Christmas Presents For The Fieldsports Enthusiast
Chosen by Martin Puddifer – editor of the Shooting Gazette until 2021
The run-up to Christmas needn’t be a time for mass panic-buying of gifts that risk being forgotten faster than the smoothie maker still boxed up in granny’s pantry. While the smiles of loved ones opening unexpected gifts on Christmas morning can light up a room, it is equally heartwarming when something special is given in return. Field clothing and field accessories fall nicely into this category, especially if replacing something which has served its wearer well. Sorry as it can be to lay a treasured item to rest, few guns want to look anything other than their best on shoot day, especially those “peg peacocks” whose individuality shines through their outfit..
While the season might be only weeks from closing by the time the big day arrives, Christmas is the perfect time to breathe new life into a sporting wardrobe, with plenty of opportunities to break in new items before the guns fall silent. But be warned. Without due care, ill-chosen presents can bring about everything from choruses of “where did you get that hat?” to unrealistic expectations about the wearer’s shooting prowess based purely on their clothing. No one wants to appear to be “all the gear and no idea”, do they? This selection of essential clothing and accessories will, I hope, inspire those who are looking for ideas, whether they are giving or receiving the gift in question. And remember buyers, if the gift is a hit, why not look at purchasing the same item in another colour for a birthday or special occasion, gradually building a collection of firm favourites with timeless appeal?
Field clothing gift ideas
A real investment piece, this gorgeous waterproof coat has bags of character both inside and out. Made in England in a cloth woven by Magee in Donegal, it offers supreme comfort and a host of functional features, including storm cuffs and hand warmer pockets, ensuring its wearer stays cosy and dry. The Boxing Day shoot will not come soon enough.
An invaluable midlayer, made in Scotland using British lambswool, this versatile sporting wardrobe staple offers a great fit, a luxurious feel and is suitable for both October partridges and January pheasants. It’s available in 13 other colours, worth knowing if the words “I love this” are gasped shortly after the wrapping has been torn asunder.
A cotton/wool shirt that offers a tasteful contrast to even the most reserved outfit. Generously cut and with long tails for ease of movement, the wearer need never worry about looking dishevelled after a busy, adrenaline-fuelled drive. Its Navy Red counterpart is equally resplendent, the perfect choice for back-to-back shoot days.
Part of a family comprising 13 matching products (including waistcoats, caps and luggage), practical on their own, they are the perfect starting point to build the ultimate shooting outfit. Fully-lined heavyweight breeks, cut to a generous fit and crafted from 100% Scottish wool, they can be adjusted at the waist and ankle for optimum comfort in the field, ideal for an over-indulgent Boxing Day shoot lunch/ festive period. With a supremely practical ‘fish tail’ back ensuring there are no gaps between your layers. Don’t forget to buy a smart pair of British made trouser braces!
Field accessories gift ideas
Shooting stockings can add real character to a shooting outfit without the wearer really trying. In three smart and eminently wearable colours, the Ambassadors are crafted from extra fine merino wool with a hint of nylon at the toe and heel for added support, with an intricate knitted pattern on the turn over top and a garter adding a tasteful flash of interest. An essential part of your shooting kit.
Forever misplaced, chewed by the dog or battered by the elements, headwear is a crucial piece of one’s shoot day armour. This tasteful 8-panel tweed cap, really catches the eye and will make for the perfect conversation starter for nervous single guns unsure how to interact with a more established team.
Offering generations of fieldsportsmen the chance to reflect on their day, season and even their sporting life, a game book is something to be kept and cherished long after it has been filled. Handmade in England in a luxurious crocodile print embossed leather, its golden gilt-edge pages offer plenty of space for recollections of memorable birds and time spent with lifelong friends.
Elevenses is the perfect time to fortify oneself against the cold and the single malt or homemade tipple the owner received on Christmas morning will taste even better in the field. Embossed with a delicate grouse motif, this Sheffield made flask is made for the job.
While others frantically charge up and down the high street, or set up camp in their hallway for fear of missing a delivery, the Cordings customer can rest easy in the knowledge that all of their clothing and accessories needs will be met in the iconic Piccadilly store or online at cordings.co.uk.