10 Easy Pieces: The Modern Monogram

Last month I was helping a friend compile her wedding registry when the topic of monogramming came up. To us, two women who prefer an understated sans serif script to prim calligraphy, the traditional monogram evokes a lost era of conspicuous spending and His and Hers linens. This led me on a search for the modern monogram, embroidered and printed in a distinctively contemporary typeface, and with a sense of subtlety. Here are 10 eye-opening discoveries: tableware, bedding, and household accessories that take a new approach to the bespoke.


Above: Meet the quintessential modern monogram: March’s new Monogram Tableware line features hand-painted American porcelain, custom-monogrammed before being fired and glazed. The set ranges from $110 for a cup to $332 for a charger.

Above: The Caterer’s Six-Piece Napkin Set comes in cocktail and dinner napkin sizes with custom monogramming in contrast thread; $15 for the cocktail set, $29 for the dinner set at Pottery Barn. The napkins coordinate with the Caterer’s Table Runner ($24–$29) and Caterer’s Tablecloth ($45–$59).

Above: Ceramicist Mae Mougin makes custom Porcelain Tableware with subtle monogramming in pale blue; contact Mougin for pricing and more information. Her plates are also available through A’maree’s in Newport Beach, CA; Bloom in Sag Harbor, NY; and Lazy Point Variety Store in Amagansett, NY.

Above: Sferra’s Modern Monogram Cocktail Napkins are made of Lithuanian fine linen, detailed with a black or brown embroidered initial; $25 for a set of four at J Brulee Home.

Above: London sculptor and designer Julian Sainsbury of John Julian Design creates Bespoke Monogrammed Plates. Shown here are custom pieces designed for the Beckford Arms in Tisbury (L) and the Talbot Inn in Somerset (R). (Read about Nick Jones’s Talbot Inn in Dine and Recline.) 

Above: Typographer’s Linen Dinner Napkins have tonal monogramming and a colored hem; $59 for a set of four from Mark & Graham.

Above: Arne Jacobsen’s fonts designed for the signage of the Aarhus City Hall decorates the Jacobsen Typeface Cups, available in every letter of the alphabet; they’re $22 each at Fitzsu.


Above: Restoration Hardware’s Linen-Bordered Turkish Towels can be monogrammed in tonal thread; $31 for a bath towel.


Above: Matouk’s Tranquility White Bedding is available for monogramming in eight typefaces; from $95 for a sham to $390 for a king duvet cover at Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams.

Household Accessories

Above: Playtype’s In Love with Typography Posters are printed on uncoated, Pantone-colored paper; €40 ($35.67) each.

Above: Last week at Legends, the La Cienega Design Quarter annual gathering in LA, Margot and Julie admired the monogrammed hardware at Nanz Company. Nanz’s No. 1228 Doorknob has a minimalist profile and can be custom monogrammed; price available on request.

Above: An idea inspired by the finishing touch architect Oliver Freundlich added to The Ultimate Starter Apartment, Cobble Hill Edition: The Plain Monogrammed Coco Doormat is $49.99 from Coco Mats ‘n More. (Freundlich ordered a Coco Mat with his newlywed clients’ wedding monogram on it.)

Fans of stenciled lettering and typography, take a look at:

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