Tracy Bulla -- Casual Living, January 12, 2013
IT'S THE SEASON for giving, and if you are anything like me, you haven't figured out what to give most (OK, all) people on your list.
Gift cards can be a very hard-to- resist temptation at this time of year, but they also drain all the fun and thoughtfulness out of the act of giving. I've hand-picked a few of my favorite home accents - that are not only beautiful but also functional - and sure to please the pickiest family members, clients or seasonal shoppers.
Michael Aram has introduced limited edition sets just in time for the holidays, pairing edible treats from Italian artisans with his own signature designs. Each gift set celebrates the spirit of handcraftsmanship, combining exquisite packaging with a description of each artist's process. Complementary pairings include Michael Aram's Apply Honey pot paired with Mieli Thun's Apple Blossom Honey from the Val di Non area of Trentino, Italy and the Olive Branch dish with Termite Di Bitto Olives from outside the Bari region.
I don't think you can ever really go wrong giving the gift of cashmere, but Qi Home's lineup of lush throws, travel blankets and robes push the concept of luxury to a new level. By experimenting with color, texture and pattern (think chevron, colorblocking and stripes), the collection infuses cashmere with stylish sophistication and pure modernity.
Picture frames always make a great gift, but Rablabs' semiprecious agate frames turn photo ops into an art form. Handcrafted by artisans, the stunning frames feature an organic sterling silver surround and come in an array of mouth-watering hues: azure, eggplant, fuchsia and teal. Happy Holidays!