THE ART OF GIVING
By Ruth J. Katz
Some of us are Type A shoppers who keep the holidays in mind—and eyes peeled—for the just-right gift all year long. Others of us are the last-minute power types, heading out into the seasonal fray armed with a scribbled list, plenty of optimism, and a healthy dose of determination. Whichever category you happen to fall into, here are some suggestions meant to enhance the pleasure of giving. After all, generosity is the essence of the season—and the spirit of life. That’s why a thoughtful, well-chosen present brings such joy to both the giver and the receiver alike.
ALWAYS IN VOGUE
A stunning lattice-work bracelet boasting a veritable network of pearls, amethysts, and diamonds.
Tara Pearls, available at
Rare-colored Seafoam Tourmaline adorns 18 kt gold necklace and matching earrings.
Jemily Fine Jewelry (jemily.com).
Perched on a stand, this amazing Sensor Mirror Pro also features 10X magnifier for facial fussing.
Simple Human (simplehuman.com).
From Bond No. 9, the company that has interpreted Gotham’s various nabes with provocative and romantic scents, comes the newest fragrance, “New York Night.”
Bond No. 9 (bondno9.com).
THE WRITE STUFF
There is nothing as thoughtful as a handwritten note on fine stationery. This fun “Subway Collection” is an homage to The Big Apple’s underground. Dempsey & Carroll (dempseyandcarroll.com).
Fragrance that invites you on a journey to places you love (or places you dream of) are these scents inspired by the Caribbean flowers; there are a series of six fragrances.
SOUL ON SOLE
Inspirational messages like “Dance It Off” and “I Love You” make these colorful Peruvian pima-cotton foot fashion a must-have.
Posie Turner (posieturner.com)
The perfect way to remove grit and grime is with Mia 2, which cleanses and polishes to perfection. Clarisonic available at Amazon (amazon.com).
HI-TECH GOES LUXE
The French firm Jean Rousseau, best known for its extraordinary handmade watchbands, also creates small leather goods in exotic leathers (ostrich and alligator) like this iPad case in fuchsia.
Jean Rousseau (jeanrousseau.com).
SMOOTH AS SILK
For true connoisseurs who appreciate the finer things: Balvenie’s single barrel, sherry cask-aged Scotch whisky.
This “Cuban Cigar” Collection featuring four different warm and woodsy scents will please his every mood.
It’s like a flash drive for your iPhone and iPad. DataTraveler Bolt Duo with
USB Lightning connector (and protective case) creates extra storage space and data back-up for your pix.
OPEN AND SHUT CASE
Finally, a simple-to-use umbrella with both auto-open and auto-close. Shed Rain’s e-Motion motorized and rechargeable brollie keeps you dry (46-inch arc) and folds up to 14.
Shed Rain (shedrain.com).
IT’S A WRAP
Known for his cutting-edge designs, Ben Sherman introduces the latest in leather accessories. Ben Sherman (bensherman.com).
“The Wine Master” from Swiss Army is a multi-tool with corkscrew, two-hinged lever (opens bottles), serrated foil-cutter, and more. Available in a leather storage case.
Swiss Army (swissarmy.com).
This mini-printer produces two different pictures (of the same print) It’s a snap to use: Connect your smart phone right to the Kodak Dock printer and within minutes, it produces 4” x 6” prints with one touch.
TEA FOR TWO
The Hendrick’s Gin BoomCase has all you need for tea service—with gin! Best of all, the case is a rechargeable boom box in a vintage case.
York Street Studio’s new 28-inch backgammon set can be customized to suit your taste. The standard interior is made with fine-grained calf leather that allows the oak game pieces to slide smoothly across it.
York Street Studio (yorkstreet.com).
STAR OF WONDER
This edible, majestic chocolate star from La Maison du Chocolat embodies the season’s symbolism. Everything from this confectioner is amazing; the entire holiday “Starlit Night Collection” features nuts, fruits, and appetizing flavors. La Maison du Chocolat (lamaisonduchocolat.fr/en).
MAKE A STATEMENT
The glamorous “La Rosa” serving bowl from Alessi’s newest Brass Collection features a burnished golden tone with a protective coating for food safety.
A delish centerpiece to eat or bring as a hostess gift is Etsy’s “Merry & Bright,” which can be customized in an assortment of fabulous flavors. From master baker
Adrienne Harding-McBride (sugarpetalscookiery.etsy.com).
COME AND GET IT!
A Barnes & Noble exclusive, Ree Drummond’s The Pioneer Woman Cooks–Come and Get It! features recipes and photos of tantalizing meals and snacks for the cook who enjoys sitting down with family and friends for a leisurely meal. Barnes & Noble (bn.com).
A trio of perfect balsamic vinegars, aged in juniper, cherry, and oak wood; each takes on the flavor of the cask and delivers a tangy punch.
Dean & Deluca (deandeluca.com).
SMOKE GETS IN YOUR FOOD
Breville’s Smoking Gun Pro is a handy appliance that delivers the smokehouse flavor and taste to your meats, cheeses, dips, and more with applewood or hickory wood chips.
Breville (brevilleusa.com) or Amazon (amazon.com).
THE SPICE OF LIFE
The ultimate collection of sea salts, The Daily Chef contains three favorites—making it the perfect gift for any chef. Hamptons Salt Company (hampstonssalt.com).