“‘Push present?’ That’s not a thing,” my partner Jim said, looking at me incredulously.
We were splashing around in my parents’ pool last summer when I asked him if he’d found me a gift to mark the impending birth of our first child. I was six months pregnant and beginning to feel a little entitled. I wasn’t exactly being serious. But I wasn’t mocking the idea, either.
As jewelry industry professionals, we all know that push presents are, in fact, a thing. Over the past decade, we’ve seen celebrities like Rachel Zoe and Mariah Carey benefit handsomely from the tradition—earning a 10 ct. diamond ring and a diamond and sapphire necklace for their labors, respectively.
Fast-forward to November, when I gave birth to my son, Nikolai (“Niko”) Gregory Sullivan. My sneaky twin sis, Julia, had been at the pool when Jim and I argued the merits of a push present and secretly hatched a plan to buy me the very gift I had in mind, a gold letter “N” pendant. While I recovered from a last-minute C-section in Cedars-Sinai’s postpartum wing, she slipped me a small jewelry box bearing the Stephen Webster logo.
With the help of our dear friend Mark Davidovich, West Coast sales manager for the British jeweler, Jul and Jim, who ended up going halfsies with her, were able to buy me an “N” pendant from Webster’s Fish Tales collection, a line of 26 charms in 18k yellow gold and diamonds, each depicting a sea creature wrapped around a letter of the alphabet. N, in this case, is for newt.
The pendant has been on my neck since Nov. 21, the day Niko was born. And it means everything to me. Sure, some critics complain about the materialism inherent in the tradition, going so far as to suggest the concept is a jewelry industry conspiracy to sell more jewels (do they really think we’re that organized?), but I beg to differ. An arrival as precious as a baby deserves a gift to match.
Speaking of gifts, I’d be remiss not to mention all the wonderful, thoughtful, meaningful, useful, inventive, kind, and super-lovely gifts from friends and colleagues in the industry that have arrived on our doorstep in the weeks and months since Niko’s birth:
A wagon of books from the team at JCK Events; booties, burp cloths, a banana-shape toothbrush, wooden toys, tummy time accessories, and more books from my friends and colleagues at JCK; a deluxe diaper bag and some hilarious bibs from managing editor Melissa Bernardo; baby bath accessories from my boss; a killer Marfa, Texas, T-shirt and cool-boy camo pants from market editor Rima Suqi; a personalized towel for Niko from the team at Omi Privé; baby blankets galore, from my PR friends at Patek Philippe, Zenith, and IWC, and designer Katey Brunini (whose mom knitted us a sweet blue blankie along with a matching pair of booties); a deluxe elephant rattle all the way from Munich-based Hemmerle; onesies and sleepers of every color and style, from JCK photo editor Freyda Tavin, Bell & Ross, Mark and Josette Patterson, and Manos and Kelly Phoundoulakis; a handsome varsity-style jacket from Audemars Piguet; a miracle-working cradle and swing by Fisher Price from Victoria Tse; a basket of adorable baby-boy goodies from Govberg/WatchBox; Burt’s Bees onesies from PGI; a sweet set of swaddles from JCK’s lovely Kansas-based copy editor; a copy of Where the Sidewalk Ends from the one and only Billy Furman; a Georg Jensen child’s plate set from jewelry whisperer Meeling Wong; a fancy Georg Jensen silver spoon from Battalion PR; a set of eight Eric Carle board books from Sylvie Collection’s Sylvie and Ian Levine; commemorative 2019 coins from created-emerald manufacturer Walter Barshai; a set of Leslie Patricelli books and minty children’s bubble bath from JCK publisher Mark Smelzer, and his husband, Eric; and a very generous gift card from A. Lange & Söhne.
If I’ve missed anyone, please forgive me. The bounty of gifts has been unexpected and overwhelming, and I’ve happy-cried more times than I’d like to admit. Thank you so much for helping Jim and me welcome our little boy into the world!