Trend Ahead: Rustic Traditional

Tracy SternTracy Stern
Amelia Barr said that "it is always the simple that produces the marvelous." Although her reference was to literature, her sentiment was so pure that it permeates all we know. Modern life, now so technical, causes the soul to yearn for that which is rustic, simple, traditional and pure.

As I travel Napa Valley, Calif., the "rustic traditional" trend is easy to spot and tremendously comforting. To view it is to be whisked away to a time when things were homemade, hand-sewn and hand-spun. The beauty of this growing trend rests in raw materials, antique collections and a sense of purity found only in the most seasoned of fashions. More powerful than a trend, "vintage" seems more a style aesthetic - one that is perfectly embodied in Napa.

Vintage HomeVintage Home
The Napa Valley Bath Co. boasts of "earth-driven" beauty. Here you will find homemade soaps, bath oils and body products presented with vintage, Old World elegance. Eight years into existence, the company has stayed true to its origins, creating and selling products "that are full of goodness, romance and peace."

My journey then led me to Napa Valley Vintage Home. Owner Laura Rombauer opened Vintage Home in January 2003, after years of practicing commercial interior design at a leading design firm. Simply entrancing are the collections upon collections of botanicals, vintage-printed papers, French glass and ultimate entertaining pieces. With its seasonally inspired showcases, one is never dulled by the offerings, but left intrigued by a promise of more to come.

Equally amazing is Jan de Luz, a design house that channels French ancestry via its proportions, patina and design. I was entranced by the Old World-style of monogramming available on raw, flaxen linens (while you wait). The research into theme is apparent, and the beauty is seemingly unending.

Using Napa Valley as inspiration, one can draw closer to one's truer self through design. Employing vintage collections and raw materials, space is transformed into peaceful and reminiscent amplitude. 

 Acres Home & GardenAcres Home & Garden Jan de Luz LinensJan de Luz Linens Napa Valley Bath Co.Napa Valley Bath Co.

Tracy Stern is the author of two books on the art of entertaining and the founder of the international tea company Salontea with shops in Dubai, Paris and Vancouver. She is recognized as a society hostess and philanthropist in New York City. Setting the scene as a luxury trend-setter and interior designer, Stern's first furniture collection will debut next year. She can be reached at

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