Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Haute Hippie Holiday Gift Guide '05

Boy, do I ever love the holidays. Gingerbread lattes with peppermint brownies from Starbucks, the anticipation of a yummy Christmas dinner, decorations, holiday parties with lots of champagne, and a reason to wear your winter wardrobe -- which is, by the way, only boots and cute sweaters here on the (still sunny, but chilly) West Coast.

What I don't like about the holidays? Longer traffic commutes home (people seem to book it from work as soon as the winter sun begins going down at 4 pm), the cold weather forcing me to wear socks to bed at night, the dread of Christmas food weight gain, and the stress of getting the best gift ever for someone near and dear to your heart. Who has time to navigate packed shopping crowds these days, anyway?

Have no fear, darlings. Here is a little gift guide list of things to make things a whole lot easier for you this year.

For That Super-Fly Male Figure in Your Life

L.A.-based designer twosome Max Benatar and Lee Wasser head up Max Richard, a slick collection of printed silk-lined blazers. The jackets are so hot, male celebs young and old are snapping them up. Let your daddy dearest channel Don Johnson by gifting him the Miami Vice-inspired "Pink Panther", an ivory number lined with -- naturally -- pink silk. Add a pair of white loafers with no socks and he's good to go.

For That Eco-Friendly Mother of Yours

Holidays are a time for appreciating everything you have in life -- a crazy but loving family, a stressful but somehow fulfilling career, the perfect circle of friends, a roof to sleep under, food in your belly, and a beautiful world to live in. GLU (Girls Living It Up) is a local line contributing to our environment by creating cute accessories out of recycled soda tabs, zippers, and fasteners. GLU is exemplary eco-conscious and charitable -- South American women constructing the bags are able to support their families comfortably. What a wonderful world, indeed.

For a Great One Stop Gift Shop Destination

People these days have less time to wander around searching for the perfect gift. Brent-Air Gifts (134 S. Barrington Avenue, Los Angeles) is a hidden gem, located above Brent-Air Pharmacy and nestled right in the heart of Brentwood. This store has something for everyone -- specialty lines and products by local designers, custom gift wrapping, local deliveries, and a welcoming atmosphere that has yet to be matched by any other boutique in Los Angeles. Present shopping will never be this easy again.

For That Sister You Completely Adore

Sisters are notorious for raiding your closet when you're not a home, helping themselves to precious articles of clothing that not even your bestest friend in the entire world is allowed to borrow. Encourage her to start an indispensible wardrobe of her own, starting with anything from the absolutely adorable Girlie Designs by Linda Antwi. Buy l'il (or big) sis the silk-lined, cropped blazer with front-tie sash, furry purse, embroidered turquoise bolero, or the black, cropped furry chub and she will never go wrong. Better yet, get her all of them and make it a very Merry Christmas.

For That Rockin' Big Bro

Remember the time you caught your brother playing air guitar and lip-synching to "Eye Of The Tiger" in his room? Well, he may be a corporate suit these days, but every now and then, you know he still wants to be a rock star. For those precious moments, get him a Rock-N-Role one-off (meaning: only one like it exists) distressed tee or deconstructed executive shirt, loving made by designer Ali MacLean. Hey, while you're at it, why not get a restructured skirt for yourself -- there's nothing wrong with a little "one for you, one for me" when it comes to buying presents. Rock on.

For Keeping That SoCal Sun Outta Your Eyes

It may be winter, but the SoCal sun is still a-shining outside. Everyone knows the importance of having a good-looking pair of shades with you at all times down here. Delusions Eyeware -- a customized eyewear line -- is the brainchild of Douglas Johnson, a wire sculptor since childhood and avid sunglasses fan. Each Delusion pair is hand-made in Los Angeles with high quality UV lenses, which can also be made with a prescription. The line has already been featured in recent sci-fi flick Serenity and has been showcased at various local art shows, such as the Six Degrees the morning after a particularly fun holiday soiree.

Happy holidays, from me to you!

I'm Lovin' it: Anything from Bath and Bodyworks. C.O. Bigelow Mentha Lip Tints (No. 1136 - Nude) will keep your mouth pouty, Fresh Vanilla Body Splash will keep you smelling yummy, while Jacqua's Buttercream Frosting Body Butter will keep you supple and soft. It's hard to leave this store not covered in layers of lotion, fragrance, and lip gloss. Guilty as charged.

I'm Over it: Folks thinking it's okay to let it rip in crowded public places. Okay, just because there's a ton of people around doesn't mean we don't know it was you.

Track Classic of the Day: "Sunday Morning" by No Doubt. This song never really made it to the airwaves, but was hands-down the best track on "Tragic Kingdom". Play, rock out, and repeat -- that's my motto when it come to this jam.


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