Tuesday, September 22, 2009

a treasure trove in chicago

i want to introduce you to one of my new favorite stores for gift and home items, jayson home and garden in chicago. though i've never been there, i've shopped online, and have encountered very helpful and knowledgeable staff on the phone and over email, patiently working with me as i made my choices.

the store is a treasure trove of unique and well-edited items for the home, none of which smack of mass-production and price gouging. the items they carry are universal enough that they would work for many people as gifts, but not so mundane that the recipient might receive it more than once. here are some of my favorite gift and home items:

pyrite heart (fool's gold): pretty as a paperweight or bedside charm. also, as a tabletop design, a few of them scattered on a mirrored tile.
lotus flower dishes:
quartz votive holder: looks like a glacier!
jenny chandelier: love this as the only luxe accent in a relaxed beach house
guinea feather placemats:
gold sequin pillow: OMG
caravan chandelier:


absinthe spoons: for the barkeep who almost has it all
abalone shell mirror: - i'd actually use this flat on it's back on a coffee table or dining table as a beachy but glitter centerpiece, maybe with a candle in the center.

the faulkner chest:
the canopy chair:
the amalfi sofa: so lovely and feminine
i also love their garden offerings, some which can be purchased for one's own gardening, like the aged planters below. they also have a container planting service and a home gardening service, and they make beautiful floral and plant arrangements for delivery (chicago area only). some of their options include the modern herb box and the shades of red pot below.

the store also has a whole "flea" department, which houses real vintage pieces scouted out by their buyers and available for purchase. they include all kinds of curiosities and artifacts, including totally incredible pieces of furniture which are truly one of a kind, especially since they are sometimes reupholstered or refinished, but always retain their vintage bones. these are definitely the first come, first serve kind of purchases - here today, gone tomorrow. or even later today. here are some of the flea items i love:

antique baroque sofa: would be amazing in a white-on-white room
floral pendant:
antique headboard: could you just die?
artists' palette - there were a few of these, each unique, but they're not on the site anymore as of my most recent exploration - i wonder how the lucky owners are using them
vintage scandinavian books:
vintage enamel numbers: these would be cool on the backs of dining chairs or on nice storage boxes.
vintage camera:
vintage alphabet prints:
victorian penmanship studies: love these in a child's room or nursery
vintage sofa (in belgian linen):
small vintage parsons bench (with original crewel upholstery): great vanity seatvintage shoe mold (from holland):
vintage wingback settee (in belgian linen): would love this as the seating on one side of a dining table - maybe a big farmhouse table.
over the summer, we gave a wedding gift from jayson that i was very pleased with. it was the large agate cheese plate with the bolinas cheese spreader and cheese knife, all shown below.

aside from the fact that i really loved each piece, the added pleasure came from the fact that i was able to handpick the item we gave - because the agate cheese plates are each unique and organic, the five plates they had at the store were of varying colors and patterns. one of the members of jayson's staff emailed me pictures of each one right away so i could choose the one i wanted to give. i loved it also because i knew the one i selected was the only one of its kind in the whole world - a fitting gift for a wedding, if you ask me.

here are the pictures, to give you an idea of the variety.





i chose the first of the pictures shown here, because i liked the colors and the definition of the rings within the plate. a sort of perfection within a naturally flawed item - i loved that duality.

my helper at jayson guided me thoughtfully and efficiently on which flatware to choose to accompany the plate, as i was also considering the horn flatware and the king's cheese cleaver and knife.
he told me that while the horn and bolinas flatware both matched the agate perfectly, horn goods can be controversial. not knowing exactly how my recipients would feel about that, i opted for the bolinas.

when i received all the items in the mail, i was thrilled with my choice. the tailored, chocolate-colored gift boxes and tissue, along with the giftcard enclosed sealed the deal. sometimes it's details as small as that which solidify my love for a store. it shows they think about their choices and their presentation, and that means something to most discerning shoppers i know.

photos from www.jaysonhomeandgarden.com

1 comment:

Erin said...

I love looking around their website! I had no idea that they had a store in Chicago...I totally have to hit it up next time I visit. You have some great finds here! (That gold sequin pillow is crazy-cool!)

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