Matter & Spirit – The Blog

12 בNovember 2014

Collecting Beauty- Chayei Sarah

“And Sarah’s life was one hundred years and twenty years and seven years (Bereishit 23:1).

Why is each ‘years’ mentioned separately? Rashi explains that when Sarah was 100 years, she was as a twenty-year-old who never sinned and as a seven-year-old in beauty.

Indeed, Sarah, the “First Lady” of Tanach, was a woman whose beauty escorted her throughout life, and whose exquisiteness was significant at various points in her life. It was because of her rare gift of beauty that Avraham was forced to smuggle Sarah into Egypt in a box and claim that she was his sister rather than his wife. Sarah was desired both by Pharoah, king of Egypt, and Avimelech, king of Grar.  Rashi expounds that her name was also Yiska, since “Everyone sachin (immersed in the perfume) of her beauty.”

I’ll share with you the honest truth:  The vast majority of my clients are women. Of course, the men come along, as well. They’re the ones who usually glance at the plans, participate in a meeting or two with the contractor or carpenter, and of course, foot the bill! But for the most part, the husband quickly tires of the project, leaving his wife and me to bring the dream to fruition and complete the task.  Although I don’t know it for a fact, my gut feeling is also that most readers of design and home styling blogs are women.

Just so you don’t get me wrong: If there are any males out there still reading this post, you’re welcome to continue. But I will make a point of emphasizing that this week’s post is dedicated to the women of the world!

matter-spirit-chyei-sarah-1 shoes- chicnova, clutch- beaded bundles, lipstick- chanel, perfume- vera wong, scarf- foldi

 You pick it out! I’ll be there soon!

I imagine that the following has already been studied and confirmed in numerous sociological studies, but here’s my humble analysis:

1.    Women care more than their male counterparts about beauty and aesthetics.  (The guy says, “It works? Good. Sounds like a great mixer. What? You want it only in orange? It doesn’t come in orange! What’s wrong with white?!”)

2.    Women have more patience to deal with minute details. (The woman says, “Of course there’s a difference! Can’t you see it? Here, the fold is on the right side, and there it’s on the left!”)

3.    Women ascertain the practical aspects of a design. (They double check that the pantry shelf is the right height for their favorite cereal boxes.)

The curator in my client’s gallery

Often, clients show me a special collection that they’ve accumulated over years. I’ve met women with 150 pairs of shoes. And scarves. And hats.  No kidding. Others collect trinkets or crystal, earrings or rings, headscarves or wigs, assorted colored nail polish and, of course perfumes. In the kitchen, there may be a collection of kettles or porcelain roosters…  You name it, someone’s got it.

from scout vintage market                        from ART4U



                    decoratix,                 debbiesfineart,                       dazzle ‘n’ sparkle


When it comes to designing or redesigning their home, clients want to include a special little corner where they can display their unique collection, and they should! I’ve waited eagerly to write this post, highlight the special, unique details of the women I know, and celebrate the beauty together with them!





Water for camels, a nose ring and bracelets

Later in the parshah, after Sarah’s death, a new woman steps into the picture and into Sarah’s tent to perpetuate her righteous ways and be Yitzchak’s wife. Rivka.

What does Eliezer, Avraham’s servant, give Rivka when he meets her at the well and she generously offers to draw water both for Eliezer and his camels? The Torah thrice mentions a nose ring and bracelets, apparently the time’s equivalent of a diamond ring.

The Torah relates that Rivka, Yitzchak’s brand-new kallah, then enters the tent of Sarah. I can’t help but wonder what she brought along with her into that special tent—a bracelet collection or a camel collection?!





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