Style and Sense for the American Wife

A few (many) months back, one of my closest girlfriends sent me a very intimidating box of about fifty novels to read. I, of course, had requested some book recommendations resulting in this gesture. Some for me is about 2. Some for most everyone else is between 5 and 23. Having narrowed down my borrowed library to a manageable 3 books, I neatly stacked them on my nightstand for some entertaining pre-slumber tales.
Book one: American Wife by Curtis Sittenfeld. I love reading about American wives, mothers, and daughters from the 1940’s, 50’s, and 60’s. The idea of the quintessential housewife with her methodical chores, her style, her yearnings, her struggles, and her poise intrigues me. The small gestures expressed by Alice Lindgren’s mother in American Wife – her thoughtful placement of pretty new ribbons or treats on her daughter’s bedspread – add warmth to the home and are indicative of the power of the little things.

As I dive into first few chapters of this book, I can relate to Alice’s appreciation for her mother’s simple, yet profound influences. Having read Sittenfeld’s book Prep, I am accustomed to and fond of her writing style and increasingly lost in this unfolding story. Sittenfeld takes her time in painting a picture to tell a story – like a slow conversation on a breezy, southern afternoon.

If I were to adapt my picture of today’s modern housewife with inspiration from Alice Lindgren’s mother, here are a few items that might make Mama Lindgren’s life a little easier, a little richer, and a little sweeter.

Every modern mother deserves simplicity, efficiency, comfort, style, and a little decadence. From the stylish and convenient herb pot to the disguised laundry sorter to the tropical truffles, these hand-picked items make everyday tasks a little more special. I also included cute canisters for stashing said truffles from wee ones.

The loot: 1. Cookie Cutters, $8 | Sur La Table; 2. Bristol Canisters, $60 | Williams Sonoma; 3. Bake by Numbers Pie Plate, $38 | Anthropologie; 4. Mrs. Meyer’s Laundry Detergent and Hand Soap, $4-12 | Mrs. Meyer’s; 5. Bee Tumblers, $50 Set 6 | Maison de Kristine; 6. Throw Blankets, $60 | West Elm; 7. Laundry Sorter, $180 | Home Decorators; 8. Herb Pot Trio, $45 | Huset; 9. Table Runners, Pricing on Request | Bev Hisey; 10. Toast Coconut Rum Truffles, $19 for 7 | Katherine Anne Confections.


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