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Bull’s Eye! Our Top Picks from the Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday Collaboration

With 24 CFDA-approved designers and over 50 items in total, the Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday Collection collaboration (the name alone is a mouthful) is overwhelming to even the most seasoned collab-crazed shopper. Not only will the collection be in Target and Neiman Marcus stores — and the retailers’ respective Web sites — we’re positive that many of the pieces will be making their way onto eBay straight after the collaboration’s release on December 1.

The Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday Collection spans all of Target’s departments, including pets, children’s (courtesy of Marchesa), homegoods, apparel and accessories, meaning you’ll have to get your hamstrings ready for a real trek through your local Target. We want to help you ready yourself, so we’ve flipped through Target’s virtual lookbook and picked our must-have items and ones that we think you can steer clear of when the collection drops, saving you precious time and your hard-earned collab cash.

Thom Browne for Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 2012

Alice + Olivia for Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our top pick in apparel is the Thom Browne-designed blazer, available for both guys — at $149.99 — and girls, $129.99. We’ve been lusting after a real deal Browne piece after we spied his latest collection in Bergdorf Goodman’s men’s store, but with all of his signatures, right down to the red, white and blue grosgrain detailing, we think this tailored jacket will quell that longing just fine. As with past collabs — and Target’s clothing in general — it’ll take a trip to the tailor to get the fit right (punctuated silhouettes and second-skin tailoring are the mark of a true Thom Browne suit) but at a fraction of the price, which justifies splurging at the tailor. We’re already planning holiday outfits around this lust-worthy piece.

Another item worth throwing elbows over? The Alice + Olivia bicycle ($499.99). It’s the most expensive piece in the collection, but it’s also one of the most memorable. We love a bike, especially if it’s got a fashion slant (see our stylish bike round up here), so this colorful, whimsical two-wheeler is something we hope pops up online. Pedal quickly to get it, because it’s sure to go fast in Target stores, as the Missoni bike did last fall. Also check your Neiman Marcus locations, should the ladies shopping there prefer trendy spikes to spokes. If you can’t snag this Alice + Olivia standout, the luggage trolley — complete with bold stripes — is another piece we’re loving.

Marchesa for Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 2012

Prabal Gurung for Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Budget-conscious fashion fans are always salivating over big names at Target prices (that’s the appeal of the collab after all, isn’t it?), so snagging the Prabal Gurung cape ($79.99) will up your wardrobe cachet and get you one of the season’s biggest trends. And because style mavens might want to give their little girls a head start on their fashion aspirations, a Marchesa dress ($99.99) might just be the perfect sartorial gateway drug.

Marc Jacobs for Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 2012

Oscar de la Renta for Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 2012

As far as stocking stuffers go, we can’t think of a more glam (and impressive) choice than the Marc Jacobs metallic pouches ($69.99). One of our favorite parts of this collaboration is the lack of the “for Target” tagline that’s featured heavily on past collabs such as Mulberry, Jason Wu and more. Instead, the designers take center stage, so you can proudly boast about your designer duds. We’re imagining sheer holiday delight when you give out Marc Jacobs’ go-everywhere pouches, which can easily fit inside a bigger bag and wrangle things such as makeup, receipts from holiday shopping and more.

For pet-lovers, Oscar de la Renta designed a bowl and a leash ($29.99 and $39.99, respectively) for four-legged fans of fashion, which feature the designer’s signature florals.

10 Crosby Derek Lam for Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 2012

Proenza Schouler for Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gift givers will love having the 10 Crosby Derek Lam skateboard ($99.99) ready for last minute gift-giving — it works great for guys and girls and the logo doesn’t lean too far in either direction — and the Proenza Schouler iPad case ($49.99).

Both are great, impressive gifts to hand out, especially if you’re left with someone on your list that’s got it all.

Rodarte for Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 2012

Jason Wu for Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To trim your holiday tree in high style, grab a few sets of the Jason Wu ornaments ($49.99) or a celestial galaxy-motif single ornament from Rodarte ($19.99). Whichever you choose, both are instantly recognizable — Wu’s trademark lace and ¼ber-glam gold finishes give a touch of luxe and Rodarte’s dark beauty shines with this unexpected holiday motif. While we don’t think anyone but Tim Burton would like a tree full of swirling galaxies, we do think that one or two strategically placed spheres would be a welcome holiday surprise.

Brian Atwood for Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 2012

Judith Leiber for Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our editor-in-chief, Michelle, loves a good designer collab with a mass retailer, but she is often lamenting that with said collabs, more often than not, items are instantly recognizable as the low half of the high/low mix. That’s exactly how we feel about the Brian Atwood pieces, which include a pair of round sunglasses ($39.99) and mixed-metal studded leather gloves ($49.99). While both feature Atwood’s signature studding, they’re both so loud and blingy that they can’t help but look a little tawdry. And let’s face it, nobody looks good in circular sunglasses except for style blogger Susie Bubble.

Judith Leiber is known for catering to the upper echelons of the bag world with her detailed minaudiere, but we loved the recent launch of her more affordable, fashion-forward line! So we were disappointed in the mirrored compact ($59.99) that bears her trademark rhinestone designs, but definitely leans downmarket.  Everything from the saccharine colorways to the shape makes us think of a department store beauty counter’s gift with purchase, not a red carpet-worthy clutch.

Rodarte for Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 2012

Rag & Bone for Target + Neiman Marcus Holiday 2012

 

 

 

 

 

We are huge fans of both Rodarte and Rag & Bone, but we were hoping for something with more oomph from both designing duos. While we loved the glass ornament from Rodarte, we were not wowed by the wrapping paper ($7.99)  from the usually uber-thoughtful Rodarte sisters.  We don’t think that holiday wrapping paper has to be staid and traditional, but we can’t think of many people who would want a dark, black gift under their tree — even our most avant-garde leaning friends. And real fans of Rodarte won’t even recognize the pattern when it’s folded around a box. Now, for those of you who insist that you will craft with it or frame it, we know the truth: You’ll never get around to doing it during the holiday rush, and it will be retired to the coat closet with the holiday wrapping and gifts you forgot to send.

While we know that holiday madness can drive even the most sane among us to drink, we say do it in style. And the Rag & Bone shot glasses seemed to be missing a shot of that. We wanted more of that crisp coolness of the fashion collection. We do, however, like the clean lines of the flask and are considering it for some of the stylish gents we know. For holiday libations. we’d opt for the much more luxe Old Fashioned glasses from Altuzarra ($49.99 for a set of four) instead, and save our Rag & Bone bucks for a splurge at their fabulous, new L.A. outpost!

Photos courtesy Target