Ask the Expert: Gift-Buying Tips from Design Connoisseur Richard Wright

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By William Lamb
Richard Wright, the founder of modern design auction house Wright, shares his favorite gifts with Dwell.

What’s your go-to host gift? 

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What’s the best wedding present you’ve given or received?

Last year, I got married to Valerie Carberry. Val made a video of all the times we’ve spent together with my two sons and presented it to me at the rehearsal dinner in Todi, Italy. I still cry when I watch it. It was an unforgettable gift. In terms of what I’ve given, I gave one of my employees a vintage Hans Wegner Papa Bear chair for her wedding.

You can’t go wrong with Hermès playing cards. Parade bridge playing cards (set of two) by Hermès, $100.

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What’s your go-to host gift?

You can’t go wrong with Hermès playing cards. Parade bridge playing cards (set of two) by Hermès, $100.

What is your everyday bedding? 

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What is the best design book to give as a gift?

1968: Radical Italian Furniture. It recontextualizes radical furniture in the context of today’s aesthetic tastes. It was just published May 2014. It’s a great present for a design aficionado. 1968: Radical Italian Furniture, by Maurizio Cattelan and Pierpaolo Ferrari (Deste Foundation/Toilet Paper, 2014), $80.

My wife and I have Frette linens. The quality is unmatched. Once you get used to it, there’s no going back.

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What is your everyday bedding?

My wife and I have Frette linens. The quality is unmatched. Once you get used to it, there’s no going back.

What’s the best wedding present you’ve given or received?

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Richard Wright founded 20th- and 21st-century design gallery and auction house Wright in Chicago in 2000.

Last year, I got married to Valerie Carberry. Val made a video of all the times we’ve spent together with my two sons and presented it to me at the rehearsal dinner in Todi, Italy. I still cry when I watch it. It was an unforgettable gift. In terms of what I’ve given, I gave one of my employees a Hans Wegner Papa Bear chair for her wedding. Papa Bear chair by Hans Wegner, $2,895. 

What would you give to a recent college graduate? 

I always give a college graduate money. They need it.

What is your go-to kitchen appliance?

I can’t live without my old-school juicer. You have to grind the fruit by hand. I think the brand is called Juicerator, or maybe it’s just me that calls it that. The boys love it; I put them to work making drinks in the morning. 

What is the best design book to give as a gift?

1968: Radical Italian Furniture. It recontextualizes radical furniture in the context of today’s aesthetic tastes. It was just published May 2014. It’s a great present for a design aficionado. 1968: Radical Italian Furniture, by Maurizio Cattelan and Pierpaolo Ferrari (Deste Foundation/Toilet Paper, 2014), $80.

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