Remember When...?

I love this quote at the bottom of one of my favorite blogs:

"A room without accessories reminds me of a woman who got dressed and forgot to put on her jewelry!" - Heather Clawson aka Habitually Chic


It is a huge trend right now to stack your arms full of bracelets and bangles, watches and wrist adornments...as many as you can, PILE THEM ON! Annnnd....I totally dig it. For quite some time now I have been proudly rocking an arm full of what-nots. It makes me feel slightly edgy and totally creatively expressive and fashion forward....but there is more to it than that...




One of my favorite new-to-me blogs, Design Darling, posted a question the other day asking "what does your stack consist of?" Seems like a fairly simple question right? Wrong (well at least for my analytic self). When I was roughly 16 years old I read an article (in Vogue, I believe) which offered a highly personal and intimate glimpse into Donatella Versace's jewelry box. Each and every brilliant bauble held significant intrinsic value (aside from the hefty monetary value) as each piece told a very specific story, elicited a memory of a loved one, or recalled a special time in her life. HER LIFE. Her jewelry box was essentially a timeline, a movie, a biography, of HER LIFE. I thought that was beyond amazing to be able to open your jewel box to get ready and instead of glimpsing in at mounds of sentimentally void beads be able to smile as you ran your fingers over familiar friends and stories quietly pondering which to relive today. From the moment I read that article I decided I would never invest in or wear any jewelry (expensive or costume) that didn't have some nostalgic memory attached (obviously jewelry that people give to me is already intimately special and esteemed in my heart). This, in turn, has made my jewelry boxes highly prized treasure chests and guarders of my happiest and fondest reminiscence.

On average, this is usually what my left arm looks like (full of vintage family pieces and gifted special occasions)

 My mirrored box is a special gift from my Aunt Patti for my graduation. I surround my box with special black and white pictures of my family, friends, beloved dog, and boyfriend so the entire experience of finding something to wear allows me a few moments a day to be completely sentimental, thankful and grateful for the people in my life, and blessed for the memories I have with them.

I thoroughly believe that the very involved personal attachment I have to each of these solidified memories is the same manner in which you should accessorize your home. You should surround yourself in things that will extract a smile every time you glimpse upon them. Don't invest in pieces just to fill the space, just because it matches, just because it looks empty, just because it was on sale, just because the magazine says it's chic, just because...It would be better to have a completely empty bookshelf than one that was filled with things that meant absolutely nothing to you, but looked pretty. Building a jewelry archive or home collection takes time. But that is where the best stories, memories, moments, designs occur...OVER TIME.

Some personal examples next to my desk right now:

A silk magnolia flower that me and my mom both made and turned into pins/hair accessories last May prior to my moving to Charleston for the summer for work attempting to hid the "used" book stickers on my design books (please excuse the exposure of that).Reminds me of all my fond experiences there.

A hand sewn lace fan my dear, wonderful roommate got me while studying abroad in Italy playing peek-a-boo with some of my favorite issues of Vogue and Domino. Reminds me of the closeness of our friendship despite vast distances.

A clam shell me and my boyfriend both found at the beach one year (he has one too) holding my most prized rings.

It may not be the trendiest most stylish bookshelf and desktop display but that is perfectly okay with me because every time I sit down to work I am able to catch these items out of the corner of my eye and briefly smile.

So what are your most valued valuables? What memory do they mark? How do you display them?

Here's to Remembering,

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