Style File: Access all areas - designer stocking fillers

Fashion’s new democratic bent means there are small-but-stylish designer gifts to suit all pockets, says Alexander Fury

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Indy Lifestyle Online

A stocking stuffed with designer labels could, understandably, be assumed to cost a king’s ransom. Not necessarily: from perfumes to purses to intricate intarsia socks (the ultimate in festive decadence), there are choice designer pieces that won’t break the bank. They’re easily grabbed in a last-minute festive shopping-spree too.

The cold corporate terminology is “entry level” – but really, what these items offer is a slither of luxury at a fraction of the usual cost. And, try as we might, we can’t avoid the cachet of the designer name. The multibillion-pound fashion industry is based, in part, on just that. However, just because an item is accessible – or, indeed, stocking-sized – doesn’t mean it has to be anodyne. It also isn’t restricted to the cash cows of lipstick, perfume or jazzy key ring.

The revitalised house of Kenzo, under the design direction of Carol Lim and Humberto Leon, is a prime example. Pitching plainly at the sportswear market, with accessible price points for well-designed products (a Kenzo cap will set you back £40, the collaborative Vans, above, £80), Kenzo proves catwalk doesn’t have to cost the earth. Their bright, bold prints, slogan-splashed pieces and statement sweatshirts have become sell-out must-haves that retail for less than £200, a territory also occupied by the uber-cool LA designer Brian Lichtenberg, with his cotton separates featuring reconfigured designer logos. Our picks hover between £12.99 – for Camilla Morton’s Fashion Fairy Tales featuring Diane von Furstenberg, Christian Lacroix and Manolo Blahnik – to Prada’s luxe leather hibiscus earrings at £180, as seen in their latest Resort advertising campaign.

These small products pack a serious punch. There’s also something undeniably glamorous about a stocking stuffed with glossy designer-branded boxes. The adage is true: good things do come in small packages. Especially from Prada, Kenzo and Marc Jacobs.