Quality Over Quantity
Cringing (internally) when forced to use anything other than a real, honest-to-goodness napkin does not make me a snob. Right?
CLOTH NAPKIN DISCIPLE
Hand on my coffee table book collection, I vow that I am about as far removed from a waste-conscious hippie as humanly possible. Put your pitchforks down, I recycle. My point is this - there is no sense in owning nice things to tuck them away on a shelf or in a closet, never to be enjoyed. Men who buy nice cars but never drive them.. I can’t.
I did once witness a very respectable looking girl wrap her leftover Antico’s pizza (so divine) in a paper towel and place it directly inside her gorgeous orange Birkin. I almost choked on my Malbec. But you know what? Whatever! You go girl.
Dump that Chinese takeout on your wedding china and thank me later.
If you haven’t yet rolled your eyes, we should get along just fine. Side note, but related: next time you’re in Atlanta, try Antico’s on Hemphill Avenue - prepare to wait in a long line and eat cafeteria style but it’s BYOB and beyond worth it.
But really. My significant other is my favorite human - if I'm not willing to make him chocolate souffle' on a rainy Monday night (served alongside a quality cloth napkin), why would I go out of my way to do so on Christmas Eve for a group of 12?
At the risk of sounding like one of those girls, I want to spoil my significant other (and my family, and my friends, and my dog) daily - not just on their birthday, Valentine's day, or our anniversary. When did that become disgustingly old fashioned? There is something so nice about wiping your mouth with a cloth napkin during your meal.
Remove it from your mind that this is some form of extravagance.
Truth be told - you will spend less money long-term on cloth napkins then you will on endless runs to Costco or Target for paper towels and napkins. Another upside: when your mother-in-law shows up unceremoniously (and unannounced) on Saturday morning whilst you’re enjoying a croissant and a pitcher of mimosas, she will be impressed by your elevated domesticity.
Toss every plastic item in your kitchen. Purge them all. If you haven’t already, invest in stemware you love, drool worthy table settings, and yes - quality cloth napkins. I’m certain I sound like a minimalist (the horror), but no. You should, however, own only things you absolutely love and (newsflash) USE the things you own.
Quality Over Quantity
Life is too damn short. Love every. single. thing. you own. Quality over quantity - not just in terms of home design, but also in life. Again, I repeat, Quality over quantity.
If your husband objects, simply explain the scientific evidence - there are financial benefits to buying only things you absolutely love (regardless of price). The New York Times wrote an article on this for god’s sake - which, naturally, makes it indisputable.
Consider the following a commandment of sorts.
“I hereby give you permission to consider buying the things you really love — things that may be two, three or perhaps even four times more expensive than a similar product. I am asking you to consider the possibility that buying stuff you love, regardless of price, may be the best decision you can make.
Consider that if you love it and you’ll use it, you’ll save not only money but retain the cognitive and emotional energy you would have used to replace the thing once a year. You’ve heard of “buy nice, or buy twice,” right? Well this is a derivative of that idea. But don’t just buy nice, buy what you love.
If you don’t, you’ll end up hating, and replacing, until you do.
TIPS OF THE TRADE
Pro tip: If you have a top load washing machine, fill it with water and laundry detergent prior to your dinner party. When the last guest has bid you adieu, throw your napkins and let them soak overnight. When you wake up in the morning they’ll be ready to wash! There’s more - don’t dry them. Throw them in the freezer… once frozen, take them out and iron them. This will give you a perfectly crisp napkin without looking starched. I go this route for our weekly dinner partied. Read more about that here.