I recently tried a wild experiment. My husband and I invited friends for cocktails and when they asked what they could bring, I said “nothing but yourselves!” They asked again, I replied the same way. The experiment failed, miserably. Not a single guest came without food. It is a kind sentiment but it was just a cocktail party and as a host, I felt confident I could provide enough sustenance to compliment champagne for two hours.
So, here’s a wild suggestion: the next time someone tells you to bring nothing, how about show up with a host gift? It’s old school and elegant- Miss Manners would be proud.
Previously a freelance journalist for prestigious media outlets such as Architectural Digest, T: The New York Times Style Magazine, Departures and Women’s Wear Daily, Alicia Brunker recently founded The Scope, a private members club that puts the designer’s story at the forefront. The site curates an exclusive collection of luxury furnishings and decor from established and emerging designers that they believe are the icons of our generation. Their goal is to educate buyers about the artful aspects of design.
Haute Residence checked in with Brunker to ask for her top five recommendations for hostess gifts this season. Here are her luxurious suggestions sure to please any hostess.
Trakata Candle Holders by Farrah Sit
I always think it’s better to gift a candleholder as opposed to a candle, because its presence is permanent rather than fleeting. And Brooklyn-based designer Farrah Sit handcrafts solid brass and white rhodium variations with a timeless appeal that suits just about any aesthetic. $480
Element Wall Hanger by Anna Karlin
Overnight guests can earn their keep with designer Anna Karlin’s polished brass and leather wall hangers. The display rings’s geometric shapes offer a chic storage system for extra throws or hand towels in the guest bathroom. $400
Placemat with Brass Corners by Slash Objects
An asymmetrical shape and brass detailing add the ideal amount of glam around the dinner table. Meanwhile, the placemat’s terrazzo rubber surface makes cleaning up a cinch — a quality your host will be especially grateful for. $38
Paper Bowls by Christopher Gentner
During the holidays, it’s essential for a host to place mini bowls of peppermint candies and chocolates around the house, and these hand-forged brass bowls by Chicago designer Christopher Gentner are an innovative stand-in for traditional serveware. For extra glitz, a 24K gold option is available upon request. $150
Decanter by Anna Karlin
An elegant decanter is an absolute necessity during a dinner party. From cognac to egg nog, this handblown borosilicate glass vessel by designer Anna Karlin is anchored by a polished brass stopper that can easily be removed for refills. $170