random favorites: gifts that keep on giving.
you know your loved ones and what they want better than i ever could, but if you're stuck, here are a few of my favorite gifts (both to give, and to receive).
bare hands is the ultimate in natural nail care for the ones you love. this home manicure set started with founder suzanne shade’s simple idea that natural nails should be just that; shined and nourished with the same ingredients you find in high-end organic skincare. bye bye, salon, say hello instead to luxurious home manicures made easy.
light your tapers and tealights in quirky style with jayson home’s quirky but chic eye matches. the reusable matchbox features a delightfully eerie vintage illustration of an eye, taken from celebrated designer john derian’s expansive collection of antique images.
niwaki rattan snips are made with comfortable handles wrapped in wisteria rattan, these fine garden snips are ideal for foraging in nature, cutting flowers, and also work as desk scissors and are handcrafted by artisans in sanjo, japan. i carry mine everywhere — you never know when you may need a snip, snip.
jayson home’s match cloches are a go-to gift of mine. hand blown from smoky glass, containing 120 natural (and refillable) matches, and held in place by a cork stopper, they’re elegant but affordable. the handy flint strip on the side of the bottle makes simple the task of striking each match to light your candles and incense so easily — and beautifully.
i’ve got a wee crush on this cute la maison inondée bowl with its sweet little house at the center. these whimsical dishes turn eating into an adventure — the smaller bowl is perfectly sized for children and might even get them to eat those veggies. the larger size makes a striking spot for storing baubles, too.
don’t let the name fool you — the boy smells candle in cinderose smells anything but boyish. their 50-hour-long burning candles made from all-natural coconut & beeswax are a favorite of mine and the perfect gift. cheeky but luxury-scented candles for home are always welcome presents.
of gardens is an ode to francis bacon’s 1625 essay, a paean to the pleasures of a garden ablaze with blooming flowers. it’s a bouquet of citrus and floral scents: notes of bergamot blend with lemon and neroli, which mingle with a base of musk and sandalwood. just delicious on your body.
pomme16’s gorgeous handmade fine jewelry is made from 14, 18, and 22k gold with a whole lot of passion and love by talya mor, jewelry designer and goldsmith. with a story behind every piece, ancient symbolism and meaning can be found in each design, and her amulets with personal prayers inside, protect loved ones on their journey, and other prayer wards away the evil eye.
ha ko is a uniquely leaf-shaped incense that is crafted from japanese washi paper and imbued with natural essential oils. when burned, leaves emit a light wisp of fragrant smoke that cleanses your personal space and helps transform your mood instantly. what a thoughtful gift.
i found out about astier de villatte’s incense sticks on my last trip to paris when i visited their very dreamy-smelling shop. their incense evokes the distinctive characters of a variety of different scents: wisps of tobacco, leather, ambergris, and angelica root essence — and now will forever remind me of paris.
i first discovered pre de provence artisanal french soap when in marseille. their soap bars are enriched with shea butter and feel (and smell) so good on your skin. made using old-world methods in the french provence produces a soap that has few impurities and an incredibly smooth texture which creates a longer-lasting soap, too. my favorites are verbena, lavender, and mint leaf.
i was given le lebo’s santal 33 eau de parfum one year for christmas, and i’ve never gone back — it’s now my signature scent, and i must say, i get asked what i’m wearing all the time. its famously well-balanced blend of milky sandalwood and comforting iris only came to fruition after a painstaking number of trials, and well worth it. it’s quite long-lasting, too.
j’adore ginny sims hard to come by ceramics. i found out about her uniquely beautiful works of art on instagram and have been trying to gift myself one of her pieces ever since. ginny announces her upcoming sales on instagram and it’s up to us to set our alarms to nab one and fast. a very beautiful and hard-won gift to be sure.
i bought this present for moi. webster’s dictionary defines “vermeil” as “gilded silver.” and you could always just google that — but wouldn’t it be so much chicer to look it up in your very own vermeil leather dictionary & thesaurus? this gorgeous tome is covered in luxe pale gold leather and cleverly embossed with “words” across its front cover. for the wordsmiths in your life.
i saw alessi’s pulcina stovetop coffee maker in a paris shop window and had to hunt her down upon my return. for the coffee lovers in your life, this beauty makes 6 cups of espresso and does it easily while also looking fabulous on your stove. for your coffee aficionados and italian design-loving friends everywhere.
for the competitive sporty spices in your life, might i suggest the always portable game of boules? boules is the french word for balls, and a game played in the park or any field of flat greens, flattened earth or gravel and is perhaps the sport that is closest to french hearts. similar to british lawn bowling or italian bocce, it’s the perfect picnic game and quite easy to learn.
the latest from british designer luke edward hall is his dreamy new collection of fashionable clothing. i’m smitten with his chateau wool crewneck jumper (aka sweater) with a design inspired by souvenir sweaters featuring luke's handwritten chateau logo. i got myself the vest because that’s the unspoken golden gift rule — one for them; one for moi.
holiday by pamela fiori is a gorgeous look into the magazine sensation holiday, which portrayed the romance of travel like no other from 1946 to 1977. known for its bold layouts, literary credibility, and incredible collection of photographers and artists, it’s stunning as a vacation-inspired gift for your favorite travel-lover.
how about a handcrafted woven rattan house basket from dear keaton for the brand-new homeowner? it’s sure to add a bit of cheerful whimsy to anyone’s decor and is quite perfect for small storage. perhaps you load it up with much-needed supplies for the pantry? or it’s also simply darling for packing a petite picnic in the park.
from one of my favorite homeware and ceramics shops, lrnce comes this l’amour plate for, you guessed it — your true love. it’s a beautifully unique way to say i love you, with its pretty scalloped edges and hand-painted words of adoration. you might even like to bake something special and add it to this pretty plate before hand delivering it to your loved one.
oh wow — also called a boule, but this time with its optical bubbles, a hurricane boule candle votive gives off a gorgeous shimmering light with a hefty, luxurious weight. since these are handcrafted candle lanterns, each one is completely unique, and boules are just as beautiful as petite vases for flowers, too.
for your fancy, fashionable friend, i love these softly textured fringe collars from erica tanov — an iconic colder-weather favorite. the alpaca fringe collar adds an effortless finishing touch and a big bit of oomph to any winter coat or sweater with just a subtle touch of color, style, and texture. gimme!
for the gardener or farmer in your life, i really love the kinfolk garden: how to live with nature by john burns. written around the idea of nature as nourishment, this beautifully photographed book explores lush gardens and plant-filled homes around the world and introduces the inspiring green thumbs who coax them into bloom. through visits to friends, the kinfolk team teaches us the secrets to a good garden and what good a garden can do for our self-care, creativity, and communities. lovely!
for your burgeoning writer, this collection of vintage pencils from the boston general store embraces a love for vintage and intersects with an enthusiasm for unique writing utensils. bundled into neat little bouquets, these vintage pencils each have stories to tell with perfectly sharpened points, i like to imagine how each one came into use. for all the nerds with pocket protectors, we secretly love.
for loved ones that enjoy a sip of the bubbly now and then, a champagne bottle glass ornament by hudson grace is the perfect gift to celebrate the holidays.
mushrooms are quite on-trend right now for a variety of reasons, so for your mushroom-loving pals, this german glass mushroom ornament from inge-glas is the spot-on ornament to add to their tree.
who doesn’t adore a sloth? only those without a soul, that’s who. in tribute to my love of sloths is this blown glass sloth ornament from old world christmas. darling.
for the beach bums and surf-loving friends in your life, i bring you the hula girl dancer glass ornament from old world christmas. island vibes forever.
oh meow. everyone’s got a cat-lover in their life, and this sweet tabby cat glass blown ornament from old world christmas is the purrfect gift for feline fans.
i like this ornament because it evokes old school trees of yesteryear. perfect for your vintage-loving gift recipients — the limelight flare reflection ornament from wayfair.
for the traditionalists in your life, santa always deserves a spot on the tree, and christopher radko is known for making the very best in keepsake ornaments. this santa face ornament is just one of the hundreds in their collection.
cheers! nothing says happy holidays like a toast — naturally chilled, up with a twist and an olive for me, please. i quite think james bond would love this holiday martini ornament from burke decor.
for the hoarders in your life? too much? a subtle hint, perhaps? anyway, this inge-glas forest squirrel ornament is quite sweet.
for the wiener dog lovers (ahem, moi?) in your life, and who isn't, i give you the very adorable dachshund glass ornament from old world christmas.
i couldn’t resist another bottle ornament — this cheers bottle ornament from old world christmas just screams ‘start the holiday festivities’ and is perhaps the perfect hostess gift.
i’m a huge fan of saving the bees, and bloomingdale's glass honeycomb ornament is the ideal ornament for those naturalist honeys in your life who love the bees, too.