Gift Guide

Moms Know Best

Seattle’s top style moms dish Mother’s Day gift advice.

By Laura Cassidy May 8, 2012

At least one Seattle mom wants this necklace by local designers Iacoli & McAllister. Read on for more ideas.

When you need a straight answer, you go straight to the source. With only a few shopping days left until Mother’s Day, we asked some expert Seattle moms to put us on the quick course to spot-on gifting.

Designer Lizzie Parker
Mom of: Two children and one bulldog
Favorite gift: Every year my husband does a green screen–like picture and Photoshops the kids in for a Mother’s Day poster. My favorite was them with their light sabers wishing me a Star Wars happy Mother’s Day when they were toddlers.
Top gift picks: Breakfast in bed and the day to shop at some of my favorite Seattle haunts: Nancy’s Sewing Basket (for some new fab fabrics; perhaps I will make myself something), La Ree (I mean Isabel Marant and Rick Owens, need I say more?), and Baby and Co (I love to check out her seasonal window themes).

Jacquelynn Reasy Woodward of Sorella Spa
Mom of: A two-year-old and another on the way
Favorite gift: Day at the spa, a portrait of my family, a fun day planned by my husband.
Top gift pick: Our Mother’s Day special, which includes a massage, facial, and deep conditioning treatment for $100.

Ali Brownrigg, blogger and shopper
Mom of: Two
Favorite gift: Nothing beats a homemade gift created with intention and love by your kiddos. They’re so eager to give it to you and so proud when you display it in a place of honor. My most favorite gift ever was a paper skirt that my husband helped my daughter make for me to wear to all my fashion shows.
Top gift picks: I’d be over the moon with sleeping in, then snuggles in bed, a homemade card, and some flowers picked earnestly from our backyard. But if I were making a wish list I would include a mani/pedi at Mimisan on Queen Anne, a skinny strap belt from MMH, this necklace from Iacoli & McAllister, which I am fairly swooning over, or a Tiffany 1837 bar pendant from their new Rubedo metal collection because I think it looks like a modern cartouche.

Designer Rosanna Bowles
Mom of: Two
Favorite gift: Handmade art from my youngest daughter and mind-stretching books from my older daughter.
Top gift picks: Our fabulous cake pedestals and compotes from the Decor Bon Bon, Le Gateau, White Pedestals, and La Patisserie lines.

Makeup artist Tiffany Lowry, also known as Tiffany Colors
Mom of: One
Favorite gift: The gift of staying in bed all day. My family brought me breakfast and coffee and all my favorite mags and even a few videos on the iPad so I could cuddle and relax all day! And a cupcake from Flying Apron—chocolate with peanut butter frosting! YES!
Top gift picks: A makeover/beauty update. As a working mother I know the stresses and the lack of time we take to put ourselves together! I’m chasing my daughter to eat, get dressed, and shove her homework into her backpack and then we are out the door so I’ve figured out the best lipstick to apply in the car! Y.S.L Rouge Pur Vernis A Levres #8; it’s the “It” color and so sheer that you can’t mess up and you look so put together.

Lingerie designer Laurie Shapiro from Toad Lillie
Mom of: Two
Favorite gift: Because my boys are young, the only gift I look forward to every Mother’s Day is a sloppily written handmade card and an extra big hug. My husband is so sweet and shows his appreciation every year with something very feminine for Mother’s Day to help make up for the crazy, messy boy-filled life that I have.
Top gift picks: A lovely nightie is perfect for celebrating the woman inside every mother. My handcrafted Glace chemise has a hand-painted bodice that almost acts as jewelry and is bias-cut to flatter mom and make her feel glamorous. A close second would be perfume because what mom doesn’t want to smell fabulous? Since it’s so hard to pick the perfect fragrance, I recommend taking a custom perfume making class instead with local perfumer Meredith Tucker of Sweet Anthem. This way Mom can escape for a few hours to olfactory heaven and design a one-of-a-kind fragrance that will leave her remembering not only the thoughtful Mother’s Day gift but the experience as well.

Nancy Meade, owner of Terra Bella in Bellevue
Mom of: Four
Favorite gift: I love receiving artistic gifts made by my kids. Some of my favorites have been a watercolor painting, ceramic mask, ceramic bowls, and long, decorative love notes. I love knowing that they put energy, thought, and love into creating something special and meaningful for me!
Top gift picks: Our handcrafted gorgeous jewelry from a multitude of local and world-wide designers; Italian hand-loomed linen hand towels and tea towels; Sid Dickens memory blocks handcrafted in Vancouver, Canada; gorgeous Arte Italica serving pieces and hobnail glass pitchers; modern resin trays, vases, bowls by Lawrence Essentials; hand-blown glass candle cylinders by Marianne Guedin, made in France.

Terri Morgan, owner, TCM Models
Mom of: Two
Favorite gift: My favorite gift is just having uninterrupted time with my kids; cell phones put away, no TV—we could be doing anything, we’re just together.
Top gift pick: I really love it when I get a spa day or mani/pedi thing. It isn’t something that I normally treat myself too. I really like Mimisan on Queen Anne.

Samantha Crowley, owner of Fleurt in West Seattle
Mom of: Two
Favorite gift: Handmade paper flowers from my son Jack when he was in First grade. New shoes from my daughter this year. She was a little early but could not resist the new Geox shoes from Nordstrom. I also enjoy this one day a year where I don’t have to do anything. My kids make me breakfast, lunch, and dinner, clean the house, and wash my car.
Top gift picks: Fleurt is loaded with goodies for Mother’s Day. Of course fresh flowers are always gorgeous, but for something a bit different we have custom terrariums in all shapes and sizes, mushroom growing kits, and my all time favorite: tea towels from Studio Patro.

Sara Seumae of Spun
Mom of: Two
Favorite gift: Every mom I know says that they cherish the hand-drawn pictures and macaroni crafts that their kids make them. I am no different! My husband recently bought me a home laminate machine just so I could save my daughter’s artwork. Some of them are sweet while others are pure comedy.
Top gift picks: As a mother, I love to receive gifts that I wouldn’t normally buy for myself. My kids—let’s be serious, my husband does the gift shopping—always buy me clothes or jewelry, knowing that I seldom buy that for myself. I think that moms would love to receive anything from Cameron Levin. Her pieces are easy to wear and beautiful for going out to dinner or a fancy party. She even has pieces that can easily be layered for a casual look. I love the folded-sleeve top; I wear it over a tank top and jeans. Our Mother’s Day sale on Saturday, May 12 includes 50 percent off our remaining stock of Cameron’s Chelsea collection, 30 percent off fall/winter pieces from the talented Kate Chrisman, 20 percent off the Spun line, and 20 percent off jewelry and handbags.

Mindy Jahn at Whole Foods, Lynnwood
Mom of: Two
Favorite gift: I love food and cooking so the best gifts I get from my kids are when they make me breakfast in bed. They have been doing this since they were very little and each year it gets better and better. I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease two years ago and now the kids even bake me gluten-free treats and bring them to me with coffee and fruit.
Top gift pick: Our store has some fantastic Mother’s Day gifts. My ultimate favorite gift would be a gift that gives back. The Blessing Basket is the perfect gift for any caring mother; these handwoven and hand-signed baskets are not only beautiful but are helping to eliminate poverty across the globe.

Sally Brock, owner of Fancy
Mom of: One
Favorite gift: Crepes in bed (dad’s contribution) and beans and cereal (Claudia’s addition).
Top gift picks: I’d love to get these 14K yellow gold earrings with pink sapphires, peridot, and champagne diamond petals, but of course, I can just make my own. I also love this Catherine Grisez necklace featuring coral, rose quartz, and carnelian.

Designer Maresa Patterson
Mom of: Three boys, and four if you count the biggest kid of them all.
Favorite gift: I received a universal remote control that was life-changing. I can actually watch Mad Men whenever I want to without having to shuffle between eight remote controls! (Can you believe this season?)
Top gift picks: In honor of Mother’s Day, consider Linda, made of 100 percent double-face cotton. It’s very comfortable, perfect for hanging out with lovely children and chasing them around! Also, a beautiful Dries Van Noten scarf from Jack Straw or anything from Far 4.

Carilyn Platt, public relations
Mom of: One
Favorite gift: Last year, I took the charms from my mom’s charm bracelet—the one she received when she first went to Europe with her parents—and had them put on a charm bracelet that she bought for me. My husband and son got me a new charm that they also added to the bracelet, and that is probably my most treasured Mother’s Day gift because of the special meaning all around.
Top gift picks: I must preface by saying I am not expecting any of these things, but they would of course be welcome any time of the year. Creed perfume, a VitaMix blender, a Glassybaby, local skincare products from Kari Gran, a birdhouse or bench from Ravenna Gardens, or jewelry from Maria Carter or Jamie Joseph.

Serpil Kaymaz, owner of Alhambra
Mom of: One
Favorite gift: Small and simple gold jewelry.
Top gift picks: Jewelry from Jane Hollinger, Sara McGuire, Beth Orduna, or Dana Kellin. The line Tucker is also a wonderful for Mother’s Day. The prints put everyone in the mood for spring and their styles are classic and timeless. I am particularly fond of the red polka dot short sleeve blouse.

Alissa Leinonen, founder of Gourmondo Catering
Mom of: Five
Favorite gift: In addition to the homemade cards and crafts I’ve received over the years, including some adorable handmade jewelry, I’ve loved it when my children have made special baked goods and desserts on Mother’s Day. I’m lucky to have children who love to bake.
Top gift pick: Gourmondo’s dressing gift sampler, which includes our Bacon Balsamic, Tuscan Herb, and Cypress Citrus dressings, is a fun gift for the foodie Mom. They are great over fresh greens from your local farmers market. The Tuscan Herb works as a marinade, with a Painted Hills steak or grilled chicken breast.

Natalie Angelillo, of Swink Style Bar
Mom of: Two
Favorite gift: Best gift ever was an elaborate breakfast in bed cooked by my two kids all by themselves without any fighting and a total kitchen clean-up afterward. Admittedly the last part was probably as great as the first.
Top gift picks: Our Mommy and Me Dry Style package, or a three-, six-, or 12-pack of blowouts. Or a gift certificate for our downtown or University Village locations.

Kay Smith-Blum, CEO Butch Blum
Mom of: Three boys
Favorite gift: When they do yard clean up. One year they even washed down the white-stained fence, saving me hours in the garden!
Top gift picks: The striped dresses from Martin Margiela and MM6, Margiela’s diffusion line. One is $545, the other $295—both are quintessential travel dresses, doubling as bathing suit cover-up after they get used once or twice for shopping and dinner.

Ruth True, owner of NuBe Green
Mom of: Five
Favorite gift: Some bubble bath and the time to use it.

Judith Winquist, co-owner of Mane Blow Dry Bar
Mom of: Two
Favorite gift: As my children are now adults with families and busy careers of their own, my favorite Mother’s Day gift and the one I value most is the gift of my children’s time. Any outing or event they choose to do together with me on Mother’s Day is one I hold dear. It spawns priceless memories and even photos that keep giving throughout the year.
Top gift pick: In a very real way, Mane Blow Dry Bar fulfills my Mother’s day dream to spend more time with my daughter, Kate, who is also my business partner. This year, our collaboration in our new business will afford us the opportunity to pass on the gift of shared time by offering daughters an opportunity to purchase gift certificates to pamper their mom or mother-in-law. Better yet, come in together for mother-daughter blowouts. Our Mane gift certificates are available for purchase online.

Sanda Belaire, from downtown Nordstrom, Savvy department
Mom of: Two
Favorite gift: Homemade cards and paintings are always treasured!
Top gift pick: Our exclusive Nordstrom Glassybaby Evelyn candle holder makes an excellent Mother’s Day gift. Each one is locally handmade by Seattle artists and 10 percent from the sale of each is donated to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. Toms canvas slip-on shoes can be custom painted by the kids with fabric paint for a unique gift, and with every pair of Toms shoes purchased, the company gives a new pair of shoes to a child in need.

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