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The Old Soft Shoe
For at least 100 years, farmers and their wives in the Charentaise region of western France have padded around their houses in cozy plaid wool slippers. Jeva, the company responsible for the originals, is still hand-making these slippers the old-fashioned way, and Tam and Robert Arbor have recently imported a cache. Which is great news for frostbitten New Yorkers shuffling around their chilly city digs ($45).
LE GAMIN/114 West Houston Street/646-654-6685
It's Not a Purse
Women have their totes, but where can men stow the stuff they need when in tourist mode -- camera, maps, guidebooks, currency converter, and the like? Well, Andy Spade, of the non-eponymous Jack Spade (and CEO of Kate Spade), has a solution: a map bag. It's an adaptation of a venerable Swiss navigator's satchel. He's made it of sturdy waterproof canvas and added pockets for pens, cell phone, whatever ($185; in black, navy, and olive, too).
JACK SPADE/56 Greene Street/212-625-1820
Mice have certainly been in the news lately, thanks to Stuart Little, but this cute little brass critter has nothing to do with the book or the movie. He just stands around opening doors. And since he's mounted on a thick wooden base, he does the job even in old apartments where there's a wide span between floors and doors ($16).
ANTHROPOLOGIE/375 West Broadway/212-343-7070; and 85 Fifth Avenue, at 16th Street/212-627-5885
Hop to It
Monkey Business Sports has come up with an antidote to winter blahs of the kiddie kind. It's the Bungee Jumper, a foam version of the old-fashioned pogo stick. Four layers of foam make up the spring base, and since the foam muffles noise, it can be used indoors on days when youngsters can't go out to play. A flexible tether allows kids to attempt all sorts of jumping tricks (around $21; for kids 5 years old and up).
MARSHA D.D./1324 Lexington Avenue, near 88th Street/212-876-9922
MY FAVORITE PLACE/ 265 West 87th Street/212-362-5320
Palm Beach Story
Suddenly, Palm Beach is hot, and the country-club look is in. At A Perfect Day in Paradise, Denice Summers's new store, it's resort time year-round, so for guys there are baby-blue cords, pink cable-knit cashmeres, and polos and oxford shirts in a rainbow of pastels. And for Palm Beach-princess types, bold Lilly Pulitzer-ish print dresses and skirts, macs in dreamy shades, pink-and-green leopard-print bathing suits, and strapless evening gowns. The shop's name? It's a line from a Jimmy Buffett song. (From $35 for leather-and-ribbon belts to $135 for men's cords to $350 for four-ply cable-knit cashmeres to $1,500 for a custom-made beaded-satin evening gown.)
A PERFECT DAY IN PARADISE/153 East 70th Street/212-639-1414
Photographs by Kenneth Chen
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