Some things you can depend on during the holidays, such as long lines, grumpy shoppers, and tired feet. But shopping for glam gifts can be fun, if you know where to look. Three places that put joy into shopping for glam gifts are: Nordstrom, Swarovski and Home Goods, (shop online at nordstrom.com, homegoods.com and Swarovski.com). Whether in the store or online, you will find a gleefully glamorous group of gifts in all price points, to dazzle and delight. All three stores offer a pleasant atmosphere, helpful salespeople, and options for everyone at various price points. Shop Nordstrom, Swarovski or Home Goods, and feel happy about holiday shopping again!
At a recent editor’s holiday preview for Nordstrom, for example, I saw so many beauty gifts I’d absolutely love to have, I felt as though I was in an adult beauty candy store! Of course Nordstrom has gifts in every category as well, but their beauty area is beyond, beyond! Other beauty stores do have plenty of products, but Nordstrom prides itself on customer service. They will move heaven and earth to please you and help you choose just the right things for the right people on your list. Some department stores offer the services of personal stylists for fashion, but Nordstrom also has one for beauty! If you can’t get to the store where the beauty stylist is, you can still access this kind of attention, online or by phone. And guess what? The Stylist service is free. Stop by your nearest Nordstrom (appointments are appreciated, but not necessary), call 1.800.7beauty or Live Chat with a Beauty Stylist online. Nordstrom has exclusives not just in their own brand, but in some of the chic-est and most exciting brands on the planet (e.g. Smashbox, Butter London, Diptique, Kiehls, NARS, M-A-C Cosmetics, Laura Mercier, Ciate, Deborah Lippman, bareMinerals,…the list goes on and on. Nordstrom has a first coming up: real Aveda Spas (and all the great products) right in the stores!
I didn’t realize that Swarovski Crystal had different types of stores. The Swarovski “Swan stores” (the swan is the Swarovski logo) has all manner of crystal objects d’art and jewelry but there is one very special store, the Swarovksi Crystallized boutique. At a recent editor’s preview in the New York Store, I learned that it is just one of 5 showcase stores in the entire world. Here, everyone can pick out various pieces (elements) from a long wall of charms and crystals, to create their own unique pieces. But in case you aren’t interested in DIY, the Swarovski Crystallized boutique is also where you can view and purchase some of the most astounding, designer pieces, crafted from those Swarovski elements. While many run hundreds of dollars as you can see in the photo featuring gorgeous crystals framed in chunks of silver, there are also options for the budget minded in the boutique and from Elements, online. You can also get a huge array of beautiful items for home, jewelry and more, at the regular Swarovski boutiques and Swarovski.com
Check out votive candle holders, blinged-out phone cases, and pens (this one with 200 crystals in the top and a 4gb USB stick in the middle. If your budget is a bit bigger, check out cuff links for the guys, and these customizable jewels. The prices I’m quoting are approximate, depending upon what you buy and how many extra crystals and bezels you want, but basically your purchase is a sterling silver base piece for a ring, pendant or earrings that will run you anywhere from around $72.00 for some of the rings and around $85.00 for the earrings, to over $180+ for some of the pendants. Add a crystal (They are around $13.00) and select as many bezels as you wish (around $33.00). Then, just mix and match them. A unique clasp pulls apart to allow easy switching of crystal colors, and bezels. You’ll get one bezel and one crystal to start, then start collecting! There are obviously hundreds of items you can buy at the Swarovski stores or dazzle someone with a true designer original from those showcased at the Crystallized boutique or their online sales site, or really go all out and pick something from the Atelier Collection (Nadia Swarovski hand selects 20 designers). Even if you don’t walk away with a designer original, you’ll be dazzled by all the crystal beauty!\
You might not think of Home Goods as your one-stop holiday shopping experience but it is! At a recent holiday preview event, featuring the magnetic and oh so stylish, Carson Kressley, I discovered that Home Goods has gifts so insanely inexpensive, but so incredibly covet-able, I couldn’t help but be impressed. I honestly never shopped there before, but I will, from now on. Consider a wine gift that costs under $10.00? Incredibly, this set of four wine glasses, each with a different etched pattern is just $9.99.
For the young and the young at heart, Home Goods offers a snowman snow globe for just $19.99 that gives back to a good cause. Home Goods will donate 50% of the purchase price to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital while $25.00 gets you a large ceramic pig (one is in a baseball/Yankees theme) that donates to UNICEF. There are pasta sets, candies and other foodie gifts at far less than you would spend in a gourmet store, and they’re all first quality and fresh. There are scented soaps and beautifiers for the ladies, and plenty of “guy gifts” too. There’s even a wide range of holiday decorations and tons of picture frame and organizer items for your practical friends and family members. The thing about shopping in a place like Home Goods is that you never know what you’ll find, because new items come in and go out at a fast pace. But there is that ultimate thrill when you get something you know should be much more, for much, much less. The store is bright and cheerful and fun to shop in. You are bound to find something for everyone on your list, even unique toys for babies and kids, but if you are stumped, you can always just send a gift card (and you can do that, too)!