Sun, 22 December 2019
Season 6 of The Simple Sophisticate is well underway as 2019 wraps up and we head into 2020. As I reflect back to September 2014 when the show premiered, I could not have fathomed the engagement it would inspire, the topics and books we would cover and explore nor the people who would wish to be on the show.
This year, Apple changed its categories for podcasts, and in so doing prompted me to reconsider how to label the show for new and potential listeners, which turned out to be a boon for the show and new listeners discovering it.
With the help of you, the listeners the podcast and readers of TSLL, the selections that were decided upon (#1— Education: Self-Improvement; #2 — Society & Culture; #3 — Leisure: Home & Garden) in no small part contributed to the podcast reaching #33 in the United States' ALL-Time Self-Improvement podcasts. And, as the podcast has a strong Francophile following, when episode #269 - 32 Ways to Be Parisian Chic went live earlier this month, the podcast soared to #5 for the daily Self-Improvement podcasts.
As listeners share how and when they listen to the show — while running the NYC marathon, while spring cleaning, while starting the day in Australia, while commuting via car or train or subway, while walking/running with their pups, while strolling along a river in the European countryside, while strolling through a park throughout the vast United States, while winding down at the end of the day in a cozy abode in Canada, and in so many countries around the globe as listeners go about their lives (the show ranked #16 in South Africa, #12 in Hong Kong, #23 in Romania, #6 in Oman, and #2 in Spain!) — I am humbled as well as tickled to realize how TSLL community stretches far and wide, but more so how similiar we are no matter where we call home regarding our interests to live a life of contentment, a life of deep joy and understanding of the world around us as we strive to contribute positively to its future as we savor the everyday moments.
How to rankings work? The combination of number of downloads and positive reviews and rankings drive up a show on the charts, and for both of these contributions by listeners, I want to say thank you. So many of you have left positive reviews and high rankings, and as I try to share all of the reviews, sprinkling a few in each podcast episode, thank you for your time to share specifically what draws you to the show. (you can leave a review here on Apple iTunes)
Mon, 16 December 2019
When it comes to the winter holiday season, cozying in asks of us to be inside our homes far more than we would be during the warmer months which is why our homes need to become a sanctuary inside which we love spending time.
Over the years my approach to how I decorate for Christmas, the New Year and the wintery weather has evolved, and this year I am excited to share with you 12 ways I have simplify, and at the same time curated decor that surrounds me and those who spend time in my home with warmth, comfort and an abundance of joy.
Visit the full Show Notes on The Simply Luxurious Life — thesimplyluxuriouslife.com/podcast271
Sun, 8 December 2019
"We have the choice to change our life, to be courageous and to live true to our heart, one that will see us die and live without regret." —Bronnie Ware, author of The Top Five Regrets of the Dying
Dying, death and loss has unwantingly been on my mind this past fall. Rest assured, today's episode will uplift, inspire and remind, but the reason I share what has been occupying my mind these past few months is because I likely would not have picked up Bronnie Ware's new book The Top Five Regrets of the Dying. But I am very grateful that I did.
Ware's entire book shares her experience working in the palliative care system in New South Wales, Australia, which sprung up from what was originally a blog post. Subsequently, after more than three million people viewed the post, it was thankfully turned into a book which shares detailed five lessons and those special individuals she had the opportunity to spend time with in their final days. Along the way, Ware shares her own journey of self-growth and discovery and how she has applied the lessons she has learned.
It is not lost on me that often the books we need find us, and after the loss of a special woman in my life who was very much akin to a grandmother, who having lived a wonderful life of nearly 95 years reminded me with each visit and time spent together the power of a happy heart, and after a cancer scare with one of my parents (they are in full recovery now), along with my beloved boys (my dogs) each in their double digit years, it quickly becomes apparent that life is short, precious and up to each of us to make it something we are proud to have lived, shared and experienced.
While we will all make mistakes in our lives, that is the gift of being a human :), we do not have to suffer needlessly if we are willing to open our minds to the stories and life experiernces of others. In the past ten years I have come to enjoy reading biographies and autobiographies to soak up as many life lessons as I can that I would have otherwise not known about (Julia Child is one of my favorite teachers, but so are many others). Today what I would like to share with you are nine Life Lessons that caught my attention as I was reading Bronnie Ware's book. While her book focuses on five overarching regrets, interwoven amongst each are smaller, no less important lessons, to understand and apply to our lives moving forward.
As I was reading, I began to celebrate as I discovered that much of what is shared aligns with living a simply luxurious life, and especially if you've read TSLL's 2nd book, you will know that nearly all of these topics are explored in depth. I cannot fully understand the emotional strength Bronnie exercised in each of her experiences, as well, and more importantly, the individuals who shared their stories in their final days, but I am determined to make sure their lessons are learned and applied forward as we go about our daily lives. Let's take a look at the list.
Visit the full Show Notes on The Simply Luxurious Life — thesimplyluxuriouslife.com/podcast270
Sun, 1 December 2019
"Everyone knows you don't have to be born in Paris to dress like a Parisian." —Ines de la Fressange, author of Parisian Chic, Encore!: A Style Guide (2019) with Sophie Gachet, co-author
In 2011, Karl Lagerfeld's muse and the first model to sign an exclusive modeling contract with the haute couture fashion house, in this case Chanel, Ines de la Fressange published her first Style Guide. Becoming quickly a New York Times Book Review bestseller, eight years later, she has updated her much applauded Parisian Style Guide.
Parisian Chic, Encore!: A Style Guide was recently released this past November. Having written a detailed a review when her original book was first published (have a look), the updated version contains 50% new content, 300 full-color illustrations/photographs, and is completely refreshed. Now admittedly, much of the original holds true and is still a valuable resource, but if you too have the original copy, you know that the latter half of the book is a resource of addresses of boutiques, restaurants and many other Parisian locales recommended by de la Fressange. As one might imagine, these had to be updated.
Today, what I'd like to share with you are 32 Ways to Exhibit Parisian Chic style whether in your wardrobe, home or lifestyle because whether we live in Paris, wish to visit Paris or not, incorporate one or many of her style tips will help us to cultivate our own unique signature style. Let's get started.
~Be sure to tune in to the audio version as much more detail is shared on each of the items shared below.
1.Muster up courage and ignore the trends (p.13)
2. Create a vintage collection of your own (p.14)
3. Remember to let your style evolve (p.30)
4. Practice discretion when it comes to labels and accessories (p.12)
5. Take on the role of 'buyer' for your own wardrobe (p.15)
6. Hone the skill of 'mixing things up' (p.16, 26, 28, 29)
Wear a high end designer pant with a simple white shirt
7. Mix patterns and soften with white (p.21)
8. Know the universal rule of proportions when it comes to good style
9. Simple is good
"Not everything you buy has to be interesting. A nice scoop neck sweater is a must. You can wear it with jeans and a long necklace —it will look elegant without being boring." (p.32)
10. Welcome men's accessories into your wardrobe - especially belts
Worn and too long for a traditional outfit, belts with such descriptors are perfect for cinching everything that needs a waist. (p. 27)
11. Avoid fashion faux pas (p. 34-37)
Such as T-shirts with supposedly funny sayings and leggings (unless you are headed to yoga class or a your daily workout is calling).
12. Style idea for a date - cropped black trousers, a man's white button-up shirt and low heeled or flat shoes, but don't forget nice lingerie (p.41)
13. Don't be afraid of sneakers (stylish and thoughtful, bien sûr) (p. 45)
14. When packing for a getaway, bring denim (p.48) . . .
. . . also a loose shirt, white jeans, two long-sleeved shirts, a white cotton dress (and to view the entire list visit page 48-49).
15. Buy the right leather jacket . . .
. . . which is "as close fitting as possible with high armholes and patch pockets". (p. 54)
16. Never follow diets. Rather follow Ines' golden rule:
"Pay attention when you are eating and stop when you are no longer hungry." (p. 171)
17. Remember the truth about dinner parties - they are coming to see you, not for a gourmet meal (p. 170)
18. Dinner party - a simple, yet delicious dinner, followed by an amusing dessert (regarding the presentation). (p. 170)
19. Stick to a central theme in your home decor
View/Listen to episode #228 - 21 Parisian Decor Ideas from Ines de la Fressange's New Decor Book
20. Make decor statements with a single piece of furniture - a chair, a settee.
Thoughtfully chosen items can stand-out against a neutral palette
21. Welcome the scented candles . . . to every room
22.Harmonize containers in the kitchen (p. 152)
23. Use vases to store kitchen utensils (p. 152)
24. Display a painting on an easel instead of the wall (p.156)
25. Collect and display a variety of ceramic items on a table - trés Parisienne (swap regularly) (p. 156)
26. Choose an inviting sofa (large, comfortable, plush is that is your liking) (p. 156)
27. Keep your eye out for a vintage stepladder to place next to a bookshelf (p. 156)
28. Unification in the closet - hangers of the same color
29. Give everything in your closet a front-row seat
So you can see what you have and wear it! (p. 162)
30. Don't worry about buying last season's trends
31. Walk or bike as much as you can instead of hopping into a car (location dependent)
32. Know what true effortless style is . . . "self-confidence and a smile" (p.26)
SIMILAR POSTS/EPISODES YOU MIGHT ENJOY:
How to Cultivate Your True Style All Year Long, episode #149
Parisian Chic: A Style Guide by Ines de la Fressange, TSLL's review (2011)