Ohhhhhh, what to buy

Kent State students, local retailers discuss the ideal gifts for the special people in their lives

Thanksgiving is a time for family gatherings and homecooked food — and, of course, the shopping that follows bright and early the next morning.

The day after Thanksgiving, known as Black Friday, is considered one of the busiest shopping days of the year, complete with huge sales and long lines. Stores and retailers have no question that merchandise will sell on this unofficial holiday.

It’s what shoppers will buy that is the question.

From simple stocking stuffers to hundred-dollar purchases, the prices and options seem endless.

To help avoid giving dad that same old tie and significant other a gift they hate, the features staff of the Stater asked around: What do you want this year? What’s the ideal gift for you?

So, before heading out to battle the crowds, take a look at what some Kent State students hope to find under the tree this year.

For Friends

Save (Under $50)

Shopping for your friend and want to find something nice that fits into your tight budget?

For Jordan Blank, freshman integrated social studies major, sports-related gifts are the way to go.

“I want a jersey — either a football or a basketball one,” he said.

For shoppers looking to save money, check out the selection at Wal-Mart — assorted jerseys begin at $24.83, and both male and female sizes are available.

Splurge (More than $50)

For really close friends, the “under $20” section may not suffice.

What better way is there to let a friend know how much they are appreciated than by splurging a little?

“I want a GPS (Global Positioning System),” Blank said. “I get lost everywhere, and it shows you where you are.”

The Garmin – StreetPilot C340 GPS is available at Best Buy for $299.99.

Chad Skutle, senior conservation major, said he would like to get a Playstation 3, available at Circuit City for $499.99.

“That would be nice,” he said. “I could play Major League Baseball on it.”

For some, clothes were a popular option when shopping for girl friends.

“You could get a nice sweater or something from Abercrombie or Hollister,” freshman communications major Kelly Petryszyn said. “They’re expensive, but nice.”

— Maria Nann and Anna Duszkiewicz

For the girlfriend

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From tea sets to good reads, there are plenty of options when shopping for your girlfriend this holiday season.

An unique gift idea for this season can be found at Urban Outfitters: a Tea for One set, priced at $24.

“Anyone who likes tea and quaint pieces will think this is adorable,” said Urban Outfitter’s employee Tia Browning. “It has a teapot that stacks on top of the mug and the pattern is cute. I’d tell my boy to get this for me so we can have chai together,” she said.

A good read is also a good buy.

“Charmed Thirds,” by Megan McCafferty, is available at Barnes and Noble for $13.95.

“It’s kind of a rite of passage for girls to read McCafferty’s books about Jessica Darling. They are so witty and down-to-earth,” said Barnes and Noble employee Sara Leech. “This is the latest one about Jessica Darling going to college.”

Splurge (More than $50)

Looking to get on your girlfriend’s good side?

An extra special gift could do the trick.

Best Buy employee Brian Pugliese recommends “Sex and the City — The Complete Collector’s Series.”

This box set, which looks like a velvet pink Bible, is sure to please any girl.

“Yeah, my girlfriend would flip if I got her that,” Pugliese said. “I’m pretty sure every female alive loves Carrie Bradshaw. See, even I know her name. Carrie’s a cool chick.”

The set is available not only at stores, but at Amazon.com, too, for $158.99.

Nicole Mossbruger, senior interpersonal communication major, recommended that boyfriends look at buying Victoria’s Secret Ultimate Sex Kit.

Mossbruger, who admits she would never buy this for herself, said girls would love this gift because Victoria’s Secret has quality makeup. She also said it’s a great idea because girls love dressing up and feeling pretty.

— Brenna McNamara

For the boyfriend

Andrea Bluell, sophomore fashion merchandising major, and Tim Claypoole, freshman secondary education major, have been dating for the past three years. When it comes to buying gifts for one another for the holidays, they often set limits.

“We usually have a price range,” Bluell said, “but we haven’t really discussed it yet.”

Over the years, Claypoole received a variety of gifts from Bluell, from patterned Vans shoes to belts. Keeping a budget in mind, he said he would prefer to get clothes or CDs this year.

For sophomore business major Zach Smith, steering clear of buying clothes is a must.

“Clothes such as shirts or hoodies are okay, but when girls buy pants, they always mess up the size,” he said.

For a cheaper gift, Smith said he would prefer iTunes music instead.

Splurge (More than $50)

Although Claypoole and Bluell said they will probably set their spending limit this holiday season at $50, Claypoole said if he could choose a more expensive gift, it would be a tattoo.

Ryan Fifhley, an employee at Defiance Tattoos in Kent, said the minimum price on their tattoos starts at $40 for smaller tattoos. Fifhley said business usually increases around the holiday season.

— Hillary Craig

For mom

Save (Under $50)

From mother’s day to Christmas, shopping for mom is common year around.

For Natalia Miyake, sophomore fashion merchandising major, expensive gifts for Mom are the norm. However, Miyake said if she was on a budget she would look at buying her mom scarves for winter. A wide variety of fashionable winter scarves can be found at local stores, including Wal-Mart and Guess, and a wide range of prices are also available, depending on the brand.

Freshman fashion merchandising major Sarah Callison said if she were trying to save money, she would buy her mom perfume.

Try Very Sexy Sheer Sexy Mist, available at Victoria Secret stores, $22 for 8.4 oz.

Splurge (More than $50)

Splurging on gifts for mom seems like a common thing for Kent State students to do.

Miyake chooses to splurge every year for her mom, and this year her and her sister are splitting the cost of a Louis Vuitton purse. (Estimated $2,000)

Callison also splurges for this occasion.

“Last year, I broke a wine glass so I bought her a wine glass that was way more expensive last Christmas to replace it,” she said.

Sticking with the popular purse idea, Callison said she hopes to find her mom a nice Coach purse to replace the one that she had broken for the holiday this year.

— Samantha Tosado

For dad

Save (Under $50)

Cami Smith, freshman marketing major, is one of many who shops for money-saving deals, including when shopping for dad. She said in the past, she has gotten him the same thing every year.

“He likes to build car models,” she said. “I like to get him tools for work, such as drill bits or a screw driver set.”

This year, however, she is looking for something different.

“My dad is a workaholic so when he comes home he just wants to lay around,” she said, explaining why she is going to buy him pajamas and slippers this year.

Smith recommends shopping at Walmart for these items – where men’s sleepwear sets are priced as low as $12.92

Freshman exploratory major Katie Brautigan said good deals can also be found at Sears, which is where she plans to shop for her dad.

“This year I’ll probably get him one of those neon light signs because we have a bar downstairs,” she said.

Splurge (More than $50)

Sophomore flight technology major Stu Young opens up his wallet for his dad.

Young said he spends a lot of money when shopping for his dad. “He’s pretty easy to shop for,” he said.

Young said him and his father like to go hunting, so he likes to get him hunting supplies at outdoor stores, such as Fur Fin & Feather.

“Last year I got him some camo stuff,” he said.

For those shopping for hunting supplies, Fur Fin & Feather offers Blackhawk gloves for $44.99 and vests for $79.99.

— Samantha Tosado