November 15, 2013 02:00 PM

Courtesy (clockwise) Penguin, Cox & Cox, Modern House Wine, Rust and 72 Editions

When we saw Gwyneth Paltrow‘s Goop gift guide land in our email inboxes Thursday, we winced, closed our eyes and clicked. This is, after all, the gal who has recommended a $649 artistic iPod player and a personal SoulCycle bike as good and thoughtful gifts for your pals at Christmas time. It’s not just that the items are pricey, but they occasionaly can tend to the tone-deaf as well, and we were bracing ourselves for just that.

Turns out, our fears were unfounded. Oh sure, there are multi-thousand dollar kitchen tool sets and $500 monogrammed PJs, but there are actually a few things that we totally dug — and that don’t even require a movie star budget to afford. So Gwyneth, if you’re listening and want to play Santa, here are some of the items we’re most into. And we also had to mention one that proves Paltrow is still up to her usual tricks.

PHOTOS: Last Night’s Look – Love It or Leave It? Vote now!

Some of our Paltrow-recommended faves, clockwise from top left: the “Penguin Threads” collection of classics with the prettiest covers ever ($16 for a paperback); pretty much the best sheets we’ve ever seen (with a tiara pillow and ballgown duvet) for $112; Modern House Wine, which really communicates what you’re trying to say to the recipient (we like “Expensive”) for $13; plates and platters you can have personalized with your initials or name (this one, with initials and a date carved into the birch tree, is $115.

But of course, there have to be a few gifts that bear that signature Goop mark of being fancy, specific and a little goofy. For instance, we question the wisdom behind spending $120 on a neon pink striped slingshot that you couldn’t possibly use for anything besides starting a conversation — and if your kid it picked up, you’d have a heart attack.

What did you think of this year’s gift guide? Anything outrageous — or secretly on your wish list?

–Alex Apatoff

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