the art of self care

bonjour dear friends, it’s been a while since I sat down to blog. In fact it’s been over a year which is really unbelievable since this used to be my favorite place to be. wordpress has a new format and now that i’m over the learning curve i can get back to doing what I love, being here!

so what’s changed in this past year? well, only everything. the outside world has shifted and that brought our homes more into focus. we began nesting, cleaning out closets and trimming the excess.

we created areas to work, relax and rest, inspired by our need for personal spaces, and we reignited our love for just being home.

we also found that self care would be come a priority. but with everyone home, it wasn’t always so easy to find.

i’ve always felt a vanity is the ultimate refuge; an intimately personal realm we don’t share. it’s a sacred space that is ours alone. they seem to come in and out of fashion but now more than ever, they’re an essential non negotiable. some may see it as excessive but i believe being self-ish in this way is like putting your oxygen mask on before helping someone else when on a plane. what good are we to anyone else when we haven’t replenished ourselves? i would argue that the vanity has the ability to restore, reset and revive us on many levels, from physical to mental and emotional.

vanities are nothing new, in fact they’ve been around for thousands of years, maybe more. so what is it exactly is the magic that a table, mirror and chair combo does for us? well, it’s a combination of eternal needs; a moment of me time, the ultimate luxury, full focus on you alone. it’s a timeless concept. in fact we see in early pompeii paintings like this one below (showcasing the age old dilemma of what looks to be a bad hair day) that this issue knows no time or bounds.

heck, even cleopatra had a vanity, which is no surprise really, they were already thousands of years old by her time. we tend to attribute the dressing table to the french but maybe it’s more that they just rebranded them. their innovative and lavish designs brought glamour into the 1700s.

so, if women through all of eternity have been setting up this private world all to themselves, why shouldn’t we enjoy this little indulgent tradition in the Age of Self Care? we should!

You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.

Buddah

alors then, what does it take to have a vanity or dressing table in a modern world? luckily for us we’re living in a minimalistic age where it really doesn’t take much. a table, a mirror, the perfect seat, and of course all the accoutrements that make it personal. but it’s only natural (and fun) to gather inspiration from the past, and who can resist the early designs and historical illustrations of daily life?

the designs were elaborate in the 1700s but still, many have gone with simplicity throughout the years

it’s hard to imagine life in the 1500s and 1600s but rain or shine, feeling well or not, they pulled it together and put their hair and faces on.

i get such a kick out of these old plates…pinterest is full of wonderful rabbit holes to go down and discover. in fact, all images were found there on my vanity board. pinterest.com/parisapartment/vanities

what is it about a woman looking into a mirror that is so alluring?

And lest we think the vanity belongs to women alone, take a look at these old illustrations from hundreds of years ago where men were no strangers to the importance of the vanity.

so dear friends, as we take this new era, to go with the flow of changes we’re all experiencing, it seems that the most important action we can do is one of being self-ish, and that’s a far cry from selfish. have a great weekend!

Self compassion is simply giving the same kindness to ourselves that we would give to others.

C. Germer

May 1, 2021. Life, Vanities. 12 comments.

the ultimate altar

hey guys, happy monday. i’ve been goofing around tonight collecting pics, you know how we do! i love pinning cause it gets me out of my head and into a fantasy frame of mind.  tonight i honed in the vanity.

the variety of vanities is as varied as anything else, but somehow it’s a little more personal. where else can you claim complete domain over your territory and have a place where everything you use each day is where you left it? (don’t forget this is a fantasy)!

some are extravagant, but they can be as bohemian as they are luxe

it’s a place to call your very own. a world unto itself, completely self sufficient requiring only a chair, table and mirror.

each is as individual as the woman who runs it

yes it’s a luxury but an easy one to fit into any boudoir.

in fact, let’s face it, what’s a boudoir without one?

it’s a tranquil place to  start each day.

i hope to get a flat surface myself one day soon

this one was made from an old frame below:

oooh these photogs, i could eat them up!

choosing the right style is the trickiest part. till then, a mirror and table will do, it doesn’t take much to get the ball rolling and every little addition is like a little piece of artwork being added to a beautiful living sculpture!

what starts out the same becomes completely different depending on the gal. but one thing’s for sure, it’s your very own universe and something you really don’t share, unlike anyplace else in the house and that’s kind of sacred.

well the clock is striking midnight so that’s my cue. more tomorrow,  bonne nuit!

March 1, 2011. Vanities. 10 comments.