Bored with the all-too-familiar China-made, cheap plastic Christmas decorations? Want your party favourites and Christmas gifts to stand out? yoshita sengupta picks the best and most interesting festive products to jazz up your Christmas tree
Move over, Mr Reindeer
When in Mumbai, even Santa has no choice but to forego his sleigh for a hardier ride, the rickshaw. Chumbak's Santa looks at home in his rickety ride, his bag of goodies balancing precariously on the top, followed by children screaming Santa bhai. The Merry Ok Christmas mug is for those wintery mornings that are incomplete without hot chocolate or hot coffee. It's a limited edition set, so order quickly.
Visit: http://www.chumbak.in/Chumbak/Store/ product.php?id_product=207
Price: Rs 225, shipping is free for orders over Rs 200 until December 25 midnight
Clingy and loving it
If you have too many friends, cards have become old-fashioned, and expensive Christmas gifts are burning a hole in your pocket, inexpensive, yet fun magnets designed by Mumbai-based company Ha:ppy are the safest, most unique gifts this season. After all, how can you go wrong with Santa, reindeer and the snowman?
Price: Set of four magnets for Rs 300, shipping free
A convenient balance
Tired of doing the balancing act with your favourite finger foods and that glass of Dom Perignon at parties? Hitplay has come up with the perfect solution -- finger plates. These little plates have an attached ring that fits right onto your finger. They are about three inches in diameter and lightweight, small enough to fit into your purse to carry around and whip out whenever you fancy a shrimp to go with your cocktail.
Price: Pack of 10 reusable plates for Rs 799
Gold to top your tree
In our list of all things Christmas-y, we had to include the most famous symbol of the festival, the star. And we found just the right one. This mighty big star (set of two) made by Delhi-based Reshma Anand's company Earth Store is a good relief from the China-made plastic versions you get at most city markets. The stars are made of gold fabric, set with simple and elegant zardozi and thread work and are also available in
Price: Set of two stars for Rs 280, shipping free
When you can't keep count
Lost track of the number of beers you've chugged? Use the beer tracker. This handy little device is essentially a bottle opener with a small LCD display that keeps track of how many bottles of beverages you've opened. A handy thing that tells you when you've had enough, it's specially designed for heavy alcohol drinkers who are
past the stage where they can count
Price: Rs 799
Freshly baked soaps anyone?
Ever dreamed of getting carried away and taking a bath in Christmas sweets? Get yourself a slice of Nyaasa's delicious plum cake soap -- think of a nice plum fruit cake sprinkled with red and green candied fruit. Just be careful and don't keep it anywhere near the living room or the kitchen, these soap-cake slices look so real someone may just pop one into their mouth.
At: Skyzone, High Street Phoenix, Lower Parel and Oberoi Mall, Goregaon (E)
Price: Rs 100 for a 100 g slice
The light of your party
Bored of the twinkling lights that you use at every party? It's Our Studio in Tardeo has four LED options to choose from. Ice Cubes, which have been moulded to look like regular ice, are made of sealed acrylic plastic. The lights can be activated with push buttons and can run for up to 12 hours. The shot glass lights come on as soon as they are filled with liquid -- a perfect incentive to keep refilling your glass. And if you are not a shot person then the LED beer glasses should do the trick. Our favourite, however, is the LED ice bucket that is sure to be the prized possession of any home bar.
At: It's Our Studio, 80, Tardeo Road, Shop No 2, Arun Chambers
Price: Beer glass for R299 per piece, ice cube for Rs 100 per piece, shot glass for Rs 199 per piece, bucket for Rs 1,500
Velvet in a cupcake
What's Christmas without that box of decorated sweets? Le 15 Patisserie has created a special box of festive cupcakes. These are available in boxes of six or 12. Choose from rich Belgian chocolate, luscious vanilla or the popular red velvet cupcake. The cupcakes are generously decorated with colourful snowmen, Christmas trees, bells and other Christmas marzipan shapes. Chances are, though, that you might want to use these lookers as festive decorations instead of popping them into your mouth.
At: GoodEarth, Raghuvanshi Mills compound, Lower Parel & Worli, J N Palkar marg, opposite Flora restaurant
Price: Box of six for Rs 300
Music in your rum
Throw a little extra something into your party's drinks with these groovy guitar ice cubes. Made from food-grade silicone, the ice-maker is a stir stick that resembles the arm of a guitar. Drop one of these guitars into your drink, give it a stir and voila, your drink has that extra jazz. The moulds can be used to freeze gin, juice, sugar, soda or even chocolate.
Price: Rs 349
Shape your sweets
Make little gingerbread figures, Christmas canes, gifts and stars with these moulds. The silicon moulds are easy to pop out. Imagine the little treats you can whip up for your Christmas parties or even the funky ice cubes that can add a festive touch to your drinks.
At: It's Our Studio, 80, Tardeo Road, Shop No 2, Arun Chambers
Price: Rs 1,400 each
Leave no trace
If you are drinking and don't want to leave any evidence behind, try the ice shot glass trays from Tappu ki Dukaan. You just pour water into the mould and leave it to freeze. Once frozen, you can pour your favourite liquor in it and throw back your shots. When done with the gulp-and-pour routine, just chuck them in the kitchen sink and watch the glasses melt. Each silicon rubber tray makes four shot glasses that can hold two ounces of your favourite drink. No worries about breaking your precious glasses and no traces of your secret party, what could be better?
Price: Rs 480
Make work fun
If you are working this Christmas and need something to cheer you up in office, then colourful pens with Christmas motifs and tiny lights on top, along with a sleek tree-shaped memo clip are the perfect buys for you this season.
Price: Pens start at Rs 149, Memo clip for Rs 449 each