Monday, November 29, 2010


If you were to call this a "trend" it would probably be a summer one, not something that should be on my mind during the holidays. I'm not sure why I've been thinking of scalloped patterns lately – perhaps because a few of the things below are on my wish list – but this post is dedicated to that decidedly timeless design.

If you aren't familiar with the term, this is what a "scalloped" edge looks like.

The shape of the scalloping design is derived from, you guessed it, the edge of a scallop shell. 

If we were to call this a trend, I suppose it's a somewhat out-of-date one at the moment. Scallops had a moment on the S/S 2009 runways of Chloé (lower left) and Christopher Kane, and Alix (aka The Cherry Blossom Girl) took plenty of pictures of her adorable Chloé shorts, pictured below (upper right). The trend eventually trickled down to Urban Outfitters, where I bought this tank top (upper left), a beaded flapper-ish take on the scalloped edging design. Putting scallop designs on clothes certainly wasn't the idea of modern designers, though, if the dress shown here in the lower left (otherwise known as The Most Amazing Dress Ever) is any indication. And if you trust Sartorialist favorite Giovanna Battaglia (lower middle), this timeless look lives on.

clockwise from upper right:
The Cherry Blossom Girl
? - it's done the blog rounds and has been in my file for ages
Giovanna Battaglia photographed by The Sartorialist
Chloé S/S 09
Urban Outfitters

Scalloped edges in decor can easily go in the direction of cutesy country, but here's proof that they can also look polished. In small doses (the hem of the bedding in the upper right or the apron of the secretary desk in the lower left), scallops are downright elegant. The scalloped edging on the bone inlay mirror from Wisteria (center) is incidental and is almost overshadowed by the primary pattern. I'm not a big fan of purple, but I love the color of the Martha Stewart bedroom (lower middle) in combination with the simple scalloped bedding. Last but not least, it's hard not to be drawn to the cloud-like whimsical painted edging in this blue bedroom (lower right), which is prevented from looking too nursery by the harsh, ornamental metal headboard.

clockwise from upper right:
Apartment Therapy
Martha Stewart
(center) Wisteria
antique dealer David Duggan's house, photographed by Gridley and Graves
tablecloth from French General Home Sewn by Kaari Meng

For some reason, I've gone from having too many throw pillows to not having enough. I'm in the market for some for my couch, and this embroidered "Scales" pillow from Jamie's adorable store is at the top of my wish list. If you want some more scallops for your living room, these three mirrors prove how versatile the pattern can be. Most of the bedding I found was far too grandma, but this simple set by Barbara Barry could be mixed with plenty of different styles. Th
e prize of cheapest thing in this entire roundup goes to the black scalloped-edge blanket from, where else, Ikea (and it's cozy, too!). If anyone needs proof that scalloped edging can be stunningly sophisticated, look no further than this gorgeous vintage chest.

clockwise from lower right:
Gio Ponti Fall Front Mahogany desk sold by Brian Kish
Simply Scallop bedding by Barbara Barry, $199 for F/Q duvet at Bed Bath and Beyond
Polarvide throw, $3.49 at Ikea
Amberlyn Wall Mirror, $151.88 at JCPenney
Regina Andrew Square Scalloped Mirror, $99.95 at Candelabra
New Arrivals Scalloped Wall Mirror, $60 at Amazon
Granite Scales Linen Pillow, $70 at Furbish Studio

While I don't suggest decking out an entire table in matching scallops, each of these pieces could be mixed with your basic dishes to add a dash of cute to your holiday setting. 

clockwise from upper right:
Large Cake Plate in Pistachio by Rachel Carley Ceramics
Scalloped-Metal Napkin Ring, $4 each at West Elm
scalloped white bowl from Sheffield Pottery
set of four vintage white linen napkins, $14 from RenaissanceProfessor on Etsy

Fortunately, the shopping guilt you'll get from buying all the rest of these adorable things can be assuaged by giving some equally adorable gifts. Etsy and Martha can always be relied upon to provide cute cards, tags, boxes, bags, stationary, and – for the more ambitious among us – DIY supplies. 

clockwise from upper right:
"Thanks" kraft scallop tags, $5 for 20 by therufflyowl on Etsy
clear favor boxes with scalloped lids, $4.50 for 5 by CCustomCreations on Etsy
Scallop Edge Personalized Note Pad, $17 by LetterLoveDesigns on Etsy
Martha Stewart 1-inch Scalloped Circle Punch and Scalloped Tag Punch, $10.09 each on Overstock
Die Cut Calling Cards, $50 for 50 at Stationary XPress
Scalloped Glassine Bags, $2.50 for 8 by sweetprovisions on Etsy

For those of us who can't afford Alix's fabulous Chloé shorts, the usual suspects (Urban, Modcloth, ASOS, and Etsy) provide some stellar cheaper options. The blue scalloped-edge tank top comes in a variety of colors and would be a great substitute for the usual basic tank. I don't usually like one-shouldered dresses, but this deep blue one edged with festive gold is gorgeous for holiday parties.

clockwise from top:
Debut of Venus Dress, $90 at Modcloth
Lucca Couture Chiffon Scallop Short, $48 at Urban Outfitters
Scalloped Waist Corduroy Skirt, $48 by vivatveritas7 on Etsy
Embellished Scalloped Hem One Shoulder Dress, $129.30 at ASOS
Black Scalloped Hem Dress,  $85 by victorianbird on Etsy
Warehouse Scallop Laser Cut Dress at Selfridge's
VIP Bejewelled Heart Layer Dress, £95 at Lipsy
Basic Scallop Edged Vest, $30 at Topshop

Of all the scalloped products I found, I think the selection of accessories is my favorite. I would happily wear any of these beautiful shoes, belts, bags, and gloves, not to mention the very pretty unmentionables! Plus, a few of these are downright affordable. 

clockwise from upper right:
Scallop Bag, $109.99 at French Connection
Chocolate Brown Vintage Gloves, $10 from AllerRetour on Etsy
Sergio Rossi Scalloped Cage Bootie, $569 at Nieman Marcus
Beaded Detail Snap Clutch, $36.90 at Akira
Pollini Scalloped Sole Shoe, $347 at
Huit Cupcake Full Cup Bra and Brasilian Brief, $72 and $47 from Journelle
Ladies Vintage Long Black Tailored Leather Gloves, $32.50 on Ebay
Miu Miu Scalloped leather belt, no longer available

Finally, no roundup at the moment would be complete without some Christmas decorating options. The cloud-like garland below would be adorable on a tree. If you need something to put under the tree and have some time on your hands, Martha has instructions on how to make the simple tree skirt here.

scalloped felt tree skirt how-to on
A Study in French Scalloped Vintage Paper Garland, $12 by MaisyandAlice on Etsy
Holiday Scalloped Felt Ribbon by Martha Stewart Crafts, $4.99 from


  1. Stop making me want things omg. And by stop, I mean more please, thanks.

  2. I just found this post and wanted to say that I *really* love it... and thank you for including my kraft scallop tags. Now I'm off to read the rest of your blog... :)

  3. I love scalloped necklines...especially deep scallops...I think it can be really flattering..