Southern Cocktails: Dixie Drinks, Party Potions, and Classic Libations (Chronicle Books, $14.95) Southern hospitality comes naturally for acclaimed journalist Denise Gee. The Natchez native’s recipes have been found within the pages of Southern Living, Coastal Living and Better Homes and Gardens, and now her favorite Southern spirits have been compiled into one collection. From such classics as the mint julep and the Hurricane to new concoctions such as the peach mojito, each drink is as relaxing as a riverboat ride down the Mississippi.
A Great Mistake: When a wine jug collapses while being hand-blown, the result is accidental art. This 1940s vessel from Haslet (as it’s spelled on the piece), Belgium, could easily have been discarded, but its unique form and beautiful imperfections make for a valued vase or conversation piece. Antiques and Wholesale Furnishings, 3511 River Road, Suite C, Jefferson, 837-8095, or go to www.antiquesnola.com.
Nest in Peace: Part of Gloster’s Scoop Collection, the cozy Nest chair provides a plush place to enjoy the outdoors and arrives just in time for spring 2008. Nest redefines the shape of woven seating with its fresh silhouette, subtle detailing and gentle metallic finish of bronze or copper. Pool & Patio Center, 3740 N. Causeway Blvd., Metairie, 837-2022, or go to www.gloster.com.
Clear Ambition: Designer Barbara Cosgrove means business. After all, her lamps have appeared on the set of The Apprentice. Standing more than 3 feet tall, her square glass lamp reaches new heights with its towering base and linen drum shade and offers a bold look without seeming bossy. Magazine Furniture Galleries, 4209 Magazine St., 891-8915.
Finishing Touch: Dramatic windows are instantly achieved with custom cornices. Whether they’re gilt gold or hand-painted, solid wood boards with intricate adornments add an extra something when hung over panels or sheers and can even make a statement on their own. Wren’s Tontine Shade and Design Shop, 1533 Prytania St., 525-7409, or go to www.wrenstontine.com.
Pretty in Pink: Samsonite’s Black Label Vintage Luggage makes travel fashionable, and its funky retro styles are just the beginning. Each piece is meticulously crafted of durable herringbone fabric and trimmed in belting leather. Upright pieces feature in-line skate wheels so they can swivel with ease. Best yet, each piece is lined with glamorous satin for a luxurious look and feel. Horchow Collection, 877/944-9888, or go to www.horchow.com.
Mirror, Mirror: Muted tones and impeccable details rank this mirror among the fairest of them all. Imported from France, this interesting ornamental piece exudes elegance and artistry thanks to its fanciful trompe l’oeil stenciling. UDwell, 2101 Magazine St., 309-2503.
Clutter Buster: Nothing gives the appearance of more space quite like a wide-open floor. Cool wall-mount consoles can serve as washbasins in the bathroom or as compact nightstands in the bedroom. This sleek square console from Sonia’s Atic series maintains a clean and organized space and offers a spacious drawer featuring two removable trays. Sonia, 888/766-4287, or go to www.sonia-sa.com.