By Charlyne Varkonyi Schaub
New York socialite Tinsley Mortimer wasn’t content with merely going to parties and charity events. She wanted to build her name into a recognizable brand.
Mortimer, who recently moved back to New York after living a few years in Palm Beach, created a handbag and clothing collection sold exclusively in Japan and a Tinsley Pink lip gloss for Christian Dior. She wrote the novel Southern Charm, starred in the TV reality series High Society and appeared on Extra, Access Hollywood, Gossip Girl and E! Her name and image have been in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Cosmopolitan, Harper’s Bazaar and Palm Beach The Island.
Mortimer’s latest project is a collection of colorful dishes and Lucite barware for popcultureliving.com. The dishes – with accents of bright pink, tangerine, aqua and lime green – are coordinated with white and gold dinnerware featuring koi fish, palm trees and bubble borders.
City & Shore What was the inspiration for your new entertaining collection?
Tinsley Mortimer I love Asian elements in the home. In my New York apartment, I have red Chinese lacquer, blue and white porcelain and foo dogs. Koi fish signify love and affection and are important to the Japanese culture. I love color. I grew up with a southern mother who was always entertaining. I feel like I am doing my part. These are high quality but also affordable.
C&S What item would make a good holiday gift from your collection?
TM I love working with Lucite. The collection has great ice buckets and trays, some with faux colored skin. Neon under the lid of the ice buckets makes it look like they are lit. The tequila set is a great hostess gift.
C&S What are your favorite items for gifts?
TM The gift should be something individual for the person. I like giving an orchid. Because I am from Virginia, I give Virginia hams and make little ham biscuits to go with them. I also love giving LL Bean totes that you can customize and put initials on, especially the camo tote bag. Candles are another favorite gift.
C&S Is re-gifting ever OK?
TM I don’t think so. In New York, I get great free makeup and goodie bags. I give some of these things to my mom and she knows I didn’t buy them. I give my doorman things and tell him they were free. It’s OK as long as you are honest.
C&S You have two Chihuahuas, BB and Bambi. Do you ever give holiday gifts to friends’ dogs?
TM When people have pets, they love them as their children. I love when someone gives me a present for my babies. I like to give nice dog bags. You can also get faux fur throws that are great for pets.