Monday, March 31, 2008

Aunt Annie's Accessories - A...A...A

It's what I love about this experience... I never quite know where my blog is going to go in a given week. I simply trust that the premise of my blog is true... creativity is everywhere and, therefore, ideas will present themselves in an on-going way.

So, here's insight into how my mind works (which for you, Anon, I know is quite a mystery).

My sister, Ann, and my niece came to visit this weekend. Ann loves - and I do mean LOVES accessories. She has a belt collection only to be surpassed by her shoe collection which still is only to be surpassed by her jewelry collection. To put this in some kind of context - she admits to having over 100 pairs of shoes (which could likely mean it is more like 120 or so - with a minor in cowboy boots).

I fully intended to interview my sister for some creative tidbit I could feature for this morning's blog entry. Then, on Saturday morning I got my haircut by Erika my hairdresser (who I love and highly recommend for anyone unfortunate enough to have straight fine hair like mine). She immediately asked about my Easter and then launched into a great story about Easter with her family (underscoring everything I believe about the importance of family rituals and traditions). Albeit after Easter, I immediately thought her story should be shared with our readers.

So here I am. Ann and her Accessories... Erika and her Easter story... you see where this is going, right?.... A, E, I, O, U, and sometimes Y. There are six vowels and I blog six out of seven days a week. A perfect match!!!!! So there will be a theme this week... Vowels. Each day I will feature a creative idea based on a vowel.

Now, here's the problem and hopefully, where you all can come in. I don't have six ideas - one for each vowel. I only have the first two covered - A for Ann and E for Erika. So, I am counting on my trusty and creative readers to provide me with simple words -prompts - for each of the other letters. This can be a ton of fun. You provide me with any random word beginning with either I, O, U, or Y and I will use it to prompt the creative ideas for Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. We're such a participatory group it's likely I'll get more than one suggestion per letter. If so, I will either combine words or select one that strikes my fancy.

Now for Aunt Ann's Accessories... The picture above is Ann modeling her new purchases - three belts, one pair of boots, and one pair of western mules. Mind you, Ann, Allegra (my niece), and Errol live in a New York apartment. So where she stores all her accessories is a mystery. Take note, Tera as there might be an idea or two in here for you. Ann, the city girl, swears she was born in the wrong region because of her love for western attire. She has a collection of over 20 pairs of cowboy boots (all different colors) and just this weekend replaced her prized purple boots with a new pair (see her left foot). When asked where she kept all of her boots (never mind shoes), she shared an idea I thought worth passing along.

Her boots live in her bedroom, high on a hand built shelf that runs along the top of the wall. She describes each pair of boots as being colorful and unique in their own way, so the idea of using them as a creative room decoration seemed not only plausible but somewhat ingenious. Somewhere along the line she also acquired a framed picture of a girl wearing a tattered pair of western boots and that too sits along the shelf - in a way pulling the whole idea together. The lesson here is that some of what we have tucked or packed away, when displayed, can actually serve to be an aesthetically pleasing decoration. By being a little less utilitarian and a little more creative, Ann has effectively - personalized her living space and freed up storage space for something else.

Ann's approach to storing her boots got me thinking.... I was at one of our readers houses a couple of weeks ago and she collects plates from all the places she and her family have traveled. They hang on a wall in her kitchen, adding a lot of great color and serving as a great conversation piece. I don't have anything cool like that... gel pens, ribbon, wrapping paper, over-sized items of all sorts (for another day's blog). About the only thing I could think of are my scarves and neckerchiefs. I worked at Talbots for a number of years and acquired a collection of scarves that rivals Ann's shoe collection. The colors and textures lend themselves perfectly to being displayed. But where and how? That is the question.

Signing off until tomorrow when maybe I will have found an enterprising solution to my envious and endless collection of elegant scarves...

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