Thursday, December 24, 2015

The Kindness of Strangers

When I returned home from work yesterday, I found a large box had been delivered to my door, and this was inside.....

It is two feet high, and covered in a variety of fabrics, felt flowers and ornaments

This little tree was made by Carmen Bury, the lovely woman I met at the Manhattan Vintage Show in New York in October.  Ms. Bury also made the spectacular coat I was thrilled to wear for a few minutes at the show.  Apparently Ms. Bury received some commissions after the Vintage Show, and she wanted to thank me for my part in showing off the coat to a larger audience.  I was touched by her generous gesture, and delighted to be the recipient of a piece of her art.   I am always surprised by the warmth and openness of many of the people I have met on my visits to New York City.  People who say they find New Yorkers unfriendly are obviously not meeting the same people I do. 

This gift got me thinking about what "The Christmas Spirit" means.   I'm glad many people see Christmas as a time to share their good fortune with others in need, but I wish the giving spirit could be spread out over the entire year.   Even if you are not able to give time or money, never underestimate the effect that a kind word or gesture (like a handmade gift) can have on someone's day.  Perhaps they have reached the end of their proverbial rope, and your kindness adds another knot for them to hang onto. 

I wish all my readers a peaceful and happy holiday season.  May you be lucky enough to share good food and good conversation with people whose company brings us joy, and not stress.


  1. How beautiful, and how sweet of her to send this tree. I went back to look at the post with the coat because I hadn't looked at it before. OMG! That coat is spectacular, and you make a fabulous model!

    May you also enjoy the best of the holidays - good food, good company and dreams that just might come true.

  2. I shake my head in awe at this unexpected kindness. What a beautiful beautiful tree, so thoughtfully decorated. And to find it on your doorstep makes it even more special. This is an inspiration and at such an appropriate time of year. You are right about the knots in the ropes.

  3. I read your blogs and enjoy them immensely, but have never commented before. My friends are surprised I read a fashion blog because my wardrobe consists of nothing but jeans and turtlenecks. But I enjoy your writing style, photographs, and your exuberance for life.
    I was very touched by today's entry and wanted to say that your blog entries are a tiny gift in our inboxes for all of us who subscribe.
    This has been a particularly difficult festive season for my family, and I too agree about the knots in the rope.

  4. Oh that is just wonderful, Shelley. A better story cannot be had, made, bought or borrowed. or tree for that matter. Here's to you and your powerful ability to connect!

  5. That is a beautiful tree!
    Thirteen years ago I was a single mother of two toddlers, very low income, so I signed up for a secret Santa-type thing for the kids. I was so surprised - to tears - that they had included things for me. I've made sure to let my kids know that that's the true meaning of Santa - and we do the same for others when we can.
    Happy holidays to you, awesome style goddess that you are!

  6. what a wonderful surprise. Kindness is free, why not spread it around?

    Merry Christmas/Happy Hoildays

  7. Isn't that wonderful? How sweet.

    Hope the rest of your Christmas is just as special!


  8. That was indeed kind. And I think lovely people live everywhere. Just like nasty people. But some people do have the good fortune to ooze openness and friendlyness and they meet different people from the ones who are closed and grumpy. And might need it more. Live is a struggle for some.
    Glad you ooze the right vibes.
    Merry Christmas.

  9. That's such an awesomely nice thing to do! I love it.

    Thank you for the reminder - I struggle at this time of year, and I must make more efforts to be patient and kind.

  10. How lovely! I agree with you, the season is about kindness. And wouldn't it be grand to have more of that all year? And I agree as well about NY-ers - some of the best people I've met anywhere. xox

  11. That's absolutely lovely, even Xmas-phobic little me would give that a home.
    What a wonderful gesture, that coat looked incredible on you and hopefully you've given Carmen bags more exposure. xxx

  12. That is great and glad to see that designers who benefit from a blog post reciprocate!

  13. This is a gorgeous piece of art! I agree with you, in that I find the people of NYC incredibly kind and generous. Hope your holiday season was as special as you are!

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