Fashion, Uncategorized

2012 Holiday Gift Guide for Guys and Gals

Well, it’s been a long time coming. I’m struggling with all of my might to stay in the game until next Tuesday (the date of my last final – forever), but I can’t help but cut myself a little slack. I think I deserve it. So, I allowed myself the free time to put together this little holiday gifting-themed post so as to show off some of my favorite ideas and perhaps inspire some last minute shoppers.

Come along, let’s explore.


I’m so into shopping for men. Just ask my boyfriend. Or my mother. Or anyone I’ve ever been shopping with or discussed the activity amongst. I’m even known to utter phrases like “gosh I wish I were a man” and “if I were a man I would buy this and wear it every day,” much to the dismay of the boy I’m dating. It’s cool, though. I love being a woman. I enjoy womanly things – flowers, perfume, skirts. However, I cannot contain my jealousy upon the gorgeousness of a thick, wool man-sweater or an awesomely raw-leathered chukka. Cotton ties? BE MINE! Even an oxford suits my fancy. So, when it comes to shopping for the man, I over buy. The following is a highly curated selection of all of the mannified items i’m endorsing this season.

Men 1

1. Red Wing for J.Crew Wabasha Boots – $300

A Minnesota collabo with a men’s go-to company. Available at J.Crew stores or online.

2. James Perse short-sleeved crew neck – $45

Awesome 100% cotton shirts. Super comfy, but good lookin’, too. Available here.

3. Fox Brothers wool herringbone tie and J. Crew tartan wool tie in “Holiday White” – $75 and $79.50

Unfortunately, it appears that the Fox Brothers tie has sold out. Try this for a similarly dapper look. Both available at

4. Santa Maria Novella cologne – $125

“Remarkably light and fresh scent combines the provocative citrus and bergamot with subtle white flowers and deeply exotic spices.” In other words, a covetable and sexy odor. Available here.

5. No. 154 tri-fold wallet by Billy Kirk – $104

A hand-stitched, hand-burnished, and hand-edged wallet. So not ordinary.  Available here.

6. Tipped linen pocket square – $42

Red-tipped is out of stock, but plum tipped (maybe even better) is still available here.

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7. Kiehl’s ultimate men’s after shave balm and moisturizer – $18

Available here.

8. Kiehl’s ultimate brushless shave cream – $16

Though I’m not of the face-shaving gender and cannot personally attest to the success of these products, I am a Kiehl’s lover and this shaving cream has some of the most fantastic reviews I’ve seen. Available here.

9. Edwin Jagger double edge safety razor – $93

For the old school soul. Available here.

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10. Jack Spade Repp stripe Thermos – $35

For the prepster who needs to keep his bevvies hot – or cold. Available here.

11. The Savoy Cocktail Book – $13.57

750 classic drink recipes with Art Deco illustrations. Perfect for a man with an interest in mixology. Available on Amazon.

12. American Bar book – $84

Finely bound leather book accomplishing the same feat as gift idea #11, but in a more luxurious way. 500 recipes arranged alphabetically and categorically. Available here.

13. Whiskey stones gift set – $58

As far as I’m concerned, this is one of the coolest gifts out there. The set includes 6 whiskey stones (made from soapstone) and two asymmetrical sipping glasses. The stones are great for any drink, but perfect for whiskeys as they keep the drink at premium sipping temperature (something about wood oils and disappearing when it gets too cold) without diluting it.

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14. Zooka wireless portable speaker for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch – $99.99

A no-nonsense techie speaker that can be attached to your iPad for enhanced video and music sound. It can also stand alone wirelessly.


I like shopping for women, too, you know. Myself included. The options are endless here, really…I could write pages and pages profiling gifty items. I could go especially crazy with the medium of my singular hoarding tendency – paper goods. Stationary, planners, cards, notebooks, books magazines, prints, business cards, Japanese washi tape……..I digress. It’s all worthy. Below, please notice my excessive love for paperie acknowledged with nods to the medium sprinkled strategically throughout this section.

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1. Bringing Nature Home – $29.70

This book is filled with gorgeous images of floral arrangements that are perfectly imperfect and inspired by nature. The intent is to inspire the reader to pull flowers from their seasonal environment and make it work. None of that dome-shaped floral arrangement business. Wild and free is the way to be. Available here.

2. Fortuny Interiors – $47.25

The pages of this book profile homes that feature Fortuny fabrics in their designs. The focus is less on the fabrics themselves, and more how they weave into a home to create character and a story. Beautiful and inspiring photos. Available here.

3. Grace, a Memoir – $19.21

I haven’t read this or even touched it with my own hands, but it’s all the rage in the fashion community right now and I love the styling of the cover. Available here.

4. Restoring a House in the City – $26.40

I’ve saved the best book for last. Words cannot express my love for this bound bundle of joy. I gave it to my mom 2 Christmases ago and both of us have referenced it countless times for interior inspiration. The pages hold such an awesome and eclectic mix of homes and styles, but the best part is that the homes are all restored from dire states (well, that might be a bit of an exaggeration for some). But really, the book leaves me lusting to gut a historic Boston row house (while salvaging the bones, of course). I guarantee the receiver of this gift will not be disappointed. Available here.

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5. Le Creuset Classic Demi Tea Kettle in Dune – $55

Just a sweet and simple tea kettle for the tea lover in your life. Available here.

6. Harney & Sons tea – $8

You don’t need to stow away your tea bags when they come in containers this beautiful. An array of color combinations to suit even the choosiest of loved ones. Available here.

7. Bodum YoYo personal tea set – $34.95

The perfect size for an individual serving of tea. Great for bringing to work. The double walled glass is a huge plus – keeps your drinks hot much longer and is cool to the touch (no handle necessary)! Available here.

8. Heirloom Recipe Box by Rifle Paper Co. – $136

A really attractive handcrafted box for collecting and organizing recipes. It comes with a set of cards already inside (on nice, thick card stock) and is topped with text and floral flourishes. This is coming from one of my favorite small companies that is taking the marketplace by storm right now. Rifle Paper Co. has the greatest illustrations on their merch and this box is no exception. Rifle’s home site is sold out of the heirloom box in particular, but it’s still available here from Pigment.

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9. Caudalie Beauty Elixer – $18

A super refreshing mist of essential oils. I spray this on my face prior to moisturizing, between foundation and powder to set my makeup, and throughout the day whenever I need a boost. Reward your loved one with this beauty bauble that feels luxurious and indulgent. Ain’t nothin’ wrong with that. Available here.

10. Dyptique Olene perfume – $88 to $120

Dyptique really gets it right. They’re known largely for their pricey and heavenly-scented candles, but for a gift that lasts much longer than 30 burning hours, try the perfume. Olene is my personal sent (and therefore, my favorite – it’s a warm white floral with notes of wisteria, honeysuckle, and jasmine), but there are so many options that there is no way to fail – especially when each scent is more gorgeous and full-bodied than the next. Their signature oval medallion labels are to die for as well. Available here.

11. Kiehl’s Lip Balm #1 – $7.50

An all around great, non-sticky balm to soothe lips year round. It’s a rich and supple formula and will stay on the lips for a long time before reapplication is necessary. Perfect stocking stuffer!! Available here.

12. Mason Pearson rake comb – $30

Mason Pearson handcrafts brushes and combs that can make your everyday beauty chores feel extra special. This one is good for detangling (something I have a need for), but they come in an array of options. Also, that classis tortoise coloring is pretty dope. Available here.

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13. Der Reisende scheduler – $22.95

A planner to start her new year off right. I just received mine in the mail today and can attest to it’s gorgeousness. The cover is protected inside a clear plastic casing, turning this delicate paper product into something that will last all year long. Available here in fifteen (YES, FIFTEEN) different colors and patterns. I sprung for olive.

14. Le Pen set of 18 – $17.23

One of the 12 things Martha Stewart can’t live without (as seen in a 2011 issue of Elle Decor). And you trust the Martha, don’t you? A set of 18 of these classic colored pens is available here and would be a perfect match for the Der Reisende scheduler.

15. Talford necklace by Dannijo – $420

If you really want to make them swoon, check out this foxy statement necklace from the girls at Dannijo. All of the jewelry is handmade in New York, so buying this piece means supporting sustainable fashion in the USA! Hoorah! Available here.

16. Rima bracelet by Dannijo – $120

An essential piece in the equation for an arm party. Available here in, like, 31 different crystal and metal combinations – literally.

17. Karen Walker sunglasses – $220 to $310

Really poppy frames that by no means blend in. Similar here, here, and here.

18. Gold foil pocket notebooks by Rifle Paper Co. – $10

Another gem from the folks at Rifle Paper Co. Perfect for ideas on the go. Available here.

I hope this post has provided sufficient inspiration. Now get out there and shop – brick and mortar OR e-commerce style!!


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