Dad, Pops, Old Man, Tough Guy, Herr Kommandant, or just Bill—whatever you call him, his day is coming up on Sunday. If you’re anything like the three of us, two weeks’ notice is too much, a reminder the Friday before is too little, but six days to go is just right. Don’t worry; we’re looking out for you.
This is by no means a comprehensive guide—just our three quick thoughts for this year.
I’ve been on a hand-written note kick lately. So much so that I’m working regular, old snail-mail letters into part of my weekly routine. There’s just something about them—the extra time, thought and care they take—that shows you mean it.
My parents aren’t too particular about what kind of material goods they get, and I’ve always found that my best Father’s (and Mother’s) Day gifts have simple expressions of genuine appreciation. So Pa will be getting a long overdue letter from me this year.
If, like me, you want to spread the gospel of the hand-written note, consider sending a box of stationery as a gentle nudge. My advice? Go for something simple, elegant and typographical. But beware: A man’s stationery is as personal as his penmanship, so this may be something you want to pick out together. If surprises are important to your gift-giving mojo, a pen would be the perfect lead-in to the stationery. Some of my favorites (all of which happened to be gifts):
What’s one thing many of our fathers like? That’s right: Beer. Now, how do they like their beer? Cold. Really, really cold. But let us suppose that our fathers want to enjoy a brew by a campfire in the wild, on a boat, or somewhere else that’s nowhere near a refrigerator. How is he to keep his precious liquids at a reasonably desirable temperature?
The answer: Coleman’s Heritage 150-Quart Cooler. This bad boy has been getting some good press recently (Selectism, 10engines), and for good reason. It’ll hold 200—count ‘em: 200!–cans of your favorite beer. As a nice bonus, those beers can then be topped with a paltry 55 pounds of ice. I would tell you to feel free to sub out the beer for your favorite flavor of Shasta or a nicely brewed organic iced tea, but then, what kind of advice is that?
Or, if your Pops is cigar man, a nice bundle of his favorite stogies would probably please him more than anything. And if he’s a seasoned smoker, try getting him something he’s never smoked. He’ll love you even more for finding his new cigar of choice.
When Seth asked me to pick out some gifts for Father’s Day, I read it as, “Okay, what do I want to give my future offspring, (Lord willing)?” A pair of shoes, a leather good and a Father’s Day card came to mind. More importantly, I chose gifts that I would make said future children think, “Oh man, my dad had these and loved them.”
First up: Shoes by Florsheim. Like these raisin and black Markhams ($112), these bone and chalk-pink saddle shoes ($221.25), or these black and cognac buffalo leather Jareths ($75). On a budget, baby. I love duo-tone anything. Best of both worlds.
Second: If your guy is an accessorizer, this wrap bracelet will look amazing as it ages—1/4 Triple Wrap Cuff (Need Supply, $48) by Billy Kirk. Or how about a wooden wrist watch (Canoe, $85)? If none of that is your jam, this distressed barn-wood hip flask (Etsy, $18.95) might be a good bet.
And at the very least: A card—the “Shirt” card (Rifle Paper Co., $4.50) or the “Hat” note set (Renegade Handmade, $15).
Recommended Reading: Max Wastler’s series on last year’s Father’s Day over at AllPlaidOut.com.
Now get outta here and show some love.