It’s graduation season, which means it’s time to go shopping for the high school and college grads in your life. We recommend that you take a cue from our editors and give something unique this year!
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What says I’m thinking about you like 365 thoughtful quotes for each day of the year? These “Gathered Truths” are perfect for a friend or the one you love to let them know how much your care all year round.
Every college student needs a great tote. This one is the perfect size for books, and a laptop, and will be your grad’s new go-to accessory in no time.
These “Slow and Steady” cocktail napkins are a great reminder to the recent graduate that moderation is the key to all things in the post school world!
We think the title to this Storm Jameson novel says it all… “Farewell to Youth” and hello to the real world!
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Make sure your graduate is ready for those college formals– or post graduation celebrations– with this sharp bow tie and cummerbund set.
Let this print from Old Try serve as a friendly reminder to remember your manners… We think it makes great dorm room decor!
These beautiful notepads would certainly make note taking a more enjoyable task, making them both practical and fun!
This Presentation Box from Heritage Handcrafted is made from whiskey staves and can be personalized with initials or a date. It’s a great way to remember a special day and perfect the perfect vessel for keepsakes, or a special bottle of whiskey!
We’re going crazy for this statement accessory that never goes out of style!
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This solid 18 karat yellow gold Flower Cuff by Melissa Braniff is hand forged into a signature flower design and hammered finish.
The flower is an abstract representation of the Orchid which dates back to ancient Rome and Greece.
Lizzy Couture’s Vintage Rhinestone cuff has been spotted on a celebrity or two, and you will certainly look like when when you sport this stunner.
We love the dynamic design of Bounkit’s Rock Crystal Quartz and Green Onyx cuff. The hinge makes it easy to slip on, which is an added bonus.
Anna Ruth Henriques’ designs have us completely captivated. The Petite Labyrinth Cuff embodies nature’s duality, oppositions, multifaceted aspects – and leaves space for interpretation. Plus it is both wearable and seriously comfortable!
Glamourpuss’ hammered gold cuff is set with lovely blue chalcedony. We think it’s the perfect accessory for a sundress in these warmer months.
Last week Taigan welcomed us to their hometown where we fell in love ~ with the music, the architecture, the food, the shopping ~ but most of all with the charm of its people. Trust us, if you haven’t been to Nashville, go. It’s one of those great cites where you don’t need a reason, an itinerary, an agenda – and if your experience is anything like ours, by the time you leave, you’ll feel like you already have a couple of friends to look up when you get back.
So, here’s a glimpse into our 48 hours in Nashville – we like to mix the high and the low, the old and the new, and that’s exactly what we got…
Day One – Check out the fabulous setting for the trunk show that also featured other great Taigan vendors and benefited the American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women campaign. It was an honor to be there, and thanks to the shopping ladies of Nashville, we raised some great money for a wonderful charity. By the way, the owners of this incredible home were so easy going about all the rolling racks and piles of boxes, the phrase “Southern hospitality” must have been coined for them. And the surrounding area? Wow. We didn’t know what to expect, but what we found was winding tree-lined streets with impressive homes, flowering hedges, lush green lawns, hundred year-old stone walls, and everything done with a just dash of restraint.
Later that night…When the Taigan team overheard us mention that we wanted to go “downtown” (aka Lower Broad Street, aka “LoBro”) – none other than Taigan top-dog Elizabeth Nichols volunteered to personally take us honky tonkin’. Quick change from cocktail attire to jeans, and before we knew it Elizabeth was expertly maneuvering her SUV through historic Ryman Alley, briskly charging through the gauntlet of patrons at Robert’s, heading straight to the back, up the stairs, right in front, and ordering drinks and cheeseburgers for us all. Needless to say, we were impressed. The music was fantastic, and the 18 year-old electric guitarist seemed destined for stardom. This was our kind of night.
Day Two – Great fun at the trunk show getting to know the awesome (and gorgeous) Taigan staff who ably doubled as models, fellow vendors, and all the lovely ladies of Nashville who made us feel so welcome and appreciated. The day flew by, then it was already time to pack it all up. Someone suggested we head to “The Gulch” for dinner, a trendy part of town with cool restaurants and shops and a great moonlit view of Union Station. At Kayne Prime we sipped on well-deserved martini’s and dined under the Edison bulbs on tuna tartare and Wagyu filet mignon. After dinner we strolled a bit then took in the sights of Nashville by car. The Country Music Hall of Fame, the vintage neon store fronts, the brick facades of downtown, the churches, the glass high rises ~ it all evokes Nashville’s past and present, the world-famous “Music City”.
One last look – The next morning we only had a few hours to spare, no time for the beautiful gardens and museums, so instead we headed to Two Old Hippies, an unbelievably cool store who’s owner had shopped with us at the Taigan show the day before. My daughter turns 23 this week so this was an ideal opportunity to pick up gifts at a shop unlike anything we have in Palm Beach. Jack even found a pair of new jeans designed by a Nashville musician who had back pain from always sitting on his wallet when he played guitar - Southern Blues jeans have a clever pocket on the outside leg that’s just perfect for a cell phone or wallet.
After that we needed one more brief chance to roam around downtown, and even though it was only eleven in the morning live music flowed from every door on LoBro. We grabbed a bite at the bar at Puckett’s (a light lunch of turnip greens, loaded potato soup and grilled cheese), and had just enough time left to visit the Ernest Tubb record shop where we purchased a bunch of great Nashville music, including an album by “Brazilbilly”, the house band from the honky tonk we’d been at the night before, named for the band’s frontman and owner of Robert’s, Jesse Lee Jones, who is originally from Sao Paulo, Brazil. We didn’t get to hear them that night but their repertoire includes everything from Samba to Marty Robbins.
Appetites and thirsts quenched, purchases in hand, we headed to the airport which is literally about 10 minutes from downtown Nashville (super convenient we thought for all those music celebrities). Before we knew it we were seeing the Everglades below us and headed back to our version of reality. You won’t be surprised to learn, not a day had passed before we’d spoken to some of our new pals and were musing on when we might be able to get back there to explore some more. In the meantime, Jack’s wearing his new favorite jeans and thanking a musician in Nashville for designing a great pair of pants.
Have a wonderful rest of the week from the two of us at CJ Laing,
Jack Laing and Ali Russell
Sick of spending money on something that will only last a few short days? Give mom some flowers that will last longer than a week with these clever floral finds.
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These lovely porcelain violets by Vieuxtemps sit atop dainty tole stems and leaves. Set them in a powder room or a window sill where your guests will be able to admire the beautiful workmanship.
Diane James Home creates incredibly lifelike blooms like this single peony in a glass vase. Mom will enjoy springtime all year long with this thoughtful gift.
If you aren’t ready to give up on flowers then we recommend this porcelain bud vase by artist Caroline Reehl. Fill it with a single white rose or some spray roses to complete the gift.
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Karen Adams’ Garden Note Cards have beautiful illustrations of flowers and insects with glittered accents. We think they make writing notes a truly enjoyable experience!
These flower soaps are nestled in a linen-embossed gift box inspired by vintage Russian textiles. They come with a silk screened soap dish and are almost too pretty to use.
Sharyn Blond’s cocktail napkins are always a treat for the recipient. We love the lattice design with the cheerful yellow flowers on this particular design.
May is National Salad Month, so pick some greens, make our favorite vinaigrette and toss it up with style with these tips from Fetch.
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Daniel Bellow’s Salad Bowl is the perfect size to pile high with organic greens. The lotus design adds plenty of intrigue, but still lets your food shine.
These quirky salad servers look like garden tools. We think they are a must have for the kitchen and make a pretty great Mother’s Day Gift too.
No salad is complete with out the famous O’Kelly Girls Vinaigrette. Made with Lemon Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Sparkling White Wine Vinegar, Organic Grey Salt and Cracked Black Pepper, all from St. Helena Olive Oil, this one is hard to beat!
Our beloved Julia Reed has a new book out appropriately subtitled “Adventures in Eating, Drinking, and Making Merry”. Check out her picks that will aid you in those endeavors.
She Cooks to Conquer: I collect vintage cookbooks and I can’t wait to dig into this one from Nick Harvill. The title is perfect—we all “Cook to Conquer” whether we admit it or not.
Sterling Julep Cup: My mother was lucky enough to get more than a dozen sterling julep cups as wedding presents. (Those, apparently, were the days!) Since I did not, I’m starting my own collection with these beaded versions from Wakefield-Scearce at Corzine &Co. Nothing is more elegant. And nothing keeps your cocktail colder. After all, it’s hot where I live.
Photographs 1961-1967: I’ve been in love with Dennis Hopper since I saw “Kid Blue” at 13. At the time I had no idea that he was also the coolest photographer around.
Claw Candlesticks: I am obsessed with all things bird and these candlesticks might as well have made for me. I’m determined to have an entire—very chic—aviary walking up and down my dining table, or at least two or three to place on top of a stack of books.
Faux Bamboo Flatware: These bamboo place settings scream summer and outdoor entertaining and would look equally swell with the finest china or simple pottery or enamel plates. I will use them with my blue on blue toile tablecloths with antique Blue Willow china and big bowls of hyacinths or daffodils or hydrangeas in the center.
Blood Orange Rosemary Sea Salt Scrub: I am a scrub junkie and Napa Valley Bath Co’s Blood Orange Sea Salt Scrub not only turns your skin to silk, the subtle scent is heavenly—and thoroughly restorative.
Elizabeth Showers Malachite Earrings: I love everything on offer at Amanda Pinson, but she’s really got me with these malachite drops. The perfect size, color, and texture, they can go night or day with almost anything I’m wearing.
Leopard Needlepoint Mules: Every time I wear the loafer version of these leopard-print slides, people always ask me were I got them. The mules are even more covetable.
William Yeoward Water Pitcher: I don’t have a thing to do with my publisher’s design team, but I have to say this William Yeoward pitcher looks an awful lot like the one holding the sangria on the cover of my new book, “But Mama Always Put Vodka in Her Sangria, Adventures in Eating, Drinking, and Making Merry.” I think I have to have it!
Southern Cocktails: My friend the great Liz Smith first alerted me to this book on Southern Cocktails by Denise Gee and now it is one of my go-to hostess gifts. For someone you really love, pair it with an actual sterling julep cup—or a very nice plate or pewter version from Corzine & Co.
Artisan Glass Pitcher: I am still on the fence about whether a martini should be shaken or stirred, but either way, everyone needs a classic glass like this one for mixing all sorts of cocktails. It can also do double duty as a handsome water or iced tea pitcher or vase for a mass of Casablanca lilies.
Luxo Banho Soaps: One of my best friends refers to me as the “soap fairy” because it is my favorite gift to both give and receive. This trio from Banho has divine scents as well as pretty packaging, which makes it a fairy favorite.
Small Glasses: I used these same three sizes of thin (but amazingly indestructible) glassware from And George as vases down the endlessly long banquet tables at my rehearsal dinner. Since then I’ve used them for highballs, juice, more flowers and as wine and water glasses on the table. Everyone should own several sets of each size.
At Home In Italy: The blue and green cover had me at first glance but the gorgeous scenes (and great ideas) inside are equally tantalizing.
Straw Hat: Now that I’ve spent the last decade paying (the very cruel) piper for not protecting my skin, I try to remember to wear hats in the sun. I would have started earlier had I found one so insouciantly good looking as this raffia version from And George.
Wine Cup: I love Daniel Bellow’s pottery pieces—especially their gorgeous colors. These cups are prefect for tea or wine and add beauty and intimacy to any ritual.
Rattan Pagoda: There is scarcely a single thing at Revival I don’t want, but this hand lacquered Rattan Pagoda especially caught my eye. Put it in the middle of a hall table instead of a vase of flowers or on a console table in place of an urn. Whatever—this is exactly the kind of tactile , textured, gorgeous, and unexpected objet I love.