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Guest Shopper

The Rush You Get Finding the Perfect Gift?

Written by,

Sarah Alexander

I like to think of myself as pretty organised; I never forget a birthday and I’m one of those people that start buying Christmas presents in September. However, I’m not always completely on the ball; I do have the odd mishap, and sometimes, only sometimes, fail to recall a special event for a loved one. I hate being caught out and having hardly any time to put together a great gift for a friend or family member, but luckily with Rushden Lakes around the corner, I never have to worry again.

Rushden Lakes is my number one spot for shopping, and for presents it’s suitable for all ages and all budgets. I headed down to the lakes with the intent on scouting out gifts for my mum and two friends. I didn’t have a clue on what I was looking for but I was sure something (if not multiple things) would grab my attention.

I enjoy making up gift hampers for my favourite people; I fill it with a variety of things I hope they’ll love and it means they get to open five (or so) presents instead of one. I also don’t often buy the readymade gift sets because I sometimes find there are items included that will be discarded, so I like to make my own.

I started in Card Factory as my mum is a huge fan of those cards with the pages of verse telling her how wonderful she is and how much she means to me. They’re such affordable cards and have a huge variety so I love it in there. They also have an assortment of mugs (dogs/cute/sassy etc.) and little trinkets that I find always go down well in a gift basket.

Next I scoped out the jewellery in Accessorize, Pandora, House of Fraser and Primark. The prices varied drastically and there was so much choice. I knew whatever I went with, my friend would appreciate because we have very similar taste. I love how Rushden Lakes caters to so many demographics; a customer can buy a ring for £300 but equally £3.

I then had to squirt some perfume and check out the cosmetics (mainly for me but let’s pretend it was for my mum and pal) in House of Fraser and Boots. I like including face masks, body lotions, bath bombs etc. in my hampers as pamper sessions are one of my favourite things and I know my mum and friends love them too. In House of Fraser, I came across a stand with fancy leather wash bags that had my best friends name written all over them as he loves a classic piece.

Finally I went on the hunt for fillers; keyrings, notebooks, sunglasses, candles, travel mugs (like the ‘OMG U OK HUN?’ pictured from Paperchase), and similar. I pick specific products for the person I’m constructing the gift basket for and go from there.

Luckily, having Rushden Lakes on my doorstep, no matter how much disposable income I have, I can always guarantee that I’ll be able to find the perfect gift there. There’s something for everyone, for every age and every budget.

Due to the damage caused by Storm Ciara and extreme weather, the leisure terrace and adjoining restaurants will remain closed until further notice. However please note that all of the shops are open, including Canoe 2 and the Nene Wetlands Visitor Centre, plus the lakeside cafés and restaurants.

We apologise for the impact this may have on your visit to Rushden Lakes, but the safety of our visitors and staff is of paramount importance. We will keep you updated on when the leisure area is likely to re-open.

Currently closed: Cineworld, Starbucks, 360 Play, Paradise Island Adventure Golf, Flip Out, Rock Up, Heavenly Desserts, TGI Fridays, Hopmaster, Nando’s, Zizzi, Five Guys, Blue Mountain Yard and Greggs.

Open as normal: All shops and the following cafés/restaurants: Wildwood, Pizza Express, Wagamama, Bills, Jamaica Blue, Patisserie Valerie, Bewiched and Costa.

Please telephone Customer Service if you require any further information: 01933 427925.