Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

December 4, 2007 at 1:44pm

South Sound Christmas

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Southsoundchristmascake Gift shops are traditionally those places where you can find that sweet little trinket for Aunt Tilly, the place where you can find that floral thank-you card set or that perfect Chintz teacup that you just know will make her gush with joy.

Three South Sound gift shops have those sweet trinket items and much more. Drees in Olympia, Watermark in downtown Tacoma, and Cake in University Place all present any number of exquisite items for your dear auntie, but they also have things to make even the youngest, hippest recipients squeal.

Drees offers Olympia’s shoppers of distinction a wide range of items, from large custom furniture pieces to the daintiest of triple milled soaps in dog shapes.  Among other bath and body items at Drees are L’Occitane brand soaps and creams. The 20 percent shea butter hand cream is probably my favorite item when the winter weather makes my hands rough.  Drees also carries personal items such as scarves and purses, household goods for the well-stocked kitchen, and even children’s items, from books to pewter first-lock holders to Steiff stuffed animals.

Quality paper goods such as Crane & Co card sets are also available as well as a wide selection of handmade, one of a kind cards.  One favorite of mine, the hand water-colored avocado card with certificate of authenticity, sat beside a set of cards that looked like ’50s-era wallpapers. These are the sorts of things I love to give â€" and get â€" when the world seems to consist of e-mails, junk mail, and bills.

For this same reason, make a shopping stop at Tacoma’s Watermark. A personal favorite of mine is the custom stationery selection.  Here you can get invitations, announcements, and even customized writing paper like your Aunt Tilly used to send you letters on â€" until she started e-mailing you, that is.

Resumé kits, etiquette books, calendars, planners, notebooks, journals, and other useful paper items sit in the displays at Watermark as well as sparkling handmade jewelry, bath and body items, and serving and décor items for entertaining.

An intriguing line that melds two of my favorite things â€" cooking and scents â€" is the Cucina line, featuring scents such as coriander and olive tree, ginger and Sicilian lemon, and basil and tomato.  With this line, cooks can get a more pleasant-smelling space, softer hands, and cleaner dishes without the war of the scents that can happen when a garlic pesto meets up against a gardenia candle.
Fun stuff for those who don’t like to cook â€" and enjoy laughing about it â€" can be found at Watermark too. Its selection of Anne Taintor products is about the largest (and funniest) that I’ve seen in the South Sound.

Laughter is also emphasized in University Place at Cake with an eclectic selection of humorous gift books and other whimsical printed items such as wallets and cards. But Cake also offers up serious shopping with its Anthropologie-like boutique styling and products ranging from design and décor items for the home, high-quality body products, and seriously hip clothing. Antique furniture mixes with up-to-the-minute clothing lines such as Joe’s Jeans and Seven for all Mankind, just as sculptured vases seen last week in Elle Décor sit next to knobs and hardware that could have been at home on Aunt Tilly’s mahogany sideboard. 

The only problem I had while doing my gift shopping at these three shops was that I didn’t want to give items â€" I wanted to keep them.

Who’s the wise guy that said it’s better to give than receive, anyway? â€" Jessica Corey-Butler

[Dree’s 524 Washington St. S.E., Olympia, 360.357.7177]
[Watermark Gifts 1115 A St., Tacoma, 253.383.2041]
[Cake 3838 Bridgeport Way W., University Place, 253.564.2253]

Filed under: Holidays, Olympia, Tacoma,
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