THE GOLDEN BOY
To kick off our roundup, let's start with that modern all-American fellow who everyone loves┬--Justin Timberlake, a.k.a The Golden Boy. While the singer/songwriter/performer extraordinaire might not be a regular in your life (seeing him in US Weekly doesn't count), no doubt you know a dude or two who shares JT's energetic spirit and enthusiasm for sports, style, and super pretty ladies. When shopping for this type, all you have to remember is to look for timeless essentials with a twist┬--like a Nike sneaker designed by the French geniuses at A.P.C.┬--and you'll be set!
The Book of Basketball by Bill Simmons ($17)
Any red-blooded fellow (or blue-blood for that matter) will adore you for adding this essential tome to his collection. While we can't personally attest for this 700-page behemoth, which was written by ESPN.com's "The Sports Guy," we can tell you that it's getting rave reviews from folks who read this kind of stuff. Plus, Malcolm Gladwell contributed an engaging forward, which is a fine endorsement in our books!
Hamilton 1883 Oxford Button Down Shirt ($185)
If you've ever craved a Kain crew neck or coveted a classic tee from The Row, you know that not all wardrobe essentials are created alike. That standard certainly holds true in the menswear department too, so why not treat your MVP to a perfect version of his favorite button-down? Our suggestion: look to the shirt gurus at Hamilton for a little help. They've created custom-made shirts for the past 125 years┬--and know that fit is king, of course┬--and recently introduced a selection of ready-to-wear styles that are truly amazing. We love the simple oxford, but don't miss all the other iterations!
A.P.C. for Nike Sneakers ($140)
In keeping with our Golden Boy's affinity for modern classics, our next gift is perfect for a fashion enthusiast (you) and a casually cool guy (him): A.P.C.'s interpretation of Nike's All Court sneaker. The simple black and white style is understated, yet fresh, ensuring your fellow will look good wherever he goes!
Givenchy Play Eau de Toilette ($53)
We know that the GB's a work-hard, play-harder sort of fellow, so it's important to keep him smelling superb no matter what he's doing. To achieve that, we recommend picking up Givenchy's new fragrance, Play, which is a lively and lovely woody scent that was created in conjunction with Mr. Timberlake himself. If your man prefers bolder combinations, then check out Play Intense ($57) for a similar, even saucier cologne.
Canon PowerShot G11 Digital Camera ($450)
There are so many cameras on the market, figuring out which one to buy can be majorly confusing┬--at best. Rather than wasting time comparing products via Consumer Reports, just trust us when we say that the Canon PowerShot G11 is the one to get. The photographers we work with at WhoWhatWear.com recommend it highly because it's the only compact digital camera that can also be used in a professional setting. Just tell the lucky fellow who gets this gift that he'll get "the ease of digital, but the control of film," and his inner techie will flip. Seriously.
The Technocrat is smart, stylish, sharp, and┬--above all else┬--always on the cutting-edge when it comes to gizmos and gadgets. Like Kanye West (who's a master on many fronts, from designing a shoe collection for Louis Vuitton to laying down tracks in the studio to waxing poetic about his favorite things on his blog), the Technocrat has an insatiable appetite for anything that mixes his true loves: music, technology, design, and fashion. If you've got a guy who's equally gaga for the latest gear as well as more high-fashion fare, please feel free indulge in this sleek selection!
Nixon The Metal Atom Watch ($100)
One of the best ways for fellows to add a fashionable flourish to their ensembles is with subtle and chic accents like a wristwatch. This ticker from Nixon will hold a special place in his heart due to its Technocrat-friendly silver band, digital face, and sleek futuristic design!
The Hundreds Phoenix Sunglasses ($100)
Though Technocrats usually have a serious cache of rare and expensive sunglasses, we think these more wallet-friendly frames from The Hundreds would be a welcome addition to any avid accessory-admirer's collection! These specs mark the underground street label's first foray into eyewear, and the results are outstanding. You can pick up these early eighties-inspired sunglasses in blue, olive, or red, but we suggest this classic black pair for the fashion-forward fella to wear whenever he's off-line!
Apple Magic Mouse ($69)
The Technocrat is always plugged in and connected, but what he hates most is unwieldy wires cramping his style. Help streamline his experience with Apple's new Magic Mouse; it has a ridiculously cool look and its genius design allows for effortless clicking and scrolling!
Beats by Dr. Dre Studio High-Definition Headphones from Monster ($300)
Aristocratic in his taste and tech-centric in his ways, this guy is always one beat ahead when it comes to the highest-quality gear. These hi-def headphones from the legendary Dr. Dre offer impeccable sound clarity, while the comfortable ear cushions eliminate any external noise. Additionally, they come equipped with iSonitalk so the wearer can take incoming calls when rocking out. In short, they are perfect for the boy who balances both business and pleasure!
Pierre Hardy Metal Acier Sneakers ($460, 617.267.5500)
He may be notorious for his cutting-edge sensibilities, but the Technocrat is also a faithful fashion follower with a discerning eye for directional designs. These Pierre Hardy sneaks will speak to his posh palette and love of high-end accents; the navy color and silver trim are pitch perfect in every way!
Tatted and tough, but with a fondness for the finer things in life too, our next fellow never fails to stay true to his roots. In many ways, The Rocker's shopping attitude is most similar to ours: he'll invest in a few luxurious pieces (Vivienne Westwood cufflinks), but also knows a thrifty thrill (great graphic tees) when he sees one. As embodied by the delightful duo of Benji and Joel Madden, the Rocker's personal style is as much of a mix as the way he spends his money. Rather than sticking solely to one specific genre, he combines different influences into his signature look. It's a little skate, surf, and punk, topped off with a hefty dollop of rockstar panache.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 ($60)
To be completely candid, this present is an ideal option for any guy, assuming he doesn't have it already! (Definitely check before buying; the game did $550 million in sales in the first five days after its release, which is bonkers, breaking the previous record held by Grand Theft Auto.) It's the blockbuster of all blockbusters in the gaming world and is sure to beloved by any recipient.
Y-3 Ripstop Twin Zip Track Jacket ($420)
Whether it's a remix, duet, or a fashion partnership, sometimes it takes two to make a thing go right, if you know what we mean. On that note, the collaboration between Yohji Yamamoto and Adidas┬--the Y-3 line┬--is highly memorable and already a major hit, which is why we think the Rocker would like this piece. It offers a bold upgrade of a standard item (the track jacket, of course) and will certainly make an intriguing gift.
DCMA Drips T-Shirt ($25)
As we mentioned earlier, the Rocker is a connoisseur of many things and always adores a great graphic tee, hence our inclusion of this Drips T-Shirt by DCMA. The brand has an interesting backstory (it was founded by Benji and Joel Madden, their older brother Josh, and their friend Tal Cooperman), but more importantly, they make some very fine merchandise. We like this neon skull design, but definitely browse the whole shop!
Vivienne Westwood Diamante Skull Cufflinks ($379)
On the other end of the skull spectrum, we have these gorgeous cufflinks designed by the high priestess of punk┬--Vivienne Westwood. Dame Westwood brings a little of her signature macabre couture to men's jewelry with these Swarovski crystal-encrusted craniums. They're so cool, you might find yourself buying French-cuff shirts just so you can borrow them!
Ray Ban Aviator Sunglasses ($130)
To round out our selection of Rocker gifts, we decided to include something that's timeless, but still totally appropriate for this type of guy. These understated aviators by Ray-Ban are some of the best sunglasses around, thanks to their gradient lenses and sleek double-bridge metal frames. We like the silver style best, which is shown here, but they're also available in gunmetal brown if your fellow prefers warmer tones.
THE HIP BRIT
Our final subject du jour in today's Holiday Gift Guide is in many ways the polar opposite of our first guy. The Hip Brit┬--in this case, modeled after the producer/DJ/musician, Mark Ronson┬--is unabashedly natty fabulous and isn't afraid to let his dandy flag fly high. Sophisticated and stylish in a slightly vintage way, this fellow prizes presents that share his high standards for authenticity and craftsmanship. (A little flair is always a good thing too.) We think discerning dudes everywhere will dig these great gifts and hopefully you will too!
Bicycle Diaries by David Byrne ($17)
The artist extraordinaire responsible for such auditory gems like "Psycho Killer" (a personal fave) and "Burning Down The House" now offers a new creative masterpiece, this time via the literary world with Bicycle Diaries. Not to be confused with Jim Carroll's The Basketball Diaries, this slim orange treatise focuses on Byrne's peripatetic cycling experiences in cities around the world and is sure to be adored by any music-loving man. After all, who could resist taking a look inside the mind of the Talking Heads frontman? Not us, and certainly not your Hip Brit!
Elizabeth and James Mens Halladay Jacket ($475, 310.276.4400)
While it's well known that Ronson wilds out with his fashion choices occasionally┬--turning up at the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund in a exquisitely rust-stained Patrik Ervell suit, creating a limited-edition line of sneakers for Gucci, including these bold boat shoes┬--but even the fashion-forward fellow needs a classic dinner jacket. For those moments, it's best to turn to the new mens' collection from Elizabeth and James for sartorial aid. The Halladay Jacket, in particular, is sure to make this man smile, thanks to its thoughtfully chosen fabric (vintage sateen) and timeless design (love the shawl collar).
Bosca 12" Zipper Utilitkit ($195) in Dark Brown Leather
Whether he's jaunting around the Continent, zipping off to a music festival, or merely going on a boring old business trip, every hipster needs a cool little carryall for his toiletries. This rich leather dopp kit is both fashionable and functional, certainly an upgrade from the plastic bags that are still de rigueur for most male travelers!
Urban Outfitters Wood Turntable ($88)
Would Mr. Ronson ever use this modern three-speed record turntable? Signs point to no, but it's kind of awesome for non-pros. All in all, we think it's a swell option for the vinyl-collector-to-be or any retro enthusiast, and the price sure is right. Maybe we're crazy, but we could see it perfectly positioned next to a bar cart in a bachelor pad...
Topman Burgundy Striped Scarf ($24)
Your Hip Brit might not be an actual UK-resident, but you can give him a bit of the country's sartorial savvy with an accessory from Topman. Yes, the B-side to our favorite fast-fashion hub has just as much fabulous stuff for the fellows as Topshop does for the ladies. Just take this striped scarf for example: it's low priced, high impact, and will add just the perfect amount of pizazz to a simple lazy Sunday sort of outfit. Cool Britannia indeed!
Photos of Justin Timberlake, Joel Madden, and Benji Madden, from Getty Images; Photo of Kanye West, from INF.