- December 06, 2011
Laurann Claridge, Features Editor
Big, bigger, biggest. Make an extravagant impression with Diptyque oversized jar candles. $275, at Longoria Collection. Image: Photo by Kennon Evett.
Don’t forget to pick out something special for your four-legged friend, like this adjustable rope dog leash. $64, at PH Design Shop.
I’m all about pearls and pavé … DeVille’s 18K white-gold and diamond (love) knot ring is a stunner. $4,570, at DeVille Fine Jewelry.
I adore giving a Juliska vide pouche. My new favorite pattern includes a chic gift box. $42, at Indulge.
The classic pea coat, only in gray by Thom Browne for Black Fleece. $1,250, at Brooks Brothers.
I’m mad about this carryall by Boulevard. $158, to order at A Bientôt.
Inspire them to cook like superstar chef Ferran Adrià of el Bulli with The Family Meal: Home Cooking with Ferran Adrià (Phaidon Press, $29.95). At local booksellers; amazon.com.
No other little lacy thing is more chic worn inside or out. VPL cami top $225, and shorts $85, both at La Mode Lingerie.
Houston photographer David Bates has captured myriad colorful birds, from woodpeckers to hummingbirds, in his hauntingly glorious “Feathery Fates” still lifes. From $595, at batesphotostudio.com. Image: Photo by David Bates.
Give an armful of crossed brass bangles by designer Olga Prieto. $26 each, at Gift – Curated Shopping by Peel (West Ave).
Not born with a silver spoon in your mouth? Let your progeny dine from a silver ladle made in London, circa 1766. $300, at David Lackey Antiques at Antiques of River Oaks.
Break open the bottles with this cool brass bottle opener. $68, at PH Design Shop.
Dazzling on a bar cart or in your bath, this Georgian decanter dates to the late 18th century. $495, at Town & Country Antiques and Accessories at Antiques of River Oaks.
I’m loving Luisa Cerano’s elegant take on the cardy. $595, at Linda Cunningham.
Kate Allen Stukenberg, Fashion Editor
Cake Balls from new bake shop Petite Sweets are even sweeter in special holiday flavors: gingerbread, pumpkin, chocolate peppermint and eggnog. Perfect for stockings or holiday party hostess gifts. $2.25 each, at Petite Sweets.
Louis Vuitton has launched a seven-piece collection dubbed Louis Vuitton Icons: leather leggings, a trench, jumpsuit, jeans, bomber jacket, cardigan and, my personal favorite, The Perfect Parka. $2,150, at the Louis Vuitton boutique.
I desire local designer David Peck’s simple silk blouses, in colors that change from season to season. Celia blouse $145, at Tootsies.
Prada is known for its witty goods — these gators certainly made me smile. Resin earrings $230, at the Prada boutique opening this month at the Galleria.
This beaded ikat clutch is just small enough for a stocking surprise. $144, at Haut Chocolate. Image: Photo by Kennon Evett.
Another gilt-y pleasure for my jewelry box is this Oscar de la Renta Folkloric necklace. $575, at Atrium.
Lenny e Cia stocks Rare Eyewear, a unique sunglasses distributor focusing on stylish, never-worn vintage shades by such sought-after designers as Christian Lacroix and Guy Bourdin. Even the packaging is original, so you’ll know they’re the real deal. Prices vary, at Lenny e Cia.
It’s always fun perusing the cases at Past Era for unique vintage jewelry finds. On my last visit, I fell in love with this Louis-Philippe I onyx and rose-cut diamond cameo brooch, circa 1840. $6,950, at Past Era Fine Antique Jewelry.
Try just a touch of fur for fun. Elie Tahari Kelly scarf $698, to order at Elizabeth Anthony/Esther Wolf.
Melanie Fascitelli, founder of Closette, has designed closets for well-dressed ladies Tory Burch, Lauren Santo Domingo and Beyonce. Now she’s debuted a chic storage and organization collection dubbed Closette-Too at Neiman Marcus. I can’t wait to get my hands on her colorful signature hangers with brass accents and sweater folding boards. For now, I’m hoping the Closette-Too Deluxe VIP Launch Kit ($470) will be under my tree this season. At Neiman Marcus.
Get graphic with Ivanka Trump’s octagonal-link band with diamonds. $1,990, at Deutsch & Deutsch.
These mini Miu Miu bags are max on style. Pick one up at the new Miu Miu boutique at the Galleria, opening this month. Ostrich Mini bag $1,850, at the Miu Miu boutique.
Look luxe in luscious Hermès lacquer bangles. $225 to $245, at the Hermès boutique.
Holly Moore, Editor in Chief
Tiffany & Co. opera-length gloves in nappa leather have such throwback elegance. $295, at Tiffany & Co.
I’m mad with jealousy for Christian Louboutin men’s Mikaraji patent calf slippers with grosgrain and jeweled tassels. $2,095, at christianlouboutin.com.
Your baby wants a palace, but it’s not in the cards. Instead, opt for a more practical stacking porcelain palace that doubles as soup bowls or salad plates. $168 to $500, at Sloan/Hall.
In a new collaboration, these stunning Fortunytumblers by L’Objet Pour Fortuny are made of earthenware and detailed with 24K gold. $175 for set of four, at Neiman Marcus.
How chic are these: Hermès jumping boots in techno canvas and calfskin in hot pink/white, Day-Glo orange/white or purple/white. $2,250, at the Hermès boutique.
Nothing is better than the scent of old leather books (except perhaps for the scent of old money). Assouline library votive candle set $95, at assouline.com.
The Burlesque No Evil Monkey candelabra from Italy is slightly decadent and a whole lot chic. Black resin, 24 inches tall. $350, at Gift – Curated Shopping by Peel, Peel Gallery’s pop-up store for the holidays in West Ave, 713.520.8122; firstname.lastname@example.org.
For rowdier parties, break out the Baccarat for Williams-Sonoma. I especially love the Perfection plain square decanter ($495) and the Vega whiskey decanter ($425). Exclusively at Williams-Sonoma; williams-sonoma.com.
Surprise your favorite decorator with signed design books by Bunny Williams, Scrapbook for Living ($60); Kathryn Ireland, Summers in France ($35) and Classic Country ($40); Celerie Kemble, Black and White ($50); Hutton Wilkinson, More is More: Tony Duquette ($80); Suzanne Kasler, Inspired Interiors ($50); Jan Showers, Glamorous Rooms ($50); and David Kleinberg, Traditional Now ($60). At Curate: PaperCity Pop-Up Bookshop in Uptown Park. Info: email@example.com. Image: Photo by Jenny Antill
Fornasetti’s Theme & Variations plates are hauntingly beautiful. $185 each, at barneys.com.
Bold or not at all. I love this encrusted buckle cuff by Angelique de Paris, with moss-colored stones lined in leather. $1,155, at Tootsies. Image: Photo by Kennon Evett.
Do you not love this Fiat 500 by Gucci? Yes, this is a real car … with the signature Gucci web stripe along the bodyside of the Fiat 500 and across the power-retractable cloth top of the 500 Cabrio. And both have GG hubcaps; leather seats with Guccissima print on the back; iconic Gucci web stripes on the seats, floor mats and seat belts; and GG on the chrome shift knob. Can you stand it! Fiat 500, from $23,500; 500 Cabrio, from $27,500, available December 2011/January 2012 at Sterling McCall Fiat; information and pre-orders fiatusa.com/gucci.
Catherine D. Anspon, Visual Arts Editor
This little Louis Vuitton with touches of pink gator suggests the headdress of an Indian princess. I’m equally enthralled by this demure envelope bag fashioned from Camel Cigarette wrappers. Louis Vuitton $2,020, cigarette-wrapper clutch $275, both at The Vintage Contessa; thevintagecontessa.com. Images: Louis Vuitton limited-edition Velours and Alligator Irvine bag, 2004 - 2005 collection; Camel Cigarette-wrapper clutch, circa 1950s.
Help the homeless quench their thirst while empowering them to live a new life. Read how via the truly inspiring mission of Houston-headquartered I Am Waters Foundation in the volume Dream. $100 donation, at iamwaters.com.
For a high-impact gift, give an entrance-making Russian pouf fashioned from fox fur. $1,800, at Sakowitz Furs.
This exquisite iridescent glass vase could have been unearthed from Tut’s tomb. Its simplicity and power transcend the centuries — but its origins lie in the Deco period and the famed German Myra glass works. $1,650, at L.R. Antiques. Image: Myra iridescent glass vase.
When top patron Lester Marks of the assiduous eye became an artist, those in the know held their breaths. Now fellow collectors are scrambling to gobble up his limited-edition photographs, which marry saturated clouds of color with a wink and a nod to the everyday. From $600, at New Gallery/Thom Andriola and, coming 2012, PaperCity Acquire. Image: Lester Marks’ Untitled from the “Personages Series,” 2011.
We’re scooping up bottles and jars crafted by Houston’s own Bill Davenport and JoAnn Park, respectively, whom PaperCity has tapped for a new series available exclusively at Curate. $75 each, at Curate: PaperCity Pop-Up Bookshop, Uptown Park. Image: Bill Davenport and JoAnn Park’s collectibles.
Nothing’s droller than this collaboration between Houston artistic duo Elaine Bradford and Seth Mittag. Bradford whipped up the knitting that covers Mittag’s deer. Watch out for the one with a naughty message in its antlers. $300 each, set of three $900, at Art Palace. Photo: Elaine Bradford and Seth Mittag’s Untitled (****ing Deer), 2011.
For the stylishly casual on your list, the newest entree from Claridge + King: a cashmere sweater with leather-trimmed bell sleeves. When it’s time to order another, I only have to check in with my colleague, PaperCity features editor Laurann Claridge: she co-founded the line with her sister. $230, at Indulge, Kuhl-Linscomb; claridgeandking.com. Image: Claridge + King sweater; photo by Kennon Evett.
I’m wild for the sinuous curves of Art Nouveau, exemplified by this turn-of-the-century, silver-and-silver-gilt American gem from Heritage Auctions, featured in the December 7 sale. Starting bid $200; ha.com. Image: Unger Brothers’ silver-and-silver-gilt match safe, circa 1900.
Houston sculptor Jonathan Clark usually works on a gargantuan scale, but now he hones his craft down to desk-size with artful bundled pencils. $75 to $175 each, set of all three sizes $300, at Peel Gallery and Curate: PaperCity Pop-Up Bookshop, Uptown Park. Image: Jonathan Clark’s pencil sculptures.
This wildly inventive video vignette, an editioned work by Swiss video artist Katja Loher, pairs Busby Berkeley style choreography with 21st-century cinematic sampling. $15,500, at Anya Tish Gallery. Image: Katja Loher’s Supper for Two, 2011.
Heights neighbor and dear friend Susan Plum is an artist of global vision. Her latest, a series of Buddhas nesting in flame-worked glass compartments, also add elements of nature — including cast pomegranates and tropical blooms. From $1,200, at PG Contemporary. Photo: Susan Plums’ Red Buddhas, 2011.
Snap up Houston provocateur Thedra Cullar-Ledford’s debut volume, the strange and surreal Fifty Dolls, which comes with its own original drawing. $250, at Curate: PaperCity Pop-Up Bookshop, Uptown Park.
Rob Brinkley, Dallas Editor
For you and 23 very lucky friends (or fewer, thirstier ones), Moët & Chandon’s Gold Imperial Jeraboam in 14K gold leaf, complete with indelible marker for scribbling memories of the night — and saucy thoughts? — onto it. The three-liter, burnished beauty pours 24 perfect glasses. $995, at select retailers; moet.com.
Put “Ultimate” in any name, and I want it. Behold the wildly posh Range Rover Autobiography Ultimate Edition, fitted with reclining rear seats, an aluminum laptop table between them, a drinks chiller, Apple iPads on the backs of the front seats, even a teak floor in the cargo hold. Land Rover is sending less than 50 to the U.S. — one of them had better be under my tree. $170,000, through Land Rover, landrover.com.
My kind of game-playing: a sumptuous backgammon set made in England, of hand-bound leather for the case, inlaid wood for the playing field and sleek nickel playing pieces trimmed in exotic veneers. Let’s roll. $4,995, at barneys.com.
Happy place, happy place. A pair of highly collapsible Swedish headphones for all your i-devices — phone, pad and pod — by Urbanears. These are so sleek, any modern-day Mies van der Rohe will love them for his Mozart, his Maroon 5, his Metallica … $60, at Nordstrom, nordstrom.com.
For roadside picnics of rarefied leanings, two stainless-steel flasks in a fitted leather case, by Ettinger of London, a family concern founded in 1934, where each craftsperson is trained for a minimum of five years. (Why rush things?) Oh, how grand they’ll be in your beloved’s glove compartment. Approximately $600 the set, at ettinger.co.uk.
Brooke Hortenstine, Editor at Large
No time to season in Gstaad? Then invite the scent of the Alps to your city manse with a Feu de Bois Ski House candle set from the LAFCO house and home candle collection. $85 set of three, at lafcony.com.
The ultimate Sloe Gin Fizz and trippy illustrations by artist Chris Gall? Make mine a double. The PDT Cocktail Book: The Complete Bartender’s Guide from the Celebrated Speakeasy by Jim Meehan includes than 300 cocktail recipes from New York bar PDT, all garnished with Gall’s lush, otherworldly scenes — faintly ’50s, certainly fabulous (Sterling Epicure, $24.95). At local booksellers.
Elevate holiday envelopes with a custom-calligraphy return-address stamp, in four hand-lettered options. Choose from the smart color palette of a black, brown or navy archival inkpad. $65, at paperpastries.com.
Get wrapped up in the holiday spirit with Toledano’s Bondage crystal clutch. $1,675, at Gregory’s, gregorysshoes.com.
Love Geoffrey Parker’s watersnake Rubik’s cube. $150, at barneys.com.
Jenny Antill, Photo Editor
Tee as collectible: Stella Rose minimalist, vegan-approved shirts designed by PaperCity’s own Celeste Tammariello. From $28, at stellarosestudio.com. Image: Photo by Jenny Antill.
I’m loving the low-tech. Say cheese for this ultra-wide-angle 35mm camera, which produces saturated colors and evokes a hip vintage vibe. La Sardina camera and flash $109, at shop.lomography.com.
It’s Deco-rama with this black onyx and diamond fan bracelet in platinum. $165,000, at Tiffany & Co. Image: Photo by Carlton Davis.
I love this original Repetto cherry red ballet flat. $265. at BHLDN.
Slouching is okay with Marie Turnor’s Picnic clutch. $170, at Gift – Curated Shopping by Peel, Peel Gallery’s pop-up store for the holidays in West Ave, 713.520.8122; firstname.lastname@example.org.
Curated collecting opportunities this spring are all about photography. The Russians are coming to FotoFest and also on the block at the FotoFest Biennial International Fine Print Auction on Tuesday, March 20, 2012. Meanwhile, the Houston Center for Photography unfurls its Print Auction on Wednesday, February 22, 2012 — get your preview tickets online. Information fotofest.org, hcponline.org. Images: FotoFest Auction Lot, Gregori Maiofis’ Politics Makes Strange Bedfellows, 2006; Houston Center for Photography Lot, Lou Vest’s Big Wake, Little Wake, 2011.
Seth Vaughan, Editorial Assistant
What better antidote to post-gift-opening malaise than a wildly competitive backgammon game? T. Anthony leather tournament backgammon set $1,200, at tanthony.com.
Rubber driving shoes that can be worn in the rain and cleaned with soap and water. M: Zero II $145, at Lenny e Cia.
The documentary Bill Cunningham New York is required watching for anyone interested in fashion reportage. $29.99, at Barnes & Noble, amazon.com.
This handsome replica by French sculptor Alfred Barye Fils, estimated at $1,000 to $1,500, will delight anyone who appreciates the thrill of the steeplechase. Your only hurdle: It hits the block December 11. Morton Kuehnert Auctioneers, mortonkuehnert.com.
Spoil a loved one (or yourself) rotten with the epitome of luxury stuffed into a stocking: cashmere socks. Six pairs $98, at Neiman Marcus.
Any man will get a kick out of ties by Boast, the favored brand of ’70s tennis and golf mavericks. These are emblazoned not with a marijuana leaf, but with a Japanese maple. $120, at boastusa.com.
No gentleman’s wardrobe is complete without dignified bedroom slippers. And nothing says “dignified” quite like Bottega Veneta. From $470 for the Espresso suede slippers to $1,180 for the Dakar Caiman slippers, at the Bottega Veneta boutique.
Shave like a president with Caswell-Massey’s all-natural 1752 shaving staples in Almond, the scent preferred by Dwight D. Eisenhower. From $9 for a single bar to $18 for exfoliating face wash, at caswellmassey.com. Image: Photo by Kennon Evett.
Jot down your New Year’s resolutions with a Pilot Varsity fountain pen. With one of these biros, returning to work after the holidays will be just a little easier. $27 for pack of seven, at Avalon Stationery & Gifts. Image: Photo by Kennon Evett.
Diane Dorrans Saeks, Contributing Interior Design Editor
Stylish new Taffin candle trio, by jeweler James de Givenchy. My favorite fragrance: Bois de Lilas. $65 each, at barneys.com.
Glitter me with jeweled evening clutches and the most glamorous rings by Bulgari. From $5,500, at the Bulgari boutique; bulgari.com.
This brilliant Christian Dior book was created by photographer Patrick Demarchelier (Rizzoli, $125). Iconic gowns from Dior haute couture collections from 1950s to today … delicious. At local booksellers; amazon.com.
Mish Ratu ring with brown tourmaline cabochon and champagne and cognac diamonds. $27,500, at mishnewyork.com.
Bravo, Gucci, for bringing back ’60s elegance, including the Jackie bag in red leather. $1,890, at the Gucci boutique; gucci.com.
Take me to the utterly romantic Le Royal Monceau Hotel in Paris, with its brilliant design by Philippe Starck. I especially love La Librarie des Arts with its collection of 700 books and collectibles dedicated to contemporary art, design and architecture, and an art curator who’ll get you into all top galleries and exhibits, and help with art purchases. Bliss. raffles.com.
New Bellocq tea canisters. I adore Majorelle Mint, Noble Savage and Bellocq Breakfast. From $22, at Restoration Hardware; bellocq.com.
Greg Fourticq, Contributing Style Editor
No one loves tequila like a Texan. Gran Patron Burdeos is the best of the best. Real men drink it neat. $649, at Richard’s Liquors and Fine Wines.
It’s imperative that every so often we go on a journey to a place that’s completely foreign to us (no shopping, fine dining) and truly experience and explore it. Each Smithsonian Journeys trip is led by an expert who has spent years studying the region. I’m obsessed with the idea of their Amazon River Cruise (February 10 through 19, 17 through 26, 2012). From $4,195, through 877.338.8687; smithsonianjourneys.com.
Michael Tracy jewelry is beautifully crafted and completely unique. Tracy’s use of stones is like no one else’s. These are truly heirloom pieces: pair of butterfly brooches in black diamonds, white Golconda diamonds and 18K yellow gold with a black rhodium polish. Price upon request, through Maya at 214.926.6292.
French company Cire Trudon, established in 1643, produces the purest and most refined scented candles on the market. The Nazareth candle has hints of clove, cinnamon and orange — the ideal hostess gift. A portion of sales go to Terre d’Abeilles, a foundation dedicated to the protection of bees and other pollinating species, which are critical to the growth of so many of the natural elements used in Cire Trudon fragrances. $85, at Kuhl-Linscomb.
Now that I’ve had to turn in my running shoes, my new way to enjoy the outdoors is on my new bicycle, a 2011 Salsa Cycles Spearfish 29er. Great for the trails along Buffalo Bayou and quite a good workout! $2,500, at Bikesport.
Bals: Legendary Costume Balls of the Twentieth Century is a beautifully crafted book from Assouline with amazing photography. Quite a social case study. $175, at Curate: PaperCity Pop Up Bookshop and other booksellers.
What to give someone who already has everything: Consider funding a book for the collection of the Hirsch Library at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, which is utilized by generations of art scholars. Each book receives a personalized bookplate, letter to the donor and honoree, and a credit line in the online catalog. Match the book to the honoree’s interests. Contact library director Jon Evans at 713.639.7393; email@example.com.
James Drake drawings — each one a study for his most recent work, “Red Mirror Project.” Sold in limited quantities, each is an intricate study showing Drake’s talent in a very different light. Perfect gift for an established collector and priced as an affordable gift for someone looking to start a collection. $4,500 each (unframed), at Moody Gallery, 713.526.9911; moodygallery.com. Image: James Drake’s Red Drawing #29, 2011; photo courtesy of the artist and Moody Gallery.
Ceron, Contributing Style Editor
Finally, Hermès makes this classic cuff in a size large enough to fit man hands. Hermès Collier de Chien cuff in leather and silver hardware $1,050, at the Hermès boutique.
Here’s a bit of man glam: Kimberly McDonald Black Diamond Slice cuff links. $16,800, at fortyfiveten.com.
One’s iPad needs equal-opportunity glam. Hermès Etui iPad station in calfskin $1,400, at the Hermès boutique.
For running around Venice. Christian Louboutin men’s Loubi brogue with embroidery. $2,295, at christianlouboutin.com.
Who doesn’t want a simple Hermès Birkin bag … it’s life itself! Hermès HAC 50 Bag in chocolate calfskin $11,800, at the Hermès boutique.
Tom all the time. Tom Ford cashmere overcoat with mink collar, price on request; Wetherby double-pleat wool mohair Prince of Wales trousers $990; and crocodile Foster loafers. All at Neiman Marcus.
I so love an oversized evening tie in rich, rich velvet. This one is by Hadleigh’s Bespoke. $175, at hadleighsbespoke.com.
Everything deserves to be covered in crocodile. Alex Knight iPhone 4 cover in orange alligator $350, at alexandraknightonline.com.
I debuted these made-to-order encrusted jeans at TWO x TWO for AIDS and Art, and they were a sensation. Embellished jeans by Castillo laden with crystals, metals and skulls. From $3,000, by special order through stylist Vanessa Castillo, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dapper is as dapper does. Tom Ford’s country jacket in sharkskin double-check with suede elbow patches $3,248; Wetherby double pleat trousers $990; silk jacquard bow tie $235; and black crocodile Edward brogue cap-toe lace-up shoes, price upon request. All at Neiman Marcus.
I’m mad for Alex Prager photographs, especially Eve, 2008. So Tippi! 36 x 72, price upon request, at M+B Gallery, 310.550.0050; mbart.com. Image: Photo © Alex Prager 2008, Courtesy of the artist and M+B Gallery.
This tux is like going to a party with Tom! Tom Ford Wetherby cocktail coat in liquid velvet $3,590, Wetherby evening trousers $1,200, voile evening shirt $510, and satin bow tie $235. All at Neiman Marcus.