Ah, the New York International Gift Fair (aka, the New York Gift Show). We adore you for a variety of reasons—not the least of which is the opportunity to display everything that’s new and awesome from our own Pine Cone Hill and Dash & Albert Rug Company. After all, where else can we find everything from animal-printed note cards to hand-knit cashmere shawls, luxury bedding, kitschy housewares, fanciful furniture, gourmet salts and olive oils, and some truly out-there jewelry, in more than 500,000 square feet of eye-candy exhibitor space?
With 2,800 exhibitors on display, our only problem was narrowing down our list of likes and loves. Here’s a brief roundup of some of the standouts at the August 2012 New York Gift Show.
This Boston-based design firm’s hip housewares and accessories—coming soon to a Target Shop near you—are a mishmash of the refined (check out their vases) and the kooky (handmade burlap mushrooms, anyone?). We plan to snap up all of their nature-inspired letterpress cards.
DaisyD specializes in cute, earth-friendly greeting cards, calendars, thank-you notes, coasters, and more created by small design companies. Who doesn’t love stationery with an adorable squirrel on it?
We went nuts for these simple, statement-making, mulituse bags in big, bold colors. From the stores-everything, wipeable vinyl zip bags to the fun Euro cases and the totes that make even a skull and crossbones look cute, we’re all in for whatever Lolo dreams up next.
Get your sparkle on with these chunky, cowgirl-chic leather-and-metal bracelets and necklaces from New York City designer Gina Riley.
One Fresh American staffer buys a new bag or wallet from this company, based on the tiny, remote Daufuskie Island, off the coast of South Carolina. The Sailor’s Watch Satchel is our pick for a kicky, colorful carry-all.
Contemporary heirloom jewelry made of materials like coral, Bavarian glass, French bronze, antiqued brass, jade, and onyx. With the baroque look big for fall, these drop necklaces should fit the bill.
This London toymaker makes some seriously plush animals with a generous hint of humor. We especially like the lion, frog, and Monty Moose plushies, and their simple care instructions: “Lots of love.”
Merben Crochet Toys
What kid doesn’t need a bed full of these sweet little critters, handmade by female artisans in Nepal from 100 percent natural fibers?
Originally from Scotland, Wilson makes some of the cutest, quirkiest, pillows, blankets, and stuffed toys we’ve ever seen. Get them before she becomes a huge star and her designs sell out everywhere.
For the Home
What to do with those leftover grapes and wine? If you’re the Napa Soap Company, you incorporate them into small-batch soaps hand made from all-natural ingredients. Their grapeseed oil, wine, herbs, beeswax, and honey are all sourced locally in California.
Fresh American favorite Daniel Bellow was on hand again with more of his gorgeously glazed, Asian-inspired dinnerware and accessories. Read our profile of him, then click over to his site and pick up some of his fabulous new wares.
MoMA’s Destination: Design series highlights emerging artists around the world, and this, the tenth in the series, showcases the work of Mexico’s Jorge Akele. We were taken with all of his streamlined yet eye-catching shapes, especially his quirky and sculptural Acapulco chair.
Vinylux founder Jeff Davis began molding vinyl records over custom-made forms as part of a thesis for graduate school, and his designs preserve the look and feel of the vinyl, including the original record labels, in new, functional objects. Check out these bowls, destined to become your next coffee-table conversation piece.