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DEBATE: Should your other half ever buy you clothes?

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Two ShortListers lock horns on the issue of unwrapping an item of clothing chosen by the other half.

YES
Judy Cogan
Deputy Editor of ShortList

A couple of years ago on Christmas Day, my fella handed over a large gift-wrapped bundle accompanied by a “I really hope you like it” smile. I have to admit my stomach lurched. “It’s clothes and whatever it is, I’ll have to wear it today,” I thought, guiltily. But as I pulled off the wrapper, I exhaled. A beautiful winter coat from Sandro – one of my favourite shops. It fitted perfectly. “I love it!” I declared, practically jumping for joy.

I loved it not just because it was an expensive coat but because he’d taken a risk. A big risk. And pulled it off. He’d spent time thinking about what I might like, had faced the shops alone, wrapped it up and, in thoughtful anticipation, kept it a surprise too – and all with a potential “You don’t even know me do you?!” at the end of it.

Now I know Christmas isn’t just about the presents – really – but what’s wrong with keeping hold of an element of surprise, that sense of occasion of opening a present someone you love has put some thought into? Even if your man gets it totally wrong – and I’ve been there too – what’s the big deal? So you have to exchange it. It’s unlikely your New Year’s resolution is “I’m never going shopping again”. By letting him choose you something to wear – you may just be pleasantly surprised.

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NO
TanIa Kreindler
Business development manager, Dubai

I’ve asked my Santa for a fridge this Christmas. I think that’s perhaps the best testament to my faith in his ability to buy me clothes unassisted.

I have a slightly awkward body shape and tend to opt for an outfit that hugs me in the right places and disguises the rest – but I would never buy something before trying it on.

For instance, I don’t own a single pair of jeans and the only time you’ll see me in thigh-hugging attire is at the gym – which means no more than 12 times a year. My other half always compliments me on my epic dress collection, but if he were put in charge of buying me something without any hints, I would either end up with something unsuitable for the public eye from the back section of La Perla or an ill-fitting backless number with the gift voucher attached.

Although the idea of being surprised with a dubiously wrapped dress is exciting, returning a gift is always a painful experience. Try doing that in January, during the sales. No thanks.

I believe the ideal gift from your special someone ought to come in a either a jewellery box or a shoe box to be worn with self-chosen clothes. A girl can never have enough sparkly jewellery or red-soled pieces of art.

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