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Meet the women outsourcing their Christmas gift shopping

From grocery shopping to ironing, it seems there’s no chore you can’t outsource to professionals these days.

And now a new generation of women are making a living from one of the most dreaded tasks of the festive season: Christmas present buying.

Hailed as a godsend for time-pushed parents and busy working professionals, the services take the stress out of festive shopping – but often come with an eye-watering price tag. 

No one knows this better than Milda Chellingsworth, founder of Styling For You, who charges £680 a day for her services and is currently in the midst of the most busy periods of the year.  

Previously a fashion buyer for a high street retailer, she turned her attention to personal shopping almost a decade ago.

Milda Chellingsworth, founder of Styling For You, charges £680 a day for her services and is currently in the midst of the most busy periods of the year thanks to time-pushed parents

One of Milda’s clients, Virginia Hunter, spoke to MailOnline about why she outsources her presents – and why she hasn’t looked back.

Virginia, 41, from south-east London, said: ‘I started using Milda’s service in 2013 when I was 34 weeks pregnant with twins and had a one year old. I had the twins a week before Christmas Day. 

‘I was exhausted had no time so reluctantly handed over present buying to someone else. 

‘I had always been someone who prided myself on my present buying skills and was known for spending a lot of time buying thoughtful perfect gifts for people. It was my thing.

‘Styling For You is a luxury personal shopping and styling company, so it may seem pricey but saves me a lot of time and I do save.

Busy mum: One of Milda's clients, Virginia Hunter (pictured here with her husband) spoke to MailOnline about why she outsources her presents - and why she'll never look back

Busy mum: One of Milda’s clients, Virginia Hunter (pictured here with her husband) spoke to MailOnline about why she outsources her presents – and why she’ll never look back

Virginia with her twins in 2013. She said: said: 'I started using Milda’s service in 2013 when I was 34 weeks pregnant with twins and had a one year old. I had the twins a week before Christmas Day'

Virginia with her twins in 2013. She said: said: ‘I started using Milda’s service in 2013 when I was 34 weeks pregnant with twins and had a one year old. I had the twins a week before Christmas Day’

‘Her services are £85 per hour, but for Christmas presents she charges us for one days work and that’s £680. This includes research and shop.

‘We normally meet up to write a list of people and what they like as well as discuss budgets we want to spend on each person. 

‘Then she goes and does her research and we confirm once all is found and she will organise all payments and wrapping.’

Over the years, gifts Milda has snapped up for Virginia include personalised presents for the children and a cooking experience for her husband with Raymond Blanc. 

Virginia gets to spend more time with her children (pictured) since outsourcing her shopping. She said: 'I had always been someone who prided myself on my present buying skills and was known for spending a lot of time buying thoughtful perfect gifts for people. It was my thing'

Virginia gets to spend more time with her children (pictured) since outsourcing her shopping. She said: ‘I had always been someone who prided myself on my present buying skills and was known for spending a lot of time buying thoughtful perfect gifts for people. It was my thing’

‘I get her to buy some gifts for my immediate family and then a range of extended family and friends in the UK and overseas in Canada, America and New Zealand,’ she said. I still buy a few gifts for my husband and kids of course.’ 

Price of Milda’s shopping services 

. £85 per hour

. £680 per day

. £100 for a consultation 

Virginia, who works as a healer at virginiahunterhealing.com, had planned to just use Milda’s services for one year but was so pleased with the results she’s used them every year since.

She explained: ‘The lead-up to Christmas is so busy with three children’s Christmas events and parties and then my husband’s corporate events.

‘When you have three kids under the age of two, it is a real reality check. You have to really surrender to the things you cannot do or do well, prioritise and outsource.

‘You have no time and the time you do have you want to spend it on important 

‘things. So I outsource many jobs now as I’m time poor and it’s a false economy to do it yourself when someone else can do it much better than me in much less time.’  



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk