My husband and I will have been together ten years this fall. Ten years! A decade is mind-boggling when used as a relationship measurement. That's sooo much as my five-year-old might put it. Married six but dating ten. Still. It's much. However, six years ago, we didn't have a big wedding for a bunch of reasons. Most of all, my mother was battling cancer at the time. (She's doing great now and is in full remission!) I didn't feel deprived, though. I had worked as a bridal model at least a dozen times, so I experienced the gown and having my hair in a (painful) updo. I'd even posed for fake wedding photos with a fake groom! Also, deep down, I had never even thought about it: my father's family is French, and my mother is a hippie. Big weddings aren't a big part of French/ hippie culture, so I hadn't grown up with those wedding bell dreams, either. To top it all off: I was also conflicted about certain aspects of the wedding industry as I wrote here for Pank.
That's why, a few years ago, while walking down the street in Santa Barbara on our way to another friend's wedding, when we spotted the perfect engagement ring in a consignment boutique's window display, I realized maybe a diamond could work for me and my family's politics. I had no problem wearing a vintage ring, and I still love imagining the little old lady in a mumu that my 40s-era ring might have once belonged to. (I may or may not have named that old lady Muriel and given her my grandmother's Brooklyn accent.)
So I didn't miss not having had a wedding but ten years still does feel like something worth commemorating in some special way. That's why, while staying for free at a friend's club on the Upper East Side this past weekend, when we pushed our stroller past Cartier right there on the corner, it also felt like another solution had presented itself to us. As a Frenchwoman, non-flashy thrift is ever important in my brain, but we had saved money on a hotel in NYC and even better saved a subway ride down to the diamond district with two toddlers. However, before going in, we still did our research and we were delighted to learn that Cartier is surprisingly a VERY sustainable option! As eLuxe magazine puts it:
"...the House of Cartier is renowned for many beautiful things, but devotion to environmental sustainability is not necessarily one of them. However, it should well be."
The best part of the whole experience, though, had to be our salesman (jeweler?), Androtti. If Central Casting had been responsible for the perfect person to help us celebrate this special moment in our lives, I don't think they could have provided a better actor to play the part. Not only did he provide my Irish husband with all the champagne Ryan's Irish heart desired , but Androtti performed a sleight of hand magic trick WHILE WEARING WHITE GLOVES. Even better, when my ring was sold out in my size, he actually performed that bit at the end of a romantic comedy, where some sort of deadline comes into play: he ran to Cartier's store further downtown and hurried back with a ring that fits! (Since the store was closed for the rest of the weekend, and we were leaving on Memorial Day, we would have been out of luck otherwise!) He was affable, informative, charming, kind, and not pushy in the slightest-- my biggest fear when walking into a jewelry shop. I'm such a people pleaser I was terrified I would walk out with a ring we couldn't really afford or that I didn't really like "because it goes with your engagement ring." Instead, Androtti helped me figure out exactly what worked for me. Something delicate and pretty and not too flashy. And most of all conflict-free. It took ten years to find the right ring, but Cartier made it more than worth the wait.
Next, on a gloomy Sunday, on my French father's recommendation, we stopped by Maison Kayser, reputed to have the best, most Parisian croissants this side of the Atlantic. As someone who consumes a very low-meat, largely vegetarian diet, I live for bread. Actually, that's part of why it's taken me so long to go fully vegetarian. If you guys have any recommendation for helping me learn more about balanced, vegetarian nutrition, I'd love that! If left to my own devices, I will consume nothing but variations of bread and cheese to my heart's (but not general health's) delight. The best part of all is that our brunch was quite affordable & filling. You really have to be careful about that in NYC!! I once sat down at a café in Soho, ordered some eggs and coffee without really thinking about it and then nearly choked when I was served the check. $40!
To Cartier, I'd worn my black linen dress, which you can check out here on Instagram, but Sunday was cooler, so I donned a blue linen suit. I got a lot of surprised looks for being so dressed up on a Sunday morning (even in NYC!!), but you only celebrate ten years of marriage in one helluva romantic comedy of a weekend once*!
*The comedy part of our romantic getaway came into play as, fantasy aside, in reality we were juggling the world's orneriest two-year-old the whole weekend while trying to have a good time and pretend there wasn't a background of wails and constant demands for... bread and cheese of one variation or another. Definitely my son!
Weird looks for being overdressed on a Sunday aside, I loved wearing this blue linen suit! It was comfortable but still chic, and did you know linen is a great sustainable option even if you're not shopping from a sustainable designer? Unless dyed, it's 100% biodegradable. (Not too worried about that aspect as I'll be wearing this suit until it's rags.) Also, it requires far less water to manufacture than is required for cotton. It might be prone to more wrinkling, but, again, I find when the cut is so chic, I don't mind the wrinkles! We ran into Carrie-Ann Moss, and she definitely checked the suit out! Romantic comedy complete!
I pinned some linen options below! Do you own any linen pieces for summer? What are your favorite brands? I also just discovered the brand La Causa! I'll be posting about them to my Instagram @IsabellaDavidVintage or use my code "isabaiae20" for 20% off a linen piece of your choice at Baiae here.
My linen suit is available from Revolve here.
My vintage Chanel bag is from Tradesy. Similar here.
My sandals are old. Similar vegan pair available here from Beyond Skin.
Use code "Flash25" for an additional 25% off!!
A Slow Fashion Diary