Clocks, duvet covers, even skirts: In this selfie-obsessed age there’s nothing you can’t put your face on
- Broadcaster Emma Freud, 56, gave partner suitcase covered in a photo of herself
- Mostly women aged 24 to 33 request their pictures to be printed on items
- Can be everything from wash bags to duvets, pyjamas and even underwear
My sleeping partner is as tall as I am, infinitely more imposing and, I fear, not terribly attractive.
Emblazoned on its fabric are eyes as big as saucepans, endless expanses of pink complexion interspersed with foot-long wrinkles.
Femail’s Antonia Hoyle shopped for as many products as she could find to put a photo of her face on
And a smile supposed to be both cryptic and coolly aloof.
HERE’S WHERE YOU CAN GET ITEMS WITH PHOTOS OF YOURSELF PRINTED ON THEM
1. DUVET COVER
Super-sized and slightly scary, this cotton blend cover exposes every flaw.
£229, (super king size), Bags of Love
2. PILLOW CASE
Warning: sleep on it and you’ll wake up next to an even more wrinkled version of yourself.
£24, Bags of Love
Better quality than any puzzle I’ve ever bought on the High Street. My children enjoyed putting me back together, even if being reduced to small pieces was strangely unnerving to start with.
£10 (30 pieces), TShirt Studio
4. SHOPPING BAG
So what if I still have to do my own grocery shopping? I can pretend I’m a star with this personalised jute bag.
5. GREETINGS CARDS
A bizarre way to show you’re thinking of someone else, and one that would be met with short shrift, I’m absolutely certain, were I to send to friends or family.
£12.95 (Set of 10), Photobox
Apparently one of the most reques- ted personalised items, but it was bizarrely tricky to upload a photo onto without cutting off my forehead and chin.
The sight of my heart-shaped discombobulated head made me feel slightly queasy, and frankly had my husband running for the door.
£22, Photogifts Ltd
8. OVEN GLOVES
One for budding chefs, perhaps, but anathema to me, especially in rather impractical white.
9. HEART-SHAPED PENDANT
Refreshingly subtle, this rhodium pendant has my face printed as a hologram. My seven-year-old daughter loves it.
10. GLASS CHOPPING BOARD
For narcissists with a masochistic streak, I found slicing carrots over my skin strangely therapeutic after a difficult day.
£20, Photogifts Ltd
11. MOUSE MAT
An office essential, albeit not one I necessarily want my face to stare up at me from.
£6, TShirt Studio
12. MAKE-UP BAG
My cosmetic artifice is aptly contained in the confines of this selfie-covered bag.
£34, Bags of Love
A floral display or countryside panorama? Pah! Putting a picture of myself on my drink mats will prove a much more provocative way of breaking the ice among guests.
£1 each, TShirt Studio
14. iPHONE CASE
The ultimate in self-indulgent meta-narrative. It all starts with a selfie, after all, so having a smartphone cover with a photograph of a selfie on it makes sense.
15. TEDDY BEAR
With my face in miniature on the bear’s T-shirt, this proved an instant hit with my son, and would reassure smaller children in their mothers’ absence.
£15, Photogifts Ltd
16. CHOCOLATE CARD
Now I’ve learned swallow my own hype, this white and milk chocolate block went down rather well.
Perhaps not one for those with emotional baggage. And not one my husband was prepared to be seen in public with either, sadly.
£120, Bags of Love
Made of leather and blessedly discreet, a good starter gift for narcissist novices.
£14, Bags of Love
19. FLIP FLOPS
My face is divided in half for each foot, with each half looking outward, making me look decidedly shifty.
Yes, Kim Kardashian has a life-sized semi-naked picture of herself in her home, but my more modest portrait is still more likely to be consigned to the upstairs loo.
40x60cm, £51.94, Photobox
Never mind that pesky electricity bill. With magnets of myself to fix such tedious reminders to my fridge I can clearly see what —or who — really matters.
£11.95 (Set of nine), Photobox
My picture is imprinted onto the front and back of this skirt, leaving me quite literally sitting on my head. Very strange.
Skirt, £39, Bags of Love
A prerequisite for modern hen parties, personalised T-shirts have never been more popular. This company encourages customers to put captions with their picture.
Unsurprisingly, all I could think of was my name. Something more humorous might have occurred to my husband.
£13, TShirt Studio
JUST A MINUTE! Isn’t there is a certain irony in holding back the ravages of time by immortalising myself onto a clock face?
£16, TShirt Studio
It is a duvet cover, on which I have had imprinted a giant picture of my face.
What do you mean, why?
Surely you don’t still think photographs belong in frames on your mantelpiece and your appearance is something you should be checking out in a mirror?
In an era of escalating self-obsession, personalised products such as my new bedding are, for everyone in the know, a must-have purchase.
A wry and not-particularly-subtle nod to our narcissistic age.
Just ask Emma Freud, who recently packed her screenwriter partner Richard Curtis off to the States with a suitcase covered in a picture of herself.
‘Just wanted to makes sure he knew which was his bag at the carousel,’ quipped broadcaster Emma, 56.
And adding an obligatory snap of the luggage to her Twitter feed.
But she’s not the only one doing it.
The advent of social media, the pervasive grip of celebrity culture and the unstoppable rise of the ‘selfie’ have left us all clamouring for our share of the limelight, and there are plenty of companies happy to feed our appetite.
Personalised products are big business, and we can bandy our image about on everything from duvet covers to flip flops and mousemats.
One survey revealed customers are prepared to pay 20 per cent more for the privilege of owning them.
Of course, most choose to personalise gifts with the faces of loved ones, rather than their own mugshots, but the potential for attention-seeking is nonetheless endless.
Ekaterina Vankova is the content editor at Bags of Love, the personalised gift company from whom I bought my duvet cover.
She said: ‘The fact that people nowadays are much more self-obsessed with their image drives our sales.
‘Everyone likes a selfie, so why not put a selfie on a product?
‘It didn’t happen five years ago, but is definitely a trend now.’
The company’s customers are mostly women aged 24 to 33.
They apparently request their photos to be printed on everything from wash bags to suitcases, pyjamas and, ahem, underwear.
‘It’s about personal brand expansion.
‘I think everyone wants to be a bit famous.’
Predictably, those who are already famous have led the way.
Although whether they are seeking to separate themselves from their public persona, having a laugh at their own expense, or simply trying to get through airport security quicker by doing so isn’t always obvious.
Singers Miley Cyrus, 25, and Taylor Swift, 28, have been pictured wearing T-shirts of themselves.
Along with socialite Paris Hilton, 37, who has worn an Andy Warhol-inspired imprint of her image.
Reality star Kim Kardashian, 37, upped the ante by commissioning a custom-made jacket on which pictures from her Instagram account.
Each were painstakingly painted on by an artist in a process that took six weeks.
Then there’s the wall ‘art’.
Stars quite unashamedly hang up posters of themselves in their homes.
Just to underline how famous and fabulous they are.
Model Kylie Jenner, 20, has had an entire mural of her face painted on a wall of her Los Angeles mansion.
While actress Emily Ratajkowski, 26, hosts a giant screenshot of one of her Instagram selfies.
Replete with ‘likes’ and her followers’ comments (which appear devoid of anyone telling her she’s lost the plot) on the wall of her apartment.
The fashion world, is, undoubtedly fuelling this trend.
Earlier this year Gucci models were sent down the catwalk carrying macabre replicas of their own heads to represent ‘the dualism and dichotomy of identity.’
Less pompous but still pricey is accessories designer Anya Hindmarch.
Her coveted Be a Bag range, allows customers to imprint their photo on a variety of washbags (costing upwards of £175).
And the Italian brand Prada, which has designed a customisation service for its brogues.
This allows you to monogram your initials on the bottom of the shoe (if you’re willing to pay £740 for the privilege).
For those of us without A-List bank balances, there are plenty of online stores and, indeed, supermarkets, prepared to print your face on its product, without requiring you take out a second mortgage.
In part, they are profiting from a move away from the mass production.
‘People don’t want to buy from the High Street any more.
‘They want original, smart, clever gifts,’ claims Vankova.
They’re hardly short of options.
I discovered this when I took a selfie on my smartphone ready to upload and shopped for as many products as I could find to put it on.
Up until I was sick of the sight of myself.
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