For the Animal Lover
Maybe your dog won’t appreciate the quality of an Uptown Wag bandana (made in Fort Worth), but you will. All designs are perfect squares with stitched edges. The Butterscotch Flannel is idealfor cool days. $18, Uptown Wag, uptownwag.com
Mr Waffles Loves Design is for the cat lover who also is a design enthusiast, the one who doesn’t care if the felines snooze in the Womb chair. This former shelter cat was adopted by such people, and now lives a life surrounded by Issey Miyake lamps and Michael Graves small appliances. Mr. Waffles is a lucky cat who even has his own Instagram page @mrwaffleslovesdesign. $24.95, wherever books are sold.
Snacks make the world go around for most dogs. These cod skins are nicely packaged; we give them as host/hostess gifts for friends with four-legged family members. $6, Hollywood Feed. Find your nearest location at hollywoodfeed.com.
Rover is a coffee-table book that aims to bring awareness to the homeless pet population. Photographer Andrew Grant pays tribute to hundreds of dogs (and a few cats) on more than 500 pages. The multibook project has raised millions for animal rescues across the country. The images, all shot in a studio on a stark white background, are presented without comment save for their names. The animals’ eyes say it all. $99, LTO or roverworks.org.
For the Ladies
Not A Perfume from Juliette Has a Gun is a softly compelling, single-note hypoallergenic (synthetic) scent ideal for anyone with sensitivities. $100-$135, for 1.7-ounce and 3.4-ounce bottles, at Marie Antoinette. The larger size also is sold in a gift set that includes vials of three scents — Lady Vengeance, Vanilla Vibes and Mmmm . . . — intended for mixing with Not A Perfume, $150.
The Pearl is a special holiday release from Fort Worth-based Wylde Empyre and perfect for the handbag lover in your life. It transitions from day to night thanks to luxe materials — Italian saffiano cream-colored leather and Wylde Empyre’s “Disco” python. $1,800. Other colors are available, with custom orders requiring about three to five weeks. Gift wrapping is included. Check the website for more options, wyldeempyre.com.
Designer Marla Aaron’s chains and charms are meant to mix and match, and the combinations are endless. We like her Biker Chain, silver with a black rhodium finish, available in multiple lengths. (The 24-inch is $262.) When it comes to add-ons, the choices are endless. Featured is a combination of the classic Regular lock in sterling, $275, with Stoned Baby Heartlock in white gold with diamonds, $1,863; and a Total Baguette Starlock in white gold with ruby, $2,950. Shop Ylang 23 for more options.
Devon Woodhill’s modern lockets and charms are part of the Jo Latham collection at You Are Here. The Moon & Stars design comes in 18-karat rose gold, $6,950; the letter charm is 18-karat gold with diamonds, $650. The small Snowflake is 18-karat gold set with diamonds, $2,950. Designer Melissa Levy will be at You Are Here 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Dec. 3 and 4 for a holiday trunk show. She will have a printer on hand to fill the lockets with images of your choice.
For the Gents
Solo Stove stainless steel firepit stoves are transportable from poolside to patio, come in a variety of sizes, and burn wood with minimal smoke and easy cleanup. The 45-pound Yukon is the newest and largest in the line, at 30 inches wide and 16 inches tall, $649. See other sizes and learn more at the Southlake company’s website, solostove.com. Find Solo Stove products at multiple locations of Home Depot and at REI.
Fort Worth jewelry designer Kori Green also offers a bracelet collection for men, including the New Braunfels double-wrap braided leather bracelet featuring a pewter bead and a magnetic clasp, $88. Smooth African clay beads, tribal beads and pewter accents make up the Lubbock stretch bracelet, $45. Available online or at Local Design Studio + Gallery/Kori Green Designs.
Fort Worth-based Supply Co. recently earned a financial deal on Shark Tank, but it already had become a favorite of razor loyalists. Tweaks, adjustments and more products have been made and added over the past four years, but the razor itself remains a thing of beauty, with nice hand weight. All products are sold separately. Classic matte razor (blades are sold in three-month supply packs of eight for $6), $75; marble shaving bowl, $24; shaving brush, $39; shaving cream, $22; post-shave spritz, $14. Shop at supply.co.
Last Call author Brad Thomas Parsons takes the reader on a journey to fine drinking establishments and dives around the country, where he asks bartenders: What’s the last drink you’d have before you die? The answers range from an extra-dry martini to intriguing craft cocktails. There are recipes and beautiful photographs along with the interviews and essays. It all makes for good reading, even for someone who doesn’t own a cocktail shaker. $35
Como Audio’s belt-drive turntable looks as good as it sounds. This sleek design can be connected to other Como components or existing products you might already own via Bluetooth technology or wired options. Available in four finishes, including walnut, shown here, it comes with a removable dust cover. $399; check comoaudio.com for more info and to purchase.
For the Wanderer
Big Sky Escape
Backwoods, Fort Worth’s original outfitter for outdoor adventures, doubles as a cool tour company. Expeditions in the Trans-Pecos for 2020 include a seven-day Ultimate West Texas trip: Visit the McDonald Observatory, the Davis Mountains and the Marfa Lights; take a River Road drive to Big Bend National Park to hike, dip into the Hot Springs and ferry or ride a burro across the Rio Grande; and make a final stop in Marathon. Meals, upscale lodging, transportation and guides included. April 17-23, $3,350 per person; add $600 for single supplement. There’s a more rugged five-day Big Bend National Park Hiking and Camping Adventure, including some meals, camping for three nights and lodging for one, guided activities and some transportation. Trips in January, March and October, $1,250 per person. For details and booking, 888-849-6637, backwoods.com.
Room for Two
Carr Mansion in Galveston is the bed-and-breakfast for people who don’t like B&Bs. A recent renovation of the elegant 1866 Greek Revival house gilds its grandeur with modern style. Proprietor Joellyn Moynahan will customize romantic retreats to include wine in the guest room, carriage rides to dinner on The Strand and moonlight walks on the beach. Among eight huge guest rooms, consider booking The Merchant, with its bed in a turret. Guests enjoy luxury bedding, evening cocktails and hors d’oeuvres — and bicycles for touring the island’s historic districts. Lodging only, $179-$409; 409-497-4740, carrmansion.com.
The Family Trip
Way out west of Austin, where the Hill Country landscape succumbs to the rocky swells of West Texas, the JL Bar Ranch opened earlier this year near Sonora. Previously a private family retreat, the resort and spa on 13,000 acres offers the comforts of home. But 32 rooms in two lodges create space enough for even the largest of family reunions. Horseback riding, ATV adventures, hiking, trail and mountain biking, skeet and trap shooting, archery, pond fishing, spa time and a putting green fill the days, while shuffleboard, billiards, karaoke and s’mores figure into nighttime schedules. The Caverns of Sonora are nearby, and cooking and painting classes and helicopter tours are on offer. Several dining venues keep guests well-fed. From $645, with most activities included; 855-414-3337, jlbar.com.
For the Kids
Make bedtime more inviting with the whimsical duvet covers and pillow cases from Amsterdam-based Snurk. Designs range from sharks and dinosaurs to unicorns and princesses. Made of 100 percent soft organic cotton, they’re pre-shrunk and dryer safe. From $125 for twin cover and pillowcase, B Kids Boutique.
Fort Worth author Jennifer Drez continues her “Goodnight” series with a tribute to firefighters. Young readers can bid goodnight to everyone from the crew to the firedog. Illustrations are by Keller resident Kyle Clay, a and member of the Fort Worth Fire Department. Buy it at Monkey & Dog Books and Lawrence’s, $15.95. For more information, visit goodnightfirehouse.com.
For the Cause
Cook Children’s Health Foundation recently welcomed two new staff members to its Sit…Stay…PLAY therapy dog program. Golden doodles Steve, far right, and Brienne, the white dog sitting in front, are cousins. They immediately got along with the rest of the group in enjoying a little play time, but they’re all business when it comes to work (the pups come via a Georgia agency that specializes in therapy dogs). Steve spends time throughout the medical center and with families and patients in the Child Life Zone; Brienne works in the Rehabilitation and Transitional Care Unit and in Special Procedures. This program, which now totals six dogs, is 100 percent donor funded (vet care, food, grooming services along with a program coordinator. To donate, go to giving.cookchildrens.org/sitstayplay.