shopping 12.7.04

Gift Ideas

At the delightful, mini tea emporium/kiosk Leaf Storm Tea, 176. W 94th [Amst], they've got samplers in two sizes, filled with black, green, oolong, and herbal varieties. And they're already gift wrapped.

100 New Yorkers by Julia Holmes (The Little Bookroom ($19.95), a softcover that tops our holiday list — and how could it not? Ms. Holmes has done a superb job of gathering up illustrious locals — a mix that includes Edna St. Vincent Millay, Diego Rivera, Emma Goldman, Mathew Brady, Sojourner Truth, and Diana Vreeland, giving you a brief bio and then placing them in context in the city: where they lived, worked, performed, drank, or are buried. The stylish book design is by Milton Glaser and there are great pics, too.

Personalized, hand-drawn pen-and-ink correspondence cards for bread and butter notes, invitations, or baby announcements that are charming as all get out, thanks to Kari Jo Cates, the fine hand behind Eight announcement cards are $40.

Sinuous vases from the talented duo of KleinReid are on sale December 11th and 18th, 12-4pm, at 475 Keap Williamsburg [Union/Ainslie] 718.388.9331. Firsts and one-of-a-kind samples. Cash only.

She may not carry The Bratz Tokyo-A-Go-Go Dance N' Skate Club, but Lisa Mahar, who opened the new Village toy store, Kid O, 123 W. 10th [6th/Greenwich] 212.366.kido, probably doesn't mind. Her approach is to sell only well-designed toys with an educational or visually stimulating component. You'll find puzzles, blocks, mobiles, and one adorable zebra.

Josh Rubin's site Cool Hunting is a fantastic resource for cool gifts, and this year he's compiled a gift guide for $7.95 that could solve all your tough-nut giftee problems. We asked for a sneak peek for MUG readers and Mr. Rubin obliged with three suggestions. He says, "Here are three items I think MUG readers would be into…" Highly customizable messenger bags from R. E. Load, a tiny, round, wall-hanging aquarium called the Fish Pod, and the Solio, a solar iPod charger.
Want to share your doorman/hairdresser/super (et al) holiday tipping strategies? Email us here.

Illustration by Chesley McLaren

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