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Gifts for the sophisticated non-girly ladies in your life

robert clergerie sneaker

Because sneakers are the new stilettos. Robert Clergerie Teba Sneaker, from $168.

comme des garcons wallet

Because this is basically a no nonsense men’s style wallet with a zipper. Except it’s golden. Comme Des Garcons wallet, $120.

jill platner key chain

Because believe it or not, there are lots of women who aren’t really into jewelry. But pretty much everybody has to carry around keys. Jill Platner bolt key chain, $285.

beauty heroes box

Because the less make up she wears, the more important it is for her skin to be naturally radiant. And there’s nothing like a monthly influx of new, all-natural products to help ensure that particular reality. Beauty Heroes monthly subscription, from $39.

cashmere robe

Because, lets be honest, who doesn’t want a full length cashmere robe? Chinti and Parker cashmere robe, $1000.

winter beach hair

Because we all want that I-just-came-off-the-beach look for our hair… Especially in the winter. Brooklyn beach Hair Mist in Winter Scent, $25.

take out block by livewild design

Because we are all busy and tired and sometimes can’t even deal with figuring out where to order from. Lovewild Design Take Out Block, $14.

Gifts for your husband/sister/neighbor/business partner who kind of has everything but would appreciate an upgrade if it’s really good

kept kitchen canister

Because if all of our storage items were this beautiful, we’d probably be much better at putting things away. Irvington 24 oz canister, $60.

USB typewriter

Because there is NO WAY they already have this keyboard. USB typewriter, $899.


Because these cups are incredibly thin, incredibly beautiful and made out of wood, for Pete’s sake. Kami wooden cups, from $60.

screwdriver kit

Because 3 flat and 3 Phillips head screwdrivers are all you ever really need. And a matching set, with beautiful wooden handles, might motivate a few useful projects around the house. Screwdriver set, $48


Because why would you charge one thing at a time when you can get everything running at once? Twist Plus+ World Charging Station, $53.


Because evidently the special design of this spout makes this the essential kettle for making manual drip coffee. Period. Hario buono drip kettle, $75.


Because everybody could use a key ring upgrade. Contour key ring bell, $16

white enamel lunchbox

Because who doesn’t want to be the envy of everyone in the office when you show up with this lunch box? Austrian picnic pot, $54.

blackcreek mercantile cutting board

Because this is not just a cutting board. It’s a chic cutting board. Blackcreek Mercantile cutting board, $235.

kikkerland acorn soeaker

Because if you’re going to give a wireless speaker, it may as well be made of wood and shaped like an acorn. Kikkerland acorn speaker, $46.

red flower room diffuser

Because why should a house smell like a house when it can smell like cardamom and amber? Red Flower room diffuser, $82.

Monday, Monday… or a Holiday Guide to some of my favorite 2015 Holiday Gift Guides

Rebekah's hands

I’m still in the midst of posting my own holiday shopping guides, but I thought I’d take a break and point you all towards some other compendiums of potential purchases as well. Because when it comes to giving presents, the more the merrier!

The adventures in cooking gift guide is superbly minimal and beautifully shot, just like the blog. To be honest, I want everything on this list.

If you have some time, and want to check out tons and tons (and tons) of great gift ideas for the home, go to Remodelista and search for Gift Guides. Or just click here. You won’t be disappointed.

Joanna Goddard’s gift guides for A Cup OF Jo are, in my humble opinion, the gold standard when it comes to holiday shopping. Hands down. The archive of past years are also well worth checking out…

It is true that at times T Magazine can feel a bit overly aspirational, but every once in a while a person just needs to buy a spectacularly designed, perfectly round, handcrafted in Germany, wooden music box that plays Mozart and costs a bit over $100. And their gift guide will always deliver the goods.

My friend Andrea Linett is a master of finding super chic stuff at shockingly good prices. So needless to say, the I Want To Be Her Fun Chic Gifts Under $100 list is not to be missed!

Who in their right mind doesn’t want to check out a selection called The Cut’s Weirdly Specific Holiday Gift Guide? Especially if you appreciate The Cut’s ability to be 100% on trend and totally subversive at the same time…

Last year, I remember being pleasantly surprised at the caliber of gifts on the Esquire Gift Guide… and it looks like 2015′s selection is even better, especially for the finicky men in your life.

Gifts for the people in your life who are really into cooking, eating and just being around nice food

Photo tk

Photo by James Ransom

Because you want to keep your bread, veggies, pasta etc fresh but you are trying oh so hard to stay away from plastic. And also because you want the inside of your fridge to look all cute and full of striped bundles and whatnot. Bee’s Wrap (set of 3 sizes) $24.


Because we all need a place to store our knives, but most of us don’t have a magnetic knife rack made of wood, now, do we? Cherry Magnetic knife rack, $45.

Photo courtesy of Gather Journal.

Photo courtesy of Gather Journal.

Because what part of a book called Chicken Makes the Ice Cream Taste Better (written by Harlem middle schoolers about their experiences with food and the Edible Schoolyard Program) don’t you want to read? At 826NYC.org, $15.

Photo courtesy of potterandwoodsworth.

Photo courtesy of potterandwoodsworth.

Because… well… just because these plates are really nice and will make your table feel special without being all precious and overly formal, if you know what I mean. White Lace Dinner Plates by potterandwoodsmith on Etsy, $18.

Photo tk for Food52.com.

Photo by Rocky Luten and Alpha Smoot for Food52.com.

Because it’s rugged (waxed cotton) and grey (the new black) and long (because we’re messy) and will last forever (which is always a good thing). Grey waxed canvas apron, $150.

Photo courtesy of The Brooklyn Larder.

Photo courtesy of The Brooklyn Larder.

Because it’s like a book of the month club, but for cheese. But even more useful than literature because now, when folks just show up all unexpected like, you will actually have something to serve them. Brooklyn Larder Monthly Cheese Club, from $199.

5 great gifts you can get right now on Etsy

Felt gnome and mushrooms set by BlueRooster Arts on Etsy

Felt gnome and mushrooms set by BlueRooster Arts on Etsy

Ok first off, here’s a little thing you may not have known about me: I am a sucker for tiny handmade felt figurines. I love them. I have not gone whole hog, acquiring dozens of the little creatures and placing them all over our house, but if I were to go into someone else’s home who had such a display, I’m sure I would throw my hands in the air and squeal with delight.

Now that I’ve gotten that off of my chest, I wanted to start my own holiday gift guide season with a few ideas from the one and only center for all things handmade: Etsy. Because the sellers are just regular people, and not Amazon Prime, one has to be a bit more organized when ordering from them. But at this point we still have plenty of time to get the gifts to where they need to be. So now is the time to troll Etsy for the good stuff. And maybe even get something personalized while you’re at it!

First up (above) the felt woodland figurines. Maybe they are a gift, or maybe they are destined to become part of your own home decor. I like the gnome, but there are others to check out as well. Lovingly made in Montana by BlueRooster, $20.

indigo shiboro napkins by shoppromisedland on etsy

We need new napkins and I totally want these, which are linen and hand dyed using the ancient Japanese shibori technique. Just in case there are any people out there looking to give me something for the holidays. Made in Massachusetts by ShopPromisedLand, $32.50.

glass teapot etsy

I’m not quite sure I understand how this teapot is “handmade”, but it sure is pretty. And that’s gotta count for something right? This comes to us via Unihom in the UK, which might be slightly inconvenient, but hey– they ship worldwide, so who’s counting? $24.50.

memory game o etsy

This is one of those memory games that you play with your kids before they can read and if you’re me, your kids actually do much better than you because your memory is shot. Hopefully, you are not me, and you will kick your kids’ a**es. Regardless, this version is handmade by fourthavenue in Minnesota and if you get in touch with them, you can even customize the game with imagery of your choosing! $12.

log ipad dock etsy

I mean, if this wooden iPad dock and charging station doesn’t have ETSY written all over it, I don’t know what does. This is the kind of thing that the online emporium of handmade is all abut. Plus who else do you know who has one of these? I rest my case. Handcrafted from barnwood by valliswood in Croatia, $80.

Father’s Day is around the corner (again!) so here are a few ideas to get the wheels turning…

cord storage on OKL

Because there is no reason not to give him the gift of organization along with a lovely object made out of leather? Leather cordito cord wrap, $39.

photo courtesy of Fodd52

photo courtesy Food52.com

Because it’s always good to upgrade to the Japanese version of just about anything. Contemporary Japanese shears, $58.

Photo courtesy of penaddict.com

Same thing goes for this pencil holder. Midori brass bullet pencil holder, $21.

Photo courtesy of handeyesupply.com

Photo courtesy of handeyesupply.com

Because even if he has everything, he probably does not have super stylish and larger-than-life paperclips. Areaware oversized paper clips, $10.

ceramics bible

Photo courtesy of handeyesupply.com

Because for some reason, my husband is suddenly really into ceramics and stops to carefully examine all pots, bowls and mugs he encounters. And as I always say, embrace the obsession before it strangles you. The Ceramics Bible, $40.


Because who doesn’t want a little hot sauce with them at all times? Siracha2go keychain, $5.99.

oak street boots

Photo courtesy oakstreetbootmakers.com.

If you know his size, you should get him a pair of these boots. And if you can’t buy then yourself, you can at least point him in the right direction by telling him about Oak Street Bootmakers. Natural trench boots, $426.

Monday, Monday– or links to a few things you might want to get your mom (or wife, or sister, etc…) for Mother’s Day

good eggs flowers

A bouquet of seasonal flowers ($29.49) because, well, she deserves a little fresh beauty in her life.


A self watering planter ($100) because no one really wants to have to check on the potted plants every day, but everybody likes a little green in the house.


What mother has not secretly (or not so secretly) wished for a bottle of Magic Energy Spray ($16) to her her get through the tough times?

jil platner bracelet

Is there ever a bad time to give her a silver bracelet (from $285) from Jill Platner?

gretel home watering can

A watering can upgrade ($68) is never a bad thing.

ion water bottle

Pour some water (or wine, or whatever you’re drinking) into this Shigaraki ion bottle ($40) and the radium minerals in its glaze change the ion content. Which makes everything taste more delicious and is evidently much better for us. We should probably get two of these and keep one for ourselves.

Holiday Gift Guide Part 4: Oh my God, what am I going to get my (fill in the blank) for Christmas?

If they spend a lot of time in the kitchen…

bamboo bread knife

How much do you want to bet that your office-mate who is really into cooking already has a bread knife made of bamboo? I’m going to say 10% chance, tops. And if they do, they probably also have a second home so they need two of them anyway. Bamboo bread knife, $12.

live wire farm spoons

While we’re on the topic of wooden kitchen tools, these are my all time favorite spoons ever. They are the kind of thing Pa lovingly made for Ma in their little house on the prairie. But in real life they’re made by the incredibly talented father of one of my most remarkable friends (who is a fine woodworker in his own right). I would like to be more like them and make all sorts of stuff by hand. But instead I’ll just buy their goods and so should you. Live Wire Farm Spoons, $10 – $50.

If they like making electronic music but are also into the olden days:

OP-1 synth

It’s a full blown synth that is totally portable, looks great and is reasonably priced for what it is. A stocking stuffer it is not, but the kid/wife/bandmate who gets this under the tree is going to be a very happy camper, I can tell you that right now. OP 1 Portable Synthesizer, $849.

margiella feather pen

And come on, wouldn’t the desk that had this feather pen sitting next to the above mentioned synth be amazing? These two objects should come as a package. Maison Martin Margiella Feather Pen, $68.

If they like to ride bikes:

folding bike helmet

There are not a lot of attractive bike helmets out there, but this one is cool because it collapses, so you can fit it into your bag and take it in with you after you’ve locked the wheels up outside. Which means that you are more likely to wear the helmet in the first place. So this is kind of like giving a person the gift of safety without being at all preachy about it. Folding Bike Helmet, $139.

If they believe in fairies:

cedar sandalwood incense

I’ve seen incense sticks and incense cones and pieces of wood that burn like incense, but never incense made of rope. This stuff kicks the whole incense thing up a notch, which is what it very badly needs. Cedar Rope Incense, $12.

goodnight dust

Sprinkle a bit of this magic fairy dust into your tea at night and it will tranquilize your blood flow, detox your pancreas and promote beautiful dreams. No seriously, it will. I promise. In fact, maybe we should all just get this for ourselves and then the world would be a happier place full of well rested people who like to paint moons and stars all over their packaging. Goodnight Dust, $55.

If they like to collect things like ashtrays and art:

yayoi_kusama towel

A limited edition massive beach towel designed by Yayoi Kusama. Enough said. Beach Towel, $95.

saya woolfalk print

Or maybe you might want to lead somebody, via a limited edition print, into the mystical, brightly colored world of Saya Woolfalk which is full of detailed drawings of fantastical artifacts and messages that stretch our ideas about cultural boundaries. No Placean Anatomy (Human/Plant/Animal) by Saya Woolfalk, $1200.

And then, of course, if they are a spy:

clip tool

Any female James Bond shouldn’t be caught out without a hairclip that doubles as a saw, screwdriver, wrench, ruler and trolley coin (whatever that is). Mini Tools Clip by Clippa, $9.99.

Holiday Gift Guide Part 3: If you were shopping for my husband, here’s what you should get him for Hannukah

If you’re looking for a gift for a man (or a woman for that matter, as most of these gifts are gender non-specific) who is really into design, loves to make things and claims he wants nothing but socks for the holidays, you might find some ideas here…


What is this, you ask? Why it’s a chimney humidifier, of course. This is exactly the kind of thing my husband loves. He will happily toss our current, more mundane model into the landfill (I will then have to rescue it and donate it to some organization or something) and replace it with this sculptural number. On the one hand, he is really picky. On the other, quite easy to please, if you know where to look. Takeshi Ishiguro Chimney Humidifier, $200.

german chalk

Like, for example, he would be just as excited about this chalk from Germany. Because they bothered to design lovely packaging, because the chalk comes in all sorts of subtly refreshing colors and (most importantly) because it’s a little more difficult to come by as it hails from… well… Germany. Schulkreide Champagne Colored Chalk, $12.

hermes pen

And while we’re on the topic of writing…

Finally!! The pen we’ve all been waiting for!! OK maybe I haven’t been losing sleep for years wondering why Hermes hadn’t made a pen, but now that it’s here I’m thinking it’s exactly the kind of instrument that the Duke of York or some French Count might keep in his jacket pocket for jotting down notes about some large scale outdoor sculpture that he might want to purchase at Art Basel. And who doesn’t want to feel like that? Hermes Nautilus pen, $1350.

stool MOMA

Here is the perfect stool upon which to sit whilst contemplating just how Marc Newson managed to design a ballpoint pen that costs over a thousand dollars. It’s made out of cardboard, looks great, involves some simple assembly (which helps us feel like we are master builders) and is reasonably priced to boot. Riki stool, $45.

boot rescue

This is the kind of gift that can only really come from your wife (or maybe your mother, but then it would feel slightly annoying for no good reason) It’s not beautiful, it doesn’t automatically make you feel relaxed or stylish… and yet it is exactly the kind of thing your loved one will be sooooo happy to have in his life. Sometimes the little things are the best. Boot Rescue, $6.99.

moma power cube

If, hypothetically, you were married to the type of person who is kept up at night fretting about unsightly power cords, this is the gift for him (or her). It takes up way less space than the standard variety and kind of looks like it could be R2D2′s cousin. PowerCube, $20.

gold flatware food52

photo by James Ransom

So at Provisions, Food52′s lovely online retail shop, they have a special gift section for the cook who has everything. Not that we are anywhere close to that, but I am of course curious, so I check it out… and lo, there it is: the golden flatware I have been waiting for. Waaaaaay less expensive than the Hermes pen, and yet every bit as much a tool that might be found on the Sultan of Brunai’s table (if he were a minimalist). Gold Flatware set, $120.

jill platner cufflinks

And maybe he’s fancy, but really cool and understated so he doesn’t want gold flatware. In that case, go to Jill Platner and get him these cufflinks which he probably doesn’t already have and which are way nicer than the ones he usually wears (unless he has some amazing vintage set from his grandfather in which case you should just get them anyway because a man’s gotta be modern every once in a while…) Jill Platner belly button cufflinks, $305.

Just FYI, unless otherwise noted, all gift guide photos come courtesy of the websites that you will visit in order to purchase the the items. In case you were curious…

Monday, Monday– or links to a bunch of other people’s excellent gift guides

one kings lane gift wrap

I have not gotten it together to actually start wrapping gifts yet, so this lovely package comes courtesy of One Kings Lane. Check the bottom of this post for the link to learn how to make these beautiful ribbon-flowers…

We’ve all basically got one more week to get it together and buy everything for our loved ones before school gets out and all bets are essentially off. Unless you want to take your kids with you into midtown on a desperate search for something your father-in-law might like… but that would be utter madness.

I will, I promise, continue to flood you with my own gift guides for at least the rest of the week, but I thought I’d start things off with the traditional Monday links post, this time pointing you towards the lists from a few of my favorite shopping gurus. Enjoy…

Joanna Goddard’s A Cup of Jo Holiday gift guides might just be the gold standard in thoughtful, quirky, out-of-left-field-and-yet-right-on-target ideas for holiday shopping. Each year she breaks it down into specific lists for specific people and just about everything she puts up would make an amazing gift. (Her 2013 guide is worth checking out as well!)

Kim France (fearless leader of Girls of a Certain Age) is a total grown up, with a sense of humor and impeccable (but not overwrought) taste to boot. So who better to turn to when looking for a luxurious gift for that special someone this season?

Coos and Ahhs is probably my favorite site for little kids– My daughter has largely outgrown it’s content, but I still have friends and family with younger kids, so I always check out what they have to share.

This might surprise you, but Esquire has always done me right when it comes to serving up gift ideas for the discerning man.

God bless The Cut for posting (just a few minutes ago) a list of 50 chic, last minute gifts all under $50. Because it’s about to be the last minute, so we may as well stop fighting and go with the flow.

Shopping for someone who is always on the road? Refinery29 hooks us up with a list of items that are perfect for the stylish traveler.

Leave it to Grace Bonney of Design Sponge to come up with a brilliant list of gifts that don’t involve buying anything. More of this spirit for 2015, please!

ps: Check out this video on One Kings Lane to learn how to create a ribbon rosette like the one in the photo above!