I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday! Aside from Sunshine getting a nasty stomach bug that lasted several days (and has now passed, fingers crossed), we had a great (fattening) holiday and lots of fun giving and playing with presents.
There's nothing like setting the table for all the elaborate meals during the holidays to make you re-evaluate the types of table linens you have. And certainly the holidays are the time to bring out special pieces, though of course I don't think you need to limit yourself to special occasions at all. Any occasion where you get together with loved ones is special enough to use the "good stuff." I love using fancy tabletop and linens; why else register for these things, right?
My table linens situation is a little sad. My dining table is a large oval and I find it so difficult to find an interesting tablecloth that is the appropriate size and isn't rectangular. Napkins are a bit easier: I have a set of four cloth napkins with metallic thread I picked up at HomeGoods and another set that goes with a tablecloth purchased to fit our old dining table. I would like to buy a new set of at least 12 napkins that can be mixed and matched (and will coordinate with a future tablecloth) and brought out when we have gatherings.
Aside from being more sophisticated than paper napkins, I like cloth for the environmental angle--less trash!
I really like the new line of table linens designed by Elson & Company. The napkins are the brand's first venture into tabletop products and are currently available exclusively through Elson & Company’s new online shop.
I've been familiar with the company for several years, since I saw their second Fashion Underfoot collection—the company is best known for their stylish carpets and collaborations with well-known designers such as Lulu DK, Kathryn Ireland, and Oscar de la Renta.
The debut collection of napkins offers a really fun mix of patterns and colors. You can easily create a traditional look, a more ethnic look, something that's a bit laid back, and there are designs that feel more formal, plus a couple that are distinctly holiday patterns, if you're thinking ahead for next year.
I'm partial to the Petals Coral, Hatch, John, and India patterns for both everyday use and special occasions.
The hand-dyed napkins are 100% cotton and made in India.
images via elson & company
This sampler set of dark chocolates is delicious with subtle flavors and also helps sustain communities in Madagascar, where the chocolate is harvested and produced.
Mini Chocolate Sampler, $12.99, madecasse.com
I don't know if it's weird or nerdy to include stickies in a stocking, but I think these are really happy and fun. The dots and pie pieces separate from each other so you can mark your books, textbooks, or magazines adding emphasis however you like.
Hay Color Notes, $5.75 each, huset-shop.com
Adorable ceramic cat magnets. Need I say more?
Kitty Cat magnet trio, $28, babasouk.ca
(Price is in Canadian dollars, final price in USD should be slightly less than $28 but depends on the daily conversion rate.)
Even if you live in warmer climates, you can still have a White Christmas. I'm from Syracuse so I'm used to snow at the holidays, but I'd much prefer this type.
Cotton Candy Snow Balls, $3.29, perpetualkid.com
images via retailers listed
I still have a lot of shopping to do for my own family, but I put together a few things that I hope can help you as you shop for yours. Let me know what you like!
When your green bean casserole needs to look its best, or snacks need serving, try one of Judy Jackson's hand-sculpted ceramic bakers. The set of six is dishwasher and microwave safe and comes in varying sizes and shades of grey.
Hand-Thrown bake set, $98, anthropologie.com
Featuring illustrations nearly as lush as the Brooklyn-based florist's arrangements, this letterpress calendar/set of 8x10 prints was produced by Sarah Ryhanen of Saipua in collaboration with Brown Parcel Press.
Perennial calendar, $45, saipua.com
For your friends who are always on a wine tour, these candles infuse a room with delicious notes such as refreshing pear and vanilla or warm woods and bright cherry, respectively.
Limited edition Estancia Chardonnay and Estancia Pinot Noir candles, $44 each, or $80 for both, daynadecker.com
No-brainer: A Bluetooth-enabled clock radio means no more messing around with those little plastic trays or being unable to dock your device after you've upgraded your phone.
Albergo clock radio with Bluetooth, $299.99, tivoliaudio.com
Either sitting on a desk or wall-mounted, this dock lets you watch videos, consult a cookbook, browse the web, or hold your calls—literally—and keep your own hands free to accomplish other tasks.
Universal Hand Dock, $65, shophorne.com
I love a good camo print (here on a leather strap) and that the watch face itself is disguised by a pyramid-shaped golden cover.
Vince Camuto Women's Gold-Tone Pyramid Covered Dial Camouflage leather strap watch, $150, amazon.com
This kinetic sand feels totally different than you think it will, and provides all the fun of the beach without the problem of finding gritty stuff where you don't want it.
Sånd, $19.99, brookstone.com
Let their imagination soar when they design their own superhero cape with a variety of crafty materials. Then keep an eye out for when they try to soar off the sofa.
Superhero Cape kit, $45, blueribbongeneralstore.net
Chalkboards and magnetized wooden buildings and accessories allow kids to be little city planners and imagine foreign adventures. London and a generic town are also available.
Machi Wood+Magnet Town: Paris, $41, aplusrstore.com
Half the fun of having kids is observing the world through their eyes. See what they zoom in on with this beautiful eco-friendly wooden camera.
Wooden toy camera in pixie nautical, $40, twigcreative.com
images via retailers listed
mom, wife, market editor, crazy person.
A La Plage
Back To School
Black Crow Studios
Carrier And Company
Hampton Designer Showhouse
In The Details
Kips Bay Designer Showhouse
New York State Fair