It's Not Too Late

Last-minute shoppers have lots of delightful options for fulfilling holiday wishes.



Shell shocking
-- Light up someone's world with a lovely art deco-inspired lamp with a ruffle bottom and a shell light cover, $225, from Hugh Martin Home (4222 Magazine St., 899-1882).



A classy approach -- Wrap up a gift certificate that offers an escape to the French Quarter and a British-themed, upscale dining experience with nuevo Creole cuisine, more than 100 kinds of martinis (as well as other libations), and live music to dine by nightly at The Bombay Club (830 Conti St., 586-0972


Pretty in pink -- Beauty and ease can be found in this machine washable fuchsia suede jacket with Western stitching, $50; a coordinating silk Indian sari scarf (can also be used as a shawl or table runner), $27; and a silver drop charm necklace with burgundy, pink and purple stones, $14.40; all from Out of the Box (5246 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie, 888-6666).



Ticket to jive -- Buy your favorite music fans tickets for some of the hottest national and regional artists around in a hip and artistic setting at the House of Blues (225 Decatur St., 529-2583; Throw in dinner at the club before the show and they can go straight into the music hall without waiting in line.


Cinch the perfect gift -- Draw attention to the waistline (or hip line) in a good way with belts adorned with vintage Swarovski crystal buckles: giraffe print and plain hide, $160 each; vintage brocade ribbon with a velvet back, $108, all by Wink; from The Villa (1281 N. Causeway Blvd., Suite 1, Mandeville, 985-626-9797).


Fashion in bloom -- Give her a garden to wear -- a beaded floral handbag on a black satin background with a bead handle by Asly's Treasure, $49.99; and a multicolored floral choker and matching earrings, $39.99; from Prima Donna's Closet (4409 Chastant St., Metairie, 885-3327; 1206 St. Charles Ave., 522-3327; 1218 St. Charles Ave., 525-3327; 3258 Severn Ave., Metairie, 888-3327).



Wear it well -- For a very personal gift of art, wrap up a certificate for a custom-design tattoo, a body piercing or jewelry for that piercing from Electric Ladyland (8106 Earhart Blvd., 866-3859; 610 Frenchmen St., 947-8286).


Meet them at the Station -- You can't buy a gift certificate for Carrollton Station Bar & Grill (8140 Willow St., 865-9190;, but consider treating a friend to dinner and an awesome beer selection. If you make the date for Thursday through Saturday, Carrollton Station will throw in live music for free.


Fashion plate -- Dress her in style with a plaid pleated skirt on beige clipped corduroy with an iridescent taupe waistband and red patent-leather buckles on the side by Muchacha, $124. For her feet choose black pumps with a sweet bow and hearts, $62, or copper pumps with leather flowers on top, $60, both by Me Too; all from Pogo (2180 N. Causeway Blvd., Mandeville, 985-626-0930).


Weight of the word -- Find strength in words (and a reason to write them often) with an intricately articulated pewter Atlas sculpture pen holder, $96, and a copper-colored "champagne pop" pen that makes a fun "pop" sound when you pull it out of its cigar tube-like container by Jack Zaguri, $33.75, exclusively at the new Merigold (3650 Magazine St., 430-4583).


Kick back and enjoy -- Treat someone to a casual Saturday night among friends at Parkway Bakery & Tavern (538 Hagan Ave., 482-3047), where your money will go a long way if you order the $1.50 Miller High Lifes, listen to free music from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. and dine on the scrumptious po-boys there.


A gift of history -- A perfect heirloom for any home is this rare, museum-quality French Empire gilded-bronze centerpiece with deep burgundy Baccarat cut crystal that dates from between 1810 and 1880, $3,600, from Carruth-Walker Galleries (102 Blaize Ave., Bay St. Louis, 228-467-7775).


A good show -- For a gift that hearkens back to earlier times, give a Sunday night trip to One Eyed Jacks (615 Toulouse St., 569-9100), which has the ambience of a speakeasy, for martinis and a burlesque performance by The Southern Jezebelles, $20 per ticket. There also is a New Year's Eve Bash featuring Morning 40 Federation and Rock City Morgue.


Picture perfect -- Hand-carved wood and bone frames are a great way to help someone store their memories in style: small orange bone frame, $5.99; medium carved-wood frame, $9.99 (also available in other sizes and designs); from Hopkins Blvd. Imports (8300 Earhart Blvd., 864-0277).


Music to their ears -- Become someone's favorite when you stuff their stocking with tickets to hear music at The Howlin' Wolf (828 S. Peters St., 522-9653; Make the gift immediate with tickets to see George Porter, Russell Batiste and Brian Stoltz the day after Christmas; tickets are $10 each. Or let them enjoy New Year's Eve with Bag of Donuts and Dash Rip Rock, tickets range from $20 to $50.


Preserving memories -- Help someone make a permanent record of their memories with a scrapbook that will last a lifetime. Scrapbooking consultant Brandi Montecino Christian of Creative Memories (by appointment, 985-320-2451) will instruct from one to 30 people about how to organize and preserve photographs and put together an album -- she specializes in helping people who have no time -- plus she can supply all the acid-free, archival-quality supplies you need.


Exotic respite -- Live music, exotic and not-so-exotic drink specials and a decidedly vacation-like atmosphere, all in the Warehouse District, can be bestowed on a fun-loving friend with a trip to Polynesian Joe's (869 Magazine St., 525-9301;

World tour -- Give them a break from toiling over the stove -- as well as a welcome respite from the mundane -- with gift certificates for meals from around the world, all available in our fair city. Start with an Italian feast at Nardo Trattoria (6078 Laurel St., 895-9441) or go for a mixture of Italian and Mediterranean cuisines with a trip to Fresco's Cafe and Pizzeria (7625 Maple St., 862-6363). Move on to tastes of the East with a favorite among local college students and others who like reasonably priced Chinese food: August Moon (3635 Prytania St., 899-5129). Spice things up with a stop at Vaquero's (4938 Prytania St., 891-6441) for Tex-Mex and Mexican-inspired dishes served up with award-winning margaritas. They're all kid friendly, so they'll work for anyone on your gift list. &127;

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