JOSEPH ETTEDGUI, DESIGNER
"Because you can't buy peace, I'd like to receive some luxurious cigars to try and create the feeling instead."
The Independent suggests: the Havana Club, at 165 Sloane Street, London SW3 (0171-245 0890), sells extremely desireable Cohiba Robuftos for pounds 17.50 each or pounds 378 for a box. If these aren't to your liking, the classic Monte Cristo Number Fours cost pounds 7.05 each or pounds 169 for a box.
Last orders for Christmas: the shop will be open from 10am-6pm Christmas Eve.
JARVIS COCKER, LEAD SINGER WITH PULP
"I've seen a watch that doubles as a mobile phone, and a miniature Polaroid camera, but neither are in the shops in the UK, so I'll settle for a portable DVD [Digital Versatile Disc] player."
The Independent suggests: for a palm-sized cinema effect, try the Panasonic L10 portable DVD player with a 5.8-inch screen, at pounds 850. Call 0990 357357 for stockists.
Last orders for Christmas: most stockists are open on Christmas Eve.
ALEXANDRA SHULMAN, EDITOR OF BRITISH `VOGUE'
"I'd really love some bath essence from Jo Malone. If this was impossible to find, a honeycomb would do very well."
The Independent suggests: Jo Malone bath oils come in sets of six, for pounds 33. Contact 0171-720 0202 for mail order, or buy direct from the store at 154 Walton Street, London SW3 (0171-581 1101).
Last orders for Christmas: the shop is open Christmas Eve 9am-1pm.
LARRY ADLER, MOUTH ORGANIST
"A new set of lips. I have been prescribed allergy pills by my doctor and have lost the use of my mouth, so I can't play my mouth organ."
The Independent suggests: it may be too late to grant Larry's wish in time for Christmas - but why not relax instead in a hot bath with this hot-lips blow-up bath pillow, pounds 4 from Bed & Bath Works (0151-356 7377 for branches).
Last orders for Christmas: all stores, except the Fleetwood one, open Christmas Eve.
PETER SNOW, TV PRESENTER
"I take size 13 shoes, which are very difficult to find, so my ideal present would be a pair that fits."
The Independent suggests: a pair of Italian leather shoes for pounds 89.95 from Magnus, which specialises in shoes for people with large feet. Magnus is open to Christmas Eve. Or try the mail-order service (01604 831271).
Last orders for Christmas: London branches open Christmas Eve 10am-4pm, but postal orders will be taken up to Christmas.
AS BYATT, AUTHOR
"The thing I would most like for Christmas would be either an antique French paperweight - preferably by Clichy - or any glassware by Anthony Stern."
The Independent suggests: scour your local antiques markets, or visit Anthony Stern's showroom at Unit 205, Avro House, Havelock Terrace, London SW8 (0171-622 9463); decorative glassware pounds 4-pounds 1,500.
Last orders for Christmas: the showroom opens Christmas Eve 9am-5pm.
ARTHUR SMITH, COMEDIAN
"A bottle of absinthe would be a great present. Failing that, I'd like 18 wire egg cups."
The Independent suggests: order absinthe from www.absinth.co.uk. Wire egg cups are 99p each plus pounds 4.95 for delivery, from Aero, 96 Westbourne Grove, London W2 (0171-221 1950).
Last orders for Christmas: Aero is open Christmas Eve 10am-6pm.
MARC QUINN, ARTIST
"I'd like some elasticated muslin, to put around lemon halves, to stop the pips from falling into your salad dressing."
The Independent suggests: apparently no one has thought of selling these ready-made yet, so buy some butter muslin (pounds 3.75 for two squares) from John Lewis (0171-629 7711) and sew one yourself, as they do in the kitchen at The Ivy.
Last orders for Christmas: John Lewis is open 9.30am-4.30pm on Christmas Eve.
HANIF KUREISHI, WRITER
"I collect pens, particularly old fountain pens. Watermans are a favourite make because they're so beautiful."
The Independent suggests: try Penfriend shops in London's Bush House Arcade (0171-836 9809) or Burlington Arcade (0171-499 6337); Waterman pens from pounds 95. Last orders for Christmas: shops open Christmas Eve 9.30am-2pm.
TOBY STEPHENS, ACTOR
"I'd like a Lear Jet with a full tank of aviation fuel and a nationwide ban on Christmas muzak!"
The Independent suggests: a full-size Lear Jet may be a little difficult to wrap, but Collectors Aircraft Models (0181-754 7281) stocks a much more presentable version. Toy Lear Jets are available in both generically painted wood, for pounds 89.50, and in custom-painted fibre glass for pounds 465.
Last orders for Christmas: Collectors Aircraft Models opens 9am-2pm Christmas Eve.
JEAN-CHRISTOPHE NOVELLI, CHEF
"What I'd really like would be a nice silver pen so that I could carry out all my book signings in style."
The Independent suggests: Links of London does an elegant silver-plated fountain pen via mail order. It costs pounds 47.99 from The White Company (0171- 385 7988).
Last orders for Christmas: postal orders should be received by 21 December.
CILLA BLACK, ENTERTAINER
Surprise, surprise. Cilla says the one thing she'd appreciate in her stocking would be Delia Smith's How to Cook.
The Independent suggests: all major bookstores stock Delia's latest book; Asda stores sell it for a reasonable pounds 9.99 (call 0800 192192 for nearest store).
Last orders for Christmas: all Asda stores are open on Christmas Eve.
ROGER BLACK, ATHLETE
"My ideal last-minute gift would be a good old pair of socks, as my dog is always eating them. He isn't fussy about the make."
The Independent suggests: spoil yourself and the dog with a pair of luxury cashmere socks. N Peal, in the Burlington Arcade, London W1 (0171- 493 0912) does wonderfully soft cashmere socks, in various colours. Short socks cost pounds 40 and knee-length versions are pounds 45.
Last orders for Christmas: postal orders will be taken right up to Christmas, and the shop is open Christmas Eve 9.30am-4pm.
MARCO PIERRE WHITE, CHEF
"Having caught the biggest pike in Britain, I'd like to get some angling gear that will help me catch an even bigger fish."
The Independent suggests: a good lure costs pounds 3-pounds 25, and some essential deadbaits are pounds 2 for a pack of three from Penge Angling (0181-778 4652 for mail order).
Last orders for Christmas: postal orders will be taken up to 21 December, although delivery can't be guaranteed. The shop will be open Christmas Eve 9am-1pm.
JOE SIMPSON, AUTHOR & MOUNTAINEER
"Ideally I'd like to find a million pounds under my Christmas tree but, failing that, a fly-fishing holiday to somewhere hot and sunny."
The Independent suggests: field sports and safari specialists Roxton Bailey Robinson (01488 689701) has a one-week fishing holiday to Jardines de la Reina in Cuba departing on 5 Feb. The $2,200 price includes accommodation on La Tortuga, five days fishing, food, guides and a fishing permit.
Last orders for Christmas: RBR is open for bookings on Christmas Eve.
NIGEL SLATER, CHEF
"You can never have too many Christmas puddings. My favourite one would be cooked by Joyce Molyneux at The Carved Angel restaurant in Dartmouth."
The Independent suggests: when you read this it will be too late to order a pudding by post from The Carved Angel (01803 832465) but you could nip down to London and buy one of Joyce's puddings for pounds 9.95 at the David Mellor Cookshop in Sloane Square (0171-730 4259) instead.
Last orders for Christmas: the shop will be open 9.30am-4.30pm Christmas Eve.
MICHAEL WINNER, FILM DIRECTOR & RESTAURANT CRITIC
"I'd like a Van Gogh - one with those mad green waving trees in it. But you'd probably have to sell drugs for 15 years to afford it."
The Independent suggests: steer clear of the drugs trafficking since, according to Christie's, there are no Van Goghs up for sale before Christmas. Instead get a reprint from the National Gallery shop, London WC2 (0171- 747 2870). Wheatfield with Cypress Trees costs pounds 12 for a 31in by 23in print.
Last orders for Christmas: the National Gallery is open from 10am-8pm on 23 December.
DINNY HALL, JEWELLERY DESIGNER
"A beautiful coffee-table book on Picasso, Matisse or 20th-century architecture. If that wasn't possible, a limitless book voucher for Zwemmer [the art bookshop] on Charing Cross Road would be lovely!"
The Independent suggests: At the End of the Century: 100 Years of Architecture - a collection of essays edited by Russell Ferguson, pounds 40 from Zwemmer (0171-240 4158); or the new book of Peter Zumthor's architecture, pounds 50 from the same shop.
Last orders for Christmas: Zwemmer will be open Christmas Eve 10am-3pm.
BILL BRYSON, WRITER
"Any nice tobacco for my pipe would be good. I'd need it to keep me calm on my tour!"
The Independent suggests: "Mullins Mixture", a blend of Virginian and Turkish tobaccos, or "Crusting Cake", a thick-cut medium flake. Both these own-brand tobaccos cost pounds 3.35 for 25g or pounds 6.30 for 50g from Segar & Snuff Parlour in Covent Garden (0171-836 8345).
Last orders for Christmas: postal deliveries will be accepted until today, but the shop itself (27a The Market, London WC2) will be open from 10.30am- 3pm on Christmas Eve.
ROBERT KILROY-SILK, TELEVISION PRESENTER
"Two tickets on Concorde would be nice."
The Independent suggests: to make sure you can get your hands on a ticket, contact Red Letter Days (0181-343 5354). The company does a Concorde Experience Voucher for two people for pounds 1,450. The 105-minute flight takes off from Heathrow Airport and includes a champagne reception and lunch.
Last orders for Christmas: 22 December.
DONNA KARAN, DESIGNER
"I love candles and scents, so anything along those lines would go down very well."
The Independent suggests: cover all areas with a scented candle. Ocean (call 0870 8484840 for mail order) does a gorgeous, tall double-wicked cinnamon column candle for pounds 34.95.
Last orders for Christmas: 21 December.
NIGELLA LAWSON, JOURNALIST & FOOD WRITER
"One thing I would never turn down is a large tub of caviare - not that it's ever offered much. Preferably, it would be Oscietra rather than Beluga."
The Independent suggests: Oscietra caviare, pounds 24 for 30g from Harvey Nichols (0171-235 5000). A large (250g) tub, however, costs pounds 195 for the Russian variety, or pounds 215 for Iranian.
Last orders for Christmas: Harvey Nichols is open Christmas Eve 10am- 5pm.
FAY WELDON, AUTHOR
"Padded coat hangers would be ideal for me. They're the kind of things you always need and never get round to buying for yourself."
The Independent suggests: classic embroidered white coat hangers, pounds 2.99 each, mail order from The White Company (0171-385 7988).
Last orders for Christmas: 21 December.
LAWRENCE DALLAGLIO, CAPTAIN OF ENGLAND'S RUGBY UNION TEAM
"The best thing I could get for Christmas would be a travel voucher to take me somewhere sunny."
The Independent suggests: Go (0845 60 54321) has started a gift-voucher scheme for European flights, but it can't guarantee delivery for Christmas. Instead, get close to the sun with "the Astronaut Experience" in Alabama. The cost is pounds 2,950 for two through Red Letter Days (0181-343 5354) and includes flights, hotel accommodation and a weekend of NASA instruction.
Last orders for Christmas: 22 December.
EMMA FREUD, JOURNALIST, TV PRESENTER & BROADCASTER
"A two-kilogram bar of Cadbury's Dairy Milk from Woolworths is all a girl needs."
The Independent suggests: as the lady says, a giant 2kg bar of Cadbury's Dairy Milk chocolate costs pounds 8.99 at any Woolworths branch (call 0171-262 1222 for nearest store).
Last orders for Christmas: most Woolworths stores will be open 8.30am- 6pm on Christmas Eve.
BRUCE OLDFIELD, FASHION DESIGNER
"An extra-long, horn-and-silver shoe horn from The Room."
The Independent suggests: The Room at 158 Walton St, London SW3 (0171- 225 3225) has been open for just over three years. A shop-cum-gallery, it is designed as an unintimidating home for the works of its 32 decorative British designers. The extra-long Philippa Merriman shoe horns cost pounds 149; they are also available in three other sizes for pounds 99, pounds 80 and pounds 59.
Last orders for Christmas: The Room will open 10.30am-6.30pm on Christmas Eve. Last postal orders are on 21 December.
COLIN DEXTER, WRITER
"I'd like someone to buy me Jonathan Swift by Victoria Glendinning."
The Independent suggests: the book is available at Blackwells bookstores; if you can get down to the Blackwells branch at 100 Charing Cross Road, London WC2 (0171-292 5100) there are some signed copies in stock for a special Christmas reduction of pounds 14.99.
Last orders for Christmas: stores will be open from 9.30am-6pm on Christmas Eve.
JILLY COOPER, AUTHOR
"I'd love a painting by JS Cotman - one of those beautiful autumn and spring scenes he did at the turn of the 18th and 19th centuries."
The Independent suggests: it's unlikely you'll find a JS Cotman painting with six days to go until Christmas. Instead, get painting with the Cotman range of paints and artists' equipment from Windsor & Newton. Complete painting sets with paints, brushes and pads cost pounds 18.99 from WH Smith (01793 695195 for nearest branch).
Last orders for Christmas: Most stores open 9am-5.30pm Christmas Eve.
TERRY JONES, WRITER, DIRECTOR & PERFORMER
"My cat only eats Science Diet at the moment, so maybe some nice luxurious cat food would change his eating habits."
The Independent suggests: Gilpa Umami cat food has been developed by nutritionists and comes in feline-shaped 500g bags of three different recipes for pounds 1.39. Choose from ginger, tabby, black and white, burmese blue, tortoiseshell and white, and ragdoll - whatever your cat fancies.
Last orders for Christmas: most stockists will open on Christmas Eve (phone 01707 367900 for stockists).
CHAD VARAH, FOUNDER OF THE SAMARITANS
"I always like book tokens, but I have a library of 3,000 books and there are a lot I haven't read yet - so I suppose a CD token would be better."
The Independent suggests: gift vouchers for HMV come in denominations of pounds 1, pounds 2, pounds 5, pounds 10 and pounds 20 and, luckily for Chad, they can be exchanged at any branch of Dillons and Waterstone's as well as HMV.
Last orders for Christmas: most HMV stores will be open from 9am-8pm on Christmas Eve (0171-432 2000 to check your local store).
PAULA PRYKE, FLORIST
"I don't know how last-minute it could be, but I'd love a meal in Thailand."
The Independent suggests: try an evening in Thailand instead, by booking a meal for two at Thai on the River, Chelsea Wharf, 15 Lots Road, London SW10 (0171-351 1151). A three-course meal for two with house wine will cost pounds 60-pounds 70 and, to make the experience more of a gift, you can pre-pay any amount and they will refund any money you have not spent.
Last orders for Christmas: the restaurant is closed 24-28 December but, except for these dates, bookings are taken at any time.
CLAIRE RAYNER, AGONY AUNT
"I'd want something drippingly luxurious, so it has to be a Pashmina shawl, preferably in purple; the mufflers are gorgeous, too."
The Independent suggests: Pickets Leather shop in the Burlington Arcade, London W1 (0171-493 8939) does Pashmina shawls for pounds 195 each or two for pounds 350. Scarves are also available - tipetts are pounds 75 and mufflers are pounds 95.
Last orders for Christmas: deliveries will be taken right up until Christmas Eve. The shop is also open from 9am-4pm that day.
MANOLO BLAHNIK, SHOE DESIGNER
"N Peal's cashmere blankets are great but ideally I'd like a whole room full of them."
The Independent suggests: head for N Peal at 37 Burlington Arcade, London W1 (0171-493 5378) which has single blankets at pounds 575.
Last orders for Christmas: the shop is open from 9.30am-4pm on Christmas Eve.
ROSIE THOMAS, AUTHOR
"I'd like a rope bag to stop my new climbing rope getting into a million knots every time I come down from a climbing wall."
The Independent suggests: Snow & Rock (0845 0841000 for nearest stockist) has seven stores in the UK, scattered between Sheffield and Bristol, and they all stock rope bags. The two to look for are the DMM Rope Bag, which costs pounds 24.95, and the Black Diamond Rope Bag, for pounds 39.95.
Last orders for Christmas: stores are open until 4pm or 5pm on Christmas Eve but phone to check with your local branch.
BENEDICT ALLEN, EXPLORER
"A tough wristwatch to wake me up when I'm travelling would be useful. Failing that, a Mongolian camel and his friends would be nice"
The Independent suggests: designed especially for extreme sportsmen and women, the Seiko Airpro costs pounds 150 (call 01628 770988 for nearest stockist) and has just the kind of shock-absorbing qualities a camel rider needs - including an alarm.
Last orders for Christmas: most stockists open Christmas Eve.
KATE SAUNDERS, WRITER
"Well ideally I'd like my mortgage paid off. Failing that a diamond ring or even a small Tuscan farmhouse."
The Independent suggests: Tuscan farmhouses are tricky things to buy at short notice so, being Christmas, we would suggest a trip to Tiffany's in London (0171-409 2790) instead. Diamond rings from the Etoile collection start at pounds 885.
Last orders for Christmas: the Bond Street store will be open on Christmas Eve 9.30am-4pm.
SIR JOHN MORTIMER, AUTHOR
"Ideally I'd like a new idea for a play, a case of Dom Perignon and a large roseate nude by Matthew Smith, although I'd settle for a bottle of cooking champagne and the latest book by Kathy Lette."
The Independent suggests: Oddbins (0181-944 4400 for stores) suggests Derose NV Brut Champagne, pounds 11.99. Ultra Ego by Kathy Lette (hardback, pounds 12.99).
Last orders for Christmas: Oddbins stores are open on Christmas Eve.
ANNABEL HESELTINE, WRITER
"I'd love a jigsaw puzzle, preferably with wooden pieces. It's a brillant way to kill spare time."
The Independent suggests: real wooden jigsaw puzzles are a tricky thing to find, especially something difficult enough to test an adult. Fortunately, Harrods (0171-730 1234) has up to 12 Optimago designs in stock; prices range from pounds 19-85.
Last orders for Christmas: Harrods will be open from 9am-5pm on Christmas Eve.
ARABELLA WEIR, WRITER & ACTRESS
"I'd like a manicure that doesn't make me look like an air hostess."
The Independent suggests: Amazing Nails on South Molton St, London W1 (0171-355 3634) offers a range of voucher treatments from short manicures to total pedicures. Manicures start at pounds 12.50 and go up to pounds 26.50 for the VIP Star Treatment - a one-hour pampering session using paraffin wax.
Last orders for Christmas: no cut-off for vouchers; the shop closes 4pm on Christmas Eve.
FI GLOVER, TV & RADIO PRESENTER
"I'd really like a book on females in country music to see me through the boring Christmas moments. That way, when my grannies start going on about their latest grandchild, I can turn to Tammy Wynette."
The Independent suggests: The All Music Guide to Country (Miller Freedman, pounds 14.99) from Helter Skelter (0171-836 1151).
Last orders for Christmas: the shop will be open from 10am to 5pm on Christmas Eve.
SEBASTIAN FAULKS, AUTHOR
"I would like an etching by Norman Ackroyd called Thimbleby in Winter."
The Independent suggests: Ackroyd's studio is not open to the public. However, the Royal Academy is showing some of Ackroyd's works in the Friends Room, from 4pm-6pm Mon-Thurs and until 7pm on Fridays (0171-300 8000). Prices range from pounds 180-pounds 220 for Norman Ackroyd pieces without and with frames respectively.
Last orders for Christmas: the Royal Academy is open 10am-6pm on Christmas Eve.
ROSE GRAY, JOINT OWNER OF LONDON'S RIVER CAFE
"I'd like a bottle of the thickest, oldest, richest Balsamic vinegar, so that when I'm travelling I can take it out and pour it over my aeroplane food."
The Independent suggests: Five Barrels' 12-year-old Balsamic vinegar, pounds 14.75 for 40ml at Bluebird, 350 King's Road, London SW3 (0171-559 1140).
Last orders for Christmas: Bluebird is open Christmas Eve 9am-6pm.
WILLIAM GIBSON, AUTHOR
"The Bell and Ross Vintage 123b is my dream watch."
The Independent suggests: the super sleek Bell & Ross watch isn't yet available in British shops. The French outlet (00 33 1 55 35 36 00 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org) will send you a Vintage 123b within 48 hours for FFr7900 (about pounds 880). You can pay in Britain - or take a day trip to Paris and pick one up there.
Last orders for Christmas: no absolute cut-off date, but order as soon as possible.
LORD ARCHER, AUTHOR AND POLITICIAN
"I think the best gift to receive would be The Twelve Days of Christmas by John Julius-Norwich with illustrations by Quentin Blake."
The Independent suggests: this can be found in good bookshops for pounds 7.99. Alternatively, try the Chris Beetles Gallery, 8-10 Ryder Street, London SW1 (0171-839 7551), where it was launched. The gallery has signed copies on sale for the same price.
Last orders for Christmas: Gallery open 10am-5.30pm Christmas Eve.
GERMAINE GREER, WRITER
"Right now I'd like a 17th-century King James Bible - preferably a first edition. Conversely a Geneva Bible would be fine, or even a copy of the Vulgate."
The Independent suggests: first editions are difficult to come by but most bookshops hold contemporary copies of the King James. Waterstone's (0181-742 3800) has Oxford Gift Bibles in red, black or blue for pounds 11.99.
Last orders for Christmas: Waterstone's are open Christmas Eve, but opening hours vary.
ALISON KING, THE NEXT BOND GIRL
"A season ticket for Liverpool Football Club, or alternatively a potter's wheel - I've wanted one ever since I saw Ghost."
The Independent suggests: for that authentic Patrick Swayze experience, Pottery Crafts (2 Norbury Trading Estate, Craignish Avenue, London SW16; 0181-679 7606) stocks electric wheels from pounds 531.
Last orders for Christmas: the shop is open until lunchtime on Christmas Eve.
ZOE HELLER, AUTHOR
"A big pot of Gentleman's Relish with a pair of diamond earrings buried at the bottom."
The Independent suggests: for a 42g pot of Patum Peperium's Gentleman's Relish, try Bluebird on King's Road, London SW3 (0171-559 1154). For earrings, Pemberton and Whitfield (0171-371 7454) does a pair of 0.88-carat diamond earrings set in 18- carat white gold with alpha fittings for pounds 1,500.
Last orders for Christmas: Bluebird 9am-6pm; P&W postal orders to 6pm Christmas Eve.
JAMES PALUMBO, OWNER OF THE MINISTRY OF SOUND NIGHTCLUB
"I'd like a lawnmower - preferably one of those ones you can sit on while you mow."
The Independent suggests: Focus Do It All (0800 436436 for nearest store) can provide you with a 36" Champion Ride Tractor Mower for pounds 1,199. Delivery is free for goods more than pounds 100.
Last orders for Christmas: Focus Do it All stores are open from 8.30am to 4pm on Christmas Eve.
JANCIS ROBINSON, WINE WRITER & BROADCASTER
"Moet's luxury champagne, Dom Perignon, is widely available and probably the closest thing to a wine that no one, however much of a wine snob, would ever refuse. The current vintage, 1990, is particularly gorgeous."
The Independent suggests: branches of Oddbins (0181-944 4400 for nearest store) stock bottles of 1990 vintage Dom Perignon for pounds 61.99.
Last orders for Christmas: most Oddbins stores are open 10am-6pm on Christmas Eve.
RON ARAD, FURNITURE DESIGNER
"I'd like a subscription to The Independent for a year" (and we didn't pay him anything for this...)
The Independent suggests: a basic subscription costs from pounds 90.87 for three months within the UK (0171-538 8288 for enquiries and credit card orders).
Last orders for Christmas: it is advisable to set up the subscription as soon as possible but, for those who miss out, there will be a Boxing Day edition of The Independent in newsagents.
Additional research by Tim Booler, Theresa Hoggart, Anne-Celine Jaeger and Caroline Murphy
NOTE: WHILE EVERY EFFORT HAS BEEN MADE TO CHECK DETAILS OF OPENING HOURS, PRICES AND AVAILABILITY, READERS ARE ADVISED TO RING RETAILERS BEFORE SETTING OUT AS CHRISTMAS IS A BUSY TIME OF YEAR AND STOCK CHANGES FAST.
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