1. Absolutely Beautiful Things by Ann Spiro $18.87 | Pretty, preppy colors splashed all over this cheerful book of interior design inspiration. The cover alone could inspire a color palette for an entire home. Gorgeous.
2. Slim Aarons: Once Upon A Time $54.07 | A look into the whimsical reality of old Hollywood royalty, European aristocracy, media moguls, and more. Ideal for your resident photographer or people watcher.
3. Great Houses of the South by Laurie Ossman $41.40 | Oh. My. Yes. Three centuries of distinctive, southern style homes beautifully photographed. Perfect symmetry, revival details, exceptionally tall white columns… wipe your chin. You’re already drooling.
4. Cupcakes and Cashmere at Home by Emily Schuman $14.25 | Anyone familiar with Emily’s blog will immediately recognize this hardcover. It won’t just make a coffee table look charming, it will get picked up and poured over by every guest to sit in the living room.
5. Paris in Color by Nichole Robertson $12.18 | Pair with a themed tray and and homemade macarons for a lovely, and especially thoughtful Parisian gift set.
Want to see more book lists? Go here for five book for the do-er!
Holiday decor makes great Christmas gifts, and it’s even better when handmade. Here are a few of my favorite picks from Etsy that would work for family members, hosts, teachers, and friends. Which one is your favorite?
1. Custom Calligraphy Ornament $15+ | Caroline of Papercase Design beautifully hand paints each glass orb. Can’t you already picture a collection of your children’s names on the tree? Also, a charming take on place cards for Christmas dinner.
2. Antler Lumbar Pillow Cover $46 | Janet Slagel creates hand-printed and sewn-in-house linens with eco-friendly inks. It also comes in gray for the white and neutral holiday decorators. Join the Cotton Revival list to get $20 to shop.
3. Christmas Quilt $300 | You all know by know I’m a big fan of SewEMG, so if I’m going to write about Christmas decor to invest in, it’s going to be heirloom quality. I have gifted Erica’s handiwork and have the chance to see it up close– it’s gorgeous down to each detail.
4. Holly Tea Towel $19.34 | Emma Allard Smith sketches and paints patterns and then digitally prints them onto fabric to deliver brilliantly colored, functional artwork for your home. I’m liking the holly print, but check out the others, too!
5. Brass Tree Topper $94 | Megin Sherry of Me and She Studios makes a seriously stunning tree topper. She explains the inspiration, “originally himmeli mobiles were made from rye straw and hung over the dinner table to ensure a good harvest”. Use yours to ensure good tidings this holiday season. For 15% off use code SMALLBIZ.
6. Hanging Mistletoe $16.50 | This wool and satin appointed “kiss me” decor is completely darling. Check out the Fairyfolk shop for a number of perfectly felted, delightful ornaments.
7. Gold Glitter Garland $14 | Put it up for Christmas and then again for birthday parties. Neutral gold = all the festivities. Made by Glitter + Grain with felt and thread.
8. Personalized Cookie Cutter $15 | These genius gifts are from Jana Hayman’s Etsy shop, Home Print3D. And it comes with a little love story: Jana designs the products and her husband brings them to life with their 3D printer. Get one for the family or a few for each of the kiddos!
A bag of coffee makes a decent gift in a pinch, but add a few more parts and you can give someone a full-on coffee experience. This is what you need:
1. Set of 2 Glass Double Wall Mugs $29.95 | Because you want to see this charming cup of coffee you’ve just crafted (cheaper option). A set of two also makes your coffee gift set very couple-appropriate (think weddings!).
2. One-Cup Porcelain Pour Over Cone $8.99 | I like it because I don’t have a second cup, or if I do it’s at the office… so I only make a pot when we have company at the house. Plus I was never a barista and so this is how I get my kicks.
3. Sleek, Cordless Stainless Steel Electric Kettle $79.95 | You can totally wait for all eternity if you just can’t do without the shrill whistle of a stove top kettle, or you can press one button on this bad boy and have boiling water ready faster than you can switch your laundry… but still switch your laundry because coming home from work and realizing your clothes having been sitting in the washer all day will give you a serious sad face emoji (cheaper option).
4. 100 Ct. #2 Filters $6.92 | If you’re committed you can save and buy in bulk. But don’t forget to grab a pack of these because you cannot make the coffee without them. Don’t give new meaning to #nofilterfail
5. 12oz. Bag of Brazil Beans by Cafe Kubal $12 | A medium roast from the Mogiana region with peanut and milk chocolate notes = yes. And here’s a decaf option. Kubal is my favorite local coffee shop. If you’re in the greater Syracuse area, check it out. Otherwise, at least they sell online. Also, if you give whole beans, consider whether your giftee has a grinder at home. Often people buy ground coffee or use the grinder at the store, so it’s not a guaranteed appliance.
6. Madagascar Vanilla Powder Shaker $9.99 | You might remember seeing a reference to this several months ago. There is a reason I mentioned it yet again. It. Is. So. Good. (cinnamon option)
Now here are eleven more mug options to check out. Because the truth is that mugs really reflect upon a person and dare I say, tell a potentially revealing story about that person. So if a mug is given as a gift put a little thought into it:
- For the endless errand runner
- For the serial monogrammer
- GOLD ONLY (EVER)
- For your cheeky girlfriend
- For the so-right-now-ist
- For the classic neautralist
- For the urban minimalist
- For the mason jar-aholic gal (yes, that is a thing)
- For the mason jar-aholic guy (yes, also a thing)
- For the secret architect
- For the not so ordinary
Choose well, friends.
And if you haven’t entered the current GWB giveaway on Instagram, go check it out!
Marble Tray $39 | Wreath $89.95 | Wishbone Figurine $29 | Planter $65 | Candle $
15 10.50 | Cross Back Apron $80 | Catchall $ 49 19.99
Preparing a Thanksgiving meal is impressive, challenging, and involves a whole lot of stress and preparation. So if your offer was declined when you suggested bringing your favorite green beans/potatoes/pie, don’t pass up the opportunity to pack a gift for the person or family hosting you (and possibly your whole family). I would venture to say that most people do not expect a gift for hosting, which makes it all the more fun to give. A lovely surprise that isn’t bound by any feeling of pressure. And it’s not that the token bottle of wine wont be welcome, it’s that you can push yourself to be just a bit more creative and bring a lot more joy.
My mother created a tradition with one of her closest friends several years ago where she leaves a wreath on her door at the start of every holiday season. Though her friend is well aware of it, Mom pretends that it’s a Christmas mystery yet to be solved. What a brilliant and doting gesture. Feel free to steal her idea (she’ll love it!) and pay it forward with someone special to you. Who doesn’t want to play elf every once in a while? Sign me up!
Hand Towels $11.95 | Ice Tray $8 $5.56 | Bat Server $25 | Valuspa Candle $25.46 | Candle Sticks
$24 $19 | Spatula $9.95 $7.97 | Skull Dish $8 | Nail Polish $8.50 | Chalkboard Printable $15
Your costume shouldn’t be the only thing on your mind as your prep for Halloween festivities. Don’t forget to pick up a host or hostess gift for whoever is throwing an Orange and Black bash on the 31st. Whether you spend $5 or $25, arriving with a gift in hand is always a welcomed gesture. Running late? Pick up a bottle of Essie polish in a black shade and tie an orange ribbon around it. Now that’s a girlfriend gift that’s both October-worthy and wearable well into winter. Darling!
Six-Axis Star c/o KO Sticks
This foldable star sculpture may just be the most giftable item I’ve ever featured on Gifts with Bows. Why? Well it works for just about anyone on almost any occasion:
It’s office appropriate, making it suitable for work anniversaries and first days on the job.
It’s chic in the living room (gorgeous for newlyweds ready for sophisticated decor and entertaining for families with kiddos), making it a lovely housewarming gift or wedding present.
And yes, even kids can make perfect recipients. Imagine hanging a few from the ceiling in their bedroom or playroom. Or keep them in reach… because these hand made works of art are intended to be explored by hand (see the evidence in the photo story below).
But it gets even better. Not only are KO Sticks Stars a widely practical gift, they come in several sizes and materials. That means you can buy one for $24-170 hitting whatever your appropriate price point happens to be.
Note: KO Sticks is comprised of two great artisans (and mathematicians), Jane and John Kostick. Married for just over 20 years, they met at a geometry lecture and now construct geometric objects side by side. Now isn’t that an equation you’d like to support? Give KO Sticks a follow on Facebook to give your newsfeed a welcomed pop of art.
The other day I took our stars off of the living room bookshelves where they are typically on display (see above). And brought them to the park so that our three year old, Zoe could show them to her friends. Ready to see a few thoughtful and curious faces? And park adventures, too of course!
Photos: The bookshelf and park photos are my own and the product photos are by Design Within Reach, a KO Sticks retailer. A special thanks to Zoe’s pals for making their darling debuts on GWB.
Artist Credits: Featured above with the KO Sticks star, the lantern is Lauren Ritchie and the vase is Jen Gandee.
1. Bracelet by Alex and Ani $28 | 2. 10 oz. Candle by Modern Alchemy
$20 $12 | 3. Earrings by Covet $22 | 4. iPhone Case by Kate Spade $45 | 5. Wreath Holder by Williams Sonoma $29.95 $12.99 | 6. Jar by Dot & Bo $31 $24.99 | 7. Necklace by Nasty Gal $18 | 8. Ice Tray Set by Sunnylife $22 | 9. Key Fob by Tory Burch $60 $42 | 10. Ceramic Jewelry Tray by JCrew Factory $19.50 $12.50
Give your next gift in true Florida form with a tropical delight that traditionally says, “Welcome!” and in more modern terms says, “Hey, girl!”. I can barely scroll Instagram for two minutes before I see a pineapple and you know what? I’m really okay with that. It’s fresh for summer and a sweet and citrus-y way to say congrats, happy birthday, or honey, I love you. Go forth and purchase your next punchy gift!
Trying to get your pineapple on for free? Okay I can help you there, too. Some ah-mazing bloggers and designers have made your pineappling adventures as easy as a quick download and print.
1. Oh So Lovely | 2. The Alison Show | 3. Glitter and Gloss | 4. Live Laugh Rowe
For the baker with a nose that knows: he or she will so appreciate the aromatic glory and deeply indulgent difference of Vanilla from The Spice House.
Also for your Starbucks or local grind junky who has an interminable weakness for Vanilla lattes.
16 oz. Madagascar “Bourban Islands” Pure Single-Strength Vanilla Extract $27.99
2.5oz Shaker of Madagascar Vanilla Powder $9.99
Note: I was introduced to the The Spice House by Chicago Food Planet Food Tours several years back, when I was living in the Windy City and my parents came to visit. The Vanilla they offer is miles away from what you can buy at a convenience grocery store. It is rich and layered and almost savory. Never in my life did I anticipate becoming a Vanilla snob, but I’ll freely and gladly take the title. When I found out The Spice House shipped its merchandise I immediately made a mental note to send a few jars to my Mom for Mother’s Day that year. It. Is. So. Good.
Either option works well for baking or coffee, but I’d recommend the liquid for the former and the powder for the latter.
If you’re ever in Chicago and you’re looking for something to do, treat yourself to a Food Tour by Chicago Food Planet. It’s brilliant fun, gets you walking, teaches you a great deal about a range of foods and restaurants, tells brick and mortar history, and comes with samples of the best tastes Chi-town has to offer. This company is so well loved that dozens upon dozens of food tour start-ups have mimicked them to find huge success in cities spanning the nation.
Recognize these items on a registry for your friend’s upcoming wedding? Take advantage of these sales and buy the happy couple two kitchen appliances instead of one by avoiding standard sticker prices. Not only are these great deals, the Cuisinart line is sleek and easy on the eyes making them a lovely gift choice for the newlyweds!
:: 1. Smart Stick Hand Blender
$65 $34.99 :: 2. Duet Blender/Food Processor Set $185 $89.99 :: 3. Classic Nonstick Round Waffle Maker $55 $25.99 :: 4. Custom 14-Cup Food Processor $325 $159.99 ::
Note: First things first– if you don’t have a free membership to Zulily, sign up here to access the deals listed above. Once you enter the Zulily site simply use the top-right corner search box to find ‘Cuisinart’ products. Alternatively (if any of the products are sold out or the sale is over) use the alternative links below to access these kitchen must-haves on Amazon. All are PRIME or free shipping eligible:
:: 1. Smart Stick Hand Blender :: 2. Duet Blender/Food Processor Set :: 3. Classic Nonstick Round Waffle Maker :: 4. Custom 14-Cup Food Processor ::
I have owned and used all of the products listed on today’s post, so I personally recommend each of them. Two we received as wedding gifts and the other two we bought post-wedding. Our primary uses for each? The Smart Stick is great for fast single servings of smoothies, the Waffle Maker is a definite Saturday morning staple, the blender is perfect for smoothies for the whole family, and the food processor is our go-to tool for hummus.
Whether he brews at home, hangs at the corner pub, or simply enjoys a cold one after a long day– send him a pack of beer jelly to braise meats or top his toast. Perfect for groomsmen, birthday boys and Dads on Father’s Day.
Buy the Dark & Berry 3 Pack for $21
Note: Potlicker Kitchen is the delicious gem of the Northeast corner offering a full array of artisan jellies and jams one small batch at a time. Nancy and Walter Warner have mastered the art of culinary surprise featuring mash-ups such as strawberry chipotle jam, blackberry basil jelly and wild sumac jelly. They look to six nearby craft breweries to get the best local flavor canned for your enjoyment. “Like” them on Facebook to find out what’s next on the Potlicker oven rack!