5.11.2020

# chic # elegance

Ten Elegant Things You Own But Probably Never Use



I hope you had a beautiful Mother's Day and felt celebrated. We had a wonderful day.

In today's video, I'm sharing ten elegant things you own, but probably never use. Now I realize The Daily Connoisseur audience is more likely to use many of these elegant things, but the truth is that most people struggle with using their best on a daily basis. Lessons from Madame Chic discusses this very topic in the chapter, Always Use the Best Things You Have.



Today I'm sharing ten elegant things we have at home that we might not use on a regular basis. So let's have a look.
⚜️ A letter opener This is the one I forget to use the most. I frequently open the mail with my bare hands (like a barbarian. Ha!) But a designated mail section in the home can ensure that you open the mail elegantly (and avoid paper cuts) with a letter opener.

⚜️ A fountain pen (or other elegant pen) and ink. We often receive these elegant pens as gifts but rarely do we use them. I know I avoid using my nice fountain pens because my handwriting is not very good (that is actually an understatement). I'm using The Art of Cursive Penmanship right now to practice changing my bad handwriting habits.

⚜️ Your china teacups Now I know many of you don't struggle with this one. I see the Instagram photos you tag me in. So this audience probably does use their very best teacups on a daily basis... but how many people have a beautiful teacup that collects dust on a shelf while they drink their tea from an old mug? Now is the time to use those teacups... the teacup I'm sharing here is the exclusive Victoria Magazine and April Cornell Blue Roses tea set.

⚜️ Your fancy dishes Much like the teacups, our fanciest dishes tend to sit in the cupboards until a special occasion arises. The trouble is that special occasions only arise a few times each year and we rarely use our nice dishes on a regular basis.

⚜️ Daily tablecloths Now tablecloths aren't for everyone and they might not work in your home, but I do like to drape tablecloths on both our dining room and kitchen tables. Our kitchen table is relatively new and has a beautiful wooden top. To avoid the children smashing bits of food into the grooves, I place a clear plastic tablecloth on the table to protect the table from spills and then lay a beautiful cloth on top of that. I then wash the tablecloth at the end of each day (sometimes I'll gather them to wash and will wash them every other day). I find that this protects the table and looks attractive.

⚜️ Using cloth napkins on a daily basis is a wonderful practice, not only because it is more elegant than paper napkins but also because they are better for the environment. These are similar French blue napkins to the ones I show in the video and these are the exact ones I use.

⚜️ Your best clothing on a daily basis. Now, this does not mean we wear our ballgowns to Walmart. This does mean, however, that we wear our nice clothing on a daily basis and not save it for "later". Many men and women spend every day in their comfy sweats and exercise gear. I love to encourage both men and women to dress well on a daily basis. Presentable clothing can be comfortable too and it is always the most elegant choice. For more, check out my Spring Ten-Item Capsule Wardrobe for 2020.

⚜️ Luxurious bath products I know many people who receive luxury bath products as gifts and then proceed to never use them. They sit collecting dust as a decoration in their bathroom. Use your best products just as you would use your best clothing. If you use it all up at least you enjoyed it. The two bath products I feature in the video are Bend Soap Co. Use code DC10 for 10% off and Azalia Spa Goods aromatherapy body oils (Aimee, the owner, is a Daily Connoisseur!).

⚜️ Your best posture This one is free and available to most of us. Unless you have a health condition that prevents you from using good posture, striving to sit and walk straight creates an elegant effect with our appearance. It's also one of the Chic Assignments this month.

⚜️ Classic literature We have beautiful leather-bound volumes of the classics on our shelves, but how often do we take those dusty books of the shelves and read them? I like taking my Leather-bound Sherlock Holmes volume down on a regular basis and reading a short story. I do this with my other classic volumes too. It's food for the mind and very elegant.

Thank you to The Chic Connoisseurs for bringing us today's video.
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Comment of the Week
N McElroy writes, "This thought did cross my mind during this pandemic. My mom would save things until she had "somewhere to go". Perfume, nice things, etc., would go unused and still have tags on it. Somehow that habit rubbed off on me. As another birthday is getting ready to roll around, I am making a sincere effort not to let my "nice" things go unused. My china my mom gave me, my favorite perfumes, my beloved shoes etc., will be worn on a regular, ordinary day. Life is too short to wait and tomorrow is not promised to anyone. Have a great day!"


N McElroy, your comment came at a perfect time for this post. I was so happy to receive it. Let us know how it goes!

I hope you enjoy today's video. Are there any things on this list that you would like to start using again? Let us know in the comments and your comment could be featured as comment of the week.




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8 comments:

Zénaide said...

I had to chuckle when you mentioned tea cups. I have two lovely teacups - my mother was awarded one for remembering Bible verses as a young girl and the other is the only surviving piece of my great-great grandmother's wedding china. Sadly each only holds about two or three sips, so when I've used them, I've spent more time "refilling" than I have "relaxing". ...lol

This post is spot on, Jennifer. I've moved my letter opener to my desk and know I have my grandmother's fountain pen somewhere.

NV4Beauty said...

I wanted to post a picture of my tea set but I don't think it's an option, will have to do that thru Twitter to you, but it was the first time using the set I own. I have three different teaser, all given to me by my mother. They were sets my grandmother owned. I was afraid to use them because they are vintage. Funny thing happened when I used it though. It brought on a flood of memories of my childhood visiting my grandmother in their apartment in RI. Not any particular memories, but enough to bring a smile to my face. So thank you so much for the push to do something different today.

Mafalda said...

Hey Jennifer,
I wrote a comment on one of your YouTube videos a while back, à pretty critical one.
I have since deleted it.

It's the one with the plaid anthropologie coat.

I think.. Well I know.. I was going through something at the time..something pretty sad.

And I just commented without thinking.
Why? Because I wanted you to see the comment and think..
which is why I never explained (I didn't want to have a discussion there with other people)

I was always intending to delete the comment which I did the next day.
I didn't want to leave negativity in your space.. only something to think about.

So,I am a huge fan.
I bought all your books in 2016.
During that time, I was going through such an awful time.
And your books just appeared.

It's the first books I ever got on Kindle.

And I love them because I also lived in France and fell in love with a beautiful way of living..
Although, I have been living a beautiful life since birth.
What with actually using fountain pens, fancy cutlery and letter openers..
But.. with a twist.

I appreciate the fine live as well as the spontaneous, ephemeral life as well..

And I legit love all styles and at the core.. I love people..

My father is a lit/history /philosophy teacher.. with an open mind.
I grew up in a library..

So trust me I understand where you are coming from and I love it.
But I let other people be as well.

And I think what prompted me into actually commenting was..
I see you as a lovely, caring person.

But your comments about dressing can be extreme and hurt the very person you want to help.

For example, if I said your coat was lame..
I like it but it resembles my high school uniform (the plaid) so my opinion would be biased.

It felt awful to say I didn't like it but I am sure it made you feel just a bit offended too.

So too, these people think they are dressing nicely.
It is a different world out there.
And what's beauty and chic to you is an oversized school uniform to me.
(just an example)

And tights etc people seem to like it.
So.. Just saying how awful and inappropriate etc
It just getting them annoyed rather than getting them to dress better.
No one likes to be criticized.

I'm also a teacher and how I get my girls to change.
I don't critique them.
I just do things my way and love them regardless..
AND out of love for me, they try it my way.

And sometimes they don't and that's ok too.
Just advertise positively.
Dress well. Dress well. Dress well.

And also, because I was going through something.. it felt personal.
Because you're someone I look up to who was there during a dark time.
It was just disappointing when someone you admire.. you know.

But, I agree 100% with your life's mission.
Just a little less condemning.

And I know you don't mean to be.
I know you want to change the world and it is your mission.
And it's admirable 🌹

Just a long overdue explanation.
Which I will delete after you see it because.. no lingering negativity.

Sincerely,
Shireen 🌹

Ladylike said...

Hello Jennifer,

Thank you for your post. One of the changes I made during sheltering in place is that I gave away the plain white plates and bowls we had been using for 15 years. I made a small investment in more attractive "Cranberry Italian" plates and bowls from Spode. We are using them every day, and it is a pleasure.

We have always used a tablecloth and cloth napkins. I'm glad my children are old enough that I don't need to wash the tablecloth every day! My daughter and I decorated the napkins using a suggestion from a delightful book called "Scandinavian Gatherings" by Melissa Bahen.

About my 10 item wardrobe, the hardest part for me has always been deciding what to put in it. Here is an idea for others who may be struggling. This spring, I realized that if used all the items I had from one company, (in my case it was Talbots), it would make a perfect wardrobe. I even have a few cardigans and a couple pairs of shoes (extras) from this company. Only a few solid basics were required to round out this wardrobe and make it functional since I am a print-oholic AKA a logophile, and prints don't go with prints!

Regarding books, The Folio Society is a British company that produces lovely illustrated editions of classics. I have collected them slowly over the years. Now I frequently reach for my Folio Society editions of Jane Austen's novels.

Warm best wishes,
Alexandra

Nikola Krátká said...

Hello Jenifer,

You look so lovely in this video!
And, when it comes to the Elegant Things - you are right!

Best wishes,

Nikola

The Daily Connoisseur said...

Zénaide - so funny about refilling the tiny cups. I know what you mean! Sometimes when I want a lot of tea I wonder if I should have a mug instead. I usually just put a tea cozy on the teapot so I can have cup after cup after cup :)

NV4Beauty- thank you! I wish Blogger had a feature that allowed people to post pictures. I bet your set is lovely!

Shireen- thanks for your comment. I receive critical comments every day of my life almost and they don't bother me. I appreciate that you mentioned you were going through a hard time, which is why you left it. I carry on with my message even though it does touch a nerve with people. It's not my intention to touch a nerve, but it does happen :)

Alexandra- The Folio society sounds so good! I need to check them out. Thank you!

Nikola- thank you so much! I appreciate it!

Have a wonderful week, ladies. I hope to see you tomorrow for my afternoon tea vlog :)

With love,

Jennifer

Sharon said...

Hello Jennifer. Loved this post so I pulled out the beautiful cloisonne letter opener I brought home from a trip to Asia. But what do I do with Grandma's china? I love it (Lenox Hamilton). If I use it, I feel like I have to hand wash. Won't the dishwasher take all the gold off (eventually)? So, I just use it for holiday dinners and the occasional Sunday when I'm inspired to spend more time at the sink. I know, I know ....
a very small dilemma in this big old world. (smile)

Susanne said...

Hi, Jennifer. Are you holding a cup and saucer from the new April Cornell set offered by Victoria magazine? They look lovely in the magazine, but they're especially nice to see in a home setting. Enjoy! Susanne