Thursday, March 13, 2008

Let us pause to consider the palm frond -- timeless yet ripe with nostalgia; humble yet uniquely situated in both the religious and secular worlds. So common yet so evocative, suggesting a walk through the church parking lot after Palm Sunday Mass, a just-blessed frond swaying in the pre-spring wind, or a lazy, sweaty afternoon on a tropical beach with a colorful cocktail at arm's length.

Fashion knows the subtle power of the simple palm frond -- or any of its leafy ilk. Milly's green-and-white-print shift dress has the requisite tailored fit and grown-up beading at the neckline to make it a contender for the perfect Easter Sunday dress. Pink Tartan's black-and-white silk jacket? Couldn't you just see Jackie Kennedy wearing something similar?

And leave it to Lilly Pulitzer, the Palm Beach socialite turned clothing designer whose popular, preppy brand logo is a dancing palm tree, to give the fellas a splash of swanky color with her pink bow tie and kelly green belt.

If you like it enough to wear it, why not add a bit -- just a touch, mind you -- of frond action to the house? There's Salviati's Piume line of crystal, which features vases, bowls and glasses with etched palm leaves. And the clever, chic folks at have several home decor items with palm leaves: silk pillows, decorative iron bowls for the dining table and leather placemats from SURevolution.

-- Jill Hudson Neal

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