Admit it, we all love busting open a gift basket to see what surprises they hold. There’s something about placing everyday items from apples to socks in a basket arrangement that make them all the more appealing.
Themed baskets are even more fun, and some fandoms just lend themselves to Christmas and holiday magic. Harry Potter, Doctor Who, all things Disney, and even Star Wars are good examples.
What out those whose fandoms don’t fit the “holly jolly” of the season? Can The Punisher or Kingsman still emit warm Christmas fuzzies, if presented in a nice gift basket?
Absolutely. Let’s build some baskets!
Before you get started, here are some quick tips for optimum basket-building:
Now that you have the basics, try these three fandoms ready for their unlikely gift basket makeover:
The Punisher Book Lover’s Basket
Netflix’s The Punisher series was a dark and violent look inside the tragic life of Frank Castle, but it also included one of best read cast of characters on air. They read a diverse array of classics, contemporary bestsellers, essay collections, social commentary, and more that wouldn’t be caught together on most book shelves. The great thing about this basket is you could buy new books or raid a used book store and save some money.
Stencil The Punisher’s logo, like this one from Free Stencil Gallery, onto a black basket using white acrylic paint and fill it with the eclectic collection of books featured in the series.
Books read by Castle included:
Books read or cited by other characters include:
Finally, add a good Punisher collection. There are a lot to choose from since the character has been around since 1974, but Garth Innis’s Punisher Max collection has a lot of semblance to the spirit of the Netflix series, and available in trade paperbacks.
Round out this collection with a nice cup of “Punishment Served Hot” tea from Adagio Teas (samples tins are only $5) and some Soflete Strength and Stamina “Fit to Fight” coffee blend from Black Rifle Coffee Company ($15.99 for 12 oz, with portion of cost supporting veterans’ causes). Don’t forget to include a Punisher coffee mug, for a cozy afternoon of reading and reflection. There’s a cool online exclusive skull mug from Hot Topic that will do well, but it costs $22. I’ve run across a Punisher mug for less than $5 at Walmart and it looks good.
Sam and Dean’s Retro Road Trip Basket
Supernatural has had an amazingly long run, which is still going on, so it’s hard to find something new a Supernatural superfan doesn’t have. Also, I may be a bit old fashioned, but I don’t really like giving pentagrams as holiday gifts (yes, I know it’s a demon catcher… I’m a fan of the show, too). When you think about it, though, Supernatural is also one of the greatest, weirdest, and most fun buddy road trip shows every created.
For the Supernatural fan who has everything, get them ready for the next retro-inspired road trip adventure.
Start with a simple picnic basket and add a bow in a plaid pattern (a Winchester fashion favorite) and a small set of black angel wings as embellishments. These can be found with doll accessories or floral arrangement embellishments at craft stores. Make your own out of felt paper, if you want to get crafty. Fill it with:
Everyone ready to hit the road?
Manners Maketh Man Well-Groomed Kingsman Basket
Despite a voracious amount of perfectly choreographed bloodbaths laced with a minefield of F-bombs, a Kingsman knows etiquette. Fun bit of trivia: the official Kingsman collection in London is in the Berry Bros & Rudd building, which was at one time a meeting spot for representatives from “Republic of Texas.” A Statesman would approve.
Unfortunately, much of the finer things in life are expensive, and this includes much of the items from the official Kingsman and Statesman collection from Mr Porter, with items ranging from $35 socks to a $3,650 smartwatch. As drool-worthy as some of these items may be for Kingsman fans, not many of us can afford to shell out more than $100 for a fob key chain.
This doesn’t mean we can’t put together a nice Kingsman-inspired basket for that won’t cost a King’s ransom.
Now, where are our manners?
The earliest use of the phrase “Manners Maketh Men” goes back to a Latin textbook, The Vulgaria, written in the 1500s by William Horman. Since finding a good copy of this text isn’t easy and certainly not cheap, there are plenty of other etiquette and manners books available, including recent republications of 1800s etiquette guides: The Ladies’ Book of Etiquette: A Manual of Politeness from a Gentler Time and The Gentlemen’s Book of Etiquette: A Manual of Politeness from a Gentler Time by Florence Hartley (the latter written under the name of her male alter ego, Cecil B. Hartley).
There is one manners book that seems to be tailor-made for inclusion in a Kingsman basket, especially those familiar with the dialogue of the movie and the comic: Good Manners for Nice People Who Sometimes Say F*ck by Amy Alkon. Unlike Hartley’s books, Alkon appeals to the sensibilities of modern situations for today’s less gentler times.
Round out this basket with a black umbrella with a brown hook handle, a pair of horn-rimmed sun glasses, and a little plush toy of a pug or Cairn terrier. You wouldn’t want to forget poor little JB or Mr. Pickle.
Finally, there would be no Kingsman fandom without the original graphic novel by Mark Millar, illustrated by Dave Gibbons. A copy of the collected issues of this original story is a must for this basket. This will get readers in the mood for a future Eggsy adventure, Kingsman: The Red Diamond, coming out April 2018 by Rob Williams and Simon Fraser.
This holiday season, whatever your fandom, get creative and think outside of the box… and into the basket.
This post was last modified on December 28, 2017 7:59 pm
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