Few things say “Southern style” more than a darling monogram.

(A large hairbow comes close…and they’re adorable together!)

Personalizing our clothing, bedding, accessories, towels, stationery, jewelry, etc. has become second nature to many of us. What a fun way to add a unique touch to an item by adding letters, in colors fun or subtle, to identify us in the sea of similar items! Monogramming can add a fun spin in bright colors to a swim bag, dance tote, beach towel, sleeping bag, or print dress…the options are endless. By adding the letters in bright coordinating or contrast colors, an item takes on a whole new look. Monogramming can also be an elegant touch added in subtle tones to an heirloom Christening gown or First Communion dress that is handed down within the family.

The monogram style most of us are familiar with is the Victorian format. This places the initials as follows…first initial, last initial (larger), middle initial. You can also put your initials in your normal order…first, middle, last…if the letters are all the same size. Monograms with one initial, your first or last, are also popular. Another choice is monogramming the entire first or last name. Really, anything is an option.

So how did this trend of adding letters to personalize something even begin?

Monograms have been tracked as far back as 350 B.C.! Greek cities issued coins with the first two letters of the city’s name, giving the rulers a way to make sure the coins being used were authentic.

In the middle ages, the monogram became a way for artists and craftsmen to “sign” their artwork, a shortened version of their name. This method of branding isn’t that different from modern day usage of a monogram as logo for many design houses…LV for Louis Vuitton, the mirrored “C’s” for Chanel. The fashion monogram is a clever way for fashion houses to brand themselves and differentiate their products from competitors.

Monograms also have a history of being used as a symbol of status and luxury to represent a monarchy. The monogram was incorporated with a crown to represent power, and typically worn by those in the government. Our favorite monarchy in Great Britain still uses family monograms and crests.

A lovely wedding trend is to combine two monograms into a new one…much as the wedding ceremony joins the two to become one. This version uses the bride’s first initial, then the couple’s last name (larger font), and then the groom’s first initial. If the genders are the same, just choose who gets listed first. An item showing the new monogram is a wonderful centerpiece idea for the wedding reception and can be used on thank you notes. Creating a wedding gift that incorporates the couple’s new monogram is something they’ll treasure.

One of our favorite monogram uses is to welcome a new baby to the family with a personalized blanket, outfit, keepsake rattle, or toy. When my son was born, we received a button-on with a tiny teddy bear and his name hand embroidered on the chest. The size was perfect for him to wear for his first birthday, making the day and photos even more special.

We’re thrilled with the idea of our customers personalizing our dresses and outfits to add a fun and joyful element. A few of our dresses have large portrait collars that we’ve intentionally left plain to give our customers room to add a monogram. Our new Sophia dress looks darling with a monogram on the chest….and matching hairbow! Our boys Bobbie Suit has room between the tiny pleats on the chest for letters. A popular monogram placement on our Christening/Baptism gowns is just above the hem. Monograms can also be added to our bibs and bonnets. The options are endless…and fun to create. This tiny detail adds a wonderful element to keepsake photos and portraits. Enjoy…and send us photos!

“Because if it's not monogrammed, is it even really yours?”    An anonymous Southern gal.




March 26, 2020 — Diane Janowak

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