The GOACA guide: Ten gifts I would love to receive

meditation pillow

I believe in buying people the kind of gifts they’d never buy themselves, and all of the following items fall under that heading for me. They’re all deeply unnecessary, but each in its own way quite excellent. For starters: I have been trying again to meditate—it is so hard!—and believe I could at least do so stylishly (if not effectively) on this cushion.

portable speaker

The cutest speaker maybe ever.

Kapital Kuba socks

And these socks just delight me.

Fujifilm Instax photo printer

A diminutive photo printer would come in so handy. I miss actual pictures.

wrought iron snake

This wrought iron snake would look perfect on a coffee table.

Murano glass vase

Such an unstoppably gorgeous Murano glass vase.

Urban Outfitters puffer

I have it in my mind that I need a red puffer, and I like the shirttail hem on this one.

Blackline cutting boards

These black cutting boards are so unexpected and cool.

Astier de Villatte mug

This skull print mug from Astier de Villatte is just precisely the type of item I would never buy for myself—it’s so pricey for a mug—but would be impossibly thrilled to receive.

Manon ring

It exceeds the GOACA price limit, and I don’t have my fingers crossed that anyone’s going to splurge on it for me, but I have wanted this knot ring for ages and ages.

Fornasetti plateMy new favorite Fornasetti plate.

Bags to carry to parties

Clare V bag

I have way too many bags in my life (I just did a major purge and still have too many). But I possess nothing in the way of a fun, not-too-big (but not inconveniently small) bag to carry to parties, I think because of my aversion to little bags. But I am game to find one, and believe that this is the kind of  item you can have a little fun with by, say, going for metallics or embroidery or a touch of fluff. I like the idea of one that’s on the loud side, which is why this bright orange shearling from Clare V appeals.

I have wanted this bag for a while now: the shape and the color are both absolutely perfect.

Here’s a cute (and not small) leopard clutch.

This wristlet is such a cool and also sophisticated option. (And here it is in silver metallic.)

The product description says this is velvet, but it looks much furrier—and is so adorable.

Here’s something that’s furrier still.

The chevron print here makes this choice a standout, as does the chain strap.

Oh, this just struck me as pretty sweet, what with the flowers and stars.

A gold metallic evening bag is a classic—and it can not be said enough: metallics are neutrals. This would go with everything.

 

And finally: this is just a hoot.

What I am packing for vacation

 

I’m going to Mexico on Christmas day—a small town about an hour’s flight and then another hour’s drive from Mexico City called San Miguel, have any of you been?— and am aiming to fit everything into a carry-on. This is usually pretty easy when packing for a warm climate. But apparently it gets cold in the evenings there this time of year, which creates a challenge. So I’m only bringing with me items I know I’ll want to wear repeatedly. And I am dreaming of purchasing these Nili Lotan Jenna pants, in navy, with the most adorable ribbon trim. They’ll look cute cuffed when it’s warmer out, and are so damn comfortable and flattering.

On the plane, I’ll wear these R-13 jeans, which I have owned forever.

 

And whatever the thickest sweater I’m bringing is.

Even though I know they’ll get wrinkled, I’ll bring a couple of button-downs (and maybe, if there’s room, this wee travel steamer will come along too).

I own a couple of Maria Cornejo jersey dresses, and they are so good for travel because they pack down to nothing.

I can’t imagine not bringing a striped long-sleeved tee, most likely in simple, graphic black and white because it’s so versatile, and a little punk rock.

To walk around everywhere, I will bring these clogs, even though they’re clunky to pack.

For lounging about, I’ll put an ancient Emerson Fry caftan in the suitcase, but I dream of bringing this stunner.

A lightweight cotton cardigan is a particularly good layering piece.

And finally, I know I risk boring you by going on about about Chan Luu scarves again, but they really are the best for travel. Lightweight, but super-warm too.  This is so fun in the leopard print, no?