Since I can’t personally deliver each of you mince pies, yule logs, or Victoria sponge à la GBBO this festive season, here’s the next best thing: a curated list of some of the British brands I developed a wee bit of an obsession for in the three years that I lived in the U.K. For anyone who loves the Pretty City London Instagram, Fleabag, and/or studied abroad there and made it their entire identity (me, obviously).
Monica Vinader Jewelry
As you can tell, I have a bit of a thing for gold… in all parts of my life, but most especially in my jewellery. Enter stage left, Monica Vinader, a London based jewelry brand favored by the Duchess of Cambridge and Duchess of Sussex alike. The CEO and designer’s parents owned an antique shop and her family-curated love of beautiful objects shines through each piece. For everyday heirlooms, I especially love the Nura Baroque Pearl Pendant, which can be worn on a gold chain or with its twin from the Doina Hoops. Girl with the pearl earring, or necklace, it’s up to you!
For 20% off all that glitters use this code MVINSIDER220-7300.
Gigi and Olive
This London based gift emporium curates a thoughtful collection of items that can be treasured for years and years. I adore gift-giving—it’s one of my favorite parts of the holidays—and their selection for Christmas is just *chef’s kiss* perfection!
Jo Malone London
My favorite perfume and fragrance brand, check out their utterly chic monochrome gifts! Personally I like to wear Blackberry & Bay in spring/summer and Woodsage & Sea Salt in winter. One of my favorite memories from interning for Jenny Packham in London was hosting a bridal event in partnership with the Jo Malone gals. Yours truly played photographer, dresser, waitress and DJ. There’s something really neat about the science of scent and memory, because anytime I smell Lime Basil & Mandarin it brings me back to that event!
Small British Businesses
It’s more important than ever to support small businesses, where unlike highstreet your purchase makes a significant difference for a real person. Sourced from some of my favorite British bloggers, these may take a little longer to ship internationally but will be worth the wait! Also excellent if you have friends on that side of the pond!
British Heritage Brands
These are timeless and true, and will never go out of style. Quite possibly includes everything you need to be an extra in the next season of The Crown.
Do I miss Boots Pharmacy to an almost irrational extent? Yes, I’m afraid CVS and Walgreens just aren’t on that level. Some skincare and beauty brands I would possibly commit international espionage to get my hands on (Jokes—plausible deniability is a wonderful thing).
All of the best moments in life involve great people and good food. Add a little British fare to your table this year!
Since booking a ticket to London is still a long ways off, I hope this guide tides you over. Cheers my loves!