DESIGN & SHOPPING: First Class Deliveries

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The Independent Culture
The best of the mail order catalogues for stress-free shopping

The Gluttonous Gardener

The most inspired catalogue out there - and what a name! Each package combines a plant and the food or drink it yields. There's the Gin Drinkers' Companion (gin bottle, two juniper bushes, cocktail recipes, lemons), Saffron Lover's Kit (saffron crocus bulbs, saffron), Olive Enthusiasts' Kit (olive tree, terracotta pot, extra virgin olive oil) and Give a Fig (fig tree, fig vinegar).

Cool thing: Tequila Shooter Kit - tequila, Agave cactus, limes, salt (pounds 38 or pounds 55).

Naff thing: banal Bay Watch - bay tree in pot.

Tel: 0171 627 0800 (pounds 6 p&p).


This kids' catalogue is a must for embryonic design junkies. Supplies stylish toys, tableware, pictured, cots, coathangers, lunch bags, baby buggies in hip performance fabrics, waffle blankets, trainers a la Prada Sport etc. Supplementary Millennium catalogue offers funky Y2K cards and a superb Christmas tree-shaped advent calendar.

Cool thing: Ergonomic computer Mini-Mouse (pounds 12.99).

Naff thing: Slippers inspired by jester hats.

Orderline: 01672 872872 or visit Orders arrive in 48 hours.