Holiday Designer Gift Guide – $ 150. & Up…Robin’s wish list

Holiday Entertaining


A Holiday Shopping List: Top 10 Items Over $150

Ho-Ho-Ho! Merry Christmas! (said in my best Ebonizer Scrooge voice AFTER he learns the meaning of Christmas, Friendship and Love).  To celebrate the occasion, I’ve come up with my Christmas Shopping List for 2011 and since it’s still the beginning of December, and we’re all feeling merry – and perhaps ready to splurge – I thought we’d start off with the bigger items on the list. That is, my…


Top 10 Holiday Gift Items OVER $150

1.  Be cozy, comfortable, and in style this winter by adding a dose of Canadiana to your cabin-chic, sexy rustic décor, with a Hudson’s Bay Company throw priced for any budget.  The ultra-chic coyote fur-lined blanket is a fitting addition to the multistripe family.  HBC has been selling blankets since it was founded in 1670 for fur trading purposes, and now it has expanded to the store we know and love. (We’ve talked endlessly before about their gorgeous and exclusive line of outdoor furniture by Alfred Sung). I like how these blankets incorporate the traditional fur element of HBC with a winter “must-have”.   Although the blankets without the fur range in price from $35 to $595 (for a cashmere, hand woven blanket), the coyote fur-lined blanket is $2,195. This is one item that will definitely keep you warm during the chilly Canadian winters, even with nothing on beneath it.

2.  As you already know, I LOVE books (displaying books, reading books, collecting books), so why not spice up your bookshelf, étagère or desk space with these Junior Dachshund Bookends.   These are Dachshunds that will sit, stay, obey your every command – and even add a little flair to your space while they are lounging about.  Designed by Jonathan Adler, the bases come in different colours such as brown, blue and pink. Adler has also designed whale and owl bookends too, so there are several choices (if you don’t like Dachshunds).  They’re awfully cute, functional and priced at $150 US per pair….I recommend the Dachshund in HOT PINK and white of course, accessories should NOT be timid.

(Psst! I have a little secret. While you’re browsing Adler’s website, you can design your own sofa. In stock and ready for Christmas. Just tell them that Santa sent you!)

3.  Cook for the cure this holiday season with KitchenAid, the company which has come up with a new mixer in a striking raspberry ice hue with a large glass bowl.  The rich and mouthwatering Hot Pink hue is the PERFECT Kitchen accessory and pops beautifully against stainless steel and white accessories. The Artisan Stand Mixer is flirty and fun, and is priced at $550.  So while you’re enjoying your new favourite mixer this holiday season (think of the endless baking you can do…or the endless baking your can supervise if the case be), you will know that you’re helping to support a good cause.  The Raspberry colour is in honour of Breast Cancer Awareness and some of the proceeds go to help the charity.   Of course it comes in a plethora of other colours as well including canary yellow, 2 shades of blue, dark metallic green and both Candy apple and Morrocan red.  Whatever your favourite colour is, or whatever colour goes along with your kitchen décor, KitchenAid will have it.  For me it is the blending of a multifunctional item that actually helps elevate your cooking and baking abilities combined with its beautiful Design and stunning Colour…my suggestion is, as Kay Thompson would say “THINK PINK”.


4.  I featured the THOR Garden Fire Pit in my What’s Hot section earlier this year, and it’s an item that made my Christmas shopping list.   Why is it so brilliant?  Because it is part garden sculpture, post-modern statement, utilitarian object and instinctual delight all rolled into one.  It’s great for any space, whether it’s big or small.  If you’re interested, be sure to go back and check out the article for more information!  While you’re at it…get one for yourself, one as a gift and one for me (of course).

5.  Also featured in my What’s Hot section this year was the KRUPS Silver Art Collection.   These pieces are elegant, refined, stylish and are designed with every style of kitchen in mind.   I love the sleek, sexy look and the ultra-modern feel of these small appliances.  The collection ranges in price from $80 to $300 but is comprised of everything a kitchen space could need, including a coffee machine, tea kettle, toaster and juicer. My favourite is the espresso machine – go check it out

6.  As you may already know, I really love the stunning mouthblown glass  Art, objects and lighting by Tracey Glover.   I recommend that you check out her website because she has a collection of items that range from lighting, accessories to blown glass doorknobs…but my personal passion are her exquisite mouthblown vases.  You can order directly from her website and the products will be shipped to you, so it is a great idea for a present that could be shipped directly to the receiver.   Looking for a unique gift for your relative who lives across the country but you don’t want to send the typical “Christmas-card-and-fruitcake”?  Tracey Glover designs are a unique and fun alternative, and you can feel comfortable sending one of her products to your friend, Grandmother, Uncle, niece … whomever!   I really love the Watermelon Vase and the Starburst Vase, as featured in my previous article. Check out her work at her extensive website.

7.  What can I say about the hand-crafted chandeliers created by designer Marjorie Skouras?   They are many things wrapped together: scrumptious, decadent, organic, elegant, palatial, whimsical and casual (depending on where and how you use them, they can be anything).  If you are someone who is into Art History or décor that evokes the energy and feel of 18th Century Europe, than Marjorie’s pieces are for you. Their unique quality and conversation appeal makes them a hot item for the holidays. See the entire collection here.  


8.  People are always asking me, what is a good way to make a room more masculine?  My answer: buck up! (Translation: antlers!)   I love the chic, sculptural shapes – as well as the neutral tones – that they come in.  Also, as an added holiday touch, they just scream nestling-up-in-a-cozy-cabin-in-Whistler.  Of course, you don’t have to use real antlers – faux ones will do just fine.  One of my favourites is a cast-resin Ghost deer antler by designer Erich Ginder ( which is priced at $310 US.   However, I have found other antler sets anywhere from $49 US to $149 US, so they come in all different price-points.  I love the idea of creating a dramatic collection of them grouped onto one wall in a bold cluster.

9.  The late 1960’s and early 1970’s laid-back vintage style is really on trend right now.  What better way to incorporate that into your space this holiday season than with an Eames ivory leather and walnut lounger and ottoman.  Created by Design Within Reach, the cost ranges from $3,579. and up… But the piece is very sexy and is something that you could easily find on AMC’s hit show Mad Men.  It would be a great fit for a family room, den, office or bedroom.  Check it out at Design Within Reach’s website (DWR for those of you avid shoppers).


10.   Remember when I created a bedroom space inspired by Lady Gaga (if not read it now…lol) and used the globe-shaped light fixtures as inspiration?  Well, I love this Robert Abby Lucy Pendant Light in deep patina bronze.  Even better…the cost of the lamp is $579 so it won’t break your bank.  I love how the light provides rich details that can speak to a classic home with country touches yrt gives a modern sensibility. It would even look good in a modern, sleek space. You can check out this light and many more at .

  1. Angela QuinceAngela Quince12-13-2011

    REALLY love some of the ideas on here. Combination of some dream wish things and some I can possibly get. LOL WANT the mixer and the outdoor fireplace. so cool