Zac Posen reveals the thoughtful gift he gives his longtime personal assistants

By Cristina Corvino

Whenever you're stuck in a holiday shopping rut, it never hurts to seek inspiration from others -- and who better to get gift advice from than renowned designer Zac Posen?

The 36 year old became Creative Director for Brooks Brothers -- the oldest American clothing company, as he noted -- in the beginning of 2016 and has starred on "Project Runway" for five years now.

"The last five years have been an experience of a lifetime," he gushed about the Lifetime show.

He has also worked with David's Bridal to design gowns from sizes 0 to 32, a venture he refers to as one of his proudest accomplishments in his career thus far.

And being the infinitely busy man that he is, he was in the midst of his "busy and exciting" shoot for his Zac Posen Collection when AOL Lifestyle spoke to him in November.

We were lucky enough to steal him away for a bit to get the rundown on his top gift picks for the holiday season.

"In general, I definitely do a lot of baking. That's my go-to. I love homemade gifts in general -- but a little luxury is not bad either. On my list, I went through things that I've given or received that I thought were really special, wonderful gifts."

Posen noted that if you're clamoring for his recipes, you'll have to wait for his cookbook to be released in what he hopes will be a year from now.

In the meantime, enjoy his carefully curated gift guide:

Zac Posen Gift Guide
See Gallery
Zac Posen Gift Guide

"For somebody like myself -- I spend almost every other week on a plane, [and] I like to always travel with my own blanket. It keeps me warm and it's transitional into different climates and you just never know."

Woolen Throw Blanket by Shinola + Faribault Woolen Mill, Shinola, $225

"Usually in their second year, I give all of my assistants a pair of pearl studs from Mikimoto. Sometimes they'll go with it and let me get the black pearl -- a little edgier for the young women -- but [it's] a special memento of the time that we're working together.

I've had so many personal assistants that have all really gone on to incredible jobs within the fashion industry and within the philanthropic industry -- and they all come out of the experience with me as powerhouses."

Stud Earrings in Yellow Gold, Mikimoto, $270


"I love a good, fragrant holiday candle. I particularly like a candle from Parfums de Nicolaï, and I like the Maharadjah set. It's currently going in the entrance of our office."

Maharadjah CandleParfums de Nicolaï, Price varies

"They're very festive, they're a great gifting item. [They're] hand-rolled, printed in Italy, timeless. I think that's really fun."

Block Plaid Scarf, Brooks Brothers, $98

"For that special man in your life or nephew, I always go to a Brooks Brothers pajama -- and you can get [them] monogrammed."

Alternating Framed Stripe Pajamas, Brooks Brothers, $98.50

Posen says he loves giving a cheese basket because you never know who's going to stop by for the holidays. He says it’s just an easy thing to set out for people -- and everyone loves it, including kids.

Cheese Accompaniments, Dean & Deluca, $65

"I also love antique jewelry. I do my antique jewelry from a place called Kentshire. I think it's one of the greatest selections. My friend Carrie Imberman owns and runs the business there, and antique and estate jewelry -- on the very decadent side -- is very wonderful."

Gold ring with step shoulders and a spinning onyx and diamond center, Kentshire, $3,250

"When it comes to holiday times, and you get your first snow, and you know you're going to have another few months of cold and wet and snow -- and you want to start dreaming about the springtime -- I love receiving spring planting bulbs.

There's a great website I like using, called Old House Gardens. Old House Gardens cultivates heirloom bulbs. It basically gives you the origin of the bulb, the year it was created, and the history behind it."


Read Full Story

Sign up for the Best Bites by AOL newsletter to get the most delicious recipes and hottest food trends delivered straight to your inbox every day.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.