Father’s Day Shopping: How to Do It Right

To celebrate Father’s Day properly, all you really have to do is remind the father figures in your life how special they are.

Estimates put Father’s Day spending at nearly $12 billion each year. That’s a whole lot of love—but for the 70 million Dads in the U.S. alone? It sounds about right. Thankfully, loved ones don’t have to resort to the standard polka dot tie or another Home Depot gift card. Find a new way to recognize Dad (or Grandpa!) that’s as original and unique as the men who helped mold you. They deserve just as much.

Resident gift expert and vice president of merchandising at RedEnvelope (www.redenvelope.com), Kevin Rooney, knows how it is. “Shopping for Dads  can be a challenge, which is why gift cards start to look enticing. Your best bet is to find something special, that’s also his style, that he can truly use.”

Get your gift-giving gears turning with the following Dad-friendly ideas:

When it hits, you feel no pain. Even if your pops isn’t a bona fide audiophile, he needs a way to listen to his vinyl collection that fits with the times. Revive his records with a portable turntable that looks like a vintage suitcase. Not only does it play vinyls and MP3s, the audio system will also convert vinyl records into digital files. If you’re the one with the record collection, not Dad, consider giving him a portable speaker that connects to any Bluetooth-enabled device.

May the tech be with you. Generally, it’s pretty useful to have a family member who is a computer wiz or techy genius. But, if that causes you to shy away from tech gifts, be bold! Dads and husbands will love it. Imagine his face when he unwraps a pair of engraved cufflinks that double as a 2GB USB flash drive. Does he still make Star Wars jokes? Then he may have slight arrhythmia at the sight of cufflinks shaped like R2D2, Yoda, Darth Vader or the Millenium Falcon. Yes, these are the droids you’re looking for.

From the grandstands. Most Dads have a favorite sport, unless they’re equal opportunists who watch major league baseball as religiously as college football. Either way, it’s likely he has been to tons of games and has every sports channel. So, get him something he can use—like a bar stool made out of a real base from a real MLB game. If that’s a little extravagant, consider a sleek, wooden iPhone 5 dock shaped like a golf club.

Dapper Dads unite. If you picked up most of your fashion tips and style advice from your father, then he’s what we like to call a ‘Dapper Dad.’ And all Dapper Dads know that vintage menswear is just as applicable now as it was then. Take a page out of Don Draper’s book, and give him a set of classic bowties or a homemade gin kit. You could even bring home the barbershop experience with a Men’s Soap Shop Grooming set—complete with a humidor for cigars—or a premium straight razor from RedEnvelope.

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