We’re counting down the crucial pre-Christmas shopping days with a series called Gifted Givers, in which friends old and new share their thoughts on stylishly spirited giving and receiving.
Kate Fannin‘s job is a girly-girl’s dream. As our Beauty Trend Editor, Kate gets paid to play with new makeup, lotions and perfumes, and hit trend shows, line launches and celebrity appearances at stores across the country. Oh, and twice a year she flies to New York Fashion Week, where she hangs out backstage with famous friends like makeup artist Charlotte Tilbury and nail guru Deborah Lippmann. But when Christmas rolls around, the down-to-earth Texan puts all her focus on gifts for her family, including 14 nieces and nephews and 3 tiny dogs.
The Thread: What would you love to give someone special on your gift list this year?
Fannin: My niece [pictured here] starts college next year, so it’s my duty to stock her with beauty essentials: The GLAMGLOW Brightmud Eye Treatment is amazing after late-night study sessions. Charlotte Tilbury’s Mini Lipstick Charm Trio for last-minute parties. Tocca “Stella” Daisy soaps to brighten up shared bathrooms. Clinique’s Smart Serum is self-adjusting, so she won’t have to waste her brain cells on skin care. And finally, a little designer indulgence like a Tom Ford nail polish to keep her looking girly among a sea of college sweatshirts.
What would you love to unwrap for yourself?
I love handmade gifts, especially hand-knitted socks and hats from my mom. This year, I’m pretty sure she’s making little sweaters for our three mini dachshunds. Yes, weenie dogs in sweaters—what could be cuter?!
What kinds of things do people tend to give you? Why?
I’m a serious letter writer, so people often give me beautiful handmade stationery, cool pens (I can never have enough colored Sharpies!), even stamps. I’m determined to keep “snail mail” from becoming a lost art.
What does no one ever give you?
I never get kitchen-y things like fancy utensils or cookbooks because I’m a terrible cook. Although I do make some pretty great chocolate chip cookies, so artisan chocolate chips are always welcome!
What’s your go-to host/hostess gift?
I love giving luxurious hand cream because it’s a treat people often forget to buy for themselves. And with all the holiday cooking and cleaning, hands can get extra dry. Kiehl’s has a supercute, limited-edition, Norman Rockwell-inspired trio of their amazing Ultimate Hand Salve.