Ultimate Classic Movie Gift Guide
It’s that time of year again, so I’ve gathered my favorite gifts from past Gift Guides as well as some new Classic Hollywood themed treats for you or someone special. I hope that something on this list strikes your fancy. Enjoy!
Gifts to wear!
- These fantastic enamel pins:
They’re not diamonds, but the Etsy shop Sweet and Lovely offers these super cute pins for $13 to subtly show off your classic movie flair! Pin one to your collar or your coat and you’re guaranteed to smile.
- An Esther Williams swimsuit:
Movie mermaid Esther Williams started a swimwear company that is carrying on her fantastic swimming fashion. It can be hard to find “vintage style” bathing suits, but with Esther Williams Swimwear you get the real thing! I bought one of her suits and love it. Check out the different styles (both one and two-piece) here, and have fun choosing from the incredible color and print options!
- Vintage makeup for some classic glamour:
Remember Tangee, the famous orange lipstick that adapts to your perfect shade? Or Max Factor Pan-Stik makeup, the favorite of Hollywood starlets? You can get these vintage finds and more, including perfume brands from long ago, at the Vermont Country Store. The lipstick retails for $15.95, and the Pan-Stik for $19.95.
- Classic pajamas and a matching robe:
Nothing is quite as classic as a set of elegant, matching jammies! Land’s End has lovely sets for men and women for about $70.00, and Amazon offers a short sleeve option in 26 colors for $30. Of course, no classic movie character is ever without their “dressing gown” or bathrobe, and that glamorous custom deserves a comeback! You can find my picks of monogrammable robes for men and women at Land’s End, the Company Store, and Amazon.
- A hair ornament for a touch of classic glamour:
Ladies in old movies often accessorize with flowers or pins in their hair, especially for nights out. Why not add some of that elegance to your own wardrobe with these pretty options from Etsy? If the classic gardenia from Gardenia Bridal Studio feels too bridal, the shop also has orchids, hydrangeas and other flowers. Spearmint and Thyme has tons of flower options and Chatter Blossom has beautiful pieces in lots of styles and colors. If you want something less floral but still classically glamorous, Luxe Buffalo offers some gorgeous metal options in various leaf designs, as well as stars, bumble bees, and many other lovely choices.
Gifts to read!
Some of my favorite classic movie books include:
A Life of Barbara Stanwyck: Steel-True by Victoria Wilson
Creating the Illusion: A Fashionable History of Hollywood Costume Designers by Jay Jorgenson and Donald L. Scoggins
Teach Yourself Classic Film by John S. Moore
The Art of the Hollywood Backdrop by Richard Isackes and Karen Maness
The Dame in the Kimono: Hollywood, Censorship, and the Production Code by Leonard Leff and Jerold Simmons
The Million Dollar Mermaid: An Autobiography by Esther Williams with Digby Diehl
Me: Stories of My Life by Katharine Hepburn
Lion of Hollywood: The Life and Legend of Louis B. Mayer by Scott Eyman
MGM: Hollywood’s Greatest Backlot by Steven Bingen, Stephen X. Sylvester, and Michael Troyan
Warner Bros: Hollywood’s Ultimate Backlot by Steven Bingen and Marc Wanamaker
You can read more about some of these titles in my Great Books on Classic Movies.
Gifts to add Old Hollywood style to your home!
- A classic vanity at which to apply your vintage makeup:
You can find some extraordinary (and expensive!) antique vanities at 1stDibs.com, or purchase a relatively inexpensive modern piece at Amazon, Pottery Barn, Target, Pier 1, and other stores. These start at around $60 and go up to $350.
- Stickers for your laptop, phone, or wall from the Etsy shop Mirshkastudio:
There are tons of designs including these from Singin’ in the Rain and The Wizard of Oz. They start at $7–what a delightful way to celebrate your favorite films!
- Vintage-inspired mixing bowls to bring some classic style to the kitchen:
These glowing white and minty green glass bowls feel retro and well-loved even if they’re new! You can buy these Mosser mixing bowls at Crate and Barrel in “jadeite” and “milk” for $65, as well as matching cake stands. The Vermont Country Store has Mosser plates, too, and Amazon has a large selection of Mosser glass products.
- This lovely print:
- Vintage-inspired barware:
Channel your inner Nick and Nora Charles with a gleaming cocktail set. Crate and Barrel has some fun options, including their Callaway drinkware collection that would look right at home in a Thin Man movie.
- This adorable telegram notepad:
Miss the days when telegrams, not text messages, ruled the wires? You can still feel delightfully vintage as you jot down grocery lists or ideas on this Kate Spade notepad available for $15.95.
- A vintage ad or poster:
This great Seagram’s Gin ad, Happy Go Lovely poster, and train ad are from the Etsy shop Encore Print Society. The shop has an amazing selection of mid-century ads starting at just $9.95! I highly recommend browsing through. They are also currently offering a deal: three prints for the price of two!
- Luggage stickers:
Characters in old movies often decorate their trunks and suitcases with hotel, cruise line, or destination labels. It used to be a practical way to keep track of one’s stuff, but now it evokes a more glamorous age of travel. These stickers can be applied to luggage, laptops, notebooks, walls, etc. You can find them at Cute Stickers Co or Junk Mill Relish on Etsy.
- A stylish movie poster reimagining a favorite film:
The Film Freak Design shop on Etsy has an amazing collection of minimalist movie posters from classic and recent films. Most are around $28. Take a look!
I also love the The Film Artist‘s unique prints for $10-35.
And finally, gifts to watch!
Fortunately, you can find almost anything on MovieZyng, TCM, ClassicFlix, and Amazon. Even previously rare movies are mostly available, and there are some great box sets, too. And if you’re shopping for kids this holiday season and you know they love Beauty and the Beast, Frozen, or Moana, why not try a classic musical? My favorite options for kids include Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, White Christmas, Meet Me in St. Louis, Esther Williams’ movies, Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals, and Singin’ in the Rain. And That’s Entertainment! (1974) is a fantastic way to introduce old movies in bite-size chunks. (There are more kid-friendly picks in my Great Classic Movies: For Kids.)
- Once you’ve purchased a new favorite DVD/Blu-ray, turn your home into a movie theater with some fun accessories:
Movie nights will be extra special with themed pillows, movie theater popcorn bags or reusable popcorn tubs, and this super fun clapboard rug. Find it all on Amazon and turn your home theater into a Hollywood haven.