I KNOW. I'm a hypocrite. I said that we should try to enjoy November and not wish away the time til Christmas. So sue me. I bloomin' love Christmas. If you think this post is premature, just bookmark it and come back in a couple of weeks, k?
A couple of years ago I wrote a post about stocking fillers for foodies, and at the time people seemed to really enjoy it. So, I thought it was gift guide time again. This time I was entirely selfish, and focused on gifts for bloggers. I know not all of you are bloggers yourselves, but I'd be willing to bet that a lot of you know at least one blogger (doesn't everyone have a blog these days?!), so hopefully there will be a few ideas for you here. They range in price from a couple of quid all the way up to a couple of hundred - so there's something for everyone.
I found several of the items in this post through a website called Give As You Live, which is a great tool to use for two reasons. Firstly, it serves as a price comparison tool, letting you know the cheapest place to buy each item on your list. Secondly, for every purchase you make via the site, it gives a certain proportion to charity. There are thousands of charities to choose from - or if you don't have a preference, you can just donate to the charity of the month instead. It's a great way to save money on your Christmas shopping, and give a little back at the same time! Find out more about how it works here.
So, onto the gift ideas. If you're a blogger yourself, what else will be on your Christmas list this year?
*disclosure: this post contains some affiliate links*
A blog planner
Bloggers are busy folk. Either they have a full-time job alongside blogging, in which case they have to come home every night after a long day, only to carry on working on their blogs for another few hours. Or, they're a full-time blogger like me - in which case they're probably a crazy workaholic like a lot of self-employed people are. Either way, a good organiser is essential for staying on top of things. It doesn't need to be fancy - just a sturdy planner with week-to-view pages will probably do the trick.
A lens cap strap
These little straps don't look like much (and they don't cost much either), but I personally love them. The little button sticks to your camera's lens cap, and the elastic strap goes around the lens itself. When you take the lens cap off, it dangles there nicely rather than being lost forever when you inevitably set it down somewhere entirely inappropriate. Some people may find it a little annoying to have their lens cap dangling while they're taking pictures, but considering these dealies only cost a couple of quid, I reckon it's worth giving it a try.
Amazon UK / Amazon US
Tasty Food Photography ebook
If you know any food bloggers, tell them they must read this book. I first bought it about 3 and a half years ago now (wow, time really does fly), and it was definitely the catalyst for me improving my food photography. Of course, there's no magic wand for becoming an amazing photographer, and even now here in 2015 (nearly 2016, eek!) I'm no expert, but this book helped me to learn some of the most important rules (well, guidelines) for photography. It's well-written and accessible, and there are heaps of photos inside to exemplify each point. It's an ebook as opposed to a physical book, so you can download it straight onto your computer or tablet.
Take a look at some example pages or buy a copy from Pinch of Yum.
A portable battery
There's nothing worse than being out and about and finding your phone has run out of battery - and when you're Instagramming every second of your day, it can happen surprisingly quickly. And obviously, you just know that the second your phone dies, you'll spot something that just needs to be photographed, or you'll come up with the most amazing idea for a blog post that you have to make a note of right away. I'd love one of these portable batteries - just pop it in your handbag, and you can charge your phone whenever you need to. There are a few different brands available, so do your research before you buy.
A spare SD card
We bloggers take a lot of photos. A lot. Imagine a number, then double it, then add a hundred, and that's probably the number of photos I take in a day (I'm really a terrible photographer, but if you take a thousand photos, one of them is bound to look okay... only slightly kidding). It's not uncommon for me to fill an SD card with a few different recipe shoots, and then have to faff around emptying it before I can carry on. A spare SD card (or just an extra big one) is a must! They come in lots of different sizes (in terms of memory, not physical size.....) and classes, so again, do your research before you buy.
This one's quite standard, and is very affordable: Amazon US
Adobe Creative Cloud membership
A membership to the Creative Cloud gives you access to heaps of Adobe software, including Lightroom and Photoshop, which are perfect for editing blog photos and giving them a bit of pizzazz. I personally use Lightroom to edit my photos, and I love love love it (I really love it). If you don't fancy this yearly membership, you can also buy each individual program outright, although this way you'll need to buy any new versions and updates separately. There are a few different packages available, including discounts for students, so again (say it with me now), do your research before buying.
Here's one example: Amazon US
If you're not aware, ProBlogger is a fantastic website that offers all sorts of resources for bloggers. They also have several ebooks aimed at all bloggers, from complete newbies to full-timers. I've not read any of the ProBlogger ebooks myself, but I've heard really good things, so it would definitely be worth taking a look to see if there's something here that suits.
Take a look at the full collection on ProBlogger.
An external hard drive
These little black boxes may look quite unassuming, but I assure you that one day they will save your (veggie) bacon. Remember those thousands of images I mentioned earlier? Unless you want your computer to run at a snail's pace, you'll need to find somewhere safe to store them, like one of these nifty little external hard drives. It's a good idea to use them to back up your entire computer, as one day everything might go wrong and you'll need a back-up. This little baby may well save your life one day (we bloggers aren't known for our literalness).
I have this little black Samsung number: Amazon US
Enough of the technical stuff. We bloggers like pretty things. What could be better than a slightly tongue-in-cheek piece of art to hang in the home office? It's all very well buying a piece of totally vital computing or photography equipment, but the most exciting presents serve no purpose other than to make you smile. I love browsing Etsy for this kind of thing - there are loads of options available from hundreds of different artists, and it's always nice to support self-employed creatives like myself!
A stylish camera / laptop bag
Bloggers are constantly lugging around cameras, lenses, laptops... and nobody wants to carry an ugly black laptop bag that's covered in zips and looks like some sort of briefcase. These Kelly Moore bags are super stylish, but still have special padded compartments to keep your camera and laptop safe. They're not cheap, which is why I have never had one myself, but just loook. So preeeetty! This one's my favourite, but there are loads to choose from.
Browse the collection at Kelly Moore.
And last but certainly not least...
Because we all know the best writing is produced after a couple of glasses of rose.
Obviously there are heaps to choose from, this one's from Selfridges (UK).
So, what do you think of these Christmas gifts for bloggers? Have I given you some good ideas for things to buy the blogger in your life? Or helped you to put together your own Christmas list?
Bloggers, what would you add to the list?