The T-List: Guide to Christmas Gifts, Part I

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Welcome to the T List, a newsletter from the editors of T Magazine. For this week and the following, we’ve turned it into a holiday gift guide, with recommendations from T employees on what we covet for ourselves this season, as well as what gifts we think we give to our friends and loved ones. register here to find us in your mailbox every Wednesday. You can always reach us at [email protected].


Seasonal fragrance

For 11 months of the year I pretend I don’t like Christmas, but when I smell fresh pine needles for the first time every December – floating from a stall selling wreaths on a street corner in New York, perhaps, or a garland on a friend’s fireplace – the illusion is quickly shattered. Few scents are so lush and woody, or so evocative of cold nights warmed by candles and wine. This year, Flamingo Estate, the Los Angeles-based food and wellness company, is offering a new service where they’ll pick up your Christmas tree right at your doorstep (if you live in New York or Los Angeles). December and steam distill its branches to create an aromatic essential oil which will then be mailed back to you in an elegant glass bottle, meaning your home can smell like a pine forest until the end of the season. winter and beyond. Any waste left over from the process will be used as compost for the brand’s garden at Highland Park.


What better way to sweeten the holiday season than with real candy? For the art-prone chocolate lover in your life, try a La Nef Chocolate candy bar. Each is made in Bath, Maine, and wrapped in packaging that features the work of a local artist. I have a weakness for unparalleled dark chocolate and the art of painter Caroline Boylston. (A portion of the proceeds from this bar goes to Spindleworks, a non-profit arts center for adults with disabilities.) The Ginger Flower, Bay Leaf and Chamomile Bars that are part of the Casa Bosques Makers Series ($ 20 each ) are also worth a visit. ) – they were a collaboration between the Mexico City-based chocolatier and chef and artist DeVonn Francis, and all of the latter’s proceeds support black trans people through Project Okra – or the brand’s three seasonal bars, which include a cookie Crispy and spicy speculoos covered in rich dark chocolate and in packaging printed with photographs taken by Casa Bosques founder Rafael Prieto on his travels. For a whole different kind of treat, consider a box of Balbosté crystals, inspired by kohakutou, a Japanese gem-like candy – or his white chocolate matcha fortune cookies (with personalized messages inside), so delicate that they can only be bought in person, at the Balbosté store in Paris.


High Culture

In 2019, Brett Heyman, the creator of fashion accessory brand Edie Parker, best known for his acrylic clutch bags with a wry sense of humor, launched Flower by Edie Parker, which offers lighters, trays to rouler and others related to cannabis. ephemeral, all in vibrant hues like aquamarine, periwinkle and bubble gum pink. These borosilicate glass pipes in the range – inspired by a grape, a banana, an orange, and my favorite, a cherry – also double as cute household items that can be on display even while visiting the parents. With Flower, Heyman aims to further destigmatize cannabis use and support penal reform efforts, so if you’re looking to give back this season, consider purchasing one of these fun Flower t-shirts or handbags, including 15% of the proceeds will, according to the article, be donated to either the Last Prisoner Project, Feeding America, the National Center for Transgender Equality or the Women’s Prison Association.


Delicate decorations

After years of living in a minimalist studio, I’m now the proud tenant of an apartment with a living room – one with dark wood paneling and leaded glass windows offering sometimes snow-capped views – that almost calls for a few holiday decorations. After a lot of scrolling I landed on these dyed petal paper garlands in the shape of ginkgo leaves, handcrafted by artisans in Delhi and available from British brand Toast – and on some kitsch antique-style ornaments from John Derian. New for this year are a range of mushrooms and various New York City-centric options, including a particularly shiny Statue of Liberty. They’re sure to be a crowd-pleaser so after making the rare effort, maybe I should just throw a party.

Mushrooms may be a staple food for health conscious people guys right now, but a delivery of mushrooms will always make a delightfully unexpected holiday gift. New York-based Smallhold company is on a mission to reduce the distance its mushrooms have to travel to reach their customers, and has set up miniature organic mushroom farms at the Standard Hotel, East Village, the Lower Eastside Girls Club and various other locations in across town. It also offers grow kits that allow the recipient to grow mushrooms in their own kitchen. Each comes with a starter block of either Blue Oyster Mushrooms or Lion’s Mane Oyster Mushrooms which, if properly cared for (all a home grower will need is water, a rubber band, and ‘a knife), can yield up to two pounds of fresh mushrooms. during two or three hot flashes, or harvests. Given all that bonus, you might consider pairing a kit with the brand’s new cookbook, “Mushrooms in the Middle,” which enhances the food from the side dish to the main event.


On the couch

In my childhood home, curling up on the sofa for a seasonal movie has become as much a holiday tradition as decorating the tree – we are a “Christmas Story” family – and the perfect throw is essential to the holiday. viewing experience: Ezcaray, a textile house based in Spain, hand-weaves its brightly hued Matisse throws from a blend of fibers, including mohair and wool. Trendy furniture designer Jonathan Saunders offers a cheerful striped blanket (named after his design assistant, Nani) with panels in contrasting colors. For a more neutral option, there’s Blacksaw’s reversible black and white Icon throw, which is made from baby alpaca and was designed in collaboration with Los Angeles-based artist John Zabawa, or Attersee’s Herringbone scarf. , which has an elegant leather trim and looks just as chic thrown on a chair as it is worn over the shoulders.


Lucky Charms

The striking gold lockets from New York-based jewelry brand Foundrae, which are often cast with astrological or mythological symbols, all have a slightly supernatural feel, as though they might be vessels inhabited by powerful but benign spirits. The line’s initial sealed charms, however, are particularly otherworldly, and one of them would make a perfect gift if you’re looking to really make a loved one happy this month. Composed of a gold letter encrusted with diamonds set in two crystalline quartz planes sealed in a gold case, each piece is reminiscent of an ancient creature preserved in amber, or perhaps part of a long lost missive frozen in place. in ice.


Table garnishes

For me, the inability to entertain people for much of the past two years due to the pandemic has now inspired a renewed interest in entertaining in my apartment, which allowed me to freshen up my dishes – and so much the better if the rooms themselves reflect people-to-people connections. This Carolina Irving & Daughters mini ice bucket – founded by the textile designer and her two daughters, Olympia and Ariadne – was inspired by medieval pottery and made in Portugal. And the iridescent Nassau mugs from Sirius Glassworks in Ontario mark the very first collaboration between glassblower Peter Gudrunas, founder of the brand in the 1970s, and his daughter, artist and filmmaker Iris Fraser-Gudrunas. These are the kind of special handmade pieces that your guests will want to own, too, and you would be a hero to oblige them.

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