Merry & Bright Gifting for the Creatives in Your Life Part 4

So! Sorry I skipped a few days, but with Holiday travel and recovering from my turkey coma, it has taken me a bit to get back on track. BUT, here we are back again with a gift guide or the foodies! I hope you find some inspiration from them!

1. Ingredients

If your foodie is the type to make their own the following are a wonderful place to start. First up we have gourmet popcorn salts!

These popcorn salts come in a variety of flavor combos and are great for the foodie who likes to fancy up their humdrum snacks. This is also a great one for the cineophile who enjoys a fun twist on the movie night staple.











From the same shop, and a couple of others in the etsy community, I found a really cute gourmet tea set. Definitely worth a gander for your tea lover 🙂











From Wiliams-Sonoma we’ve got a cute little gift set of infused gourmet olive oils. They’re great for dipping, and for cooking.









2. Utilities

If you’re foodie is a romantic, loves the great outdoors, or both this cute picnic pack disguised a briefcase is a winner. It’s even prepacked with fully compostable dinner ware!











Another Williams-Sonoma find, this gadget is for the foodie who loves that rich smokey flavor, but doesn’t have the time, or maybe the space, to smoke and cure meats the old fashioned way.











If your foodie is tired of breaking the stemware in the dishwasher, and the sink doesn’t do much better, give these a look. They are a very reasonable price, and the site is worth a look around as well.







3. Treats

If you’re foodie isn’t really the DIY type some of these treats will definitely put a smile on their face.

Cupcakes are all the rage these days. It’s hard to ignore some of the creative ways people are reinventing the sumptuous sweet. This shop is one of those. If you’re foodie likes to be daring, and loves the influence of asian flavors, this is the cupcake to try.








Again, if your foodie is a little adventurous, take a look around this truffle shop. They’ve got  the more adventerous flavors like  Salted Rosemary truffles and a some more traditional ones like Dark Chocolate Cocoa.











If you’re at least semi-competent in the kitchen you could always try making something for your foodie. There are lots of easy recipes on Food Network, All Recipes, and Here’s one from Paula Dean that looks like a pretty simple and tasty, it’s a Spanish stand-by, and a favorite for the holidays in lots of latin homes: Chicken Empandas.








4. Resources

Creatives almost always enjoy great photography and inspired writing. That’s why a subscription to a  food magazine for your foodie creative might be just the ticket. There are lots out there, but I’m told the favorites are Bon Apetit, Gourmet, and Food & Wine. If your foodie has a particular bent toward maybe the Food Network, or Cooking Lite, they also offer subscriptions.











If your foodie has a favorite chef, or a favorite style of cooking you could always check out a cook book. One of my favorites is Todd English, his Olives cook book is below.











5. For the table

If you know your foodie loves a good table scape to go along with their fantastic meals, consider getting them something for the table.

Again, etsy has some great centerpieces for the holidays, or everyday.  Or if you’re crafty, you could consider making your own.











A table runner is always a nice addition to a table scape as well, and the functionality can’t be beat. Don’t want to burn your antique wooden table with hot platters and serving trays? Try a table runner. This one from Pier 1 is a little out of the ordinary and can be a holiday addition or just an everyday staple.









Lastly, no holiday table scape would be complete without a nice set of dinner ware. These are on clearance at Target, but they’ve got some other really nice sets too.











That’s it for the foodies. In fact, that’s all I’ve got for now. Leave me a comment if you’ve got a different type of creative and haven’t got a clue what to get them. I’d be happy to help!

Until next time,


In the Meantime

I’m so sorry, but I’m going to have to postpone the Foodie installment of the gift guide until tomorrow. I’m working on some rush projects for Ameraguard that I really want to have at least partially done before I go into a Turkey coma. But, never fear, I’ve found a beautiful mid-century modern exhibit to share.

Via the NYC Museum of Art & Design Blog:

Crafting Modernism begins on the fifth floor of the Museum. Here you’ll find a series of vignettes designed to evoke domestic interiors of the 1950s. This grouping features unique works of art made by craftsmen.   Some highlights include the George Nakashima “free edge” table that retains the uncut edge of the tree, and revels in the natural beauty of the wood – what Nakashima called “the soul of the tree.” Other highlights include a wall panel by Earl Pardon, commissioned for an enamels exhibition held in 1959 by the Museum of Arts and Design, and a wall hanging by Ted Hallman, who created a luminous work by inserting colored acrylic shapes.  Each of these pieces would have warmed the modernist interior.




Merry & Bright – Gifting for the Creatives in Your Life Part 3

You’ll find as the gift guide progresses, or if you’ve read through some of my other posts, that I LOVE etsy. It is a treasure trove of amazing finds. Don’t get me wrong you’ll find some stinkers too, but I’d say they are in the minority – especially if you know what you’re looking for. So, forgive me if I use too many etsy links, but I just can’t get enough of it.

And now – ON TO THE GIFTS!

Today we’re looking at gifts for the popculturists. These people have an intense love for all things Hollywood, small screen or silver screen, and they probably search out good tunage as well. So, if this is the kind of creative you’re working with – proceed.

1. Costume madness

For the creative who likes a little cosplay, or just melts over a well executed costume this shop has some serious contenders, especially for the Disney fanatic in your life. They also have some serious prices, but it looks to me like they are worth every penny.











2. Trinkets

First we have a vintage TV salt and pepper shaker….I’m not kidding





Second – TV lamps. If your creative hungers for mid-century design, and loves the nostalgia of what now seems like a useless knick-knack, the TV lamp is a great start. What is a TV lamp you ask? So did I  read about them here. Then go buy one here. Get ready for the kitsch factor!






Third if it’s decoration they need, these film reels are the perfect addition to any wall or shelf that needs a little Hollywood glamor. If they are really into reels, you can also find some vintage reels made into lamps with actual film still on them at Anthropologie (check your local store) or try any of these super awesome housewares with reel film.







If your creative is anything like me, tidyness is an issue. But, they’ll want to remedy the rings on the coffee table with these awesome record coasters! I think I’ll get a set for myself actually.






3. Art

I can’t think of a single creative person who doesn’t appreciate well made art. Though we may all have different styles and tastes, if you can find a subject they are passionate about – and the popculturists are easiest to target – you’re in. Below are a few of my favorites, but don’t limit yourself.

This shop is one of my favorites. This artist has a beautiful aesthetic, and I love their take on these movie posters.








Every time I see one of these I want to buy it. I used to see them all the time at Kerbey Lane, and I ALWAYS wanted to get one, but never had the kind of cash they were asking for. These, however, are totally reasonable, and this shop has a good mix of music, movie, and TV images.







4. Multimedia

One of my personal favorites as far as music goes will always be The Beatles. Check out the Anthology DVD set at Amazon

In that same vein, the 40th anniversary edition of the Woodstock Blu-Ray is only $45 at Amazon

Or if your creative is more the West Side Story type check out the 50th anniversary Blu-Ray boxed set.







5.  Stationery

One thing I never get tired of is pretty stationery. It could be the print lover in me, but i think reviving the lost of art of letter writing, or note writing in the very least, is quite the noble cause. If your creative shares my love of the epistle try some of these options.

This shop specializes in rubber stamps! They have everything from KISS to the Beatles to Monty Python!

You could make them a mixtape, but these mixtape and 8 track stationery cards give you, or them, more room to say it like it is than that thin strip of tape on the cassette.

I know I linked this shop before, but the stationery here is really cute, and perfect for the Dr. Who fans out there.







That’s all for today, I hope this series is giving you great ideas, or a jumping off point at the very least.

Tomorrow we tackle – The Foodie!

Merry & Bright – Gifting for the Creatives in Your Life Part 2

As the holiday shopping season is drawing closer (or maybe it’s already started for some of you crazy early birds), I have realized that a holiday shopping guide has become essential for me to put together for the people in my life. Maybe you suffer from the same sickness I do – specificity.

The ghost of Christmas past could tell you that I have received some really amazing gifts over the years, but also some that I was less than thrilled with. It’s not that I didn’t appreciate the very fact that someone would even think to give me something, it’s just that as I got older, and toys no longer became an option, people seemed to have a harder and harder time understanding what it was that I would actually enjoy. Don’t get me wrong, gift cards for clothes are ALWAYS nice, but for someone who really enjoys gift giving (it’s one of my “love languages”) I really want people to understand me enough to find something I really enjoy, in the same way that I put a lot of thought and effort into the gifts I give them. It’s more fun if you just KNOW they are going to love it. I’ve decided the root of the problem is that I’m creative, and some people aren’t. It’s not a bad thing, but there are definitely things that my relatives would never even think about buying anyone, because they don’t know they even exist.

Maybe you’re at the other end of this story. Maybe there is a creative person in your life, that no matter how hard you try, you just never can find something great to give them. This series is your answer.

Everyday I’ll be posting a smattering of cool ideas for creative people. Yesterday I posted the Design Work Life 2011 Holiday Gift Guide – which is an amazing place to start! So check back here for more gifting inspiration, pass it on to your friends and family – if you’re a creative and need a Christmas list they’ll rejoice, if you’re not and they are – ask them if they like any of it – they’ll thank you later.

Today’s gifts are for the bookish.

1.  Ultimate Creative collection from HOW Print’s

This 8-book collection is a designer/illustrator’s rocket fuel. Any one of these books would make a great gift as well, but if you know a creative who is also a voracious reader – this would be amazing, but hurry because you only have until Nov. 30th.









2. Pilgrimage by Annie Liebovitz

This one is, obviously, more of a photo book than a reader’s book, but Annie is undeniably good at what she does. Plus, she explores the old homes of some of the greatest authors in history: Dickinson, Woolf, Thoreau, and Emerson. This book is very Americana (with the exception of a few subjects), but not in the homemade apple pie way. Looks like a great read/view, especially for those who love photography/ America’s intellectual and arts history.









3. Vintage “book covers”

If you’re creative loves the feel of a real book in their hands, but just can’t get over the ultimate storage a tablet or e-reader offers, these are the perfect fit. This shop upsycles vintage hard back book covers into amazing covers for ipdas, tablets, nooks, kindles, etc. They’ve got everything from comic books to cook books and even some Dr. Seuss.







4. Publish with Unbound

Maybe your creative is a writer. In that case, get them published, or show them how, at unbound. Unbound’s philosophy is that readers should get to decide what’s published. So readers sign on to fund the publication of whatever interests them, and get recognition for doing so. Even if you’re creative isn’t a writer, this site is full of independent projects, and some cool ones at that. Fish around and see if there’s something they’d be interested in. This one is on my list, but there are quite a few projects to choose from.










5. The Vignelli Canon

Massimo Vignelli (creator of the American Airlines logo, among numerous others) is one of the greats. I haven’t personally read this one, but it looks like a great primer on Vignelli’s design philosophy. This, and the “customers who bought this also bought” list at the bottom, are great resources on design theory and practice.

Via Amazon: The famous Italian designer Massimo Vignelli allows us a glimpse of his understanding of good design in this book, its rules and criteria. He uses numerous examples to convey applications in practice – from product design via signaletics and graphic design to Corporate Design. By doing this he is making an important manual available to young designers that in its clarity both in terms of subject matter and visually is entirely committed to Vignelli’s modern design.










Tomorrow’s guide: gifts for the pop culturists, get pumped!

Merry & Bright – Gifting for the Creatives in Your Life Part 1

Hello all,

I cannot apologize enough for my long absence, BUT I think I have a pretty good excuse. Not only did I start a new full-time job recently (doing marketing and design for a non-profit – which means working ALL the time) I’m also still doing some work for Ameraguard/Defender. So, my days have been pretty jam packed, and I just haven’t been able to force myself to get back here.

HOWEVER, I ran across something so fantastic I just had to share it with you all.

I have a circuit of blogs I read and regularly keep up with, but since starting work I only really have time to explore them on the weekends. So, after a delightful cinnamon roll with Mr. RAD, I sat down to do my usual Saturday morning blog sweep. That’s when I came upon the greatest gift guide I have ever seen. Design Work Life, is one of the best design blogs out there, and they always have great content. But THIS was major.

This gift guide is chock full of rockin’ holiday gifts for the design savvy in your life, as well as being totally amazingly designed in itself. I sent it to like 4 people (husband included 😉 ) as soon as I finished flipping.

So, may I present: The Design Work Life 2011 Holiday Gift Guide – the ultimate wishlist.