Friday, November 25, 2005

Leather Life’s Holiday Gift Guide

(Leather Life column published in Lavender Magazine, Issue #274, November 25, 2005)

At Leather Life, we take the holidays seriously. Your humble columnist has been shopping all year, spending countless hours doing exhaustive research and intensive testing—all to increase your seasonal merriment. Now that it’s holiday shopping time again, take a look at these great leather/kink gift suggestions.

PHOTO: Devil Nutcracker (DevilNutcracker.jpg)

For a devilish twist on a holiday tradition, take a look at this Devil Nutcracker. It’s brought to you by Eden-Prairie-based Department 56—who consider it part of their Halloween merchandise line, but never mind. It’s approximately 10” tall. I found it at Ragin’ RaeJeans Gifts & Stuff (Chicago).

PHOTO: Fury double-width cockring (Fury 005.jpg), group of engraved cockrings (Engraved_Group.jpg)

PHOTOS BY: Gearessentials

Is Minneapolis turning into the designer-cockring capital of the world? It would seem so as one local company, Torq Rings by Blasted Art, enters a field dominated by Gear Essentials, another local company.

Gear Essentials (<www.gearessentials.com>) is expanding their highly successful line of jewelry-quality premium stainless steel cockrings by introducing the Fury, their first double-width ring. Almost an inch wide, it was inspired by the fact that some people were wearing two Gear Essentials rings at a time. The company also has new patterns available in their engraved line of cockrings.

Torq Rings by Blasted Art, Inc. (<www.torqrings.com>) adds a new twist to stainless-steel cockrings: custom-sandblasted designs that can include personalization. Blasted Art (<www.blastedartinc.com>) does amazing, artistic custom-sandblasting work on denim and leather, as well as glass, stone and metal. (I think their sandblasted “zipper” vase is especially eye-catching.)

Something practical yet bizarre for your next lights-out party: a glow-in-the-dark toilet seat from Acme Toy Company of Chicago (<www.acmetoyio.com>) that was on display at the Leather Mart at this year’s International Mr. Leather contest. They also have quite a selection of stocking stuffers, including leather-scented soap, oil, spray, and incense sticks and cones. Their website even shows a picture of a leather lei.

PHOTO: Candle(s)

PHOTO BY: Raw Candles

Raw Candles sells high-quality, clean-burning handmade candles in a variety of sizes and scents including leather, tobacco, and “banilla,” a combination of just what it sounds like—banana and french vanilla. They all smell wonderful, especially the tobacco (this from a nonsmoker, no less). New scents for the holidays: Raw Pumpkin Spice, Shadow Moss and Caffeinated (“Like Starbucks—only in wax!”). Each candles is strapped with a strip of faux leather and adorned with a stainless steel stud. <www.rawcandles.com>

PHOTO: Bathtub/Massage toy: Duck and/or Worm

PHOTO BY: Big Teaze Toys

Big Teaze Toys sells “toys that play with you”—a growing line of cute waterproof massage toys. The original “I Rub My Duck,” a rubber-ducky bathtub toy with a hidden massager, is now available in “Devil Duck” and “Bondage Duck” variations. In keeping with the bathtub theme there also vibrating “I Rub My Fish” and “I Rub My Penguin” varieties, as well as the longer, larger and more powerful “I Rub My Worm.” <www.bigteazetoys.com>

PHOTO: St. Andrew’s Cross / Plant Pedestal and Knick-Knack Shelf

PHOTO BY: Foxy Furniture

COPY: Foxy Furniture specializes in ingenious dungeon furnishings “Hidden in Plain Sight”™. Their Criss Cross, a St. Andrew’s Cross that morphs into a plant pedestal and knick-knack shelf, is available in many fine woods and finishes. They also sell the Power Pole, a coffee table that turns into a whipping post, and “Pandora’s Chest,” a linen chest that turns into a spanking bench or pelvic-exam table. Details at <www.foxyfurniture.com>.

PHOTOS : girl Nancy with Leather/Rainbow Quilts (girlnancy.jpg) and Lifestyle Sewing merchandise (LifestyleSewing.jpg)

Looking for comfy domestic and household items in hard-to-find themes? girl Nancy of Lifestyle Sewing makes quilts, pillows, pillowcases, pot holders, place mats, kneel pads, flags and other textile items in various flag/pride motifs including leather, rainbow, boy, girl, bear, leather dog and red AIDS ribbon. Choose from stock items or commission a custom-made piece. <www.lifestylesewing.com>

MSDB Bizarre Bazaar

Start your holiday shopping at MSDB’s sixth annual Bizarre Bazaar. You’ll find leather and fetish goods from more than a dozen vendors as well as bootblacking, tarot readings, Kinky Santa, a performance by Psycick Slutz and a silent auction to benefit Eli Knight. Saturday, Dec. 3, noon-7 P.M. at Trikkx (490 N. Robert St., St. Paul). No admission charge.

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