dress you as girly as possible can be too great to resist. This often means that prints, from flowers to love hearts, are found wrapped under your tree on Christmas Day in the form of a ladylike dress.

If super girly isn’t quite your style these days, it’s easy to toughen up a feminine piece with chunky boots and a leather jacket. Or go boho with a suede jacket or gilet and slouchy boots. Go preppy by throwing a skinny knit over the top and wearing with pumps. The possibilities are endless, so don’t let a pretty print put you off!

The Chunky Knit From Your Nan

If you’ve got a knitting grandma who loves to gift you her handcrafted designs then be grateful that you’re getting an absolute one-off item of clothing – something people pay big money for! And there are loads of ways to style up a knit to suit your look. Try wearing it off the shoulder with a colourful vest top underneath for a slouchy daytime vibe, or tuck your knit into a suedette or leather look skirt for a trendy ‘back to the 70s’ outfit that your nan will definitely approve of!

chunky knit

The Boring Handbag From Your Husband

So you told your husband that you wanted a handbag for Christmas, or he decided that it was a failsafe gift choice. Unfortunately he’s gone for ultimate practicality and chosen a boring bag that’s hard to get excited about. Never fear because 2016 is the year of the bag charm. We’re talking tassels, fringing, keyrings, fur and, of course, pom poms – so it’s super easy and cheap to bling up your bag. Take a look at the charm and tassel bags at George for inspiration.

So there you have it. Five easy ways to style your unwanted gifts to make them wearable (at least when the giver comes around for a cup of tea). Alternatively, you could just ask for the receipt – if you dare!