The Museum Store at the Gibbes Museum of Art has presents for any occasion. Credit the eagle eye and good taste of buyer and store manager Sara Meyer. In Sara’s world, scarves rule. We were drawn to her collection of sophisticated and colorful “fair trade” silk scarves, hand woven in India. Soft and airy, they are the perfect weight for Charleston year-round. But the choice doesn’t end there. Sara carries limited-edition scarves that reproduce the whimsical world of American surrealist Richard Hagerty, an artist in the museum’s permanent collection, as well as silk batiks by Mary Edna Fraser. Fraser’s fluid, abstract designs are inspired by her aerial photographs. One beautiful scarf evokes South Carolina’s barrier islands.
The Rotunda Dome umbrella, a replica of the museum’s Tiffany-style dome, is a perennial favorite, as are greeting cards featuring the watercolors of Alice Ravenel Huger Smith, an artist of the Charleston Renaissance. And let’s not forget local designer Meyriel Edge, whose whimsical hats and fascinators sell out quickly.
Finally, a great gift for history buffs is Photography and the American Civil War, an exhibition catalog produced by the Metropolitan Museum of Art. This 256-page book, a collection of historic photographs with explanatory text, accompanies the museum’s current Civil War exhibition, which runs through January 5, 2014.