Today I wanted to write something a little different than your regular best friend gift guide (although this does actually include some wicked gift ideas for your besticle). I wanted to write about a topic which I've been thinking about more and more recently - how friendships change and develop as you enter your thirties.
I'm lucky enough to have an extremely close friendship group from way back when. I also have amazing "work" friends (who, when you take us out of the office, are still some of my closest friends on earth). And I have those women you meet at certain points in your life that just get you. Friends that you meet in adulthood, but who you feel like you've known forever.
When you enter your thirties, however, friendships really cement themselves I think. They have for me anyway. When I was in my twenties, friendship to me was about going out and getting drunk together, sharing tales of rubbish dates or fit men who fancied at work. It was about ringing each other up on a Sunday morning to ask why you only had one shoe. But friendship now is so much more&
This has definitely come with age. As we've entered our thirties, my friends and I have become so much more honest with each other. When I was younger, I was a people pleaser. I'd say what people wanted to hear, and although half the time I genuinely meant what I said, there were times when I wish I'd just told friends how I really felt. How they'd made me feel. Why I was a dick. Why I thought they were a dick. But as we've all gotten a little older and wiser, it's become so much easier to get our point across in a mature, rational way. And that honesty, honestly, has strengthened my friendships more than I ever imagined it could. That's because we all know, what we say, we mean.
More often than not, as you enter your thirties (although this can certainly happen in your twenties and even earlier), you share milestone moments such as engagements, buying a house, weddings, promotions, babies and more. You see your friends change and grow as people. They become stronger than you've ever seen before, and you also realise just how proud you are of them. Sometimes in your twenties, you feel like you're growing apart from a friendship group if you're suddenly the one to be experiencing different things. Like if all your friends are settled down and you're still Bumbling along swiping for Mr Right. But as you get older, those fears disperse a little and you're able to appreciate your friendships despite being on different paths.
When you're a teenager or in your early twenties, I don't think you understand what support really is. I certainly didn't. I pride myself on being a good friend, and if you're loyal to me, I'll be your ride or die. But when you're younger your sometimes so consumed with your own thoughts and emotions, it's hard to realise when someone is calling out for help when they're not directly saying it. It could just be sending your friend a little hello WhatsApp, or writing a card to post to them if they live in a different city. Be your friends biggest cheerleader with whatever they're going through in life. Be their rock. Let them know you're here to listen anytime, day or night. My friends are an amazing source of support, whether it's shouting about my achievements like proud mums, or messaging me to remind me of my worth when a man hasn't treated me so well. The women in my life are amazing.
So, with that said, I've teamed with the homeware and gift online emporium Juniqe today to showcase some gorgeous gift ideas to give to your bestie this Christmas (or birthday\friendship anniversary\Galentines Day). Until Juniqe approached me, I have to admit I'd never heard of them before. In the words of Julia Roberts, big mistake. Big. This place is amazing! With everything from greeting cards, to stationery, homeware and some of the most gorgeous wall art you've seen, this place is a haven for best friend gift ideas.
I had certain girlfriends in mind when I went shopping for some of these beauties, but let's be honest, I was probably shopping for myself a lil' bit too. Let's start with how stunning this print is, created by Berlin-based artist Babeth Lafon. I loved the fashion elements of her prints and knew what a gorgeous present it would be if bought a brass frame. Made from a high-quality A3 paper, I genuinely can't believe this print is under £10. You can buy the same design right here.
Secondly, what's better than a cat card? Nothing, right? I loved this "You Freakin' Meowt" card, and it actually comes with three cards in the pack so you're not having to choose with bestie gets the card. Because let's face it, we've got more than one bestie, haven't we? For those friends who like their sleep, this "Nap Queen" mug is perfect for their mid-afternoon coffee to wake them up on a Sunday. I'm an early riser, much to my friends' disapproval, heading on the group chat around 7.30am on a weekend asking what everyone's up to. It's a bit like Sister Sister when they shout "gooooo home Roger!".
For my fellow singletons, I chose this Single Ladies notebook for two reasons. There ain't nothing like Beyonce to get you over a man, and secondly, all big dreamers need a new notebook to plan their next move. If someone buys me stationery for Christmas, it's game over. They win the title of the best present giver EVER - apart from if someone was to gift me Idris Elba in a box. Naked.
Finally, one of my favourite pieces - this dalmatian print cushion. Even though this cushion is small, it packs a punch and is the perfect size to finish the look when dressing your bed. You know when you feel like something is missing? It is. It's this cushion.
For me, there was so much choice on Juniqe, you could cater for every single one of your friends. From the empowered girl boss to the fashion-loving Queen, the home decor beauty to the stationery mad writer - there really was something for everyone. With 7 day delivery (this store is based in Berlin), there's still time to get your order in for Christmas and if you sign up to Juniqe's mailing list, you also get a discount code for five Euros off your first order.
Have your friendships changed as you've gotten older? What are you buying your besties this Christmas?
*Post in partnership with Juniqe
In case you missed it: Q&A With Girl Boss Tabara N’Diaye | The Ultimate Interiors Gift Guide | Becoming Self-Employed & The Lessons I've Learnt