Encyclopedia of the Exquisite ~An Anecdotal History of Elegant Delights by Jessica Kerwin Jenkins was my favorite gift book last Christmas, my go-to holiday gift. The one I gifted as a single token or as an add-on to something larger. And I will be gifting again this year, not to the same people of course but I am sticking to this dainty and chic book because it does what I always want a holiday gift to do..........delight the recipient. Not only is the cover a festive shiny metallic, it is filled with gorgeous little drawings and the type of historical "bon-bons" that anyone on your gift list would find fascinating so I have added it to my astore here. Filled with delicious morsels of information such as how Louis XIV developed a fondness for the Bartlett Pear, the emergence of faux jewels and frilly lingerie, the art of divan lounging, the ancient uses of Saffron, how top hats incited a riot, the festive use of Confetti, and my personal favorite............aerostation, the art of hot air ballooning.
"The word "exquisite" come from the latin verb exquirere, to search out, or to seek. It means uncommon delicacies, carefully selected, and the kind of beauty that can "excite intense delight or admiration" as explained in the Oxford English Dictionary."
HOW TO GIFT THIS BOOK: I like to wrap a gift with cues from the book itself. Since this makes for a perfect Hostess gift, I would include one of the following items if you are including it with another item: A Tin of a high-quality Saffron spice, bubbly French Champagne, or a basket of gorgeous Bartlett Pears. For fun, include a envelope or packet of sparkly paper confetti.
GIFT WRAP IDEAS: A brilliant red metallic gift wrap with a wide red satin ribbon and a tube of Saffron threads tucked in the ribbon. A Cherub or Hot Air Ballooning theme gift wrap with gold ribbon and a small Cherub ornament. A simple ivory gift wrap paper with black grosgrain or satin ribbon and a Pear ornament.
You can read the author's blog here.