JOURNAL — Holiday RSS



Nya Sverige

In the mid-Seventeenth Century, Sweden was quite the world power.  Its European territory included Sweden, of course, plus Finland, Estonia, and parts of modern-day Russia, Germany, Poland, and Latvia.  And so, when the riches of the New World began glimmering across the Atlantic, Sweden was loathe to leave the riches to the French and English. […]

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Merry Christmas!

Today I give thanks for the loyal customers who have supported LEO Design—in word and deed—during the Holiday season and throughout 2017.  Merry Christmas!   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"  

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A Parliament of Owls

An old favorite at LEO Design—back for another Christmas season.  Peruvian fair trade craftsmen collect the gourds, dry them, then decorate them with paint, carving and a hot stylus.  Cheery and bright and every one just a little different from his branch mates.  Please come into the shop to see them in person or click on […]

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Coptic Glass

Glass-making, as far as we can tell, started in Mesopotamia around 2,500 BC.  About 1,500 BC, the Egyptians began making glass—mostly small amulets, beads, and tiles for decorative inlay.  As the Egyptians expanded into (and conquered portions of) the Middle East, they captured and brought back to Egypt various skilled artisans, including glassmakers.  At this […]

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Birds in Flight

Like yesterday’s angel ornaments, this hummingbird is also made of carved tagua nuts—also known as “palm ivory” or “vegetable ivory.”  He’ll happily hover amongst the branches of your Christmas tree or levitate year ’round in your kitchen window.  Made in a fair trade workshop in Ecuador ($28).       For the Holiday season, LEO […]

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Angels on High

With Christmas three weeks away, perhaps it’s time to think about trimming the tree.  Over the next few days I’ll share with you some of my in-store ornaments—new finds and old favorites. Shown above, little angels carved of tagua nuts.  Also called “vegetable ivory,” tagua nuts grow on a variety of palm tree found in […]

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Happy Hanukkah!

Wishing a Happy Hanukkah to all—and a joyful Holiday Season!  As we rush-about our ever-busy lives, let’s endeavor to enjoy a few quiet, focused moments with those we love. Hanukkah begins tonight—at sundown—and ends Monday evening, eight days from now. The Cypress Tree Menorah, pictured above, is cast of solid bronze in Canada.  Please click […]

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Sending Greetings

Our Holiday greeting cards have arrived and we’re quite pleased with the nice selection. Shown above, a sampling of cards letterpress-printed on Swan’s Island, Maine ($4 each or $22 for a box of ten).  They range—stylistically—from the Arts & Crafts to Mid-Century Modern to the contemporary.  Other options now in-store from England, Vermont and Brooklyn […]

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On the Fifth Day of Crystal (and Glass)

On the Fifth Day of Christmas, my true love gave to me—a half-dozen Candle Highballs! Cheery, indeed, yet without too much “Kitsch of Christmas Past,” this set of six highball tumblers from the 1960’s enjoys the warm glow of hospitality—bringing a reassuring note with each annual reappearance.  Let their brass lanterns bring a little festive light […]

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On the Third Day of Crystal (and Glass)

On the Third Day of Christmas, my true love gave to me—a jolly set of festive highball glass! Have yourself a Merry Sixties Christmas with this set of eight highball tumblers, gaily printed with Christmas and New Year’s greetings ($95).  Decorated in Red, Green and White, these glasses bring-back the simplicity (or naiveté?) of Holidays […]

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Merry Christmas

A Merry Christmas to all—and a happy, healthy New Year, too. I’d like to thank all of my LEO Design customers for supporting the shop, especially during this—our twentieth!—Christmas season.  Without wonderful and loyal customers like you, we would not have made it this far.  Here’s to the next twenty Christmases! LEO Design is closed […]

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Christmas Creeps In . . .

While I refuse to decorate before Thanksgiving Week, I have begun putting-out a few of the early-arriving Holiday items as they have come in.  Discreetly, of course. Last week it was the Holiday cards; now it’s a collection of hand-made, mouth-blown art glass ornaments.  Beautiful enough to display year ’round, these lovingly-crafted little treasures come […]

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What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve ?

Maybe it’s just too early in the game.  Ah, but I thought I’d ask you, just the same.  What are you doing New Year’s, New Year’s Eve? Frank Loesser’s song, “What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve?” is probably my favorite end-of-the-year song—elegant, simple, to-the-point.  Perfect. Likewise, these crystal Champagne Coupes, shown above, are perfectly […]

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Boxing Day

Today is “Boxing Day,” the day in England (and other Commonwealth Countries) when the staff are given their gifts and given the day off.  It is a public holiday in most of the British former-colonial countries. As LEO Design staff had yesterday off, we are open today: Noon ’till 6:00 pm. As for me, I […]

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Best Christmas Wishes

A Merry Christmas to you and a grateful Thank-you, as well. LEO Design will be closed today.  Please visit us tomorrow; we will be open from Noon until 6:00 pm everyday through (and including) New Year’s Day. And—if you cannot help yourself—our on-line shop is always open. Thanks again.

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Christmas Eve

It’s Christmas Eve and the season will be over in a few hours. LEO Design will be closing at 8:00 pm this evening.  Until then, we’re ready and happy to help you in-shop, by-phone, or on-line.  Please visit, call, or view the on-line shop. Wishing you a Merry Christmas!

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A Flock of Owls

A flock of little, red Holiday owls has landed at LEO Design, here to remind us:  “Only one month ’till Christmas Eve!” Another reminder, this time from our ornithologist friends:  a group of owls is called “a parliament.” Click on the photo, above, to learn more about these Peruvian, hand-made ornaments.

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Berets from Brighton

While in Brighton, England last week, I met an enterprising, young artist selling her hand-decorated berets on an outdoor stall.  I thought them jolly without being flamboyant—just perfect for a Holiday party or a “Stocking Stuffer” gift .  I bought-up an assortment, some of them shown above.  Come into the store and see the complete […]

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