celebrity shopping

50 Things Amy Sedaris Can’t Live Without

Granny panties, funny hand cream, skinny carrots for the rabbit, and more.

Amy Sedaris. Photo: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images
Amy Sedaris. Photo: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

Amy Sedaris is particular about her stuff. So particular, in fact, that when the Strategist site launched in 2016, her distinct kind of particular-ness when it came to shopping was discussed as one of our many inspirations for what the site could be. So when I visited her stuffed-to-the-brim one bedroom on a recent afternoon, it was not much of a surprise to find a Venn diagram of most every type of thing the Strategist covers: from surprising things that have multiple uses (the drugstore laxative she uses to steam her pores), to the relatively unexciting items she is determinedly specific about (she uses Heavy Duty Scotch Shipping Packing Tape — if it’s not heavy duty, she’ll, in her words, “have a meltdown”), to the useful and singular (like the Renova pink paper towels her brother David brings her back from London), to the decidedly useless but no less specific (like her plaster — not plastic — fake Cornish Hen).

The important thing is that no object in Sedaris’s house carries less significance than the other: each, from her box of small hats (labeled “Small Hats”) to the five real-hair wigs shelved in her bedroom, is a revered piece of her carefully curated, eccentric ecosystem. Below, some 50 of those items.


Photo: New York Magazine

I get these high-waisted Lollipop underpants in three-packs from old-lady bra shops on the Upper West Side.

Photo: AmySedaris/Instagram

I was obsessed with these Goody bows when I was little. Now I find them on eBay.

Photo: The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon/YouTube

This wig was made for me at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. It’s all real hair.

I’m best friends with Adam Selman, and he makes these tube socks, which I’m completely obsessed with. The quality is so nice and cushion-y and thin. Plus, the initials of his company is A.S.S., which is printed on the ankle of these. So I’ve been sending them to assholes lately.

Crafting Tools

Photo: SiamHillTribes/Etsy

I cannot live without pom-poms. I put them on everything: pillows, lamps.

Photo: PartyFavorsPlus/Etsy

I buy a ton of plain white matchbooks so I can decorate them myself. A must-have.

Photo: Creative Growth

Creative Growth, an art studio in Oakland for adults with developmental disabilities, put together this coloring book of the artists’ drawings.

Photo: AmySedaris/Instagram

I sell lighters wrapped in Dum-Dums lollipop wrappers. After I finish, I take a picture, then throw them out.

Photo: Avery

If people come over, I always offer to laminate something of theirs. I say: “give me something from your wallet, let me laminate it for you.”

Photo: Kid Made Modern

My friend Todd Oldham makes the best — and my most favorite — construction paper.

Photo: Talas

This is the best glue for if you’re decoupaging, and you don’t want it to gum up. I like to think of it as a little hidden secret.

This is one of my favorite books about decorating. I used it for inspiration when I was working on my TV show.

Beauty Things

Photo: Courtesy of Vendor

I like this because it’s large and has coconut in it. And because it rolls on.

Photo: Courtesy of Vendor

I have 13 bottles of Comme des Garçons’ Avignon perfume, just in case they ever stop making it.

Photo: Gerwold/Richard Flaskegaard

Gerlasan works well, but I buy this because the illustration makes me laugh. It’s a hand applying cream to another hand.

Photo: EVER-SHiFTiNG-PARADiGM / Alamy Stock Photo/Alamy Stock Photo

First Aid is one of the only companies making wooden swabs anymore, which is a shame.

Buly 1803 makes the most beautiful soaps. My brother David bought me the perfume version of this Tuberose one.

Photo: Courtesy of Vendor

I use this herbal laxative to steam my pores; I’ve never found anything better. Some people use it in tea when they’re constipated.

I keep this enzyme spray in every room of my house: bathroom, living room, bedroom, plus two in my office. I just spray it on all the time, whenever I look at it.

My favorite body lotion is also from Epicuren, it’s called After Bath Moisturizer. I like the Kukui Coconut scent. I use it every day, often twice.

I’m obsessed with Epsom salts, obsessed with them. I take Epsom baths all the time.


Photo: Courtesy of Vendor

The exact ones they used to use at the haunted Heathman Hotel.

Photo: Bates Mill Store

My rabbit, Tina, constantly chews these linen bedspreads up. Which means I buy about four sets a year.

Kitchen Things

Photo: Formaggio Kitchen/gabigago

David hauls a huge drum of these on the plane from London for me. They’re made with olive oil, and they’re the best potato chips I’ve ever had in my life.

Photo: Courtesy of Vendor

David also brings me back these Renova paper towels; he finds them at his local Tesco.

Photo: NoPro

When I want to jazz up a meal, I’ll get out my Norpro hand-crank bean Frencher.

This is my new obsession, tea-wise. Tulsi. I particularly like the Sweet Rose flavor, it’s uncaffeinated.

Home Repair

Photo: Henkel

I had a water-bug problem. They freak me out. I used this, and haven’t seen one since.

Photo: Courtesy of Vendor

I have an abundance of L brackets, so I can put up shelves to hold all my stuff. Straight guys love L brackets. Every time a straight guy comes over he says, “I wish you had some L brackets, so I could help you put up some shelves.” And I say, “well I have an abundance of L brackets!”


Photo: Kutimall/Etsy

My small box of small hats says small hats on it. I also have two boxes filled with googly eyes: one fancy, one not.

Photo: John Derian Company Inc

I bought the tiger rug in my bedroom at John Derian. It sits at the foot of my bed.

Photo: Autom

I get my beeswax candles from a church-supply site. Greek Orthodox churches have the most beautiful candles, so I figured a church supply website would be the place to go. I was right.

But I also love Cire Trudone’s Ernesto candle. I’m really serious about lighting candles for people when they come over. And this one burns really nicely.

Photo: Jean-store/Ebay

I got these little chair socks in Tokyo. They go on the legs of your furniture.

Photo: Vintagebarbies/Ebay

I also have a large collection of doll wigs. This one looks like a mole.

Photo: Courtesy of Vendor

Rebecca Morgan did a lot of pieces for my TV show, and she made this little ugly jug, which sits on my bookshelf.

Photo: Courtesy of Vendor

I keep these fancy amber fragments in a seashell in my bathroom.

I got this really, really great incense in Japan, but you can also get it at 45RPM in New York. It’s my favorite.

World of Interiors is my favorite magazine, it’s the only one I get in the mail. I look at it, then I hand it off to my friend Paul Dinello.

I’m obsessed with empty boxes, it’s the one thing I want to change about myself but cannot. When we were doing Sex and the City, I used to ask Sarah Jessica for her boxes, because she had amazing ones from Manolo and Hermès. Santa Maria Novella boxes are really good. They’re the perfect size for, say, a dead mouse.

Stuff for Tina the Rabbit

Photo: B&G Foods

These are a big extravagance for Tina. I call them her french fries. She rarely gets them, because it’s too much sugar. She also occasionally eats a tiny raisin, and in the morning, she gets half a banana slice. She’s a lucky rabbit.

Photo: Howcast; Howcast/Youtube

I order nine pounds of hay from a farm near Boston called Sweet Meadow.

Photo: Drollery Press

House Rabbit Handbook is the only good book on rabbit care. I have several copies.


Photo: Courtesy of Vendor

Il Bisonte wallets are my go-to gift for straight and gay guys.

Photo: Courtesy of Vendor

I always give these mini-crutches to friends who are in plays so I can say, “You gave a crippling performance.”

Photo: Astor Wines & Spirits

It’s better than any other gin I’ve ever tried, and it comes in a nice small bottle with a little monkey on it.

Photo: Fritz Heisterkamp/Copyright:KRYOLAN GmbH-Fritz Heisterkamp

If you put this Kryolan under your eye, you automatically cry. I gift it to teens, because it’s just a blast to use.


Photo: Bellatopperandmore/Etsy

I used to make fake cakes. Now I usually buy them.

Photo: Display Fake Foods

My kitchen is rife with fake meats: Cornish hens, rib roasts.

Photo: Courtesy of Vendor

I bought this frosty fake beer in the restaurant district in Tokyo. I got four, but I really should have gotten more.

Watch Amy Sedaris take us down the rabbit hole of her magical Greenwich Village apartment.

* A version of this article appears in the April 29, 2019, issue of New York Magazine. Subscribe Now!

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50 Things Amy Sedaris Can’t Live Without