Friday, December 9, 2011

New Orleans Holiday Shopping---Part 1

New Orleans is a city that gets in your blood. Once your bitten by the New Orleans love bug, you just can't shake it! Fortunately, I get to visit quite often and am able to shop for clients at my favorite boutiques, galleries, antique stores and eat at restaurants that have made New Orleans world famous. 

Three of my favorite shops have chic and stylish items that are just perfect for those on your holiday gift list. Consider Nadine Blake, perch., and Julie Neill for gifts with that certain je ne sais quoi that IS New Orleans. And remember, these shops will wrap and ship just like Amazon and Barnes & local!

On your next visit to New Orleans, start in the quarter....

New Orleans meets New York in Nadine Blake's fabulously quirky boutique on Royal Street in the French Quarter. A curated selection and stylish mix of vintage and new furniture, accessories, pillows, books, stationary and jewelry is artfully arranged in the shop which is in one of the prettiest blocks of the Vieux Carre. At Nadine Blake Lifestyle & Decoration, the New Orleans native and former New Yorker (designer for Mark Hampton, Inc) has created a shop that will make you feel like you are on Elizabeth Street in Nolita.

My selections from Nadine Blake that make perfect presents:

Porcelain vessels/vases by Middle Kingdom
coral red pots, cocoa double gourd : $20 each
these are great for flowers..use in a grouping on a sideboard or console table or dining table

Everyone knows how I feel about books as gifts. These titles are written by high profile New Yorkers who are part-time French Quarter dwellers and are two of the hottest books of 2011:

Stealing Magnolias by Debra Shriver, Hearst Corporation Executive--signed copies: $ 60
"Debra Shriver tells the story of finding and restoring a house in the French Quarter in the wake of Katrina. Part love letter, part scrapbook - readers are given a rare tour of this enigmatic city. The book is a cultural guidebook and historical reference, featuring the work of more than 20 photographers and artists. Chapters highlight food and entertaining, decorating, gardens, landscapes, local traditions, interiors, and architecture."
with preface written by George Rodrigue

The Finest Rooms in America by Thomas Jayne, New York designer--signed copies: $50
"The Finest Rooms in America: 50 Influential Interiors from the 18th Century to the Present is a selection by Thomas Jayne, one of America’s best decorators and scholars of American design. It is a definitive record of the finest American interior design with an authoritative text and  luxuriant color photography. The book includes a complete cross section of extant rooms covering a broad range of American periods and styles, beginning with the Tea Room at Jefferson’s Monticello and continuing to the present, concluding with Albert Hadley’s modern sitting room."

In this techno-driven world that we live in, handwritten notes arrive in the mailbox far less frequently than they should. Let's bring back the proper tradition of writing a thank you note, get well or sympathy card, or just a hello for the fun of it note and support local stationers like New Orleans paper products designer Alexa Pulitzer who has collections for Bergdorf Goodman, Anthropologie, and Tory Burch. Nadine Blake always has a nice selection on hand.

assorted styles of Alexa Pulitzer notecards & envelopes--packs of 10 range from $ 13-$ 17

I stock up on old fashioned but one of my little indulgences. I buy books when traveling and I like to keep a record of where I found each literary purchase so I use Alexa Pulitzer's book plate stickers to record my name, city where I found the book, and month and year. I like to think that long after I am gone and my book collection has been scattered about (probably at random Goodwill's and flea markets!) that someone will pick up one of my books, see the tidy book plate and wonder just who and the world is this Jeffery McCullough and what was he doing in Madrid, Houston, Lafayette, New York, Atlanta, Savannah, Vidalia, etc, etc....crazy, I know..but that's ok!
Assorted Book Plate Seals & Stickers-- 9 per pack, $10/pack

NADINE BLAKE Lifestyle & Decoration
1036 Royal Street
NOLA--504 529 4913

then to the Garden District....

Caroline Robert and Jack Mayberry at perch. are a very fun and stylish duo. Known for bringing refined whimsy into some of the best homes in the New Orleans area, perch. is a treat to visit. In a charming double shotgun house on Magazine Street, new pieces by Bungalow 5, Thomas Paul, Kartell, Stray Dog Designs (just to name a few of the great lines represented at perch.) are perfectly juxtaposed with fine antiques and accessories in an easy, relaxed way.

As often as I can I shop for client projects at perch. Here are my holiday gift picks:

When Caroline was asked to design a tabletop for The Times Picayune's 5th annual Wish Magazine Holiday feature, she did what she does best: mix fine silver with vintage & antique china but added a little twist with this more modern floral arrangement. The cachepot she used is available in the shop. The floral design...well, that you will have figure out on your own! 

mini clay cachepot
$ 18

"La Femme de Fontainebleau" by New Orleans photographer Lisa Conrad
33" high x 37" wide framed

BIG, EASY STYLE by Bryan Batt-New Orleans native & resident who plays Salvatore Romano on Mad Men!  $ 32
"Decorating your home to reflect your personality and taste takes practice and patience and can be a daunting undertaking, but Bryan Batt proposes that we not worry about making mistakes, that any decision we make is better than no decision at all. WithBig, Easy Style, learn how to put aside your hesitation and surrender to the wild side of home design for a big statement that’s easy to achieve."
 The book features New Orleans homes and projects of the who's who of New Orleans design including perch. owner Caroline Robert; designers Melissa Rufty, Gerrie Bremermann, Ned Marshall; antique dealers Ann Koerner, Karla Katz; stylist Valorie Hart; and Bryan Batt and his partner Tom Cianfichi, owners of the shop Hazelnut.

Velvet pumpkins are so not what I would ever think I would fall (no pun intended) for. But oh my gosh when I saw them, I flipped! Who cares if it's Halloween or not, these add style all year long. I have to have a brown one...and a certain client of mine will definitely get an animal print one...TOO fun!

These have been so hot that they are nearly sold out....only four are left and they are in this photo:

The small ones are 4" and are $ 17.50
The larger are $ 20 and are 5"

Still need some ornaments to complete your tree? Go CHIC, CHIC, CHIC with this mercury glass elephant:

aqua green & silver Indian elephant ornament
$ 14

2844 Magazine Street
NOLA--504 899 2122

and then uptown...

Bayou Contessa (SUCH a perfect title for her blog!) Julie Neill is sooo New Orleans you can hardly believe it. The first time Tim (a Louisiana native) met Julie he walked away and said, "now that's New Orleans!". The incredibly talented (and successful) lighting designer creates (all are hand made--I've seen the artisans painting and gilding them) brilliant and dazzling chandeliers, sconces, and lanterns that grace fine homes all over America like these below.

As Julie Neill Designs grew over the last ten years, Julie recognized the opportunity to not only have a lighting showroom but a beautiful shopping experience that just so happens to be canopied with all of her fabulous designs. Julie Ponze does an incredible job making sure that Julie Neill remains unique (like both of the Julie's!) by representing artists and manufacturers that you will not see anywhere else in New Orleans. I always find something special each time I pop into the Magazine Street atelier. My recent finds include items that are too good to pass up. For clients, friends, myself...who cares?! Great items, great prices. It's a win-win situation.

Here are my 2012 Holiday picks to make your dining room sparkle:

When you walk in the door of Julie Neill Designs, you are greeted by the most wonderful scent. It is the "Peony Candle" shown above. Not only great smelling, but great looking, these are a steal at $18. The antique mirrored glass pots can be used for votive holders or bud vases when the candle is finis.

These are not your grandmother's cake plates! Tres chic and interesting, these "Crystal Towers" are made from vintage serving pieces, glasses and dishes by New Orleans artist Lara Lester. Mallory Page who is always on top of what's hot turned me onto these when she used one for a recent photo shoot. What better juxtaposition than these with an abstract painting? I fell in love....have to have one! and so do my clients. Any dining room will benefit from what will surely be a conversation piece.

Crystal Towers by Laura Lester
range in price from $ 150- $ 175

An interesting tulipiere really gets me going. We must have two of these for our new dining room table in Lafayette! 

Blown Glass Branch Vases with five vessels
$ 47

New Orleans photographer John Michael Smith is represented by Julie Neill Designs. I love these small images mounted on canvas for use on easels in tabletop vignettes. Views of Audubon Park in New Orleans and images from travel in Portugal are available. At $ 40 each, these make a great gift.

Audubon Park in New Orleans

Tree Branch in Portugal

Sculpture in Portugal

The uber-talented Mallory Page is also represented by Julie Neill. A wonderful energy comes from the mix of abstract paintings and gilded and crystal chandeliers.

Half & Half, Mixed Media on Wood, 36x48

and perfect for a Christmas gift, White Noise I, 16" x 16", mixed media on wood--$ 675

Julie Neill Designs
3908 Magazine Street
NOLA--504 899 4201

You now have three fantastic New Orleans resources for your Holiday (and, of course, year round) shopping. On Monday, my blog post will be about my favorite art galleries and studios.

While doing a little research on Julie Neill, I came across this quote that she gave to Ronda at All the Best Blog when asked what her idea of earthly happiness is. I love Julie's answer and think it certainly should apply to how we all approach the holiday season and the madness  that can somehow creep into our lives this time of year. 

"Taking time to slow down and experience the small beautiful details of living on this earth. To truly look into someone’s eyes while talking with them, to notice the intricate symmetry of a flower, to close your eyes and listen to a beautiful piece of music, to feel the warmth of the sunshine on your face or the embrace of someone you love."

Wishing you a happy weekend,



Mallory Page said...

OH! All of my favorites! I obsess over Peony candles for my studio! AND I think Stealing Magnolias is the BEST go to gift for any southern woman! Thanks for the love Jeffery!

NoFearArt said...

Thank you Jeffery for the New Orleans shopping posts. Thoroughly enjoyed the read. We are headed to N.O. this weekend and I plan on stopping in a few places that you mentioned. Always love finding new places. Also, love, love, love the book labels. I also collect books from various places and will have to start doing this. Hope you are doing well and miss seeing your smiling face around town. Take care and hope you have a wonderful Christmas and a very prosperous New Year. Kathryn

P.S. Agree with Mallory, "Stealing Magnolias" is right up there with "The Obituary Cocktail" for must have N.O. books.