, is a makeup artist best known for her work on TLC's "What Not to Wear" and the author of
: Nothing says "serious cook" like French copper. It's the kitchen equivalent of mine-cut diamonds--everything else looks more expensive. I think the jam pan
is actually the most useful--centerpiece, drinks cooler, logs for the fireplace.....
Tom Ford for Men cologne.
Tom Ford has been unstoppable this year, both at the helm of his eponymous high-end clothing and accessories line and at the center of his full-court press both behind and in front of the camera. One of the most sensual (and arguably glamorous) images of the past year was the sight of a Tom Ford cologne bottle pressed invitingly into the recesses of a woman's pelvis by her red lacquered nails (Jungle Red, no doubt). Sex sells, and for that reason alone, this cologne should go flying off the shelf. But more importantly, it actually smells wonderful. With just a few strategic squirts, you can undo one more button on your shirt, bare your immaculately-manscaped chest, and begin a Holiday party filled with models and bottles.
Ren Mayblossom and Blue Cypress Balancing Facial Cleansing Gel.
I love ridiculous products for my skin, and the more outrageous the claims (unicorn horn! chirically correct molecules! fair-trade alpha-hydroxy!), the more excited I become. In the case of Ren's wonderfully-effective cleanser, I can delight in the absurd ingredients (mayblossom? blue cypress? I'm sure these foods promote proper unicorn horn growth!) and experience noticably cleaner, fresher skin. Also, I can torture my husband that I spent $32 on "soap" that can only be used on one part of my body.
Another movie with glamorous Art Deco sets is the original version of The Women,
starring Joan Crawford, Norma Shearer, and Rosalind Russell--especially the fashion show scene. I've been playing both these films on a big screen without the sound, and they are like art installations.
Paige Phelps Sigerson Morrison for Target Lustra D'Orsay Pumps
: Siegerson Morrison is a terrifically expensive, wonderful shoe brand that I usually drool over but can't afford. If you're not giving this to yourself, consider it for your hip sister or sis-in-law. It's funky and fun and can be dressed up or down. And for those who think these capsule brand promos don't offer the goods, think again. Everytime I've worn my Lela Rose for Payless or Target's International Go collection clothes, I've gotten compliments, so they do deliver.
Also for your friend/sister type, a fun cocktail ring that screams FAKE is fun for the holidays (and don't limit yourself to wearing it on the traditional ring finger). Try this Zirconite enamel ring
: great with the little black dress or even jeans and a cute top. If they're not into rings, this
can be a fun stocking stuffer:
For your more erudite friend, boy or girl, Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster
is one of the best fashion books I've read in a long while. But warning to glamourpusses: it breaks down the myths behind the magic. Trust, after reading this, you'll NEVER scoff at Target capsule collections--in fact you might think of them as just as good as high-end brands.
is a Dallas-based writer and regular DG correspondent.
With all due respect to the lure of perfume and jewels, some of us spend most of our glamour budget on books. Here are some favorites.
Woman in the Mirror: 1945-2004
: A book of Richard Avedon's iconic photography is appealing enough, but this one has the bonus of a lengthy essay by the brilliant fashion critic and art historian Anne Hollander
. Not just a coffee-table book.
: Some people think great athletes can't be glamorous, because they too obviously work hard. Walter Iooss's photography
finds glamour as well as grit: great faces, great bodies, great moves. (With a four-figure budget, you can buy a signed print of his magnificent Blue Dunk
photo of Michael Jordan through the New York Times store. Hence the NYT logo marring the illustration here.) For the lover of sports, photography, or both.
For travelers, art lovers, and people who wish they traveled more or knew more about art, Alain de Botton's The Art of Travel
is an entertaining read that smuggles in a remarkable amount of cultural education. After discovering it in London, I bought copies for several family members.
Finally, I never miss an opportunity to plug my favorite book about glamour (though I'm not sure anyone else thinks of it that way): Michael Chabon's Great American Novel, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay
For people who want to counter the "Do you have an iPhone?" question with a "No, but I pack a M8" answer: the Leica M8
. Nothing makes me wonder "Just who is that person" more than a Leica M8. Tucked discretely under one's arm, or brandished boldly across a chest, the M8 is a soft-spoken yet potent beacon of technological glamour.
TAG Heuer Men's Monaco Automatic Chronograph Watch
: If the names 911, R8, M3, or GT-R make your heart race, this is your timepiece. McQueen wore one, and it's named after the most glamorous kingdom left in the world. Royalty, speed, sex, adrenaline, and crisp, elegant aesthetics, all together on your wrist.
is a partner at IDEO, a professor at the Stanford d-school, and a regular DG contributor.
Nancy Rommelman Salvador Dali perfumes
[Nancy's husband] Din and I originally bought for Hillary [Johnson, his sister] back in 1997. When I literally could not keep my nose out of her neck, I bought myself some. It's very feminine, as in, men go gaga for it.
I also really, really like the Laguna
, which is "fresher," faster, and always make me feel very racy and ready. Also, can you beat these bottles? No, you cannot.
The stationery set
: This is the perfect fashionable gift for young romantics, or for glamour gals who still remember when Casablanca was first released. Because there’s nothing more glamorous than sending a goodbye forever note to a lover on your own stationary, except maybe sending the next note…
The personalized child's calling card:
A super-cute stocking stuffer for those just initiated to the world of glamour (or for their fashionable moms). Personalized children’s calling cards are a chic way to make introductions and organize play dates. Stylish, convenient, and they make you feel all grown up, in a good way.
is a Cleveland-based writer and graphic designer who recently wrote a DG post
on the cover art of hip-hop mixtapes.
I like to give people very pretty mother-of-pearl Korean business card holders like this one
on Ebay. Here is a similar product on Amazon by Swarovski - pave crystals
. They don't seem to have a lot in stock so maybe it's last season's. There is a zebra print
one and a leopard print
one. You need to exercise caution with animal prints, but I think these cases hit glamour and not tacky.
Another, with green crystals. Another, that has a little Monet painting on it . (I link these two because they seem to be well stocked - the Monet one I really like.)
I've got a theme: I like pretty card holders that aren't just these plain boring things. I've even attached a pic of the one I carry.
Also, I'm big on nice pens. I use Waterman fountain pens exclusively (I've been a fountain pen fiend since middle school and cut my teach on how to use them when they made the cheap ones with colored ink). Anyway, I know Amazon has a good selection of those. For those who are scared of ink leaks there is always a nice fountain pen. Either way, a nice pen is distinguished, stylish and definitely glamourous. This is the one I use now. But, yeah, I've got a few of them.
Regina Walton is a Seoul-based journalist and blogger. She interviewed fashionista Diane Pernet for DG.