Three Tips for Creating A New Family Heirloom or Tradition

As a new Mom, with a little girl on the way in February, I’m thrilled to carry on established family traditions and to pass on my family heirlooms. But I’m eager to do something new. So I’ve been thinking… what are the things that are important to my husband and I? What are the meaningful pieces of our lives that we would like to pass on to our daughter? How do I create new family heirlooms and new family traditions? Here are three tips for getting started with a new family heirloom or tradition.

1. Raid your house: Why reinvent the wheel when you have special pieces all around you? Take a look around your house (or your parents’ house) and identify the objects that were important to you. Think about how you can use these pieces to create meaning and history in your own child’s life.

These Russian nesting dolls (Matroyshka dolls) were given to me by my Mother when I was a little girl. I spent hours playing with them (life before internet) and now I’m ashamed to admit they’ve been living in the back of a dresser drawer. With my little girl on the way, I’ve dusted them off and now they’re waiting in the nursery for a new little girl to play with. I hope she will love playing with these dolls and learning about some of her ancestors who came to America from what is now Western Ukraine.

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2. Bring back the old: Ask your parents and family members about their family traditions that may not have continued into your generation. These traditions are part of the essence of your family history. If they appeal to you, make what is old new again and consider bringing them back. My Mom revealed that her family would go to the local bakery every Sunday after church. Now that is a family tradition I’m excited to take on!

3. In with the new: Think about the traditions you always wished you had or items that you wished were passed down to you. What traditions do your friends have which you’ve always found fascinating? If it’s an annual outing you’d like to turn into a tradition, mark it on your calendar. An annual party or event you’d like to host? Send out invitations and get started on planning and hosting. For a new family tradition, my husband and I are planning to take our daughter sailing on the first warm day every year. In Florida, that may very well be New Year’s Day!

I found this vintage, 1950s black velvet duster coat at an estate sale listed by esatesales.net in Pensacola, FL. The lining is beautifully done in light blue silk, that kind of heavy, delicious silk they just don’t make anymore. An open duster coat is perfect for expectant moms looking for maternity outerwear.

For a similar coat, check out this velvet duster by Eileen Fisher at Neiman Marcus.

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Eileen Fisher
Washable Velvet Kimono Jacket

My vintage, velvet 1950s cape, is another perfect solution for maternity outerwear. Capes can work with you during your pregnancy and still fit after baby arrives.

Take a look at this structured, smart-looking double-breasted cape coat by Chicwish.

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Double-Breasted Cape Coat in Black

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Alison Hetherington

For the modern girl who loves everything vintage.

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