I was recently approached by gift specialists Qwerkity to review something from their site. I had a shufty through and quickly spotted something that made me clap my hands and squeal like a five-year-old who’s got a whole packet of jelly tots to herself.
Before we get to that, a historical diversion (trust me, there’s a point to this).
Let me introduce you to William Morris. If you don’t know Mr Morris, you will probably recognise his designs or may have heard his most famous quote:
William Morris was a 19th century designer, beard wrangler, writer and leading light of the early British socialist movement. All in all a really interesting guy; worth reading up about, with much more to him than the flowery wallpaper designs he’s so closely associated with.
Flash forward a hundred or so years, and in the 1980s we were all mad for William Morris. Morrissey may or may not have been a fan. Certainly I remember going to a Smiths-themed club night at the William Morris Club in London, sitting amongst the beautifully papered walls and soaking up William It Was Really Nothing.
That was when I wore big clumpy black boots customised by attaching William Morris patterns, cut from a postcard. Clearly I had a lot of time on my hands in the 1980s.
So what’s all this got to do with gift shops? Well, as luck would have it there’s now a range of William Morris beauty products produced under the name Morris & Co.
I wonder what the man himself would have made of it all?
The Morris & Co Hand & Body Regime which I chose from Qwerkity looks like a big box on the website but in the flesh it’s only slightly larger than a 7 inch single (bonus points to anyone who gets that analogy).
The reusable box, which is excellent value at £25, contains six full sized hand and body products. The top row comprises a Body Souffle (lighter in texture than body cream); Body Salts and Body Exfoliator. The bottom row is for hands and holds a Hand Balm; Hand Soak and Hand Scrub.
Each of the plastic tubs is decorated with a signature William Morris design on the lid and label. Ingredients-wise you’re looking at a lovely mix of essential oils, shea butter, Vitamin E and herbal and fruit extracts.
For the price, the products are surprisingly good, although the scent of the bath salts is strong enough to revive a fainting damsel in a too-tight corset. They’re all useful, and they all look beautiful. Morris would approve.
Qwerkity is a site I’ve used before, since they carry an enormous range of gifts for all types of people. If like me you are a fan of doing all your Christmas shopping in one fell swoop armed only with a laptop and a glass of red wine then this is the place to do it. I’ve used them several times and always had prompt, well-packaged deliveries. Definitely worth a look if you want something a little bit different to your average high street shops. Also if you have to buy for any women who remember the 1980s, I would recommend the above.