Best Personalized Gifts

Looking Glass Designs

Andrea Heugatter used to be a technical writer (specialty: engineering) at Washington University. But she said goodbye to all that last year in order to better employ her eye for detail: making cute little-somethings for people who have everything. At her Lafayette Square shop, Looking Glass Designs, Heugatter now punches away all day at a sewing machine, stitching custom messages on spa towels, cocktail napkins and christening pillows. She's just as tickled doing a traditional monogram on a makeup bag as she is crafting something witty like "Party at my crib — 3 a.m." on the burp cloth for the friend who just had a baby. The color and ribbon choices are mind-boggling. And the fonts! Easy customers just throw up their hands and say, "Surprise me!" It's the best way to have the recipient say, "That was the sweetest gift ever!"

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