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Archive for the ‘Gifts Giving’ Category

So Many Books, So Little Time

Monday, January 27th, 2014

Over the last several years, I have amassed a growing collection of great fashion books.  Some are truly spectacular (Thanks Deb for the gorgeous Alexander McQueen book and  Sally for the beautiful Yves Saint Laurent one) and others are more pedestrian.  Over the summer, I had the opportunity to browse in the mecca of all bookstores, Powell’s in Portland, OR.  This truly is the mother ship of all bookstores!  It is so massive, check out the map to help navigate it’s many nooks and crannies:

Map of Powell's book store

My daughter, a self proclaimed bibliophile, was in heaven!  I had never seen a larger collection of fashion books in my life.  I wanted to bring a sleeping bag and stay the night.


Anyway, I digress … while at Powell’s I was able to peruse and buy some books I had my eye on.  The first one I read was by Nina Garcia, of Project Runway fame, called The One Hundred: A Guide to the Pieces Every Stylish Woman Must Own.

Nina Garcia book

I’m always a little hesitant about books that tell you what to wear.  I don’t like the MUST OWN command, it just sounds so mean.  Which if you watch PR you know that Nina can indeed be mean!  I must say that this book was entertaining, informative and easy to read.  One of the best parts of the book was the illustrations; they were amazing!  I love Ruben Toledo’s fashion illustrations, and this book had them on every page.  I am a huge fan and never tire of his art.  Garcia knows what she’s talking about as a fashion editor of Marie Claire and formerly of Elle magazines.  In addition to the beautiful pictures, Nina goes on to explain the history of an item, if that is pertinent, like in the case of the pearl necklace.  It tells you how Jacques Cartier traded a double strand of cultured pearls for the Manhattan store bearing his name in 1916, or that the fake strand of pearls Jackie O paid $80 for, sold at auction for $211,500 in 1996.  I was happy that I could  take credit for owning roughly 75- 80% of her top 100 must have items… not to bad at all.  I’ve made it this far with out a bikini and Minnetonka moccasins and haven’t suffered too much.  This is a great book whether fashion is your thing or not.  What fashion books, if any, are on your shelf???  The book can be purchased at  Enjoy!

Rubin Toledo picture



Fundraising around the Square.

Wednesday, October 24th, 2012

As October’s Breast Cancer awareness month winds down, there’s still more ways to give and GET .  Many merchants in and around Union Square are joining together to support the cause.  With a $65 donation to Susaon G. Komen for the cure, you receive a Komen Card, good for 20% off from the wonderful list of participating stores!  This is a great event and with the holidays around the corner, you can get a jump on gift shopping.  Cards can be purchased online at and are good from 10/25 until 11/4.  Get your give on and start shopping!!!

Fight breast cancer and save 20%! Shop with the 2012 Komen Card at the Bay Area’s finest merchants and Save 20% from October 25 – November 4, 2012! Purchase your Komen Card online through Friday, October 26th, or visit any participating retailer to buy your card in-store now through November 4th!

Merchants Offering 20% Savings

Agent Provocateur | 54 Geary Street some exclusions apply; please see store for details

Azadeh | 110 Geary St.

Bottega Veneta | 124 Geary St. Some exclusions apply; please see store for details

The Container Store | 26 Fourth St. Sale items are excluded

Diptyque Paris | 171 Maiden Lane

Downtown | 55 Maiden Lane Special Orders are excluded

Faconnable | 253 Post St.

Glory Chen | 134 Maiden Lane

Gump’s | 135 Post St. Some jewelrey is excluded: Aaron Henry, Buccellati, Estate & Antique Jewelry, Kothari, Petra Class, Russell Trusso and Todd Reed.

Harputs | 80 Geary St.

John Varvatos | 152 Geary St. Watches, AUdio and Photography are Excluded

Juicy Couture| 105 Grant Ave. Some exclusions apply; please see store for details

Paul Smith | 50 Geary St.

Porsche Design | 100 Grant Ave.

Serge Sorroko Gallery | 55 Geary St.

Ted Baker| 80 Grant Ave . Theory | 120 Maiden Lane Non-Theory labels are not included

Tse Cashmere | 60 Maiden Lane Some exclusions apply; please see store for details

Vince | 36 Geary St.

Williams Sonoma | 340 Post St



Can you LOVE a pair of shoes???

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

I recently celebrated a milestone birthday.  I had a wonderful party with most of my besties in attendance and had an amazing evening!   At the end of the party,  I opened gifts from my pals.  The last gift was handed to me…I unwrapped it and underneath the wrapping paper, was a Manolo Blahnik box… OMG these couldn’t be mine!  After a little hesitation I opened the box… only to find the pictured red Converse sneakers!!!

The joke was on ME!!!  I was then handed another similarly shaped box to unwrap.  This time, the box read  Jimmy ChooOK, what did this box contain, a cute pair of Haviana flip flops???   I was ready for the prank this time.  I lifted off the lid to find THESE shoes…

My new Jimmy Choos!

My jaw dropped open and a look of utter disbelief spread across my face.   These are by far the most beautiful and extravagant shoes I own!  Many of my girlfriends chipped in to buy me these gorgeous shoes for my birthday.


My surprised face!


This begs the question, can you actually LOVE a pair of shoes, handbag or article of clothing?  I guess it’s not so much love that you feel, but maybe admiration is a better word.  The leather, the workmanship and the sheer beauty of the shoes is incredible!   I have looked at these shoes non stop over the last few weeks and imagined all of the great places I’ll wear them!  Getting older certainly has it’s benefits!!!

For all you last minute “gifters”

Friday, December 23rd, 2011

You are down to the wire…it’s Christmas Eve and you don’t have gifts for all of the people on your list.  Although you vow not to let this happen yet again, here it is and you’re in the same place you were last Christmas Eve.  I have some suggestions that will help you put the ‘jolly” back in “holly, jolly Christmas”.

Giftcards are always a great option for the last minute shoppers.  EVERY major chain of grocery and drug stores has a kiosk of gift cards.  While this is certainly one option, giving the gift of a service or class is also a great gift.  What about a gift certificate for house cleaning for the busy mom, or elderly relative?  What about a gift certificate for a massage for the sports enthusiast, or a yoga class voucher for the stressed out business person?  What about a gift certificate for flowers from your favorite flower shop for a friend or relative on a tight budget?   A personal organizer for the family getting ready to move or move in.   I just sent out a gift certificate for my personal shopping services to a man who is surprising his wife and 2 daughters with their own version of “What not to wear”!  In many cases you are also giving your dollars to locally owned and operated businesses.  The ideas abound for services as gifts…

Memberships are also a favorite gift of mine.  Many people would love to get a museum or zoo membership.  Lots of moms with young children would adore getting a membership to a kids’ museum or attraction.   In this same vein, tickets to an event, that the recipient would enjoy is always welcome.  Tickets are a great way to enjoy the gift of time with a loved one, especially if they choose to bring you!    Opera, the symphony, Broadway, concerts, comedy, take your pick.

The most economical gift you can give is your time, experience or expertise.  What about a voucher for babysitting?  What parent of young children would not JUMP at the prospect of free babysitting?   What about manual labor in a loved one’s garden or around the house?  What about cooking for a stressed- out family or lonely elder…even better if you offer your company as well.

Lastly, making a donation to the charity or non-profit close to the recipients’  heart is a “can’t miss” gift.  We all have organizations that are important to us for one or many reasons.  A donation in their name or a loved one who’s passed on , can mean so much.

Thank you for reading and following my blog this year.  I‘m wishing you and yours a wonderful holiday season and a happy and healthy 2012!!!