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The best possible gifts for when flowers aren’t going to cut it

When the s**t hits the fan for friends, family and colleagues, we send flowers.

It’s become a sympathy reflex, a go-to gift to say you’re thinking of someone, whether they’re going through something life-changing or just having a tough day. And there’s nothing wrong with that – it’s always lovely to know someone cares.

But sometimes, especially for long-term issues or slightly difficult situations, you find yourself searching for a more original or useful present than a beautiful bouquet. What about the friends who are going through miscarriage, having gruelling chemotherapy, facing an extended hospital stay? Bereavement, bad news or simply trying to handle being a new parent?

We’ve curated a gallery of thoughtful and unusual gifts, including subscriptions, hampers and services for when flowers just don’t cut it.

(Plus, most are also just great Christmas or birthday presents for pretty much anyone.)

Additional images: iStock

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