Vintage, Boho, Shabby Chic - Blending the Old with the New
January always gives us an opportunity to reflect on the year that just ended and prepare for the upcoming months ahead. We can be grateful for the times that we had and savor some of our favorite moments and memories that we want to keep with us and relive, as well as glean lessons from experiences that we wish could have turned out differently and lay out a plan of how we want to navigate the New Year ahead. As I participated in this exercise of reflection, I noticed that in number of events last year, we successfully incorporated items from the past and blended them into the current celebrations we were working on. It ended up being not only a very personal experience for the hosts and guests but also resulted in a cost savings, too.
Vintage, Boho, shabby Chic, we are all familiar with the terms but do we really recognize the power, emotion and energy behind them that can add that personal touch to any event. Not that different from the tradition of “Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed…” It is not just for weddings anymore! I have found that incorporating personal items in the Décor of a room or in the place settings or centerpieces for the table, elevates the event experience and creates a connection for the guest/family to the event that brand new or rented items just do not possess.
A simple example of this is the Holiday table- Setting the table for a Holiday dinner almost always means using some of your family pieces, either supplementing the heirlooms with new pieces or dropping a vintage piece among the new china- either way blends the generations of hospitality and creates conversation as well as stirs up memories.
At a Memorial we did recently, the honoree had a large collection of bells and the hostess was unsure of how to incorporate them and honor their beloved’s memory. We simply included them with photos on each table and they became the centerpieces that everyone got to take one home! A standard floral centerpiece just did not seem appropriate, so we intermingled a number of smaller vases of flowers with the bells for a unique personal experience that reflected the reason all were gathered together.
When hosting a family event at a hotel or location outside of your home, the easiest way to warm up and personalize the space is with photographs! Grab your photos from your shelves and dressers, include albums you rarely look at, and bring those to scatter about it. They will make perfect conversation starters and bring great memories to those pictured as well as show new family members what the men looked like with hair! Recently at a wedding I attended, the Bride had a table with photos of family members that were no longer with them, but the photos brought them together in spirit. It was a lovely touch. Don’t wait for only Weddings and Funerals! Find ways to incorporate your memories in all your events!
Floral Centerpieces are beautiful but can be expensive. The addition of something personal on the table can allow you to use a smaller centerpiece and incorporate a unique or symbolic item that is part of the theme or purpose of the event or location. Use your imagination! Follow your heart!
As you plan your year ahead, try to take some good memories of the past year with you!