gifts they might actually want

What the Zitomer Ladies Want for the Holidays

Photo: Portraits by Kyle Dorosz/Products courtesy of the vendors

In August, for the magazine’s Look Book, I (along with Katy Schneider) interviewed a gaggle of women of a certain ilk while they shopped at Zitomer, the nearly 70-year-old Upper East Side pharmacy where you can fill a prescription, and purchase a tube of French gillyflower toothpaste, a $1,592 lighted mirror, and a Petit Bateau raincoat. Since the ladies we spoke to were very particular about their likes and dislikes (“I’m a Papyrus woman”) we decided to circle back to see what they’d most want to receive (and what they’re planning on giving) this holiday season.

Wynell Schrenk

Photo: Kyle Dorosz

“I have been obsessed with David Webb since the late ’60s; I was exposed to him by an incredibly chic friend’s mother, who was a major collector. He was the jeweler of the very soigné, very glamorous “Ladies Who Lunch” era, from Gloria Guinness to Lee Radziwill. This ring was inspired by Buckminster Fuller’s Geodesic Dome at Black Rock Mountain College. Domes are so 1960s, so retro, but still so modern.”

Lynn B. Goddess

Photo: Kyle Dorosz

“I’d love a Tiffany T bracelet. In extra small, of course. It’s a simple, unpretentious bracelet. I can imagine myself wearing it every evening to dinner — not during the day. I wear silver during the day, because I’m a brunette. But I’m really into gold or platinum in the evening right now.”

“I’d also love a marble serving board, for cheese, because cheese looks really good on marble. Plus, marble doesn’t retain odors. I love to have a selection of cheeses in the house: Brie, goat cheese, Saint-André. My favorite is so fattening, I wouldn’t dare tell you what it is.”  

Shirley Sacks

Photo: Kyle Dorosz

“I would like to receive Van Cleef & Arpels’s Magic Alhambra earrings. It’s my birthday on the 29th of December, right after the holidays, and my ex-husband always gets me a gift. He says, “What would you like?” I always say, “I’ll give you a list from expensive to cheap: Van Cleef to Hermès perfume.” I generally get the perfume. Last year, he was good. He got me a computer. I normally don’t like jewelry where you can clearly tell which designer made it, but I just love Van Cleef & Arpels. These are so beautiful, so subtle. Subtly beautiful.”

Trudy Selib

Photo: Kyle Dorosz

“When you reach my age, 73, there’s very few material objects that you want. But I’m thinking about retiring in the next few years, and I imagine it would be nice to take tap-dancing lessons. I took them for years as a child and as a teenager. And getting the shoes, I think, would be a good impetus to start a class. I don’t think I’m making a career out of this — my aspiration is not to become a Rockette — but you never know.”

Lynne Davis

Photo: Kyle Dorosz

“I was looking for something for my nephew’s wedding in Mexico and ultimately went with a Dolce & Gabbana satin dress, as the weather at the venue was super hot. For the colder weather, I think a pair of Dolce & Gabbana’s leopard-print pants would be perfect! They are absolutely gorgeous. And sexy!

Nancy Seltzer

Photo: Kyle Dorosz

“It’s the holidays in a bottle! Williams Sonoma has all these great, really of-the-season scents. The pumpkin, in particular, is wonderfully spicy. I give it as a gift to everyone I know.”

Delphine Hibon

Photo: Kyle Dorosz