Karim Rashid Menorahmorph menorah, $50, at Cooper Shop at the Jewish Museum
Multicolor stackable travel menorah, $125, at Cooper Shop at the Jewish Museum
Recycled magazine dreidel, $12, at Cooper Shop at the Jewish Museum
John Derian round holly plate, $48
Christina’s World hand-blown glass narwhal whale ornament, $17, at John Derian Company
Carrera marble fruit, $19–$64 each, at John Derian Company
Agayof multicolored foldable dreidel menorah, $145, at Judaica Classics
Quest painted-cloisonné brass tulip menorah, $210, at Judaica Classics
Caesarea Arts multicolor aluminum mezuzah, $59, at Judaica Classics
Richard Stauffacher two-inch snowmen figurines, $15 each, at La Mano Pottery
Peggy Clarke porcelain sake set, $50, at La Mano Pottery
Liane Montesa ceramic origami crane ornaments, $15 each, at La Mano Pottery
Pierre Jars handmade ceramic olive-oil bottle, $38, at Maison 140
Sabre Paris glitter-infused plastic demitasse spoons, $5 each, at Maison 140
Michael Aram nickel-plated bronze Tree of Life menorah, $159
Michael Aram oxidized-bronze olive-branch mezuzahs, $39 each
Michael Aram gold-plated pewter mistletoe globe, $49
IHI aluminum antler-shaped bottle opener, $13, at Mxyplyzyk
Kikkerland red-and-white-striped biodegradable-paper straws, 144 for $8, at Mxyplyzyk
Venezia glass martini glasses, $13, at Mxyplyzyk
Kristiana Parn seasonal wooden print, $65, at Pink Olive
Rifle Paper Co. DIY botanical garland, $25, at Pink Olive
Maileg cotton cookie house and ice skate ornaments, $7 each, at Scaredy Kat
Jonathan Adler ceramic mermaid ornament, $24, at Scaredy Kat
Design Ideas 3-D poplar plywood Christmas trees, small $8, large $34; both at Story
Roost silver-plated snowflake garlands, $44 each, at Story
Roost feather ornament, $24, at Story
Between the ornate holiday store windows and over-the-top light displays in NYC, there’s plenty of inspiration when it comes time to decorate your apartment for Christmas and Hanukkah. Indie shops such as John Derian, Pink Olive and Mxyplyzyk offer unique decorations that put a modern spin on traditional trimmings.
RECOMMENDED: Guide to Hanukkah in NYC
The bright, airy gift shop at this former mansion—originally home to the Warburg family until it became the Jewish Museum in 1944—has one of the finest selections of both traditional and modern Judaica in the city. The globally sourced goods include tabletop ($8–$676), jewelry ($10–$525) and Hanukkah-specific (75¢–$12,000) items from designers such as architect Richard Meier and Israeli-born artist Talila Abraham. Dreidels have long since evolved past clay, as evidenced by Jonathan Adler enamel styles ($38), Tamara Baskin Judaica glass rainbow versions ($65) and ones fashioned from recycled magazine paper (small $12, large $20) by a women’s collective in the Philippines for fair-trade organization Three Stone Steps. Among the 70-plus menorahs ($15–$12,000) in stock, off-the-beaten-path standouts include lion-shaped candelabras sculpted from metal wire ($85), an amorphous style designed for the Jewish Museum by Karim Rashid ($50) and made-in-Israel modular travel sets ($125). Enliven Hanukkah parties with stainless-steel latke servers ($9) and letterpressed coasters (100 for $28) stamped with the phrase L'CHAIM TO LIFE. All proceeds from the shop benefit the Jewish Museum.
For the past 23 years, artist John Derian has been making hand-blown glass decoupage ($48–$500), depicting reproduced antique prints, for his eponymous line. While his creations, including holiday editions such as rectangular Christmas tree trays ($66), round holly plates ($48) and starburst paperweights ($60), constitute most of the stock, Derian also carries a mix of 19th-century vintage items ($3–$500), handmade home decor ($48–$500) and furniture ($1,500-$4,500) that he sources mostly from America, France and Belgium. For tree trimming, take a peek at the array of more than 400 nautical ornaments ($5–$55) that dangle from the original tin ceilings, such as Cody Foster papier-mâché lobsters ($19) and hand-blown glass narwhal whales ($17) featuring glitter spouts and horns. Those celebrating Kwanzaa can hold off on adorning their mkeka mats with real fruit and opt for spoil-proof Carrera apples ($64), pears ($41) and peaches ($19), handmade from marble sourced from Michelangelo’s quarry of choice.
Owner Doina Bryskin scours the markets and artists’ studios of Israel, Italy and beyond to discover cutting-edge Judaica for her 23-year-old boutique. We were particularly taken with the mishmash of funky menorahs ($40–$4,000), including DCI plastic candelabras that come with 46 colored glow sticks ($32) and Legacy Judaica crystal mah-jongg styles inscribed with Chinese characters ($95). Adi Sidler seven-inch aluminum concentric tube menorahs ($89) are ideal for small spaces, as are Quest painted-cloisonné brass tulip styles ($210). Evergreen items such as Caesarea Arts multicolor aluminum mezuzahs ($59) and Israel Giftware stainless-steel dreidel-shaped bowls ($18) help make it feel like Hanukkah year-round. • 212-722-4271, judaicaclassics.com
Potters Julie Hadley, Diane Waller and Peggy Clarke’s 2,000-square-foot ceramics haven functions as a studio and shop. The latter, located at the entrance of the bi-level space, showcases seasonal home decor and stoneware made by New York artists on-site. If you plan on hosting a family feast, scoop up Clarke’s crimson stoneware bowls ($35–$100) and small teapots ($45–$65), which double as vessels for dressings or gravy. After the family leaves, bust out Clarke’s red-and-white porcelain sake set ($50, includes pitcher and three glasses), then nurse your hangover the next morning with coffee sipped from avant-garde Richard Stauffacher stoneware mugs ($45–$65), emblazoned with faces that have hands attached to their heads in place of antlers. Embellish your tree with Liane Montesa’s ceramic origami crane ornaments ($15), or your mantel with Stauffacher’s mischievous two-inch snowmen figurines ($15), boasting carrot noses that have been put in backwards, through their heads or in inappropriate positions below the waist (PG versions are also available).
Ramsey Marc wanted to bring a taste of the French countryside to the Big Apple, so he opened this charming townhouse boutique in 2010. Expect whimsical decorative objects ($5–$5,000), high-end soaps ($6–$28) and tabletop items ($12–$90) from hard-to-find European brands such as Savon de Marseille and Laguiole. Marc goes all-out during the holidays, offering a selection of more than 200 elegant, nondenominational ornaments ($10–$30), including glitter birds ($15-$25) embellished with long feather tails and jumbo metal snowflakes covered in glitter ($10–$25). Your couch will benefit from Yves Delorme rectangular red and gold velvet pillows ($98), and square styles featuring reindeers ($110). Festoon your dining table with Sabre Paris glitter-infused plastic demitasse spoons ($5 each) and Pierre Jars handmade red ceramic olive-oil bottles ($38) that double as vases. For the bathroom, Gianna Rose dove-shaped soaps (two for $28), packaged in a porcelain nestlike dish, will add cheer to your sink. • 212-255-0022, maison140nyc.com
New York metal artist Michael Aram has been making nature-themed furniture ($565–$2,855), decor ($39–$4,000) and tabletop items ($49–$2,090) under his eponymous line for nearly 25 years. For the holidays, Aram applies his signature craft to Christmas and Judaica collections, offering unique menorahs ($159–$295), mezuzahs ($39), Kiddush cups ($69–$89) and ornaments ($39–$59). At his six-year-old flagship in a former carriage house, peruse the display tables and shelves for stunning oxidized-bronze olive-branch menorahs ($259) with matching mezuzahs ($39), stainless-steel Kiddush cups ($69) featuring oxidized-bronze olive-branch stems, and nickel-plated bronze Tree of Life menorahs ($159). Eschew boring glass balls for sophisticated oxidized-bronze ornaments of a partridge in a pear tree ($49), or gold-plated pewter mistletoe globes ($49). Mention TONY to receive a gratis keychain with any purchase through December 22.
The unique home decor ($30–$95) and furnishings ($95–$300) at Kevin Brynan’s 20-year-old giftware emporium are as quirky as the store’s tongue-twisting name, which was inspired by the Superman comics character Mister Mxyzptik. Reinvent the holidays with offbeat items such as Cardboard Safari deer heads ($55) made from easy-to-assemble recycled cardboard slabs, RSVP International aluminum squirrel nutcrackers ($23) and Roost polished recycled-aluminum antler candlesticks ($65–$75) cast from real antler molds. Punch up year-end parties with Kikkerland red-and-white-striped biodegradable-paper straws (144 for $10), IHI aluminum antler-shaped bottle openers ($13) and Venezia glass martini glasses ($13) in the colors of the season. Mention TONY for 10 percent off all purchases through December 22.
A former buyer for Bloomingdale’s and Barneys New York, owner Grace Kang stocks her pair of whimsical gift shops with knickknacks ($8–$150), decorative accessories ($28–$88) and cards ($4–$6) from indie designers such as Atsuyo Et Akiko, Knot & Bow and Paper Lovely. Forgo traditional Christmas boughs and make your own with Rifle Paper Co.’s DIY botanical garlands ($24), created by stringing circular card-stock alphabet and floral tiles through ribbon. Folksy Maileg five-foot-tall pixie advent calendar dolls ($120) allow you to count down the days until Christmas by stuffing the creature’s 24 pockets with small gifts. If you’re looking to add festive flair to blank walls, check out Park Slope artist Kristiana Parn’s seasonal wooden prints ($65)—our favorite depicts bunnies resting on a holiday tree. • pinkolive.com
Although this cozy stationery shop is best known for its selection of nearly 300 cards ($2–$7) from small letterpress companies such as Egg Press, Seltzer and Snow & Graham, married couple Nora Yockey and Damond Gallagher transform it into a destination for affordable holiday decor ($2–$40) starting in mid-November through January 6. Up your tree’s A-game with one of more than 100 eye-catching ornaments ($2–$27), such as Jonathan Adler ceramic mermaids ($24), Maileg cotton cookie houses ($7) and ice skates ($7), and stuffed wool birds ($10) by DCI, a company specializing in fair-trade items. For Hanukkah, pick up Rite Lite hand-painted menorahs ($16) and all-natural Big Dipper beeswax candles in festive blue and white (45 for $12).
Every four to eight weeks, entrepreneur Rachel Shechtman’s gallery-like shop embodies a different theme, and both the merchandise and decor completely change to reflect the new concept. Past subjects have included love (February) and New York (September), but this is the first time Story is taking on the holidays. The 2,000-square-foot space has been divided into vignettes resembling the various rooms of a house, with each area hawking gifts and decor that would normally be found there. Head to the living room for fashion-forward Sherri’s Designs deer figurines ($36) featuring faux-fur collars and glitter antlers, then mosey over to the dining room to pick up Design Ideas 3-D poplar plywood Christmas trees (small $8, large $30) and Roost silver-plated snowflake garlands ($38). Meanwhile, our favorite find—Roost seven-inch mouth-blown floating glass ornaments filled with feathers ($12–$24)—can be located in the masculine library.