You might not be aware of it, distracted as you are by the armies of spendy hipsters that march through your doors each week, but our relationship has been deteriorating for years. If indeed, it was ever truly a relationship to begin with - I've hankered after your nostalgic blouses, your vampy skirts and your little strappy dresses for yonks now, while you remain coolly oblivious.
My name's Sarah and I'm a stationery addict. Since the annual September runs to WH Smith to stock up on new school year supplies, notebooks have been my particular weakness and, what with there being even more organising than usual to do over this festive season, I still love having a wonderful new pad to jot down my many lists in.
It becomes difficult when friends begin to have children, not one friend with one child, but multiple friends with multiple children - where do you draw the line? Godchildren, and nieces and nephews are essentials. But what about your godchild's siblings? And other dear friends, and extended family with children too? Of course you want to buy for everyone, but is it possible?
Mark Powell has a glint in his eye and his handshake is firm when he greets me in his Marshall Street shop. As one would expect from a man born in Poplar, east London, he has a no-nonsense attitude. At 50, he remains one of London's most iconic and influential bespoke tailors, having made suits for Mick Jagger, Ronnie Kray, David Bowie and Harrison Ford.
As soon as December approached, and in the spirit of all those M&S ads, I decided to embrace the festive season by organising a host of fun things to do with my family. Perhaps I was being excessive and I didn't expect everyone to share my enthusiasm, but I wanted this to be a Christmas to remember...
This Christmas, why not treat someone to something that they can treasure for a long, long time? In a world of fast throwaway fashion, it's sometimes so hard to find a present that will be appreciated, but that can also be used again and again without fear of it going out of style or worse, falling apart!