Sunday, April 4, 2010

Live Beautifully Everyday!

Three words I am committed to incorporating in every aspect of my life.  The core of my design philosophy.  Words that fit into any budget or style.  Is this a new concept?  Hardly.  A forgotten one?  Definately.  I am continually amazed at the prospect that many people still subscribe to the notion that there are certain things that must be saved for guests and special occasions.



I was reminded of this again today, when chatting with a friend.  She mentioned that she had company for Easter dinner.  My friend said that her guests loved her china and she was so happy she unpacked it for Easter. And, that the table looked really beautiful.  She seemed almost surprised.  The idea that people deprive themselves of enjoying their own things is perplexing.  Do they not feel worthy of such little pleasures?

Well I am here to say, we are all worthy of using beautiful things and that each day that we wake up and take a breath is a SPECIAL occasion!!!  I encouraged her not to pack them up, but instead display them or relocate them somewhere more accessible.  I suggested she even let go of other items to make room for these dishes she clearly enjoys.  She said this had never crossed her mind!  Sound familiar?  For those of you nodding....I feel very confident your great-grandma would never say "Okay, the minute you hear death is imminent or that Armageddon is not just a movie, you can use the heirloom (fill in the blank) I passed down to you."

Still not convinced?  Consider this.  By using the items you deem special, not only can it improve the quality of everyday living and at the very least bring a smile to your face, but you will always be confident when sharing them with others.  Because: 1.) it didn't cause anyone to break out in hives. 2.) smell bad.  3.) fall apart.

Make a point to use those items you thought were special enough to buy, save and store away in the first place!  I'm talking about linens, dishes, chocolates and everything in between!!!  Otherwise, how do you know what you want to share or gift and what you really want to keep for yourself and use at whim?  Buy a duplicate if it turns out to be something you really love to use, but also want to share.  This way no one was deprived of enjoyment.  Except in the case of the unwanted house guest.  Find the best local hotel possible or simply skip worrying about number one!!!



Repeat often L-B-E!!!

images courtesy of Wedgwood, Diptyque, Williams-Sonoma Home, Lily O'Brien, Hermes

23 comments:

  1. I so agree with this wonderful philosophy of yours. I read a book by Alexander Stoddard years ago and she opened my eyes to this. She took it as far as having the special color of pencils in her pencil holder.I love that thought. What ever you think is beautiful, useful or sentimental should be in your home, If it is not one of those three it should not be there. Her books are great!! I am so glad you wrote this post!! Kathysue

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  2. Ohhh what a great post. We use the 'good stuff' every day. It is disappearing slowly but I would rather it broke from use than, in the case of china, crazed because it dried out from lack of use. It also brings back memories of family times when we were all still here and those memories are more precious on the table than in the cupboard!!!!

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  3. Every fancy piece of furniture and every amazing piece of china should be used everyday! Life is short- there's no reason to wait for anything! Love your post xx

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  4. When my mother passed away, we uncovered box after box of items saved "for good". These were items never seen, never used - good never seemed to have come. I use many of them with regularity and a few have recently been passed down to the next generation for them to enjoy. I was thrilled to see a silver platter, from my mother's wedding, being used for my grand niece's first birthday by her mom. A gift I had given her for her baby shower as a remembrance of her grandmother.

    I visit your blog regularly, and just had to respond to this meaningful and lovely, lovely post. Thank you.

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  5. Oh, I could not agree more. I use my "good stuff" all the time...everyday is to be celebrated! Great post.

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  6. I agree, I need to be better about this but I think you should not save the good stuff just for special occasions.

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  7. I absolutely agree -- my only complaint about busting out the good china, crystal, etc. is that it all has to be hand washed! :)

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  8. I need to take your advice as I have only used our wedding china only twice in 20 years. Such a shame. I'm going to make it my goal to use it more often. Thanks for the motivation! And the examples you used are gorgeous!

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  9. Cheers to living beautifully -I often get grief from those who are hopelessly devoted to paper plates. Think of the landfills!
    Oh well, what can I do but live up to my reputation, cloth napkins, ironed! Water out of a crystal glass tastes so much better! We have used our wedding china for every meal and let me tell you, it is well loved.
    pve

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  10. You're right-I need to break out the Herend Rothschild china that barely sees the light of day--every time I use it, I'm so glad I did.

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  11. My only problem is like Averill, all the hand washing! You don't need to ask me twice on the good chocolates, and now I want Hermes soap! :)

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  12. Oh I like the way you think! Yes indeed! My mom bought her mother the cutest teapot many many years ago. She always thought it was 'too good to use' and kept it in her china cabinet. When she passed away, my mom gave it to me. I use it at least once a week. It just makes my tea all that more tasty! :)

    Good good stuff!

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  13. Hello and thanks so much for stopping by La Lamp Shade today!

    xoxo,

    Raina
    If the Lamp Shade Fits

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  14. I agree! I read Alexandra Stoddard's book, Living a Beautiful Life, years ago and she speaks of the same. I try to treat myself as I would my guests! Like ironing my sheets!
    xx

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  15. It is interesting to me how much people deprive themselves and their loved ones of using something because it is "for company" that almost never comes. Use it, ladies and gents -- you only go around once...

    Thanks for commenting on RD

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  16. i so agree and do try. if however, i possessed hermes soap i wonder if it would ever get used. crazy? yes, sadly yes
    debra

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  17. Nice post. I completely agree. But need to practice more often. It's too easy to get into a rut or a habit and use the same old, not so special things every day. Thanks for the reminder.

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  18. Averill & Zhush, skip the hand washing items for everyday, and think about the other items you have that aren't as high maintenance!

    Lion & Catherine, I loved hearing your stories.

    KS and Renae, I have heard of Alexandra Stoddard, but it's awful to admit I am unfamiliar with her work or her books. Clearly, I need to get my hands on them as she sounds like someone I would care very much about what she has to say!!!

    Debra, treat yourself to a bar of Hermes soap. The scent is so divine it's hard to put into words!

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  19. I totally agree. I used to be one of those who saved things for special times until one night our neighbor's house burned to the ground. The first thing she said to us when we went by to help the next day was to start using everything we had because she lost all of her "for good" items that she never used and will never be able to use. What great advice to use them now. It is a shame not to enjoy what you have purchased. You definitely can't take it with you!

    :) Judy

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  20. I love using my good things! Linen napkins, my grandmother's china...

    That Wedgwood urn is GORGEOUS!

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  21. Brilliantly written and totally inspiring! Cheers, Susan

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  22. I remember reading a comment from Erma Bombeck that one of the things she regretted in life was never pulling out those "special candles" and other 'put back for another-day" items. It stuck with me. However, as I read this, it occurs to me that I have two very special bottles of Bordeaux burning a hole in my wet bar. Is Thursday too early in the week to get started on them?

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