Shopping for Luxury Gifts & Gets – October 2011
Finding fabulous gifts for those who seemingly have it all can be a challenge at best – even if the gift recipient is you. To help alleviate this shopping stress, I perpetually scour the luxury marketplace to uncover new, innovative and otherwise exemplary must-haves – the best-of-the-best across a range of product categories. These gift-and-get-worthy goods deemed “Luxe List worthy” are a mix of tasteful, trendy, and high quality commodities – some extravagant, some practical – that are all sure to please.
Consider this month’s assortment of favorite finds (listed by price):
KitchenAid Artisan Five-Quart, 325 Watt Stand Mixer (www.qvc.com) – $286
Add a new mix to your cooking routine. The sleek and sturdy Artisan stand mixer gets the job done with 325 watts of power and 10 speeds. A tilt-back head lets you easily add ingredients or change the provided attachments while its plastic pouring shield helps keep things clean. The mixer’s unique planetary action blends thoroughly without frequent scraping or rotating. Available in no less than 12 color choices, this able appliance comes complete from QVC.com with artisan mixer, five-quart stainless steel bowl with attached handle, flat beater, wire whip, dough hook and pouring shield
Le Creuset 4.5 Quart Round French Oven (www.qvc.com) – $215
Essential to any well-equipped kitchen, this cast-iron pot is designed for exceptional cooking performance and features a durable enamel exterior in one of six available colors. This handcrafted, family-sized, round French oven features a generous capacity and a stovetop-friendly design, making it easier to work among crowded burners while preparing classics like coq au vin or boeuf bourguignon, and everyday favorites like pot roast, stews, and chili. Le Creuset round French ovens have been a fixture in homes and restaurants around the world for generations because of their enduring quality and versatility.
JOHANNA 2 Piece Striped Stiletto Pump (www.roughjustice.com) – $190
The “Johanna” from Rough Justice is a sleek and sexy D’Orsay striped, stiletto pump. With a comfort footbed in every pair, the 4″ heel is wearable for hours. The bronze metallic, two-toned leather gives the shoe a distinct air of sophistication. Handcrafted in Italy, these shoes are perfect for a night on the town, adding glamour to any outfit. Rough Justice couples the highest quality materials with superior Italian craftsmanship to create styles that are perfect for women who adore gorgeous, alluring footwear that makes a bold, yet glamorous, statement. The fashionable footwear is also available in black/bronze, white/gold, and fuchsia/purple.
Solano 3500Lite Hair Dryer (www.solanopower.com) – $190
The power of 1800 watts is combined with a light-weight DC Motor in the Solano 3500Lite Hair Dryer, which offers optimal quality and performance in a lightweight package that doesn’t weigh down arms during longer styling sessions. The Solano 3500Lite Dryer features Ceramic, Ionic, Far Infrared Heat and Tourmaline technologies for true professional quality styling results – but in a more compact and quieter dryer that’s much easier to hold and manage. Other features include even heat distribution, far infrared heat that dries from the inside out for overall healthier hair, tourmaline that adds shine and smoothes hair while minimizing fly-aways, low EMF that encourages improved environmental conditions, cold shot button to set the style, two concentrators for additional styling options, three temperature settings, two speeds, removable filter for easy cleaning, extra-long cord with hang ring and even a 48-hour care and repair warranty.
ODYSSEY WHITE ICE D.A.R.T. PUTTER (www.odysseygolf.com) – Starting at $179
This cutting edge putter from Odyssey Golf, a brand division of Callaway Golf Company, features the latest in advanced alignment technology. Along with perimeter weighting and a double-bend shaft, the innovative mallet uses D.A.R.T. alignment technology to ensure better accuracy and promote consistent strikes for increased distance control. The White Ice Insert is the company’s most popular, best feeling multi-layer insert. Developed after extensive feedback from players on Tour, engineers have enhanced its sound, responsiveness and consistency. Coupled with a Dark Nickel finish for a premium look, White Ice D.A.R.T. Putters provide Tour-level performance with Tour-inspired feel.
Mary Jurek Design Kitchenware (www.maryjurekdesigninc.com) – $60-$100
–Mariposa Three-Bowl Snack Set
–Morning Glory Creamer and Sugar Bowl Set
Charming and whimsical, Mary Jurek Design’s unique 18/8 stainless steel handcrafted Mariposa Three-Bowl Snack Set ($100) is sure to stimulate conversation at your next party. This useful server is accented with a brass butterfly carefully poised atop the center handle. Delicate and practical, there are so many different ways to use this set. Salty or sweet, this decorative accessory will surely add style and distinction to any gathering. A romantic duo, Mary Jurek Design’s Morning Glory Cream ($60) and Sugar ($64) Set will assure you begin your every day will timeless elegance. Hand-crafted of 18/8 stainless steel with delicate floral medallions of lacquered brass, the creamer and sugar bowl with lid set is perfect for a morning break or a way to brighten a mid-day luncheon with your best girlfriends. Keep them out as decorative, smart-looking décor. All three items are dishwasher safe and never require polishing.
The Bina (www.binabrianca.com) – $42.50
Every woman owns at least a dozen cover-ups — from wraps to cardigans, ponchos to Pashminas, and scarves to shawls. Here’s a fashion find that can multitask like you do. The Bin makes style simple and sophisticated in a snap (literally)! Made from an incredibly soft and luxurious, high-quality jersey, The Bina is a shawl of sorts that drapes al beautifully. Most notable is that, through strategically placed buttons throughout, it can be worn in more than 15 ways. Step-by-step instructions to achieve each style are included. The Bina is ideal for travel – it folds, rolls, is wrinkle resistant, and is machine washable. It’s also a perfect day-to-evening accessory, since the looks span from casual chic to sophisticated elegance. This accessory is veritable fashion insurance to keep well on hand. The Bina is available for in four fabulous colors: Black, Camel, Ice Blue and Lipstick Red.
Trattore Wine (www.trattorewines.com) – $18-$29
Trattore Wines’ estate vineyards are located on a hilltop on the eastern side of Sonoma County’s Dry Creek Valley. The property – a total of forty acres – is planted to Zinfandel, Grenache, Marsanne, Roussanne and Viognier. Extreme hillside farming ensures that the essence of this special vineyard site shines through in the finished wine. Case in point is Trattore’s 2009 Estate Tractor Red wine ($18) – an example of the fine art of blending. Characterized by intense blackberry, dark chocolate, and a hint of caramel, the mouth of this economical varietal is full-bodied with supple tannins and a smooth finish. Trattore’s equally reasonably priced 2009 Estate Zinfandel ($29) shows intense deep purple color with aromas of blueberry, dark cherry, and mocha. This big, yet elegant, wine is sweet and earthy on the palate. It’s a well-structured wine, displaying luscious fruit with a smooth finish.
GlassDharma Glass Straws (www.glassdharma.com) – From $6.50
Durable, sustainable, and elegant, GlassDharma Straws not only replace their plastic and toxic counterparts, but their beauty and style alsofacilitate compliments and conversation. These beautiful straws are made from borosilicate glass, the safest and strongest glass commercially available; they are even dishwasher and microwave safe! They’re great for all hot or cold drinks and are just gorgeous in cocktails – a great accessory for stemware and martini glasses in particular. They are also a nice solution for those concerned about teeth staining from wine, coffee and teas. Offering a lifetime guarantee, GlassDharma stands behind the product, promising that if a straw breaks, it will be repaired or replaced free of charge. Or, the company will extend a full refund if a customer is not satisfied. GlassDharma straws are available in three collections: Simple Elegance, Beautiful Bend, and the color accented Decorative Dots. Also offered in many lengths and widths, GlassDharma straws are available individually or in sets. The accessory line includes cleaning brushes and hemp soft sleeves for carrying the straws while on-the-go.
***Some or all of the accommodations(s), experience(s), item(s) and/or service(s)
detailed above were provided at no cost and/or sponsored to accommodate this review, but all opinions
expressed are entirely those of Merilee Kern and have not been influenced in any
way as per the disclosure policy on our “Legal” page***