Ask An Expert: Last Minute Holiday Gift Ideas

December 15, 2015 5:00 AM

Holiday Shopping (credit: Carsten Koall/Getty Images)

The Golden Hour opened its doors this autumn as San Francisco’s newest vintage boutique. Located in the Inner Richmond’s most popular shopping and dining street, the shop is carefully curated with globally-sourced vintage pieces for men and women. Stop in to say hello when shopping the Sunday Clement Street Farmers Market. The co-owners, a local interior designer and a Los Angeles-based costume designer, have joined forces to present The Golden Hour, open daily.

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Morgan Mapes
The Golden Hour
12 Clement St.
San Francisco, CA 94118
(415) 890-4660
www.thegoldenhoursf.com

Morgan is a San Francisco-based interior designer who explains that her passion for vintage fashion goes way back. “I was the kid in sixth grade wearing bell bottoms when they weren’t in, but retro is in my blood,” she said. Happily for others who share a touch of the attraction for classics, the local tastemaker has seized the opportunity to share her aesthetic preferences with the public via her new shopping destination with a flashback theme, The Golden Hour.

Gift A Simple Treasure

To make it memorable, find a special piece that will last. Morgan says, “I always think of the source when I don my jewels. Artisanal jewelry and vintage bling are both one-of-a-kind holiday finds. I am seeing a trend of very beautiful locally hand-hewn pieces made of brass or copper with geodes and semi-precious stones.” Good vintage jewelry is the real deal without costing a fortune.

Gift An Experience

Just like the famous credit card advertising claims, “priceless” is the way to describe unforgettable experiences or the feeding and nurturing of a lifelong skill. With San Francisco at the forefront of both the tech and craft cocktail culture, consider a coding course at General Assembly or a bartender course at SF Mixology. Incredibly useful lessons make a great gift for someone special on your holiday list.

Gift A Not-So-Ugly Vintage Something

Long before there were ugly Christmas sweaters, there were good-looking sweaters for Christmas. Buck the ugly trend and go for a great classic. Anyone can look sharp like Fred Astaire in a well-fitted show stopper, sexy like Marilyn Monroe in a sweet twin set with pearls or dapper like Cary Grant in a holiday vest with a billowing tie. Cowboy boots, sexy stilettos, fabulous frocks and lots more are displayed — never stuffed — on The Golden Hour rails.

Gift Green DIY

Repurpose, reuse and recycle, and make it with your own two hands. Morgan suggests, “An old teapot can create a crafty planter and an old fish tank creates a botanical terrarium. Inspire an interesting design moment with plants, pretty rocks and small decorative objects.” Copper spray paint turns a collection of jam jars, milk bottles and Mason jars into an attractive group for single flowers or small holiday sprays of holly with red berries. Play with scale or create a scene.

Gift A Unique Holiday Basket

We all look forward to spending time at home during the holidays. Prepare for the perfect “snow day” at home with a trip to the farmers market and a few local shops. Fill a basket or bag with a jar of honey, delicious preserves, a board game, snuggly pajamas, fluffy socks, a bottle of wine, a bag of popcorn and a movie DVD. Personalize the gift basket selections according to the recipient’s tastes to make a really special present.

Laurie Jo Miller Farr loves walkable cities. A tourism industry professional and transplanted New Yorker by way of half-a-lifetime in London, she’s writing about the best of the bay and beyond for Bay City Guide, AXS, Examiner and more. Examiner.com.