It wasn’t easy…but it sure was fun. theLoop set out to choose 10 great holiday gift ideas from local retailers for your consideration.
It was impossible to whittle it down…so here are a baker’s dozen gift ideas from just a few of the local stores we think you’re gonna love.
Ciao, Bella- You are so fabulous, European and eco-friendly zipping through traffic on your bright red (or pink, blue…) Vespa, the machine that started the scootering craze. Let the wind whip through your hair on this Granturismo Sport (GTS) 250, an uncompromising fusion of breathtaking performance. Just pretend you didn’t just drive to the Stop ‘n Shop for pork rinds. Prices range from $3000 to $7000, but with fuel economy as high as 100 mpg, who’s counting? Vespa of Larchmont, 2020 Boston Post Road, Larchmont. 914.630.1808. lokipowersports.com
The World is your Oysters– Sure, Santa’s got that whole drop-in-through-the-chimney routine down pat. But Mr. Shellfish, well, here’s a guy that will bring the utmost in nautical noshes right to your doorstep. For a mere $50, Mr. Shellfish – a.k.a. Larchmont’s Max Lichtenstein – will hand deliver 50 Connecticut Blue Point oysters AND 50 Little Neck Clams, freshly harvested from the depths of the Long Island Sound just the day before. Hate to shuck those suckers? No problem.
Throw in the Oy Boy, the groovy seafood-sized drill that unhinges and opens oysters in nothing flat. Drill bit alone (good on any drill) costs $8 or $29.95 with driver and charger. Mr. Shellfish 914.263.8186. firstname.lastname@example.org . Best to order two days ahead. The OyBoy is available at oyster-opener.com
Boy Toys. Girls, too.- Bonnie Ernst’s friends call it "Retail by the Inch." That’s because her very special toy store, Scarsdale Child’s Play, in downtown Scarsdale, is 600 sq. feet of chock-a-block, floor to ceiling, hand-picked toys. The retailer’s first holiday season was in a small space at the Scarsdale train station 29 years ago in, but this location has been the store’s home ever since. You’ll find Madame Alexander dolls, unusual crafts, puzzles and games…but when we asked for her looppick this season, it was this marshmallow bow and "mallow" or the marshmallow super shooter ($30 and $25, respectively.) We said, but wait, doesn’t everyone carry these now? "Yes," said Bonnie, "But I had them five years ago." Scarsdale Child’s Play- 6 Spencer Place, Scarsdale 914.723.4396 scarsdalechildsplay.com
Luxe-urious–Each of the items Outerluxe’s Helen Barlow chose would be gift enough, but the real value in this store is Helen’s eye for putting it all together. Known for its fur coats, Outerluxe also sells clothes and accessories, specializing in "emerging under-the-radar international designers," and if you ask Helen to put something together for you, it’s bound to be spectacular. pictured: Ostrich embossed anthracite Lapin coat with Blue Fox collar/ $2595; Sequin print silk charmeuse top by Gerard Darel/ $265; Reversible silk charmeuse and cashmere hand-printed scarf by Marika Charles/ $200; Black nickel and leather X belt by Suzi Roher/ $295; Dusty charcoal skinny jeans by Seven For All Mankind/ $181 Outerluxe 1951 Palmer Avenue, Larchmont 914. 834.2345 outerluxe.com
Jimmy Chew– Let’s not forget the one member of the family who doesn’t fight with you over the remote. And with the influx of chain pet supply stores man/woman’s best friend deserves a gift from All Paws in Rye. Maybe a designer handbag for Fifi? These adorable squeaky toys, with a carry strap sport names like Kate Spayed, Bark Jacobs, Chewy Vuitton, Pawda, Fursace…or you can pick up the furry toy shoes- Manolo Barknik, of course. $12 or $14. And if you can’t decide, she is welcome in this wonderful shop, owned by Claudia Baker, on a leash, to choose for herself. All Paws – 31 Purchase Street, Rye. 914.921.1690. email@example.com
Pillow Talk- Cozy, exclusive and pretty cute, Wendy Gee!’s collection of hooked wool pillows this season features one to "geo-tag" your own home! The Larchmont pillow comes in red or navy blue – adding a splash of color and homespun pizzazz to any couch or comfy chair. Prices vary. Pillows and many other great gift ideas available at Wendy Gee!, 1949 Palmer Avenue, Larchmont 914.834.8507 wendygee.com
Bling it On— Zaltas Gallery is like a little jewel box- a special place tucked away just off the Boston Post Road. Owner Kathy Zaltas just made it even more special for Loop readers. Mention theLoop and get 25% off any one piece and 20% off the rest of your gift list!
Two gift ideas from her staff: hot Chan Luu bracelets, no two are alike ($190- $290) and Nixon Watches in lollipop colors ($60) Tell them theLoop sent you! Zaltas Gallery 900 E. Boston Post Road (park in back of building) Mamaroneck 914.777.7304 zaltasgallery.com
Pop the Cork–The new location of REcologie has some wonderful gifts…but it’s always been hard to go eco on the purse. Plastic doesn’t work as well and cloth is a little Jerry Garcia. Enter the handbag (and accessories, like cuffs) made of cork. They are beautiful, lightweight, waterproof, durable, and of course, ecologically sustainable. You’ll love them. $130 and up. REcologie 1934 Palmer Avenue, Larchmont 914.315.1535 recologieonline.com
Give Me Some Skin–Just look at Najia Rohlf’s skin and you will want her to take care of yours. And one of her secrets: the Intraceutical Rejuvenate Infusion facial. It’s a mouthful, but just know that Madonna swears by it and Justin Timberlake says "It makes my skin look dope." That means good. Send a special person in (or buy a gift certificate) and in one soothing treatment, the pressurized oxygen gives instant visible results, plumping the skin and erasing fine lines. (Madonna’s cone bra, extra.) $225 Najia’s Esthetic 157 Mamaroneck Avenue, Mamaroneck 914.630.1118 najskincare.com
Grab Bag— Many women seem to know they can run out the door in rags but with the right bag, they’ll still looked dressed up. A few months ago, Love by Bella Fiora began stocking small bags and clutches that will light up any party, night out, or trip to the dry cleaner. These Moyna sequin beaded clutches come in a variety of shapes and sizes starting at $110. Store owner Ellie Devito says, "They’re the perfect size for keys, makeup, and credit cards." Colors: burgundy, gold, silver, navy, black, printed. Check out holiday dresses and 2011 swimwear collections while you’re there. Love by Bella Fiora 1912 Palmer Avenue, Larchmont 914.833.0450.
You Szent Me- Scientists say the sense of smell is the most powerful in summoning memory and mood. So if you would like to summon some good feelings in a friend but don’t know their favorite scent, go to Szent and Company and choose an unscented gift basket of soap, lotion, body oil, body wash, shampoo…whatever you like. Then they can go in with the gifts and customize the fragrances themselves. Owner Barbara Truesdale ("B True" to her friends), whose father was also a fragrance expert, will lend a hand with her nose that knows. Think: Proust’s lime-flower tea, Madeleines, Colette’s flowers, Virginia Woolf’s parade of city smells, Kipling’s rain-damp acacia.* Make Szents? Szent and Company-1969 Palmer Avenue, Larchmont. 914.834.1515 szentoils.com
* from Natural History of the Senses by Diane Ackerman
Speaking of Smells– Ever play "scratch and sniff" with wine? Well, Le Wine Shop is offering this cool gift: L’atelier du vin’s well-designed lever corkscrew with eight primary wine aroma samples so you can learn your appelations! Salut! $75. Le Wine Shop 1945 Palmer Avenue Larchmont 914.833.9666 lewineshop.com
At a Premium- Island jaunts … diamonds … Maseratis? Fuggedabouddit! Give your one and only (or whomever…) the holiday splurge to top them all: this waterfront Premium Point prize, ringing in at a cool $1 million-plus. Poised perfectly in theLoop area’s premier gated community (part Larchmont, part New Rochelle) this Colonial-style jewel comes with access to a private beach and docking privileges. Hey, may as well throw in a boat while you’re at it. Interested? We have the guy for you: H. Juergen Hess of Houlihan Lawrence, 914.409. 8925. firstname.lastname@example.org