You may have noticed some posts from our friends at the Strategist on the Cut. They’ll be dropping in every now and again, sharing their expertise on the basics you don’t have time to research and the weird and wonderful things you don’t yet know you need.
Dads don’t have to be label fanatics to appreciate the finer things. But for those who do care about designer goods, there’s a certain pleasure to unwrapping a gift, no matter how small, that bears the name of a fancy brand. Whether that’s a luxe candle or a pair of socks, even the little things can impress a father who demands only the best. Ahead of Father’s Day — June 19 this year — we sniffed out the most inexpensive, giftable things from the fanciest brands that are certain to please even the pickiest of dads. (Yes, some may not be cheap cheap, but remember we’re talking about Tom Ford and Versace here.)
This planter, made from Le Creuset’s legendary (and colorful) ceramic, doubles as a DIY project for the handyman dad. Watch out for a few sprouts on your next visit.
When we say Georg Jensen makes museum-quality home goods, we’re not kidding. Another set of the designer’s salt-and-pepper shakers is part of Cooper Hewitt’s collection of 20th-century design objects. For the price, Dad not only gets what could become a family heirloom, but also the ability to brag about the set every time he whips it out.
Strategist contributor David Eardley recently wrote about the coaster boom, in which the surface protectors are becoming more than just “bulk-bin afterthoughts.” With their graphic prints and gilded rims, these coasters from Jonathan Adler fit right into this new class of designer coasters.
Even if his cupboards are full of All-Clad pots and pans, a foodie dad might be loath to spend more than he needs to on accessories like measuring cups. Surprising him with this stainless-steel set would be a very thoughtful way to say thank you for all those meals over the years.
Upgrade his beat-up Hydro Flask to this statusy stainless-steel Prada bottle. The Cut’s senior fashion writer Emilia Petrarca describes it as having “the proper balance of plain and simple functionality and yeah-I-know-what’s-up pretentiousness.”
Everyone knows a dad whose favorite outfit is a T-shirt and jeans. If that sounds like yours, we suggest this classic white tee from A.P.C. that has the tiniest of logos to make it a bit more interesting.
For the dad who exercises in tank tops (or just likes to show off his pecs), this cotton ribbed tank from Tom Ford will make him feel like an international style icon every time he slips it on.
Subtler than a Gucci belt, this will still dress up his Carhartts of choice.
This ace-of-hearts cap is a safe bet and understated enough to go with anything he wears.
The Ralph Lauren teddy bear has its fair share of devoted fans, and if your dad counts himself among them, he’ll be delighted by this customizable beanie. Emblazon it with his initials and choose the teddy that reminds you most of him (options include Golf Bear, Martini Bear, and Trench Coat Bear).
For the fit dad who already has a water bottle and plenty of gym clothes, here’s a monochrome headband from Rick Owens’s collaboration with Champion that’ll help keep sweat out of his eyes.
Grumbling about smudged lenses and too-tight frames could be his way of hinting that an adjustment is in order, so treat him to this stylish care kit from Oliver Peoples that will give him the tools to DIY some optical improvement.
These towels that feature Missoni’s signature zigzag print will heighten his post-shave experience.
Stargazing, bird-watching, and just plain nosy dads will love this binocular sport strap from Leica. He won’t have to worry about straining his neck because the neoprene harness hooks over his shoulders and wraps around the upper back.
Instead of another pair of cuff links, consider gifting Dad this stylish lapel pin from British luxury jeweler Tateossian. The fern traditionally represents sincerity and eternal youth, which you can flatteringly mention as he unwraps this rhodium-plated accessory.
A snazzy earbud case from Coach for the dad who’s always misplacing his AirPods.
Even if Dad can’t go hunting in the British countryside, he can at least pretend he’s out there with this three-pack of Barbour socks emblazoned with pointer dogs. The brand, you can remind him, is a favorite of the queen of England.
Oenophile dads will appreciate these purple color-block socks from Marni that call to mind all the hues of his favorite Merlots, Cabs, and Syrahs.
The dad who always has a candle burning will appreciate this one from Byredo; it has a scent that the brand says is inspired by a tree house in Tokyo. That fragrance includes sandal and cedarwood scents with top notes of pimento and bamboo.
For the minimalist dad who doesn’t want to fuss with a wallet.
Or, for the minimalist dad who prefers a wallet, this is the only Comme des Garçons item worth having (at least according to our editors).
This pocket-size Smythson notebook is filled with gilt-edged paper bound in a textured lambskin leather that will stand the test of constant use. That leather will only get better with time, so when the notebook’s pages are full, Dad can keep it on a shelf for posterity.
Two decks of silver-edged cards are just what Dad needs to fully commit to weekly bridge games. When they’re not in use, he can store them in the orange Hermès box that makes for a fashionable side-table accessory.
A Christofle crystal highball glass would make for an elegant vessel to sip his nightly Tom Collins from.
Whether it’s water, kombucha, or a cocktail with dinner, these lead crystal glasses will stay firmly in his grip thanks to the Elsa Peretti thumbprint design that’s as functional as it is recognizable.
Fornasetti tableware is for those with eclectic tastes, making this plate more than fitting for the life-of-the-party dad.
If Dad’s looking for a new scent, he might like this one from YSL that has notes of bergamot, sage, and cedarwood. According to the brand, it’s inspired by the iconic YSL white T-shirt and black jacket.
If Dad’s still using Barbasol, this foaming Aesop shaving serum will upgrade his grooming routine without breaking the bank. It smells of sandalwood and neroli blossom, according to the brand, so it might even double as his new favorite cologne.
Improve his two-in-one habit with this Burberry wash that is blended with bergamot, juniper, and black pepper.
When our colleagues at the Strategist UK went searching for the next status candle, Loewe’s scents topped the list. But if you want to go with something a little more unexpected than the usual sandalwood, try this oregano bar soap featuring woody and amber notes along with a rope cord for slippery fingers.
This personalized lip balm from Officine Universelle Buly will ensure that the dad who prefers the finer things in life makes a statement every time he snaps open the luxurious case. Choose from shagreen, marbled, smooth, and croc-embossed finishes, replete with his initials in gold.
[Editor’s note: Officine Universelle Buly lists its prices in euros, so this is an approximation to U.S. dollars.]
Scandalous, maybe, but if you’re going in on one tiny thing from Versace, you really must go with a pair of these boxer briefs to get your money’s worth.
Though a Tumi suitcase can set you back the price of an airplane ticket, this pouch for electronics and toiletries is just under $100.
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