Jessica's Holiday Gift Guide - Belle Année
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Jessica’s Holiday Gift Guide

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You’ve survived the Post Thanksgiving Madness and now you really need to knock off some holiday shopping.  Here are a few perfect solutions for the people in your life:  The Foodie, The Entertainer, The Hipster, The Traveller and The Ladies. 

The Foodie:  

The stinkiest gift they’ll get all season!  Treat your favorite foodie to a Dean & Deluca cheese subscription. Available monthly or quarterly. Splash out further and throw in a book for pairing those cheeses. $165-$495


Dean Deluca Cheese

Know an aspiring Joy The Baker?  How about a Rolling Pin & Peg holder that attaches to the wall.  No more excuses for not having a pie ready for impromptu guests. $138

rolling pin and peg

A super subscription:  Bring John Besh into your favorite foodie’s home each month with The Besh Box.  $55 – $660 

the besh box


For your friend who only wants to eat at the best places. This book, Where Chefs Eat will give them the scoop. $20

Where Chefs Eat

Foodies always love cookbooks, but you don’t want to get them one they already have in their arsenal.   Go with this gorgeous Italian cookbook series and you will be the toast of the holiday dinner – even if you have duplicated one or two. Includes Cook Italy, The Country Cooking of Italy, Molto Italiano:  327 Simple Italian Recipes to Cook at Home, Recipes from an Italian Summer and The Silver Spoon.  $350

Italian Cookbook set

The Entertainer: 
A beautiful (and unisex) cutting board or serving tray from people who really know kitchen “stuff” at’s storefront, Provisions.  $150
 hole slab pico serving board
Modern glass candelabra that isn’t really a candelabra but is really cool from the Museum of Modern Art gift shop. $65

glass candalabra


Beautiful serving bowl by Suite One Studio that your neighborhood entertainer is unlikely to have in her cupboard.  The one shown below is 11″ x 9″ and $98 but there are loads of other options at a variety of prices and in a variety of colors.  You’ll find something that is perfect, I’m sure.  

mint bowl


Every good socializer is on the look out for small, high quality thank you notes.  Here are great options from New Orleans artist and stationer Alexa Pulitzer for her or for him (or for the couple).  Bundle them with a nice pen if you are looking for a more generous holiday gift. $16

The Hipster: 
An old School Camera that uses film.  This one is even wrapped in leather.  Only thing it’s missing is a Mumford & Son’s stamp of approval and three-day-old facial hair. $69

Hipster Camera

The Big “D” is coming BACK ladies and gentlemen!  Courtesy of watch, bicycle and leather goods company, Shinola, proudly making their goods in 8-mile.  Kidding about that last part.  Must have had Eminem on my running mix too recently.  But look the company is based in Detroit and they are making some gorgeous high-quality goods and this one is HIGH on my personal wish list. $600

Shinola Wrist Watch

Lighten up! How about a super cool book shelf / desk lamp / ice cube looking thing from Design House Stockholm.  $144

Block Lamp


BFF who has bitten on the craft cocktail movement?  Mason Shaker & Cocktail Book.  Or splash out and get her the W&P Cocktail Kit if she has been a really, really good girl this year. $279

W&P Cocktail Kit



You know that whole thing about the Swiss and time? Totally legit. Keep your friends punctual with a great looking wall clock that fits in with their modern, classic or contemporary decor. $195


Mondaine Wall Clock

The Traveller: 
Has your intended gift recipient caught the New Orleans bug?  It happens, you know.  If so then they are likely to love photography by Frank Relle.    Or go smaller scale and get them a CD recording of Kermit at Vaughans.  Same awesome photography, comes with music. $500 – $5000 for the limited edition photographs.  $15 for the CD.
Frank Relle Nightscapes
Know any Instagram addicts?  This is a killer gift for the iPhone travel photographer.  Only catch is that it isn’t quite ready yet (we have been Kickstarter backers for a year now) but when it is ready it is going to be a huge hit.  So how about a promise for an Instacube?  $150
Great looking overnight bag for your traveller who has grown out of backpacks or vinyl North Face duffels but isn’t quite into the Tumi Rollerboard yet.  Bless ’em.  $185
Tradesman Bag
We don’t go to any city….EVER…without looking up whether there has been a NYTimes 36-hours-in article written about it.  Here they have bound their articles into great books that anyone with the travel itch will love.  Versions available featuring US & Canada, Europe, Latin American & The Caribbean, Asia & Oceana and US & Canada West Coast.  $40
36 hours in US
Business travel or super fancy restaurants on the agenda?  How about a grown up tie case from the ever-stylish Jack Spade for him?  $145
Jack Spade Tie Holder

The Kids.  Or the young at heart: 
Metro-dwelling families with kids?  Try out a Lundby Stockholm dollhouse instead of the traditional Victorian.  This is a great “starter pack” complete with furniture, dolls etc..for someone you want to spoil absolutely rotten.  $450
stockholm doll house
 I can’t explain the attraction (pun intended) but 2-year-olds to 7-year-olds love Magnatiles in an almost creepy way.   $30 to $120


An aspiring builder in your midst?  Young Frank Architect.  Hey – wait a minute – wrap it WITH the Magnatiles!  $12

Young Frank Architect

Best kids books:  Anything by Oliver Jeffers.  $9-$15
For parents with their own Baby Einsteins?  Alphabet blocks complete with Mandarin.  $36 (But who can really put a price on genius?)
Alphabet blocks
Matchbox mice.  I have no idea their use but I have seen these in person and they are absolutely adorable.  If you have a child under 3-years-old there is a good chance this is what you are getting from me. $32
matchbox mice
Everyone should read more, and it’s hard to avoid picking up this beautifully colored box set of classics sold at Anthropologie.  $140
classic books



The women in your life.  Teachers.  Moms.  Sisters.  Aunts.  In-laws.  Don’t believe them when they say, “Oh, honey, you don’t need to get me anything.”
Jo Malone Body Balm.  Here’s the deal — this stuff is incredible.  It is expensive and I can’t promise your gift recipient will realize just how much you’ve spent on them but if you can take a chance this is the absolute best lotion you’ll EVER buy.
Heck, maybe save it for yourself. $75
jo malone body balm
Frames are only bad gifts if they are bad frames.  This one is definitely not bad.  Once again a gift great for classic or contemporary interiors.  Thank you Kate Spade with your preppy & hip little self. $40
kate spade frame
Everyone deserves to have at least one vase that didn’t come included with a flower delivery.  This is the one to have.  Gorgeous, handmade details and a rich, warm white or grey color. $40
brissi vase
Elementary, my dear Watson.  A collector’s item that is good looking and fun to have.  The Sherlock Holmes mysteries are mostly short, easy reading that are great by the bedside.  $150
sherlock books
I thought I’d keep crafty sweaters and scarves off of the list but these had to make it.  Seriously.  Adorable. $30
heart gloves
And very last, I am clearly loving books this year.  Check out this personalized book set once again from Juniper Books.  This says, “I love you.  I ordered your gift in advance.  You can never regift this” $195
juniper personalized books

No gift list is complete without the option of giving a donation on a recipient’s behalf as a gift.  Don’t have a favorite?  Allow me!

Chefs Move






Musicians Clinic



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Jessica Bride

I am a Notting Hill based lifestyle writer and Instagrammer. My reason for being is my family plus a combination of food + travel + art + life between London and New Orleans. Find me at @belleannee or covering arts & culture for @London.

  • Kelly

    June 3, 2014 at 15:35 Reply

    My husband received “Where Chefs Eat” for Christmas after I saw this blog article. We were able to use it for recommendations on a trip to Spain last week and it was perfect! Thanks for a great gift idea that we will use all year round.

    • jessica

      June 5, 2014 at 14:34 Reply

      Hi Kelly! Thank you so much for the feedback. I am always on the lookout for neat gift ideas and this was one of my favs. We used it for a trip to France and also loved it. Glad you enjoyed Spain. Jx

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