Isabel’s Holiday Gift Guide

Throughout December, we will be sharing gift guides from a few of Attersee’s friends. First up, Attersee founder Isabel Wilkinson Schor recommends special things for everyone on your list. 

A Bag That’s Sculptural and Simple

Straw bags may be a dime a dozen, but none are as special as those by Inès Bressand, a French designer who works in close collaboration with Ghanaian artisans, most of them women, in a system that allows them to balance weaving with farming and family work. The bags are then hand-formed in Bressand’s atelier in Marseille, where she also adds leather handles. The results are small masterpieces, both sculptural and simple at the same time. From €175.

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Candles That Look Like No Other

If you’re going to gift a candle, you might as well make it the most interesting one around. Here’s the Wobble Set by HANDS, which would perfectly round out any dining room table or mantlepiece. And, you guessed it: the pieces are all formed and poured — by hand. $295.

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A Wrap (or Blanket) to Wear All Winter Long

All too often on a blustery day, I’ll find that every scarf in my closet is woefully short to fit multiple times around my neck. Which is why we designed Attersee’s Herringbone Wrap, available in three colors of super-soft alpaca with thin leather trim. I’ve worn it everyday (inside at my desk, and over a coat) for the last two weeks. Plus, it looks great thrown over the arm of a chair as a throw. $595.

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Shoes to Wear With Anything

Whether I’m going to the market or a cocktail party, I’m usually in a pair of furlane shoes, or "le scarpe Veneziane.”  Unisex and ambidextrous, they come in a wide range of colors and fabrics. A few companies make them but none as well as Drogheria Crivellini. Roberto Crivellini, whose parents started the business when they opened a “Drogheria” (drug store) in the Italian town of Udine after World War II, puts it best: “At a later stage of my life, I wanted to pay tribute to my family — and promote this humble shoe, trusting it could become an object of affection that could be shared with other people.” £95.

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A Notebook That Doubles as a Desk Object

I remember an old boss telling me, “Never gift a notebook” — because the receiver will immediately open it and scroll expectantly through its blank pages. But this one from Pentreath & Hall in London feels like an exception to the rule; it’s a large-format notebook, but it’s also a desk object, covered in Norwegian rose marble paper painted by the artist Ian Harper. I use mine everyday at my desk, and then throw the smaller version into my bag when I’m running errands. Also: why not write a nice note to the gift’s recipient on the first page? £16.50.

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A Simple Gold Ring That Would Make Anyone Feel Special

This single gold vermeil stacking ring is so pure in its design — it looks like a brushstroke looping around the finger. It’s the work of Jameel Mohammed of Khiry, a talented young jewelry designer who I was lucky enough to connect with years ago. His Khartoum stacking ring has been on my wishlist forever — and would be a wonderful gesture for someone who rarely wears jewelry, or who loves to pile it on. $215.

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A Delicious Basket for a Good Cause

Rose Kitchen, the new Thai café in the Marais, may not be in your travel plans any time soon — but consider gifting one of chef Rose Chalalai Singh’s delicious-looking Christmas baskets, which she assembles with her family every year. The baskets feature an assortment of jams — all from fruit in their garden in Mallorca — teas from Thailand, apple juice and ginger liqueur. They ship internationally, and all proceeds go to a monastery in Nepal.

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A Gift to a Worthy Organization Fighting Food Insecurity

Consider a donation in someone’s name to the Angel Food Project, a wonderful program run by The Ladies of Hope Ministries that seeks to end food insecurity among women and families impacted by the criminal legal system. By partnering with Instacart, AFP connects with grocery stores around the country and delivers high-quality fresh produce to families in need.

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Perfume That Feels Like Fine Jewelry

James de Givenchy is known the world-over for his exquisite jewelry designs, which he creates by special commission for private clients out of his Madison Avenue headquarters. His uncle and father established the Givenchy perfume factory — so it was only a matter of time before he returned to his roots. This month, he launches his first foray into fragrance: Les Couleurs de Taffin, seven fine perfumes with a wide assortment of notes that include Rhubarb, Turkish Rose and Pink Pepper. Plus, the bottles are so dazzling they’ll look like jewels on any bathroom shelf. From $420.

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