Christmas gift guide: the best subscriptions | Life and style

Published on December 12, 2017

For grownups

Everyone needs more fun and colour in 2017



Everyone needs more fun and colour in 2017.

Lucky Dip Club, from £6, luckydipclub.com
Various different subscription options available

Bringing much-needed colour, fun and positivity through the letterbox each month, Lucky Dip Club finds quirky ideas from independent artists and designers.

2018 could be their year of art



2018 could be their year of art.

National Art Pass, £65 (double for £97), artfund.org

Free entry to more than 240 museums, galleries and historic houses across the UK, as well as 50% off entry to major exhibitions – all in one little card.

Home gym kit for fitness fans



Home gym kit for fitness fans.

TRX equipment and year’s subscription, £179.95, trxtraining.co.uk

For anyone sporty looking to boost their core strength from the comfort of their own home, this is the best bit of kit going. It can be used anywhere, and all that’s needed is a door or hook from which to hang the TRX. Subscription includes many different video programmes.

Like the Wind, £32 a year, likethewindmagazine.com



One of the best indy magazines.

Like the Wind, £32 a year, likethewindmagazine.com

A stunningly produced and illustrated magazine for runners, featuring original illustrations – and, of course, stories about running, all done by runners. Each issue is a mini work of art (and you can buy prints from the magazine at the online shop, too).

Sock it to them



Sock it to ’em.

Sock Exchange, from £20, thelondonsockexchange.net

One pair of socks might be a boring Christmas gift, but a rolling subscription of fancy new ones is quite a different story. Some of them have pandas on them. What more could your lucky recipient desire?

Fancy a brew?



Fancy a brew?

HonestBrew, from £48, honestbrew.co.uk

Small batch beers from around the world delivered to their door. The gift subscription comes with a pack of six and a glass to start them off, plus a voucher for the selected number of months.

Not all events of 2017 may be explicable



Not all events of 2017 may be explicable.

Delayed Gratification, £36 a year, slow-journalism.com

The news cycle being as it is these days, sometimes it’s nice just to slow down. Delayed Gratification revisits the news after the dust has settled to provide analysis and explanation, in beautifully designed and illustrated style.

The gift of a good book



The gift of a good book.

Willoughby book club, from £29.99, thewilloughbybookclub.co.uk

Personalised book club for all tastes – cookery books, gardening books, picture books for kids … you just chose the genre and fill in some info on their favourite authors and subjects and the rest is taken care of for you.

Cheese by post



Cheese by post.

Partisan Cheese Club, from £23.99 a month, partisan-deli.co.uk

Monthly cheese delivered to your door, including tasting notes and suggested pairings. You can select preferences (eg no blue cheeses) and your recipient can even vote for new cheeses to try.

Perfect gift for fickle magazine readers



Perfect gift for fickle magazine readers.

Stack, £7 a month, £70 a year, stackmagazines.com

Can’t decide which magazine subscription to opt for? Why limit them to one? Stack will send a different independent magazine through their door every month, all independent titles guaranteed to broaden their horizons.

For kids

Budding scientists will love these boxes

Budding scientists will love these boxes.

Letterbox lab, from £9, letterboxlab.com
Subscriptions or single boxes available

Wonderful themed science experiment boxes in different age groups (6+ and 8+) with clear instructions and thoroughly enjoyable results.

Expanding minds and vocab



Expanding minds
and vocab.

Mrs Wordsmith, £19.95 a month, mrswordsmith.com

Workbooks, cards and a binder of 1,500 storytelling words – including charming illustrations – to improve reading and writing skills and stimulate imagination. Also suitable for children with dyslexia.

Fun project boxes



Fun project boxes.

Trunkaroo, from £20, trunkaroo.com
Single boxes or subscriptions available

Hands-on projects for three- to eight-year-olds, with a strong emphasis on STEAM subjects (Science, Technology Engineering, Art and Maths). The boxes contain everything the kids will need to make anything from Christmas decorations to their own games.

Good reading for little minds



Good reading for little minds.

The Week Junior, £18.99 for 13 issues theweekjunior.co.uk
Anorak, £25 for four issues (one year) anorakmagazine.com

Two very different but excellent magazines, the former explaining world events to children (suggested range is around 8-14) without ever patronising, the latter encouraging imagination, creativity and fun (around 6- to 12-year-olds).

This article contains affiliate links to products. Our journalism is independent and is never written to promote these products although we may earn a small commission if a reader makes a purchase.

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