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Q Boutique

A really last-minute holiday gift guide

On the chance that you too are in denial about how few days remain until Christmas, Hanukkah or Kwanzaa, here are some  suggestions I found in the CWE that might make last-minute shopping a little easier.

Provisions St. Louis

Nicki's Central West End Guide Shop News  The Silver Lady The Candle Fusion Boutique Q Boutique ProvisionsSTL KLarIty Lifestyle Enchanting Embellishments East + West Daph. Centro Modern Furnishings

Since Debra and Ross Hunter moved to the CWE from northern California a little over a year ago, they have become fixtures in the neighborhood. Their shop, Provisions St. Louis at 228 N. Euclid, is a delightful place to visit, and the conversation is always lively.

Top photo: In the shop’s window you’ll find a beautiful display of bitter orange Agraria natural oil diffusers made in  S.F., which are topped with a signature sola wood flower, $140. The brand’s potpourri is $60, and burning sticks are $40 for 30 pieces.

Bottom row top: Patch NYC mix & match puzzle set, $20, a paperback book of 25 mazes, $10, Frank Loyd Wright Dominoes are $27.

Partially visible in the bottom row are two 1000 piece puzzles: automobiles or a U.S. map of cocktails, $16.99.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Shop News  The Silver Lady The Candle Fusion Boutique Q Boutique ProvisionsSTL KLarIty Lifestyle Enchanting Embellishments East + West Daph. Centro Modern Furnishings

The family behind the Dick Taylor Chocolate Company, which dates back to the early 1900’s, started in the boat building business in Eureka CA. The charming labels were originally printed on letterpress equipment in the creators’ garage.  Fleur de sel, 58% dark milk, black fig, and brown butter 2-ounce chocolate bars are $9 each. Eight-ounce bags of Peppermint or Belize Toledo Drinking Chocolate are $18.

Provisions St. Louis, 228 N. Euclid, Mon.-Sat. 11 to 7ish, Sun. 12 to 5.

Q Boutique at World Chess Hall of Fame

Nicki's Central West End Guide Shop News  The Silver Lady The Candle Fusion Boutique Q Boutique ProvisionsSTL KLarIty Lifestyle Enchanting Embellishments East + West Daph. Centro Modern Furnishings

Upper left: Wooden puzzles in dinosaur, angelfish, or owl shapes, $10, come with stand or can be hung as shown. Bottom left: Fabric Chess-2-Go sets roll up and come with a pouch for easy carrying, $12. Right: An easy-to-assemble cardboard spaceship is approximately 4 1/2′ tall, $50.

Q Boutique at WCHOF, 4652 Maryland Ave., Sat., Mon., Tues., 10 to 5, Weds., Thurs., 10 to 9, Sun. 12 to 5.

The Candle Fusion Studio

Nicki's Central West End Guide Shop News  The Silver Lady The Candle Fusion Boutique Q Boutique ProvisionsSTL KLarIty Lifestyle Enchanting Embellishments East + West Daph. Centro Modern Furnishings

From left, Grandma’s Kitchen Candle and Nightcap Spray, $20; 4 Candle Fusion Happy Holiday soy candles, $25, in Xmas tree, candy cane, mistletoe and gingerbread scent; Handmade Green Tea & Jasmine soap, $9; Cozy Fireside Candle in balsam fir, cranberry & gingerbread scent, $22; Let’s Stay In candle, a warm blend for holiday season, $22.

The Candle Fusion Studio, 4742 McPherson Ave., This Saturday 11 to 6. Then closed until after Christmas.

Klarity Lifestyle & Daphe. Pop-up BoutiqueNicki's Central West End Guide Shop News  The Silver Lady The Candle Fusion Boutique Q Boutique ProvisionsSTL KLarIty Lifestyle Enchanting Embellishments East + West Daph. Centro Modern Furnishings

CWE-end based clothing designer Amy Johnson is hosting a pop-up boutique along with Daphne Benzaquen, a handbag designer, at 314 N. Euclid. You better hurry in however, as the pop-up closes at the end of the day Sunday (open 12 to 5).

Top left: Among the selections from Amy Johnson’s KlariTy’s are brightly patterned kimonos, $129. Top right: Black & white turtleneck sweaters with faux fur cuffs, $49. Bottom left: A green & white on black flowered light-weight coat with 3-quarter sleeves comes in other fabrics including a black textured knit, $239. A cowl neck shimmer dress is $189.

Bottom right: Daphe. bags are made by artisans in Peru, where Daphne was born. Those on display include from top left the Peruvian leather Brenda tote, $298, leather backpacks, $295 (Daphne got into the business when couldn’t find a backpack she liked), toy llama, $55, oversized envelope bag, $158, and a cozy alpaca pouch, $140.

KlariTy Lifestyle and Daphe. Pop-up Boutique, 314 N. Euclid, Sat. 11 to 5, Sun. 12 to 5.

The Silver Lady

Nicki's Central West End Guide Shop News  The Silver Lady The Candle Fusion Boutique Q Boutique ProvisionsSTL KLarIty Lifestyle Enchanting Embellishments East + West Daph. Centro Modern Furnishings

Lori Shifter, proprietor of The Silver Lady, carries an eclectic assortment of statement rings featuring gemstones set in sterling silver. They range in price from $89 to $196. Below, a shimmery sterling silver mesh bracelet is $585, and sterling earrings, $78, have a matching pendant, $89.

The Silver Lady, 4736 McPherson Ave., Mon. – Fri. 11 to 5, Sat. 11 to 6, Sun. 11 to 4. Will close at 3 on Xmas Eve.

Centro Modern Furnishings

Nicki's Central West End Guide Shop News  The Silver Lady The Candle Fusion Boutique Q Boutique ProvisionsSTL KLarIty Lifestyle Enchanting Embellishments East + West Daph. Centro Modern Furnishings

Top left: It’s the 50th anniversary of the creation of Gaetano Pesce’s political-statement chair and ottoman which depicts a woman chained to the house, $5963. Below left, 13″ tall resin vase by Gaetano Pesce, $1,072. Upper right, Pesce’s Fish Design resin bracelets, $160, and below right resin rings, $70.

Centro Modern Furnishings, 4727 McPherson Ave., Mon. – Sat. 10 to 6. Closed Sun. Xmas Eve, 10 to 4.

Enchanting Embellishments

Nicki's Central West End Guide Shop News  The Silver Lady The Candle Fusion Boutique Q Boutique ProvisionsSTL KLarIty Lifestyle Enchanting Embellishments East + West Daph. Centro Modern Furnishings

At Enchanting Embellishments, above left, you’ll find a white Cartese embroidered sweater jacket, $244; right, FURious Faux Fur, $324, and below, an assortment of cozy Alpaca wraps, $84.95.

Enchanting Embellishments, 4742 McPherson Ave., Tues. – Sun., 10 to 5.

East · West

Nicki's Central West End Guide Shop News  The Silver Lady The Candle Fusion Boutique Q Boutique ProvisionsSTL KLarIty Lifestyle Enchanting Embellishments East + West Daph. Centro Modern Furnishings

East · West carries a navy & white Carhart Work in Progress flannel shirt, $148, and a selection of sunglasses from Crap Eyewear, Venice, CA, $79. Gloves from Norse Projects have a deerskin palm and fleece back with micro-fleece lining, $140. Everyday Oil, $48, is a unisex oil that’s suitable for face, body and hair. Here’s how it’s described in the NY Times Gift Guide: “Its subtle, enigmatic scent is mostly herbaceous and spicy, and a little bit hippy.” Sounds perfect.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Shop News  The Silver Lady The Candle Fusion Boutique Q Boutique ProvisionsSTL KLarIty Lifestyle Enchanting Embellishments East + West Daph. Centro Modern Furnishings

Also at East · West, CWE-based artist Alyssa Knowling’s framed prints, $75, and an assortment of locally-made YellowTree Clay vases, $30.

East · West,  387 N. Euclid, Tues. – Sat. 11 to 7, Sun. 12 to 5. Closed Mondays.

I’ll post the Holiday 2019 Gift Guide ·Part II tomorrow.

A CWE Valentine’s Gift Guide – Part II

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A Chocolate Trio with a crisp heart-shaped waffle at jeni’s, 389 N. Euclid, may send you into a swoon, but isn’t that what Valentine Day’s all about? The selection features scoops of Darkest Chocolate, Milkiest Chocolate and Roxbury Road, $6.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Books, Dance, Music, Theater Food and Drink Shop News  World Chess Hall of Fame St. Louis Q Boutique MO jeni's East + West Central West End AG Jeans 10denza

Josh Castleberry at Q Boutique at The World Chess Hall of Fame, 4652 Maryland Ave., pulled together some clever Valentine ideas. From top left: xoxo dish, $13; red-beaded necklace with elephant charm that doubles as a bracelet, $15; Zenzii beaded multi-chain necklace, $99; Love Sonnets by William Shakespeare & “fill in the blank,” $15, & What I Love About, another “fill in the blank” book, $11; 20 Vouchers for Lovers, $9; Quotable card, $3.50; World Chess Hall of Fame Kakao Chocolate Chess Pieces, $15.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Books, Dance, Music, Theater Food and Drink Shop News  World Chess Hall of Fame St. Louis Q Boutique MO jeni's East + West Central West End AG Jeans 10denza

At East + West Brian Simpson suggested gifting leather goods from Portland-based Tanner Goods. Card cases, wallets, valet trays (not shown) and passport holders, far right, $60 to $120. The scent of the Blind Barber candle, $32, made in Brooklyn, is reminiscent of a barber shop.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Books, Dance, Music, Theater Food and Drink Shop News  World Chess Hall of Fame St. Louis Q Boutique MO jeni's East + West Central West End AG Jeans 10denza

Left: CWEnder artist Sarah Doriani creates handsome all-occasion and Valentine’s cards, $5. Right: Proprietor Simpson describes Chance, above, as “off the wall” at home but mellow as can be in the shop, located at 387 N. Euclid.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Books, Dance, Music, Theater Food and Drink Shop News  World Chess Hall of Fame St. Louis Q Boutique MO jeni's East + West Central West End AG Jeans 10denza

Chris Lanter, proprietor of 10denza, 44 Maryland Plaza, suggested presenting your Valentine with a Daniel Wellington watch, $175 to $249. Or right: a simply beautiful necklace by St. Louis designer Salma Dena featuring an 18 carat gold charm on perodite and gold chain, $98.

Check out the Winter Sale at 10denza, men’s & women’s apparel & shoes are 50 to 75% off.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Books, Dance, Music, Theater Food and Drink Shop News  World Chess Hall of Fame St. Louis Q Boutique MO jeni's East + West Central West End AG Jeans 10denza

The staff at AG Jeans, 36 Maryland Plaza, commented that Valentine’s Day and their new spring colors make a perfect match. From left: Noah cotton cashmere turtleneck in wine, $168; biker jacket in cotton, modal, polyester & elastine has a “fun edge,” $355; and blush prima crop skinny jeans are $178.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Books, Dance, Music, Theater Food and Drink Shop News  World Chess Hall of Fame St. Louis Q Boutique MO jeni's East + West Central West End AG Jeans 10denza

From left: Men’s Highland Tech jacket is 100% polyester and 100% wind- and water-proof, $298; slim white khaki pant is 98% cotton & 2% elastine, $168.  Slanted pockets make them, I was told, “dressy enough for the golf course.”

With appreciation to the proprietors of CWE shops for their assistance in assembling this post.

Have a wonderful weekend and a lovely Valentine’s Day.

Holiday Gift Picks II/Q Boutique, living-collective, The Vino Gallery, east + west, Left Bank Books

At Q Boutique in World Chess Hall of Fame:

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture For Children Handmade Shop News  World Chess Hall of Fame The Vino Gallery St. Louis Samantha Pleet Q Boutique Potion 23 MO Living Collective Left Bank Books K Hall Designs East + West Central West End

It will come as no surprise that there are many chess sets available at Q Boutique in the World Chess Hall of Fame, but when I asked general manager Brian Flowers which was the most unusual, he pointed to the Star Trek Tri-Dimensional Chess Set, $279, shown above…unusual indeed.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture For Children Handmade Shop News  World Chess Hall of Fame The Vino Gallery St. Louis Samantha Pleet Q Boutique Potion 23 MO Living Collective Left Bank Books K Hall Designs East + West Central West End

For kids: clockwise from left: Move & Grove Dance Game (18 mos. +), $22; “super hot” Super Mario Chess Set, $55; an assortment of Smarty Pants Brain Building Games, $15 each (from pre-K to Grade 5); WordARound card game (10 years -Adult), $15; in front: “Pink Panther” Music Box, $9, one of 12 musical themes (Happy Birthday and more).

2nd photo: St. Louis-made K Hall designs: clockwise from left: Moss-scented Shea butter hand cream, $22, liquid soap, $20, Shea hand & body cream, $22, Moss candle, $22. Peeking through the products are copies of Guidebook to St. Louis, by and for St. Louisans by Amanda Doyle, $19.95.

Q Boutique at World Chess Hall of Fame, Mon., Tues., Sat. 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Wed. to Fri., 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., 4652 Maryland Ave., (314) 367-9243 x109.

At living-collective:

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture For Children Handmade Shop News  World Chess Hall of Fame The Vino Gallery St. Louis Samantha Pleet Q Boutique Potion 23 MO Living Collective Left Bank Books K Hall Designs East + West Central West End

Stop traffic in this shimmery light-as-a-feather “immortal” silk stunner by Brooklyn-based designer Samantha Pleet, $438. The back is gorgeous too!

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture For Children Handmade Shop News  World Chess Hall of Fame The Vino Gallery St. Louis Samantha Pleet Q Boutique Potion 23 MO Living Collective Left Bank Books K Hall Designs East + West Central West End

1st photo: Keep warm and stylish too in Native Youth’s Flurry Crew Sweater, $80.

2nd photo: from right: Matter Matters Tilt Necklace, $48; Donut Kill My Vibe camper mug by Pyknic, $12; Be Your Own Crush lapel pin, $10; and glass Mountain Earrings, $46.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture For Children Handmade Shop News  World Chess Hall of Fame The Vino Gallery St. Louis Samantha Pleet Q Boutique Potion 23 MO Living Collective Left Bank Books K Hall Designs East + West Central West End

And while at living-collective, I was delighted to discover Potion 23’s hand-embroidered art-to-wear pieces created by local designer Victoria Cates. Clockwise from top left: embroidered purse, $380; jacket with elaborately-embroidered pocket, $275; beret, $350; and in glass case: embroidered pins, $75 to $130.

living-collective, 4701 McPherson Avenue, Tues. to Sat., 11-7, open Sun. 12/18 too.

At The Vino Gallery: Before I present proprietor Alex Head’s suggestions for the holidays, I want to publicly thank him for being one of my first advertisers (see sidebar). View offer of $2 off a glass of wine when you mention the blog.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture For Children Handmade Shop News  World Chess Hall of Fame The Vino Gallery St. Louis Samantha Pleet Q Boutique Potion 23 MO Living Collective Left Bank Books K Hall Designs East + West Central West End

Front: all-in-one bamboo cheeseboard with 4 cheese knives, $40; from top left: an “easy drinking” Italian G.D.Vajra Langhe Rossa 2013, $15; Willamette Valley’s Big Table Farm red wine is described as a “really special gift,” $45; Colorado’s Ska Brewing Co.’s True Blonde Dubbel, two-for-1 bomber size, $14; and Nicolas Feuillatte French Champagne, $30 (real champagne at a great price because the Euro is so low right now).

The Vino Gallery, 4701 McPherson Avenue, Tues.-Sat. 11 till closing, open this Sunday 12/18.

At east + west:

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture For Children Handmade Shop News  World Chess Hall of Fame The Vino Gallery St. Louis Samantha Pleet Q Boutique Potion 23 MO Living Collective Left Bank Books K Hall Designs East + West Central West End

Clockwise from top left: Market Bag by L.A.-based Apolis, a “living and breathing social enterprise that equips and empowers people through opportunity rather than charity,”$68; Filson waxed-canvas, water-repellant, wind-resistant jacket with lifetime guarantee, $395; Ebbets STL hat, $48; Norse Project merino wool gloves, $60; Japanese-made Chup socks enjoy a cult following because a) they don’t have a toe seam, b) they don’t shift around, and c) look at those great-looking patterns. The newest pattern is the Native American design, $28; Baxter Hair Pomades for 3 hair types: clay, hard cream, & hard water, $20.

east + west, 387 N. Euclid Avenue, during December: Mon. – Sat. 11 to 7, Sun. 12 t0 5.

At Left Bank Books:

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture For Children Handmade Shop News  World Chess Hall of Fame The Vino Gallery St. Louis Samantha Pleet Q Boutique Potion 23 MO Living Collective Left Bank Books K Hall Designs East + West Central West End

The first book Wintaye Gehru, manager of LBB, grabbed for this post is the magical The Hidden Life of Trees by Peter Wohlleben, middle, $24.95 (read review in NYT here).  Other picks chosen by bookseller Randy Schiller include They All Saw A Cat by Brendan Wenzel, $16.99; Ten Restaurants That Changed America (with introduction by Danny Meyer) by Paul Freedman, $35; autographed copies of Joe Buck’s Lucky Bastard are available for $28; and Zadie Smith’s autographed Swing Time is $27 (you didn’t miss a book signing by the British author, instead her publisher sent autographed copies…Smith apparently isn’t keen on book tours); MOMA holiday cards, 8 for $22; and in front, Out of Print socks, “Where the Wild Things Are” and “Library Card,” $10.

Left Bank Books, 399 N. Euclid, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. everyday.

Next up: Holiday Gift Picks III