Just a few nights ago, I was with a few fellow bloggers at the City Tavern Club in Washington, DC. Being as the group was brought together due to our appreciation of good design and getting out and about, it’s no surprise that the conversation turned to our love for a well-curated matchbook collection.
WHY DO WE LOVE COLLECTING MATCHBOOKS?
Matchbooks are one of those useful little items that can also be incredibly well-designed. You can buy a gigantic pack fro the grocery store or gather them throughout your evenings out and your travels around the world. We hunt them down at restaurants sending our fiancés to lurk around the hostess stand seeing if a particular restaurant might have them (oh, is that just me?) and we’re careful not to use the last one or two in order to justify keeping a particularly stylish matchbook. We have our preferences of matchbox v. matchbook (is anyone really on team matchbook?).
I love collecting matchbooks because they’re a tiny little memento that you can take with you – without taking up a lot of room (PS, if you want to read a great post about travel mementos that are small on space, Monica did a post on her travel souvenir of choice earlier this year). It’s a way I can look back with a smile on great evenings out I’ve had or trips I’ve taken – and it’s something I can keep right in my living room in plain sight. Plus, they’re so often so beautifully designed.
A FEW OF MY FAVORITES
So, what are a few of my favorite matchbooks that I have in my collection? There’s the one from the night that Adam and I met at the Hamilton, some from fabulous trips abroad, others from favorite haunts right here in DC. The collection runs the gamut – and that’s perhaps my favorite part about it. Here are just a few.
- The Hamilton, Washington, DC
The Grey, Savannah, GA
The Darling Oyster Bar, Charleston, SC
- Eberly, Austin, TX
- C & O, Charlottesville, VA
- Freeman’s, New York City, NY
Some of them are incredibly well-designed, while others just happen to come from places that I like to keep with me and remember. A matchbook from a dive bar can have just as much meaning as one from the best three-star Michelin experience of your life – it’s all about what it means to you. But, of course, a few of those graphic, gorgeous boxes don’t hurt.
TELL ME ABOUT YOUR MATCHBOOK COLLECTION
So, tell me about your collection! Do you collect matchbooks? What are your favorites? Are they so fabulous that I need to track them down myself? I want to hear all about it! And, if not matchbooks, do you have any sort of little memento that you collect?