The Architect Behind The Wing’s Chic Workspaces Shares Her Favorite Gifts

The Architect Behind The Wing’s Chic Workspaces Shares Her Favorite Gifts

By Ian Zunt
Alda Ly’s list includes eight accoutrements sure to zhuzh up any kitchen or home office.

With a focus on context-driven design, Alda Ly founded her namesake architecture and interior design firm, ALA, in 2017. From whimsical boutiques to setting the aesthetic vision for the women-focused coworking space The Wing, Alda brings a balance of play and practicality to everything she touches, including this gift list. Take a peek—we're positive you'll see something there for someone on your list or for yourself.

Looking for something else? Check out the rest of our holiday gift guides here.

Alda Ly started her own architectural practice after working at several different firms in New York City and was soon completing projects for start ups and co-working spaces on the East Coast.

"A beautiful French press that’s understated and timeless. Since it’s double-walled stainless steel, it keeps coffee and tea piping hot for hours on end. I’ve owned mine for about 20 years and it’s one of my go-to gifts for coffee lovers."

Frieling Double-Walled French Press
Hello, better coffee. Meet your new go-to for whipping up coffee and loose-leaf teas: This French press can prep your preferred pick-me-up in four minutes flat. And thanks to that double-walled construction, it’ll keep it piping-hot much longer than glass (four times longer, to be exact).

"Cookware should be both lovely to cook with and look at, and this Staub cocotte definitely fits the bill. The Cherry color is perfect for the holiday season. It’s great for making stews and braises now that we’re approaching colder weather. The four-quart size is a great workhorse—small enough for everyday cooking but big enough for roasts for two."

Food52 x Staub Round Cocotte
World-renowned pots.  The French oven is a timeless standby for stews, roasts, soups, casseroles and other one-pot classics. Staub has perfected this tradition in their signature “La Cocotte” French Oven, chosen and loved by some of the world’s best chefs.

"Simple, minimal, and slim, this ladder hanger looks good in most environments and is great for managing all those winter scarves or displaying pretty blankets. We use it to organize clothing that’s in frequent rotation. Add some s-hooks and it doubles as light hanging storage as well. This ladder is great because it doesn’t require any tools to mount it to the wall—just lean it and use it!"

Yamazaki Home Tower Leaning Ladder Hanger
This slim, space-saving rack has endless uses. Add a clean, modern touch to your bedroom or living room. Prop it against the wall to store throws and linens, or use it as a catch-all rack. This ladder will seamlessly ingratiate itself to you and your home.

"We love supporting our fellow female makers and Seattle-based artist Cameron Bishop is one of the best of them. This beautiful little tumbler is the perfect way to enjoy a 3PM caffeine pick-me-up and makes a true ritual out of any moment. "

Beau Rush Ceramics O'Keeffe Tumbler
Roughly 9oz tumbler. 2.75"W x 3"H (roughly)—each piece individually wheel thrown. Black stoneware. Each item will feature unique variations.

"It's not often we come across a tool that allows us to really shift how we do our creative work, but the Apple Pencil with an iPad really revolutionized how we work as architects and designers, especially remotely. From marking up drawings to quick sketches of new spaces, we use it daily."

Apple Pencil (2nd Generation)
Apple Pencil (2nd generation) delivers pixel-perfect precision and industry-leading low latency, making it great for drawing, sketching, coloring, taking notes, marking up email, and more. And it’s as easy and natural to use as a pencil.

"Even before the pandemic hit, we were all obsessed with this hand sanitizer in our office. It started with only one person using it and within a few weeks every one of us had our own personal bottle. It smells great, looks cool, and it’s going to class up your pandemic sanitation game."

Jao Hand Refresher
Formulated with 65% ethyl alcohol, this hand sanitizer kills germs and keeps your hands feeling refreshed with a fragrant blend of essential oils. Chamomile, calendula, and aloe vera keep your skin feeling hydrated and soothed.

"A water bottle that looks like a piece of art. Of course it comes from the mind of George Sowden, a co-founder of the Memphis Group. Keep it within your webcam’s view and we guarantee it’ll make your fellow Zoom call participants envious."

HAY Sowden Bottle
Contrasting colors make for a playful expression with George Sowden’s bottle series. Crafted in stainless steel with a plastic screw lid, the functional design is suitable for hot and cold drinks.

"Good lighting is key for your work-from-home setup and this classic Anglepoise desk lamp combines both form and function. The playful colors by Paul Smith remind us of warmer days."

Anglepoise Type 75 Desk Lamp
The Type 75 Desk Lamp (2004) was inspired by a 1970s version of the Anglepoise Apex 90®, originally launched in the 1950s. In all iterations, Type 75 is revered by architects, designers, and homeowners the world over, boasting classic looks and full adjustability.

Cover photo is of Parsley Health in West Hollywood, California photographed by Trevor Tondro.

Related Reading:

13 Extraordinary Women in Design and Architecture You Need to Know

A Peek Inside Brooklyn’s Latest Co-Working Space Dedicated to Women


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