VALRICO — While ties may be the ol’ standby Father’s Day gift, Brandon area retailers are catering to shoppers who think outside the necktie box.
Matt Creager, who manages The Green Boutique in Valrico’s Plaza Bella, said women are not the only ones who want to be appreciated on a special day. He has several ideas for gifts for Father’s Day, which is Sunday.
“Even though I’m a bachelor with no children, I know that many dads enjoy gardening, decorating and even smelling good on occasion,” Creager said. “On Father’s Day, try pampering them with good-smelling soaps and washes, giving them a new way to enjoy beer and encouraging their talents for beautifying the home and garden.”
Creager said the boutique carries candles and fabric wash from Tyler Candle Company that many men enjoy.
“Their wives purchase the linen washes and use them on the bed linens and the men end up coming in looking for ‘that great-smelling laundry soap,’” Creager said. “We also sell French soaps in a variety of fragrances. Again, the guys are often the customers returning to the store to find the same soap fragrance that they received as a gift.”
He said other gift ideas for dad include the Chilsner by Corksicle, a reusable item that keeps beer cold. He said the item looks like an icicle and can be frozen and then inserted into a bottle of beer.
“As for the home and garden, two of my personal favorite items are hand-tuned wind chimes by Woodstock Percussion and Sid Dickens Memory Blocks,” he said. “As an avid gardener and landscaper, I love the interesting sounds of quality bells and chimes in the yard or garden setting.”
Creager said his favorite home décor item from The Green Boutique is the Sid Dickens Memory Block art tile. Dickens is a Canadian artist who has been designing plaster and wood art tiles for the past 20 years. Each block has a name and meaning printed on the back.
“The hand-made blocks can be hung on the wall in various groupings and patterns and are a great alternative to traditional framed art,” Creager said. “Two of the more manly memory blocks are T294 Dragon and T260 Festina Lente. The meaning printed on the back of the Dragon block is ‘Valiant protector of good fortune, keeper of the eternal flame of imagination.’ The meaning of Festina Lente is ‘Make haste slowly.’”
Creager also recommended wooden fish sculptures by Fishtales, which are carved and painted wooden fish that make great “statement pieces” for an office or entertainment room.
“The fish are lifelike enough to entice the fisherman and tastefully painted to be acceptable décor to many of our female shoppers,” he said.
Rachel Kurtz, the field operations manager for Gift-ology Inc. in the Westfield Brandon mall, also offered some of her ideas for Father’s Day gifts.
In addition to recommending the Chilsner by Corksicle that Creager suggested, Kurtz also pointed to Lolita’s “Best Dad Ever” pilsner glass as another fun gift for the beer drinker in the family.
For dads who don’t drink beer, she suggested Enesco mugs that say “Super Dad” and “Most Awesome Dad.”
“It’s a fun way to show your appreciation for dad. We have several other mugs in the line that are great for dads and grandfathers,” Kurtz said.
She also suggested Matchstix’s natural, hand- distressed wood frames as a way to showcase a family photo for dad.
In addition, Bering offers a variety of classic and fashion watches for dad at different price points, Kurtz said.