Wednesday, July 22, 2009

freefall into fall

but it's july, right? that was how i felt a few weeks ago roaming through the aisles of target, shocked and chagrined to see that the summer accessories are being clearance ghetto-ized while the back to school merchandise takes center stage. and that was a few weeks ago! by now, they're probably holding s.a.t. prep classes in the flip flop aisle.





no matter how well i come to understand how retail merchandising and buying works, i still feel robbed as a consumer when places like cvs and target are rolling out pumpkin merchandise while i'm looking for sunblock. most of us function at least a quarter ahead at work on the things we do daily. how are we supposed to try and be "present" when we're being pulled into the future all the time? it's upsetting, it really is. LEAVE ME ALONE TO ENJOY THE SUMMER.

sorry.

luckily, not all change is bad, as i was reminded as i looked through the most recent pottery barn catalog. they make fall look like the dream it is, and i can embrace the fact that it is just around the corner. it has always been my favorite season, and these images helped me to remember that and actually start to get excited about it.




both things i loved in this catalog are actually chandeliers (is it a coincidence that i've been dying to replace the one in my dining room?) and are entirely autumnal in style, or at least they'd work very nicely that way. the first is what they call the french wire chandelier and i absolutely adore how it is designed to hold stuff in the middle.

shown here, in autumnal glory, are dried flowers and leaves, but it would totally work to hold all sorts of other things - balls of various materials like moss or rope or shells...you could use ornaments or other holiday themed fillers, fresh or silk flowers, pinecones, faux fruit (tastefully faux of course)...really the possibilities are endless. what i love about something like this is that although the base item is a consistent part of your decor, the details (and therefore the whole look) can change as often as your mood, season or color scheme does. it also looks great empty if you're in a less is more mood.

what's also nice is that pottery barn is showing some other french wire items this season which smartly don't match the chandelier exactly, so it's not that matchy matchy, cloying kind of ensemble. instead, the embellishments are slightly different from one another and they look more evenly acquired over time - not like you went to pottery barn and walked out with a dining room in a bag. then, if it's a style you really love, you can acquire other wire pieces without being concerned about matching.

if i were to get this chandelier (which i'd reeeaaaallllly like to), i also might get the placecard holders or a three-tier stand, like below, to casually pick up on the french wire theme.



the other fabulous chandelier situation this fall is what they're calling the wine bottle chandelier.

i really love the piercing green of the bottles and think it is so unique looking. i could see using this in a chicly rustic kitchen or dining room setting, as it has a real tuscan, vineyardy feel.

however, (and this is often my problem with unusual items at chain retail stores) it's one of those things where everyone knows where you got it. not to say i would ever be secretive about my shopping, because i enjoy sharing my finds (clearly), but i hate the idea that the same "unusual" chandelier is hanging in millions of homes and that it can be spotted from a mile away as "the pottery barn wine bottle chandelier." to me, the second it feels mass-produced, it loses something, and what it loses is the uniqueness that attracted me to it in the first place.

the use of two of these chandeliers in the picture below exemplifies how much is lost when you realize they come out of a factory and a box. for some reason, the french wire chandelier doesn't present this problem to me - probably because it's customizable, and also because it's not as memorable, or as much of a statement piece.

i guess it comes down to the same thing most of us already know, which is that stores like crate and barrel and pottery barn are amazing sources for wonderful but basic glassware, dishes, furniture, kitchen accessories, etc. but when it comes to more unique items, the stores are too ubiquitous for their own good. so in a way, their popularity is their downfall.

but enough about fall!

i am determined to take the encroaching notebooks and scientific calculators and backpacks as a gentle reminder to enjoy the rest of july and august, and take pleasure in as many summer delights as possible - sunsets late enough to enjoy, fireflies, barbecues, wildflowers, outdoor dinners, flip flops, birds, and the distinct feeling of summer that magically descends on memorial day weekend and goes away just as quickly by the time labor day ends.

fall road picture is from http://www.punitsinha.com/

2 comments:

molly said...

though i'm annoyed by the "back to school" display in july, i enjoy the summer clearance prices when it's still summer! i also LOVE the wire chandelier and 3 tier stand!

Maria said...

I walked into Hallmark the other day, saw a Halloween display and almost walked out (i would have but I really needed a card). As you suggested, I will take it as a reminder to enjoy the rest of my summer.

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