Searching for the perfect holiday present? Our Dandelion Chandelier holiday luxury gift-giving series showcases truly special products and experiences that will delight your beloved. We’re sharing incredible items and experiences that you can purchase right now. That way, when the holiday season actually arrives, you can go to parties, drink eggnog, look cute and be generally just totally chill. Sound like a dream? If you want to kick it like that this year, read on.
Looking for a knock-out gift this holiday season? Why not bestow a one-of-a-kind item that is precisely tailored to the personality, experiences or aesthetic of your loved one? As part of our holiday gift-giving series, we’re sharing ideas for special hand-crafted items that require prior planning and consultation. That means you’ll need to start the process now. If you do, you’ll have the fun of knowing that no one else in the world has exactly the same thing as your gift recipient. Now that’s some serious luxury.
Here’s our Dandelion Chandelier list of artisanal bespoke gift ideas that are sure to dazzle anyone on your list.
Fine Jewelry: Award winning jewelry designer Sharon Khazzam is a star in the world of haute joaillerie. She was the sole in-house jewelry designer for Asprey for eight years. With Asprey’s support, in 1993 Sharon launched her eponymous collection, which reflects her tastes as an artist and also her expertise with gemstones. During an initial consultation, Khazzam shares selections from her collection of precious gemstones to see which ones resonate most deeply. She also seeks to understand the details of the client’s lifestyle, the intended use of the new piece, and also which of their features they are most hoping to showcase (she laughingly notes “we all have areas we love and would prefer to accent – jewelry guides the eye of the person looking at you to your preferred spot.”) Khazzam then creates an original sketch, and after additional discussions crafts stunning bespoke necklaces, bracelets, and earrings. Each numbered piece is entirely handmade in New York, and meticulously catalogued with a permanent record guarded in Sharon’s studio. There’s still time to work with her to create a show-stopping holiday gift: the bespoke process can take as little as 4 weeks once the order is placed (it can also take a year, depending on the complexity of the piece). If time starts to runs short, you can find her permanent collection at Barneys New York, Isetan and Mitsukoshi in Tokyo, and Ylang 23 in Dallas. Prices for a pair of earrings start at about $7,500; bracelets are $8,000 and up, and necklaces are $15,000+. If you’re feeling flush, there’s also a necklace available for just under $1 million, with fancy vivid-colored diamonds and 22 Gemological Institute of America (GIA) certified stones. Khazzam’s price range is sufficiently broad to provide options for a few different budgets. Learn more at www.sharonkhazzam.com.
Home Décor: Pangea Maps will create a customized coastal map based on nautical charts to render the underwater topography of your gift recipient’s favorite waterfront location. Lake, river or ocean, majestic estate or thatched hut, you can commemorate a special place or a special memory in an interesting way. They’re made from birch plywood and acrylic, and can be created for any location in the world. They’re unlabeled, so the location can be as secret or as overt as you like. The maps arrive framed in a plywood box. The price is $390 for an 18” square. It may take up to 28 days following confirmation of your order before your map is ready to be shipped (the design and layout require final customer approval before any materials are cut). So you’ve still got time to make this happen. We’d like one for Martha’s Vineyard, please! www.pangeamaps.com
Luxury Travel: Rosewood Hotels and Resorts just announced it’s first-ever holiday gift package, 12 Days of Rosewood. The luxury brand has created a set of exclusive travel experiences, some involving the creation of bespoke items as part of the gift. For example, the “Aston Martin Discovery” trip includes a 3-night stay in a suite at the Rosewood London, a private helicopter transfer to Aston Martin headquarters in Graydon, a greeting from the car maker’s CEO and a session with the Chief Creative Officer to design your own DB11 V12 coupe. The package also includes a performance training session on their test track. Prices start at $256,200. The other trips aren’t technically bespoke (although itineraries can be tweaked to meet individual preferences). There are eleven other options, and many of them sound like a dream: a winter visit to Tuscany to taste Brunello, take a cooking class, and test-drive a Ferrari ($17,400); a 5-night cultural stay in Beijing, including a contemporary painting masterclass and a visit to the city’s famous 798 Art District ($5,090); or a cabaret night at the Café Carlyle in Manhattan, where the gift recipient and 24 friends or family members will be treated to a private performance by either Megan Hilty or Isaac Mizrahi, complete with dinner and a champagne reception with the performer afterward ($95,000). www.rosewoodhotels.com
Fragrance: Azzi Glasser is an award-winning perfume designer who specializes in creating bespoke fragrances for the world’s top fashion designers, beauty brands, Hollywood actors, musicians and artists, including Jude Law, Kylie Minogue, Orlando Bloom and Johnny Depp. She captures the client’s character, personality and style and then composes an exclusive perfume for them using handpicked rare ingredients from around the world. Consultations take place within a studio at Glasser’s private residence and are strictly by appointment only. The fragrance is presented in a beautiful crystal bottle (520ml) engraved with the name and formula number of the unique perfume, encased in a luxury handmade box, along with 20 travel sized bottles.
The personalized service comes with a significant price tag: it’s reported that each fragrance costs about $20,000. If that’s within your budget, just be sure to start the process well in advance of the holidays: from the first appointment to having the finished product in hand, the average lead time for a bespoke fragrance is 3-4 months. According to a representative from the maison, it can be quicker than that – it entirely depends on the individual. The other hurdle you’ll have to jump? There’s a waiting list for consultations with Glasser – as of this posting, the earliest appointment available is at the end of November. So realistically, this may have to be your Valentine’s Day gift. You can book through the Harvey Nichols Concierge Service at the Knightsbridge store, Net-A-Porter EIP Atelier Service or directly at www.theperfumersstory.com.
In the meantime, should you want to experience at least a piece of the dream, you can make an appointment with the Harvey Nichols Concierge Service at the Knightsbridge store and meet with a “fragrance stylist” that will match individuals with one of the eleven scents from Glasser’s permanent collection, The Perfumer’s Story. A bottle costs $150, and a scented candle is $80.
You can also make the tiniest connection with heartthrob Colin Firth for your gift recipient (or yourself) with a purchase of Glasser’s first “film fragrance.” Kingsman TGC is a scent created for the movie “Kingsman: The Golden Circle.” In it, Firth throws a weaponized bottle of it to save his life (the actual product, we are assured, does not have that functionality). A 30ml bottle sells for $125 on website Mr. Porter, at the Mr. Porter pop-up shop in St. James in London; at Harrods; and on Glasser’s website. A 150ml version will be available in November for $265.
If anyone out there is interested, we here at Dandelion Chandelier would be very happy to receive any one of these gifts on the big day. Just letting you know, Santa.
Bet you’ve got someone on your list who would say the same.