Why Not . . . Be A Modern Lady?
Wednesday September 29, 2010

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With all of the fashions in recent past and upcoming seasons revealing a more feminine, classic appeal, I thought it very fitting to revisit the idea of being a lady.  So often in our modern culture, young girls and beyond aren’t able to understand or appreciate the privilege and value in presenting themselves as a lady in society.  But I must say that I truly believe it is indeed a privilege more so today than in any time in history because of the many opportunities that lay at our feet if only we choose to chase after them. Oscar de la Renta commented recently about designing for today’s woman,“Never in the history of time has a woman been so in control of her destiny than the woman today.” And the truth in such a statement could not ring more clearly.

As a woman, that mere fact, is something to celebrate, but in being a woman, this responsibility must not be taken lightly.  Too often it seems that many feel it is best to try to “run with the boys”, but the truth is while yes, we can run with them, why would we want to when we can be what they cannot?  Being a lady no longer means being silent and subservient.  A modern lady is strong, but in a more subtle confident way that doesn’t need to be abrasive. A modern woman is well-educated and staying apprised of the goings-ons in the world around her so that no one can pull the wool over her eyes.  The fact most surely remains that a woman’s looks can be helpful, but her brains will always propel her to where she wants to go.

With that said, during the next three Wednesdays, The Simply Luxurious Life will share ways to act like a modern lady.  This particular series could probably go on for quite some time, but I’ve tried to narrow it down.  Let’s get started.

Show Genuine Appreciation

A simple gesture that can say more than words can express is writing a thank you note to send to either a host of a dinner party you attended, a thoughtful gesture by a friend, or anything when the person clearly went out of their way to create a beautiful moment in which you were a part of.  Another similar gesture would be to always come with someone in hand – a bottle of wine, a beautiful luxury candle or another type of hostess gift to a party in which you are invited.  This courtesy communicates to your host your appreciation.

RSVP Please

Something that seems to have slipped a bit is the courtesy to RSVP whether you are able to attend a party or not.  By taking the time to communicate with the event host or party planner you are saving them unnecessary money and stress, and in the event you can’t make it, you are extended the message that you truly do appreciate the invite. Nowadays, RSVPing is much simpler as you can quickly send off an email to correspond your intentions.

Have An Air of Mystery

In our world of reality television and tell-all books, it seems a rarity to know a woman who shares just enough to keep you intrigued, but not so much as to make you feel as though you’ve stepped into her boudoir. Now, we all must have our closest friends with whom we share our intimate secrets with, after all, we all need to vent every once in awhile and not everyone can afford or wants a therapist, but just because someone asks you a question, doesn’t me you are obligated to respond or post it on your Facebook page.  In other words, always know something that nobody else knows, it keeps people on their toes.

Be Humble

Now if you are a woman who has great taste and common sense (which I know you are), you undoubtedly have had many reasons in life to celebrate.  The beauty of being a modern lady is that you have a healthy confidence about yourself that doesn’t require a continuous patting on the back. An initial celebration, fantastic.  Allowing your dearest friends and loved ones to raise a glass, absolutely, but beyond that, be reserved.  Consider this an opportunity to create a bit of mystery due to the fact that you know something that everyone else might love to know, but you won’t be divulging any time soon.

Be True To Your Word

There’s nothing more welcomed than a woman of her word.  If you say you’ll call, follow through.  If you mention you could lend a hand, do so without any prompting.  And on the flip side, don’t offer to do something that, while sounding great at the moment, isn’t something you’ll be able to actually do.  Initially, some may question why you aren’t saying yes to everything, but with time, when they realize that when you do step up, you do a lovely job, the right people won’t mind a bit and will take note.

*Click here to read Part Two or here for Part Three

Out of curiosity, I would love to know what your definition of a modern lady would be.  Be sure to stop by next Wednesday as the series continues.  Have a wonderful day.

28 thoughts on “Why Not . . . Be A Modern Lady?

  1. I find myself nodding in agreement to every one of these. What is funny is my coworkers knew I was a stickler for etiquette and would call me Little Susie Homemaker. A pet peeve of mine are individuals who do not RSVP. The very moment I get an invite I check my calendar, consult with the Mr. and call with my acceptance to the invitation or regrets. I have hosted countless gatherings and what is worst is estimating how many people to expect. I hate to have too little, and also hate to be wasteful. And true to your word….how can one think you are loyal, compassionate, and valuable if your word is worthless? Love this post!

  2. What a wonderfully expressed post!! I’m so looking forward to Wednesdays!! I love it when ladies are ladies… everything about being a woman id fantastic, why would we want to be anything else? I just know your posts are going to encourage somemany to embrace their feminine self.

    I agree One’s word must be kept and RSVP – a must !!! Sweet Wednesday ..HHL

  3. Great post! I agree with you about showing genuine appreciation. That is something that is being lost, especially with the younger generation of ladies. We are in the age of cell phones and e-mail, no one bothers to take the time with a handwritten thank you note anymore.

    Wonderful thoughts! Looking forward to the next posts.

  4. Brilliant post Shannon. Granted these are all things we know we should do but seeing them in writing is the perfect reminder. Looking foward to the series.
    Cheers -Carrie

  5. Great post as always Shannon.
    I love the show appreciation, and be humble.
    If I had to add something to your list of being a modern woman, I would add, “be authentic to yourself/who you are”.
    Gorgeous images. I always have “image envy” with your blog!

  6. i can be bad with RSVP’s *i admit* .. i get busy with things and then i forget – then like a month later i’ll find it and be *opps* .. i make up for it in the gift tho :o)

    i think if u stick with being repectful and all the ‘rules’ your parents taught you growing up – i think ur good .. i still call everyone Mr and Mrs. – even friends parents i know my ENTIRE life!

    PS – pass on the GIVE-AWAY – $45 worth of goodness waiting for someone!

    *kiss kiss*
    ~Tiptoe Butterfly~

  7. Love Love Love this post. I am from CT but live in LA now and I can’t say this enough….etiquette is a lost art here. Thank goodness for my close friends who believe in R.S.V.P.s and thank you notes – although a few of them could read your post…my girlfriends biggest pet peeve is R.S.V.P.s and wanted me to blog on it – I’m going to forward her your post. It’s perfect. I agree with a little bit of mystery…I need to work on that myself. Always love you posts and they always make me stop and look at myself, something I need to do more of. Put me in check. I write thank you notes for dinner parties, gifts, etc. It’s a lost art and when I have kids it will be something that I teach them.

  8. I absolutely love this! I’ve actually been trying to have an air of mystery about me lately. I’m the type of person who blabs everything to any person I meet. Not that I talk very much or anything. I’m certainly not a loud person by any means but I am very open and friendly and I tend to reveal too much too quickly. I’ve been reading the book Entre Nous and one of the things talked about in the book is how French women are much more guarded with their info and it definitely has made me think twice about revealing too much. I’m a work in progress but definitely improving 🙂

  9. This is one of my favourite posts of yours lately (among many favourites!). My husband says I’m different to most of the other females in our group of friends in that I’m feminine, lady-like, almost old-fashioned, and he loves it. Merci!

  10. I think a modern lady takes time for herself and doesn’t over plan. You can’t be at your best if you’re constantly on the go. Why not have a night in so the next night you can be 100% your amazing self?

  11. This is a wonderful series! I’ve thought time and time again about the young women of today divulging everything to anyone; probably (as you mentioned) due to all the television.

    I’ve always loved the personal touch and the classic reserved but sexy look. Trust me girls, the guys love it too. IF you are trying to stand out (in a good way) they boys will flock to a reserved and confident lady and if they don’t … they aren’t worth having.

    Can’t wait for next weeks post!

  12. My mother is very lady-like and I’m thankful to have been raised with ladylike admonishments. (always wear a slip). LOVE your post, Shannon, and I agree so much with all parts of it. There are a couple books that I have that I’ve enjoyed. One is a kind of tongue-in-cheek book about being classy … but while it’s a little humorous, it’s got some good examples of what to do and what not to do. It’s Classy by Derek Blasberg. I also have a little Tiffany Blue book in my library called “A Guide to Elegance” by Genevieve Antoine Dariaux – “for every woman who wants to be well and properly dressed on all occasions.” A very lady-like addition to a library! Love your series. And you know I’m a HUGE fan. xo

  13. I think I’m a better gentleman than a lady but Mystery, Humility, and true to one’s word (and having a sense of humor) are good traits for anyone to have. I’m becoming stronger at dodging intrusive questions that I shouldn’t have to answer, especially to strangers.

  14. Oh, joy! I already own three of these: I always bring a hostess gift; I try to remain humble about things; and am always true to my word. I was brought up this way. I was also brought up to write thank you notes; but even though I remember to say thanks I need to step it up on the note-writing! Thanks for a lovely post.

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