Monday, December 17, 2012

Stockings Hung By the Chimney with Care. . .

         Stockings, perhaps the most exciting part of Christmas cadeaux, are not typically part of Noêl festivities in France. I do however have a great friend who has a huge family -- and fortunately an enormous fireplace -- who has taken to the tradition with a passion to the delight of her children and now her grandchildren.

          The stockings hung by the chimney with care. . . have always been my very favorite part of the holidays. I like them because, in a way, it takes more thought to fill them with charming offerings. Each one is theoretically strategically conceived to reflect the recipient's personality, all of which made me think about that most difficult of challenges: The Woman Who Has Everything.

         I imagine all of us have one or more friends in that category and they tend to create a cadeau conundrum  when we're confronted with those "what in the world can we give her?" occasions. Clearly, we're not in competition to "keep up" with her budget possibilities and as for my friends, they would never expect excess because they are kind, thoughtful, generous and mostly blithely unaware that we would even think it could be difficult to find perfect presents for them.

         So, mes amis, that was the task I set for myself: Fill a Christmas stocking for the woman who has everything with gifts that never surpass $50 and sometimes ring in at less than $10. I'm not suggesting we would be responsible from toe to top, simply one (maybe two) special items that could be tucked within to give joy and show our affection.

         Here then, is Part I of my two-part series:
         1.) The purpose made (it glides right into a stocking) and covetable, The Night Before Christmas in Paris book by my great, great friend Betty Lou Phillips with Roblyn Herndon and illustrations by Sheryl Dickert.

         2.) Because there is a little girl in every big girl, the beyond charming Bulles d'Agathe perfume bubbles from the brilliant perfumer, Francis Kurkdjian are fun and fashionable. The fragrances come in violet, pear, cold mint and grass. The idea is to blow the bubbles and dash through them inhaling the scent as they pop in the air.

         3.) Clarins' three point eyeliner pen. It's slightly complicated to use the first time -- instructions are inside the box -- and requires a tiny bit of practice, but once you've learned the technique there is no turning back. The concept is so ingenious that it redefines, literally, everything we have ever thought about the process.

         4.) Poudre Universelle Libre, Réverie, by Chanel. What could be more festive than a dusting of light reflecting gold and silver powder?

         5.) Pate a tartiner Pietra by Pierre Hermé -- it's sort of like an intensely chic version of Nutella from one of the world's most talented chocolate makers  and, many contend, the king of macaroons.

        6.)  "Le Premeur" a calendar of fruits and vegetables which tells us what produce is grown in which season and therefore leads us to the best quality choices. It saves us from eating raspberries in December that taste like the carton in which they were so enticingly displayed for example.
       7.) Just for fun, and Coco Chanel would approve, a pair of "gold" hand-wire wrapped earrings with small hemalite beads and smokey quartz teardrops from my friend Marsha at Splenderosa. Remember, when they're worn by the woman who has everything, everyone will naturally assume they're precious pieces.
       8.)  Nars Jungle Red nail polish -- rich, red and daring. (I received it as a gift from a dear friend and have a pedicure appointment on Thursday to have it applied. Can't wait.)

      9.) One or two shooting star hair combs, brass with a wash of gold something-or-other. Take my word for it, they're glamorous.

    10.) Guerlain's beyond chic lipstick with its built-in mirror. It has heft, style and the magic "click" that tells a woman, "this is pure luxury."

    A demain for the second installment.


Splenderosa said...

Tish, I love this list. So many things I didn't know about and believe me I would be thrilled to receive any one of them. Yes, for the woman who has everything.
Merry Christmas !!

webb said...

Stockings are my favorite, too, and the most fun to fill. Usually little personal things - like the toiletries - and maybe a game or some "doo-dad" I find. Somehow they seem to bring out the child that lurks in all the adults!

vicki archer said...

Yes please... to all these lovely goodies... And that eyeliner... it does look complex... but I trust you... :) xv

That's Not My Age said...

I am partial to a pair of cheap sparkly earrings - and I love the fact that the Nars nail polish is called Jungle Red. Just like in The Women, one of my favourite films!

sharon santoni at my french country home said...

Love stockings!!! love filling them and love opening them - yup Santa brings me one too!
All your gift ideas are perfect

Karen Albert said...

Oh Tish, these are perfect for every woman I know!

Love & Hugs,
Art by Karena
$75 NOVICA Giveaway

LPC said...

I absolutely adore your suggestions.

Young at Heart said...

I'll take the earings...and the Jungle Red .....and the hair comb would be fun and.........

falke sokken said...

Stockings are my favorite part of clothing and also of Christmas...! love filling them for my kids.

Carol said...

What marvellous choices Tish, l would be over the moon to have any one of these in my stocking.

Déjà Pseu said...

That fruit and vegetable chart is the cleverest thing I've seen in quite a while! And I'm going to make a note of that eyeliner pen to check out next time I visit the Clarins counter.

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