That’s A Wrap! Local Experts Guide You To The Perfect Gifts

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McMullen
McMullen

Photo Credit: Maria Del Rio

As the Christmas carol says, “it’s the most wonderful time of the year!”—Or is it? Even with overnight delivery, shopping for holiday gifts can be a daunting: what to get the assistant, dog-walker, sister-in-law, and son’s new girlfriend? One easy way to plan your shopping list is to consult an expert like Sherri McMullen of the 11-year old Oakland boutique, McMullen. Earlier this fall, McMullen moved her store into a bigger and better location, and it’s the perfect one-stop shop for the females in your life. “We have so many great options at McMullen for the gift-giving season. We have some extraordinary pieces from Ariel Gordon jewelry that include custom hand engraved rings and pendants,” Sherri says.

McMullen
McMullen

Photo Credit: Maria Del Rio

“We offer a nameplate necklace, signet ring, or stud earrings customized with a loved one’s initials or you can engrave each piece with a unique saying. Our handbags all have striking design features that are hard to find. Take for example the Ulla Johnson hand crochet Barranco tote. We also have some Scandinavian hand woven pullover sweaters by Ganni that are perfect for the holidays and fall weather.” The new McMullen also has more space for items like home goods, so you can also find handwoven baskets and Eithopian throws. And if you’re searching for something super unique, browse her selection of designers that you can find nowhere else: Petar Petrov, Stine Goya, and Baum und Pferdgarten.

Racks of clothes at Hero Shop
Racks of clothes at Hero Shop

Photo Credit: Hero Shop

If you can’t get to Oakland, head to the Tenderloin where Hero Shop and Emily Holt have your gift-giving needs covered. “We have a few things I think are slam dunks for almost anyone: sleep masks by Stevie Howell in really rich, beautiful floral silk; personalized monogrammed stationery by local artist Samantha Kidd available to order; cocktail napkins by Jonathan Adler that read “Retox/Detox”; and a beautiful white resin Champagne bucket by Tina Frey.”

Jonathan Adler cocktail napkins
Jonathan Adler cocktail napkins

Photo Credit: Hero Shop

Holt also has “MMClay’s fantastic Calfornia Love ornaments. They’re clay sculpted in the shape of California with a gold heart for SF,” she says. “They look terrific on a tree, but I like to hang them year round as decor on a wall, door handle, mood board or even use as a paperweight. California love isn’t season-specific.” If you’re hoping to purchase a gift or two for yourself, Hero Shop has a couple of in-store events that should not be missed. On December 13, Holt is hosting a holiday beauty shopping party. Holt says it’s “perfect time to find a gift—or shop for yourself!”

Jonathan Rachman poses in his store
Jonathan Rachman poses in his store

Photo Credit: Aubrie Pick

Fashion, not your forte? Interior designer Jonathan Rachman’s namesake shop is full of one-of-a-kind treasures and exotic objects of delight. Think extra-large antique mirrors, English colonial style chaise lounges, and vintage Hermés saddles. “We are carrying de Gournay’s bespoke porcelain collection, and for any porcelain purchase, you receive a complimentary holiday floral arrangement that can be done inside the porcelain!” Rachman says excitedly.

Exotic items at J. Rachman
Exotic items at J. Rachman

Photo Credit: Aubrie Pick

“We are also carrying Firmamenta Italian crushed velvet clutches in rich holiday tones! It’s an instant holiday accessory for your cocktail event with any outfit! As well as their decorative pillows for your home, they are so festive: #instantmood!” For the ladies who lunch that don’t need anything, Rachman recommends Margot Larkin’s bespoke handprinted glassware made exclusively for his store. “Get the bejeweled gazelle Cosmo glasses or a set of 12 numbered Madeline glasses plus 1 Miss Clavel: they are chic and fun all in one. The Ferragamo sisters have a set of our dragon wine glasses.”

unspecified-8Photo Credit: Neiman Marcus

Then there is Neiman Marcus, the spot where you can kill all birds with one stone and get everyone’s gifts at the same time. “Every holiday season we do a special ‘Crazy Good Gifts’ pop-up curated with the chicest and fun items for everyone on your list. This year, proceeds from the shop will benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of America youth arts education programs,” Terri Murphy Mino, Neiman’s public relations manager says.

Spectacles camera sunglasses
Spectacles camera sunglasses

Photo Credit: Neiman Marcus

“You can never go wrong with handbags or shoes, but we are thrilled to have Spectacles camera sunglasses from Snapchat for the techie on your list!” If your loved one is after an experience, consider Neiman Marcus’ pop-up spa. The Natura Bisse bubble will be at the department store during the holidays. The facial is unlike any other treatment in the world.

The Tiffany & Co. store in Union Square
The Tiffany & Co. store in Union Square

Photo Credit: Tiffany & Co.

Finally, if jewelry is on your list, there is no place quite like Tiffany & Co. The decorations alone are a reason to visit the Post Street jeweler, but Michelle Vercruysse, Tiffany & Co. San Francisco’s senior director, suggests a personalized gift. “I love our Tiffany charms, tags, and keys in sterling silver, 18K yellow gold, rose, and white gold with diamonds,” she says. “You can create a one of a kind gift using our new in-store ‘Make It My Tiffany’ engraving option.  My favorite is called ‘Doodle’ which allows our customers to draw or write a personal message or design that can then be immediately engraved while you wait.”

A look at the jeweler's new in-store personalization service
A look at the jeweler’s new in-store personalization service

Photo Credit: Tiffany & Co.

And for those gentlemen (or ladies!) planning a holiday engagement, the brand has released a new engagement ring for the first time in a decade. “Our new engagement ring, Tiffany True, is very exciting!  It is an innovative diamond cut that maximizes brilliance, and the setting is immaculate and modern. It’s a perfect new addition and just in time for holiday engagements!”        

  

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