The Surface Holiday Gift Guide

Our Holiday gift guide is geared toward a discerning consumer who, like us, tends to cringe at the thought of sappy Hallmark festivities. Spanning everything from Diptyque’s stylish refillable candles by Cristina Celestino to a lavishly illustrated Carolina Herrera tome, the selections below will surprise and delight even the most selective shopper on your gift-giving list this year.

Picking a gift for the discerning aesthete in your life is often difficult. Just about everyone’s social media feeds and email inboxes are chockablock with gimmicky “must-haves” that place Instagram-friendly style over substance and longevity. This season, we’ve decided to cut through the noise and provide a guide to the year’s most covetable objects of desire that are sure to make a lasting impression—even for the person who’s seen everything. 

Ash Souvenirs: The Host Collection

What is a getaway really worth without a keepsake to remember it by? With boutique hotels in Baltimore, Detroit, New Orleans, and Providence, Ash has made its name for cultivating a cinematic sense of place in charming locales. In time for festive season, the design firm and hotelier has released a transportive collection of heirloom-quality keepsakes one might be inclined to pocket from a dinner table. Highlights include lifelike sardine cutlery rests designed to spare table linens from stains, a shimmering moiré ribbon wine tie, and delightfully delicate sterling silver caviar spoons and oyster forks. From $28

Bang & Olufsen: The Ferrari Collection

Bang & Olufsen’s classic speakers are veritable studies in minimalism that often blend into their surroundings, but the Danish brand’s latest launch demands to be seen—and heard—at full volume. That’s because it partnered with Ferrari to reimagine a quartet of its greatest hits in the Italian automotive mainstay’s Rosso Corsa shade. The bold red unites the reinvented Beosound 2 home speaker, Beoplay H95 headphones, Beoplay EX earphones, and portable Beosound Explore speaker while imbuing the standard aluminum finish with a rich luster. From $285

Armani/Casa: The Tale Tarot Cards

There’s a long-standing rumor that one’s first tarot deck must be gifted to them and not sought out. We’ve never been so thankful to find such hearsay disproven: Armani/Casa’s Tale tarot deck brings the house’s fine fashions and furnishings together in a one-of-a-kind 78-card collection. The major arcana are impeccably dressed in a mix of archival and contemporary Armani garments, and depicted among the house’s furniture and wall coverings, with each card finished in a gold profile. It’s the perfect gift for the hard-to-shop-for—or, one’s self. $350

Tekla: Le Corbusier Mohair Blankets

Is there any greater joy than snuggling up under a throw in the frigid expanse of an American air-conditioned interior? If you know, you know, and those who do will agree there’s no statute of seasonality on enjoying a voluminous mohair blanket in colors inspired by Le Corbusier’s Architectural Polychromy. Each limited-edition blanket is hand-woven in Spain and finished with a hand-signed number. Go ahead: set the thermostat to 68 degrees, grab a tall glass of ice water, and bask in the high-low balance. $745

Sofia Coppola Archive

As Sofia Coppola’s Priscilla enjoyed a wide release on the heels of a fantastically successful turn on the film festival circuit, indie art house publisher Mack gives the filmmaker’s cult following a behind-the-scenes look at her oeuvre with Sofia Coppola Archive. The tome compiles the director’s self-shot set photography along with images shot by the likes of Tina Barney and Corrinne Day. Fans are also treated to a first-person perspective on Coppola’s various inspirations, which she details in the form of essays that precede each of her films’ dedicated chapters. $65

La Prairie: Skin Caviar Vanity Tray by Sabine Marcelis

Fresh off of a recent collaboration with the premium beauty brand at Art Basel in Switzerland, Sabine Marcelis has launched a capsule collection of objects aimed at further elevating the experience of applying La Prairie’s signature Skin Caviar creams. A standout among them is the natural stone vanity display tray. Set on a La Prairie–blue resin plinth that slides open to reveal an applicator and Gua Shua tool inside, the tray literally puts one of the beauty industry’s most coveted products on a pedestal. $1,990

Burberry x Highgrove Silk Scarves

Take a look behind the walled gardens of Highgrove House, the bucolic country residence of King Charles III of England, with Burberry’s newest collection of silk scarves. While the preppy staple has long been a signature accessory of the British fashion house, this collection is built around four pastel sketches of the property’s flora by British Drawing School graduate Sammi Lynch. Her idyllic landscapes are sure to spark an appreciation for the great outdoors, even among the most indoorsy types. $190

Laxmi Hussain Art Prints for Design Within Reach

Laxmi Hussain’s latest endeavor, a collection of prints for Design Within Reach, strikes an elusive balance between accenting—yet not overwhelming—its surroundings. In this series, the illustrator’s abstract line art nods to the beauty of the feminine form, with an homage to motherhood in the print Motherhood: Heartbeat & Body Heat. Hussain’s work, and her signature cobalt blue, are everywhere from Tate to Soho House—is home next? From $506

Marguerita Mergentime x Food52: Garland Table Throw

Marguerita Mergentime died young (in 1941, of leukemia at age 47) but her legacy is aging gracefully. Her Americana wall hanging, shown at the 1939 World’s Fair in San Francisco, printed texts on textiles in a linguistic assemblage carried on in the work of Barbara Kruger, On Kawara, and Pippa Garner, while her tablescapes offered bold patterns, clearly defined, to soften the hard edges of Modernism and harder times of the Depression. Form Portfolios, the firm working with historic designers and their estates to revive their work, has partnered with Mergentime’s granddaughter and Food52 on a holiday collection of textiles—napkins, tablecloths, a tree skirt—that reintroduces Mergentime to new generations and whet the appetite for deeper dives into her life and work. $95

All Blues: Jewelry by Peter Do

When Peter Do staged his Spring/Summer runway show in Paris this past September, all eyes were on the collection of remixed suiting, punctuated by striking splashes of red. Those singularly focused on the new Helmut Lang artistic director’s design signatures—singularly brilliant executions of tailoring and drape—likely missed out on some choice styling gems in the form of All Blues’ sterling silver bracelets, necklaces, and earrings. The Swedish jewelry brand founded by Jacob Skragge channeled Do’s signature minimalism into an 11-piece stackable collection made of recycled sterling silver and available online, at All Blues’ Stockholm store, and at Dover Street Market Tokyo. From $240

Koivu: Pierre Charpin Knitwear

In an era of overwrought and overhyped fashion collabs that no one seems to have asked for, coming across one that plays as a stroke of genius is a delightful rarity. Thankfully, we see that embodied in Koivu’s capsule collection of merino wool sweaters embroidered in the fashion of Pierre Charpin. The artist-designer has worked with the likes of Hay and Hermès, and is a natural fit for the Finnish-Italian label founded by veteran editor and curator Anniina Koivu. The limited-edition capsule sees two of Charpin’s line art compositions, Flo and Scala, transposed onto navy and black merino sweaters in high-contrast embroidery. $525

Karla Bag by Marimekko

There’s something to be said for discovering a truly original it-bag. Finding one that feels downright revelatory rather than something that’s already been seen on the arm of everyone from A-listers to nano-influencers might seem impossible these days. Thankfully, Finnish label Marimekko has just the fix with six new summery hues of its Swedish candy-inspired Karla bag. With its buttery-soft leather, punchy colorways like juicy guava and berry mascarpone, and delicate finishing details like ruching and a strappy handle, this shoulder bag is a sweet treat in more ways than one. $310

Hannah Polskin: Menorah Sculpture in Black

Is it a sculptural tabletop object or a Hanukkah season staple? It turns out, Hannah Polskin’s graphite and brass Menorah sculpture is, intentionally, a bit of both. Its rolling peaks and valleys make for a modern interpretation of the sacred candelabra that will look just as good alight with nine candles as it will during the rest of the year. $1,250

MoMA Design Store: Subu Slippers by Yinka Ilori 

MoMA Design Store’s Subu slippers have quickly become a classic, whether coated in Black Teflon or Dusen Dusen’s eye-popping stripes. For the holiday season, Yinka Ilori is offering an exclusive trio of new takes that draw on the London designer’s British and Nigerian heritage. With its pink and orange hearts, Mo Dupe is named for the phrase I’m thankful, Ilori says, to “encourage us to cherish what’s precious.” It joins the summery Sun & Trees and Obi patterns. The latter, he says, “pays homage to the fruit from the West African obi kola nut tree, a powerful symbol within my culture and a sacred offering.” $79

Diptyque: Refillable Candles

Every fragrance enthusiast knows there are only so many ways to reuse the vessels that once held a beloved candle. Anyone who has had to seriously contemplate the quantity of the French parfumerie’s 6.7oz classic candle jars they can justify stashing will be thrilled to know that designer Cristina Celestino and Olivia Giacobetti have teamed up with Diptyque on a new collection of 9.5oz refillable candles. Celestino’s glass vessels come in smoky hues of sage, tamarind, and berry, and correspond to Giacobetti’s evocative, custom-crafted scents of Forest Dreams, Golden Lands, and further gardens of earthly delight. $285

Van Cleef & Arpels: Moonlight Rose Eau de Parfum

At its heart, the jewelry maison is on a quest to inspire emotion, and what better way than by appealing to the power of olfactory memories? Moonlight Rose, the haute parfumerie’s latest launch, allows fragrance enthusiasts to rediscover the flower that has captivated poets, artists, and noses for centuries. A one-of-a-kind blend of Bulgarian and Taif roses creates an unexpected note of spice, which rounds out the floral profile with top notes of pink peppercorn. An energizing touch of tart raspberry in the base notes livens up accords of patchouli and oakmoss. $250

Alexander McQueen Candle Collection

Candles are often a safe entry point for brands eager to jump into homewares, but they don’t always hit. The Alexander McQueen Candle Collection escapes that fate, debuting today with three scents that mimic the provocative contradictions the late couturier so loved. Ghost Flower contrasts fresh freesia and peony with earthy patchouli; Pagan Rose balances fragile wild rose and earthy peat. Each comes in an egg-shaped black lacquered glass container and mycelium shell. The collection may hew closely to McQueen codes, but lends further proof the fashion legend’s light will never go out. $395

Platform x Dana Schutz: Mountain Group Jigsaw Puzzle & Pouch

It’s shaping up to be a whirlwind fall for the Brooklyn painter and sculptor. At the beginning of November, “Jupiter’s Lottery,” an exhibition of Schutz’s allegorical paintings, opened at David Zwirner in Chelsea. This month, a limited 250-count run of 1,000-piece puzzles made from the artist’s 2018 painting Mountain Run launched on Platform. The original, a creation inspired by her children, is on view in a career retrospective at Musée d’Art Moderne de Paris. As gift-giving season approaches, we’re inclined to think it’s the kind of article suited to whomever in your life has already amassed an enviable library of art books. $200

Judy Chicago illy Art Collection

From the very beginning of her practice, Judy Chicago has employed transfixing colors in her paintings and installations that turn a critical eye to women’s roles in culture throughout history. It’s fitting, then, that her work makes a different kind of incursion into the domestic sphere in the form of a collaboration with illy’s newest art collection. Collectors can acquire an eight-piece set of either cappuccino or espresso cups and coordinating saucers, both realized in the kaleidoscopic hues that have become a Chicago signature. From $170

Carolina Herrera: Colormania

The photographer Elizaveta Porodina often collaborates with fashion’s most recognizable names, and in the process, creates otherworldly compositions that subvert tropes and expectations. Her newest body of work, an art book created together with Rizzoli, Carolina Herrera’s creative director Wes Gordon, and featuring a foreword by editor Edward Enninful, is no exception. Since its beginnings as a Zoom photography project in 2020, the book catalogs the label’s collections created in the intervening years, grouping them by color and creating a relationship between each decadent garment, its wearer, light, and motion.. Through Porodina’s lens, we see the artistic and oft-photographed—among them Wendy Whelan, Maggie Maurer, Mao Xing Xing—as we never have before. $85

Le Labo: Lavande 31 Eau de Parfum

The cult-favorite fragrance house knows a thing or two about subverting expectations. Its scents largely offer unexpected twists on common and often polarizing olfactory notes like rose, vanilla, or patchouli. With Lavande 31, Le Labo avoids the stuff of laundry aisle migraines and instead explores the bright, vegetal notes of lavender buds with a fresh infusion of bergamot and neroli. Base notes of amber, musk, and tonka anchor the formulation with mysterious complexity. $99 for 15 mL

All Stories