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Celebrating A Slice of England

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I immediately wanted to host an event after seeing this beautifully decorated table (and photos below) on the Instagram account of @IndiaHicksStyle. The accompanying comment said “This time last week. Slice of England.” After a bit of digging around online, I came to learn that this lovely table was designed for a dinner held last week in the garden of  “American Farm”, the country English home of India Hicks and her partner David Flint Wood. The event celebrated India’s new book “India Hicks: A Slice of England” released earlier this year. Every guest received a copy of the book. But you don’t have to feel left out…you can purchase your own copy here. 

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images via @indiahicksstyle

Fascination with Orchids

I received an email recently about the upcoming Fascination with Orchids show that, regretfully, I will have to miss. But I have a good excuse and you’ll have to read tomorrow’s post to learn why I won’t be able to attend. I digress…There are countless varieties of orchid plants that come in a variety of beautiful shapes, colors, and sizes. They get a bad rap for being known as difficult to grow. My mother-in-law had the magic touch when it came to orchids and I always enjoyed seeing her collection. I will admit that they can be finicky. But if I can grow them anyone can. They need just the right amount of light and if you find that sweet spot where they are happy do not move them. Years back they seemed like the “it” plant in home decor and they would show up in almost every magazine spread. To me, they will always be a classic and one plant that I consistently keep in my own home and on my desk at work. If you live in Southern California and are looking for something to do this weekend shop by the show this weekend, September 23-34, from 10 am to 5 pm. at South Coast Plaza. There will be orchid vendors from around the world offering an array of unique varieties, as well as displays and helpful seminars. And if you need a few ideas on how to display your new orchids then here are a few bits of inspiration. decorating with orchids_Reviving Charmdecorating with orchids_Reviving Charm 1decorating with orchids_reviving charm 4decorating with orchids_Reviving Charm 3decorating with orchids_reviving charm 5decorating with orchids_reviving charm 6decorating with orchids_Reviving Charm 8decorating with orchids_reviving charm 9decorating with orchids_reviving charm 11decorating with orchids_Reviving Charm 10

Kindness Is Always in Style

Yesterday was Administrative Professionals Day. Did you do anything for your staff or were you treated to something special? As a way of saying “thank you” for all my staff’s hard work and helping make my job a little bit easier there were several treats arranged for them throughout the day. One of them included a delivery of beautiful flowers. My regular florist couldn’t deliver to the office as early in the morning as I had hoped and I did not want them delivered a day before. I opted to reschedule some dinner plans in order to pick up the flowers myself the night before. I’ve used my florist for many years and when they heard of my dilemma, they offered to make a special arrangement for me to stop by after normal business hours to pick up the floral arrangements myself. It was a wonderful gesture, an act of kindness, and fabulous customer service….which reminded me of the many reasons I continue to be a loyal customer. When I got home I carefully unloaded the flowers only to have to reload them in the morning. I also got up extra early yesterday morning to allow time to pick up some breakfast treats and get into the office before anyone else. I wanted to make sure each arrangement was placed perfectly on the recipients desk so they had a pretty surprise to look at first thing when they walked into the office. What they didn’t know about was all the behind the scenes activity that took place to make it all happen. Hopefully, I made it look effortless.

When I loaded the flowers into my car I couldn’t help but notice that they matched the red leather interior perfectly!

To put it simple: “Treat others as you would want to be treated”.  Words to live by. If you search the internet you can find countless quotes about kindness. Here are just a few that I wanted to highlight for you today.

Kindness is more than deeds, it is an attitude, an expression, a look, a touch. It is anything that lifts another person.  –Plato

The smallest act of kindness is worth more than the greatest intention.  –Kahlil Gibran

Kindness. One of the greatest gifts you can bestow upon another. If someone is in need, lend them a helping hand. Do not wait for a thank you. True kindness lies within the act of giving without the expectation of something in return.

Kindness is behaving in a way that makes people feel good when they are around you.

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I couldn’t end this post without specifically mentioning my florist, White House Flowers. I couldn’t have pulled this off without their assistance. The owner, Mary, and her assistant Fernando always take great care of me and always remember my preferences.

If you are in need of a florist in Southern California, then definitely give them a try.  They really care about their customers, provide the freshest flowers and offer great customer service. Don’t forget to tell them that Vanessa sent you!

White House Flowers
9855 Flower Street.
Bellflower, California 90706-5408

Phone: (562) 925-1238

Tuesday Tip No. 6

As I was putting this post together I realized that several of my Tuesday Tips involve the use of fresh flowers. I guess that’s because flowers can create instant impact, often on the cheap and easy. With Spring officially here, I am already starting to see blooms appear on the trees in our front yard. A recent article in Victoria Magazine (that includes the photos highlighted in this post) reminded me that twigs and branches shouldn’t be overlooked as a decorating touch. Those with beautiful blooms can be particularly stunning when brought indoors. With very little effort you can create a stylish arrangement using something readily available right outside your own door. decorating with branches via Reviving Charmtuesday tip no 6 via Reviving Charmdecorating with branchesdecorating with branches via Reviving Charm 4decorating with branches 3decorating with branches via Reviving Charm 2

Cowboy Chic

I recently had a reader contact me about providing inspiration for western décor. Admittedly, I was initially perplexed at the request given the typical nature of my usual content. But I soon became intrigued with the idea of coming up with western décor that is stylish without being overly kitschy. I said to myself…challenge accepted! Whether you (or someone you know) is decorating a primary home, a vacation cabin or putting on a party with a western theme, here are a few ideas to spark your creativity. One word of advice: Don’t overload a space with all things western. Instead, carefully curate a few pieces and mix them in with a more modern decor. This juxtaposition will help keep things looking fresh without being too literal.

Home Design & Decor
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Flatware (last photo) and book available here.  If you are looking for a new pair of cowboy boots to create your own floral arrangement (or to wear!) be sure to check out some unique styles here. 

Source information & additional inspiration is available on my Pinterest board, “Western Style”. 

TUESDAY TIP NO. 5: A UNIQUE CONTAINER FOR FLORAL ARRANGEMENTS

Flowers have been on my mind since my recent visit to the world famous Nuccio’s Nurseries. It’s hard to think about Spring at the moment but it will be here before you know it. Fresh flowers are my favorite part of the season and I can’t wait for all the springtime blooms and freshly cut flowers to bring indoors. I am always looking for creative ways to display flowers and I love the idea of using old cans as a container to display them. tuesday-tip-no-5-floral-arrangement-ideas-via-revivingcharm-1This photo features a vintage oyster can that would be perfect for a seaside home although any metal can will do. Whether the can is vintage or new, be sure to select one that has a particularly unique graphic design. A centerpiece like this is sure to become a fun topic of conversation.
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If you ever decide to use a Tuesday Tip I’ve shared here, be sure to drop me a note and let me know. I’d love to hear how you’ve incorporated these tips into your own lifestyle.

Image via Coastal Living Magazine.

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RECONSIDERING CARNATIONS

Did you know that the carnation is the flower of the month for January? Since we’re being honest here, I’ll admit that carnations are not my first choice of flower. Or second. Or third choice. For as long as I can remember I’ve never liked carnations. They’ve always seemed like such a generic flower and used as inexpensive “filler” in floral arrangements. Friends and family that know me well have learned to never include carnations in bouquets they send me. Even when I place an order with my florist Mary (for myself or as a gift), she always reminds me that she remembers my preference. “I know, I know…no baby’s breath or carnations,” she says.

Don’t tell anyone but I think I *might* be reconsidering my position on this matter. I hate to admit it but over the last couple of years I’ve had a secretly growing appreciation for the carnation. I might be eating my words (not the first time…or the last) but I am going to go out on a limb here and say that maybe this humble little flower is underrated.

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Image via Sayeh Pezeshki

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Image via Eddie Ross

There is definitely something to be said about a flower that lasts such a long time after it has been cut. Plus, the fact that they are so inexpensive is another perk. While I am not going to unequivocally dismiss my position, I did want to share a few pictures that have me thinking that I might have to give carnations a fair chance. carnations-via-revivingcharmtips-for-arranging-carnations-via-revivingcharm

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Image via Floret Cadet

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The beautiful pink carnations above and below are from the book Flair: Exquisite Invitations, Lush Flowers, and Gorgeous Table Settings” by Joe Nye. This book has been in my library since it was published in 2010 and I reference it often for inspiration. It’s visually stunning and packed with lots of entertaining tips. If you love to entertain, I highly recommend this book. It’s also a great book for gifting.carnations-joe-nye-book-flair-via-revivingcharm-1carnation-comeback-via-revivingcharm

After reviewing the pictures to be included in this post, I realized that carnations are appropriate for almost any season and for any holiday. Wow…another argument in favor of the carnation!carnations-for-fall-via-revivingcharm-1carnation-flower-arrangements-via-revivingcharmb8a43cf05d77e6cb2fc4f0aa833178d4

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I previously posted about Carolyne Roehm’s inspiration for this tablescape. If you missed it, be sure to check it out HERE.

THE ALLURE OF BURGUNDY

Burgundy is one of my longtime favorite colors to wear. It compliments my dark hair and skin tone and I will almost always fetch a compliment while wearing this color. For me, burgundy is one of those “feel good” colors. I’m sure you have one of those….a color that just makes you feel your best. It’s usually a color you start seeing around this time of the year. However, it really seems to be a color that is dominating this year in both fashion and home decor. I love when those two world collide. I couldn’t be happier to give this color the recognition it deserves. So let’s celebrate the allure of burgundy…

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I have mentioned before that my favorite brand of lipstick is by Yves St. Laurent. I couldn’t publish a post without my sharing my favorite lipstick color at the moment. I am not a fan of the name (#54 prune avenue) but the color is beautiful. favorite-lipstick-of-reviving-charm-ysl-54-prune-avenue

By the way, you may have noticed that I made some subtle updates to my site. One of them includes adding a new category of topics that is called “Series: Color Stories”. I get a lot of compliments on my posts dedicated to color so I thought I would make it easier for you to find these posts in one  dedicated spot. You can still find them in the “all posts” category. And of course, if you choose to follow along (and hope you do), you will always be notified of the latest posts. Thanks for visiting Reviving Charm! Have a great weekend.