FOR THE LOVE OF MONOGRAMMING

STYLE | BEAUTY
2016
November/December

Look up monogramming on Pinterest and prepare to spend several hours being amazed at how many things people can (or would even want to) put their initials on.  From hairbrushes, to laptop stickers, to car keys and even pacifiers, people are crazy about monogramming! 

While it is entirely possible to go a little overboard with monogramming (looking at you, sock monogrammers) the trend itself can be both fun and addicting! Monogramming is a great way to dress something up, add a touch of class and personalization, or for recently married women – show off a new last name. 

Monogramming is also a great way to personalize an otherwise basic gift for a friend or family member. Even a simple T-shirt looks dressy with a monogram on it. Don’t stress if you can’t sew – monograms have become so popular that several hobby stores across East Texas have embraced the trend, and sell pre-sewn monograms that can be combined with different letters in different styles, and simply ironed on any cloth such as shirts, pillow cases or baby blankets. Or, if DIY isn’t your thing, you can get monograms done professionally at several local businesses.

One local business that opened just this year is Gurl Powders Tinted Tumblers. Owner Lisa Crawford first started the business as a way to create personalized items for herself, but after much demand she expanded into retail. Because Crawford makes tumblers using powder-coated stainless steel, the products are more durable than spray painted tumblers, and are FDA approved. The tumblers are completely customizable from start to finish, whether you have a specific font in mind, such as a loved one’s handwriting or a specific color. Lisa also sells personalized T-shirts, window decals and several other items. She can do bulk orders for office Christmas parties or other business functions. 

“Anything you would want to personalize, I can pretty much personalize,” Crawford said. 

There is a surprising amount of gifts in general that can be monogrammed. Rolling pins can be monogrammed for the baker in your life, or musical instruments such as guitars. Although monogramming is often considered more of a preppy style, many things outside of that style can be monogrammed, such as wooden plugs for stretched ears. Creators have gotten so inventive when dreaming up monogrammable items that some have even created flip flops that have an indented monogram in the bottom of the shoe. When you walk on sand, your name will trail behind you permanently etched on the coast for all to see (at least until a wave rolls through).

The list goes on and on. A simple beer glass can be etched with initials, the leather band in a watch, onesies, necklaces and dog beds can all be transformed from an otherwise basic gift into something classy, thoughtful and personalized. The best part is, because it has their initials on it, you know they can’t give it away or re-gift it!

Monograms are so versatile that, not only do they make great gift ideas, they also make wonderful décor for the upcoming holidays. Try turning a basic fall or Christmas wreath into a personalized one, by adding one large wooden letter representing your last name in the center of the wreath. Paint it to go with the colors of your wreath and you’ll be sure to get several compliments. 

Christmas tree décor has a whole slew of options. To personalize a tree, try decorating with monogrammed ornaments for some subtle flair. These can be self-made with a little creativity, or ordered for a more polished look. Another subtle Christmas tree décor idea is to get a monogrammed tree skirt. Try adding the family last name, or if you like to organize your presents into groups, monogram one name per section of the tree skirt ,and place gifts accordingly! For a more pronounced, personalized look, try a monogrammed tree topper. This is a great idea for a “family tree” with all the kids’ ornaments and family photos decorating the limbs. A gold, cursive family initial atop the tree will make it all come together nicely. 

Stockings are one holiday decoration that hardly ever fails to go un-monogrammed. Instead of having each member's name across the top of the stocking, try out some fun variations, such as using monogrammed initials, or opting for simple stockings with patterned letters sewn down the length of them, that spells out each name. Placemats are also a great way to personalize your home for the holiday. The best part is, you won’t need to use separate place cards, which saves both time and room on the table. 

Typography plays a major role in monogramming, and while the classic monogram is cursive, there are plenty of other options that fit depending on what item you are monogramming. Clean, straight lines are great for fun, colorful items. Big, rounded letters go well on children’s clothing or toys, and the classic cursive lettering goes well with anything you want to dress up. 

While you might think monograms have come out of the woodwork only as of recent, the trend itself has actually been steadily increasing in popularity since before the middle ages, when the trend first began. Rulers marked their reign by placing their monogram on coins in their region, and artisans signed their work with their monogram. All of these practices are somewhat familiar today. So where is the appeal? Is monogramming only for the people with unique names or spellings that were never able to find it on a key chain in the store, or on a coke can? Do we just like claiming what’s ours? In the South, monograms reign supreme. It’s almost impossible to walk into a southern home and not see monogrammed towels in the guest bathroom. Maybe we’ll never know why we love seeing our initials all over our house, but the fact is … monogramming isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.

For those of you who will add a monogram on pretty much anything and everything that comes your way (it’s okay to admit it!), take the hard work out by simply getting a monthly subscription box full of personalized items. Take your obsession to the next level by trying out the I Love Jewelry Monobox. They will send you a monthly surprise box, which might include clothing, makeup bags, mirrors, purses and many other items with your personal monogram on each one. 

When it comes to personalization, most of the time you can decide exactly what you want the monogram to look like, what colors, what style, what initials and where to put it. That’s one of the reasons why monogramming has become so popular – you’re in control of the outcome!

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