SWEET TIDINGS: OLD TIMEY CHOCOLATES WITH A SENSE OF TRADITION

by Marisa Marcantonio

Photo courtesy Martha Stewart American Made
When it comes to the holidays, I like things to be old school. My mom has these amazing little wooden elves with long beards and pointy felt hats  from 1971 that I will not let her throw away. They may be on their last legs, but that sense of tradition coupled with the fact that it is a charming German wooden toy that they don't make the way they used to makes me want them to last forever. The same thing goes for holiday candy. The more throwback, the better. This fall, when I discovered Shane's Confectioners at Martha Stewart's American Made Event in Grand Central, I knew I had come upon something special. As the "oldest continuously-run confectionery in the United States", Shane's, based in Philadelphia,  has been cranking out handmade candies and chocolates since 1863. The chocolates shown above, a precursor to the Whitmans Sampler, have an eclectic mix of fillings from a bygone era. Filled with butter creams, fruits and nuts, this tasty mix is sure to bring up some holiday memories for you. Available through the Ebay store set up for American Made, they will arrive in time for New Year's.  Enjoy the array and the old timey packaging.

FANCY THAT: THE JEWEL-LIKE BOXES OF ADDISON WEEKS

by Marisa Marcantonio

As my mom is fond of saying,  to quote Benjamin Franklin, "A place for everything, everything in its place." If only it was that easy in a New York City apartment, if only.  I have a thing for decorative boxes, one of the easiest ways to put this phrase into action. They have the ability to elevate a setting, and add a design moment when set atop a stack of books on the coffee table or on the shelf of an etagere. They also create storage for small objects, a reason to desire them even more. The antidote to clutter, they provide a place to tuck away necklaces and stray earrings, as well as business cards that need corralling.  Taking snazzy luxe materials and transforming them, Addison Weeks, started by close friends, Southerners Lee Addison Lesle and Katherine Weeks Mulford,   creates decorative brass boxes encrusted with semi-precious stones. Brass is hot/hot/hot again. The gals also design terrific jewelry that my friend Holly Phillips of The English Room told me about. It is hard to choose just one of these boxes, since the slightly bohemian pieces look even more amazing together, sparking aplenty. My choice? The rectangular version with gobs of single stones covering the surface. It is a more is more statement, but on a coffee table, it will stand out from the sea of books.

Photo courtesy of Addison Weeks

A large brass box with dazzling Aqua Chalcedony pieces is lined in blue velvet.

The Bendall Box, covered in Ocean-blue labradorite.

A medium rectangular box with a rectangular Lapis on the lid

For stark contrast, a darker stone.

For earrings or desk necessities, a small square box with a blue turquoise on the top.

with a faceted Chalcedony...

or Moonstone...

A round box with teardrop shaped Turquoise.

Rose Quartz, Labradorite and Green Turquoise.