Not a nautical themed pashmina afghan, please.
December 29, 2011 4:40 PM   Subscribe

I'm looking for a gift for someone who just bought an ancient 35-foot yacht that she intends to spend the next couple of years renovating, and then live in. I want it to be kind of a house-warming gift, but, y'know, for a boat.

I know nothing about boats. If you do, I'd love any suggestions for something that will be useful, but also fun or otherwise something she wouldn't think to get for herself. The money for the renovations isn't a problem for her, so I don't need a gift that contributes to those, necessarily.

She likes quirky things, even tending towards the kitschy. She does a lot of fishing. She's not planning on making big trips overseas; just sailing around the harbour and bays in Auckland.

The gift needs to be something that is either easily able to be posted internationally, or available to buy online from somewhere in Auckland or with reasonable shipping fees to Auckland.

I'm thinking of spending $100 max, including delivery costs.
posted by lollusc to Shopping (19 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Antique barometer? Captain's hat?
posted by chaiminda at 4:45 PM on December 29, 2011

How about a bottle of champagne/wine for the boat christening she can have when the renovations are finished?
posted by Houstonian at 4:48 PM on December 29, 2011

Engraved ship's bell.
posted by rabidsegue at 5:01 PM on December 29, 2011

Wow, these are already awesome answers! Keep them coming!
posted by lollusc at 5:11 PM on December 29, 2011

If you go the champagne bottle route, be sure to purchase a christening bottle instead of a regular bottle, lest you hurt yourself or the boat.
posted by xingcat at 5:23 PM on December 29, 2011 [1 favorite]

Auckland nautical charts
posted by BitterOldPunk at 5:24 PM on December 29, 2011 [2 favorites]

As a former owner of an ancient boat my first recommendation would be a suitcase full of hundred dollar bills.
A more practical idea would be some of the legally (and sensibly) required safety stuff like life jackets, a floating heaving line, a manual bilge pump or a floating flashlight.
Maybe a small portable stove she can use until the galley is set up or a beer cooler.
Tools should always be welcome and a marlin spike knife would be quite nautical.
posted by islander at 5:31 PM on December 29, 2011 [4 favorites]

A marine compass or depth finder would fall under $100.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 5:39 PM on December 29, 2011

I've been sailing a few times and each has included "cup" or beer holders that attach to the lines around the boat that as the boat tilts they stay level. (Knowing little about big boats myself, I don't know if these are only useful for sailing boats or others as well.)
posted by raccoon409 at 5:39 PM on December 29, 2011

A depth finder is handy if she plans on sailing near the shore. She doesn't want to get stuck ashore and have to try to push a 35-foot boat out of the mud.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 5:41 PM on December 29, 2011

A keychain float. Looks cute and keeps your keys from sinking when you drop them. (A friend who lived on a boat for ten years had one.)
posted by Margalo Epps at 6:09 PM on December 29, 2011 [2 favorites]

Instead of an embroidered "Home Sweet Home" pillow, you could get her an embroidered floatation pillow that says: "The two best days of owning a boat are the day you buy your boat and the day you sell you boat."

Shorter: "A boat is a hole in the water you throw money into."
posted by OmieWise at 6:11 PM on December 29, 2011 [1 favorite]

A snuggly blanket embroidered with the name of her boat would be a thoughtful gift. Boat people seem to love stuff with the boat's name on it: polo shorts, mugs, key floatie things, boat bags [those canvas tote things], pillows. Or a copy of one of the old standard sailing books. Around here it's Moby Dick. Might want to dig around this website some.
posted by jessamyn at 7:25 PM on December 29, 2011

Seconding the usual tools, customized or really good quality.

It's traditional at my marina to pin up your used/deployed key buoy on the bulletin board. One of those would make a great stocking stuffer.

A really good knife or multitool engraved with her name would be a good gift. I'm very partial to Leatherman brand stainless tools and have bought quite a few to replace the ones Poseidon has taken.

She assuredly has lifejackets aboard, but does she have one comfortable enough to wear in the height of summer and whenever she's just puttering around on deck ? A really good self-inflating PFD, maybe monogrammed, would be a good gift. After an unwitnessed dunking and head-whacking last summer, I've become a big fan of the self-inflator because it's so comfortable.
posted by Kakkerlak at 11:41 PM on December 29, 2011 [1 favorite]

A comfort seat is great, and typically one of these products that looks way too expensive to just buy for yourself because you don't really need it and cheap boat seats work just fine too. I'm sure there are comparable products in the US as well, but wouldn't know about other brands. I do love the model I linked, and they are well liked by boat owners I know.
posted by davar at 2:49 AM on December 30, 2011

Thanks, everyone.

I think it will come down to what I can easily get online from a NZ shop. I especially like the captain's hat idea, since she has been insisting on people calling her "captain", lately! Also the keychain float will be a definite extra, no matter what else I get.

The practical gifts sound great in theory, but she has been using a friend's boat a lot the past few years, and the friend has now sold it and passed some stuff on to her, so it's possible she already has some of navigation charts, comfy lifejackets, depth finder, compass, etc.
posted by lollusc at 4:30 AM on December 30, 2011

Minature Cannon.
posted by craven_morhead at 7:20 AM on December 30, 2011

A bucket for her tears?

Kidding, the captain's hat sounds like a good fit.
posted by brand-gnu at 12:21 PM on December 30, 2011

I got her a captain's hat and a keychain float, from SmartMarine. Thanks!
posted by lollusc at 9:22 PM on March 4, 2012

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