Monday, November 29, 2010

The Olde Christmas Cupboard

 Three seasons ago I mused about the passing of time and how fast it all flies. Many of you have already seen the changes I made in my English sideboard at that time. If you wish to see the post, you may find it again here. My sideboard has remained much the same until now.

 I like to incorporate my vintage collections into my seasonal decorating whenever I can. So I have replaced my brown transferware pieces with a different mishmash of china to usher in the new season.

 I'm not one for grand schemes during the holidays. Just before the big day we will put up a fresh evergreen tree. I love having a few live wreaths and a few sprigs to go with them all through the season. There's nothing like walking in at the end of the day to the smell of the woods to cheer you.

I picked up my first bunch of greens at the florist just before Thanksgiving and popped them into a large white ironstone pitcher of water. They're still soft and fragrant, ready for a photo shoot, and look festive just as they are in the vase.

I have used only a few pieces of my red vintage transferware as I want the overall effect to be mostly white. And I don't think that I will ever again buy a complete matching set of anything. What started out as thrifting out of necessity, has become my preferred style. I love looking at a mix of patterns and textures on my hutch.

 And my little doggies are a constant feature there.

I don't really know just how long I have loved and collected transferware, but I know my Victoria's fed the flames of my desire. The November 2000 issue pictured here carries an article on the process stating that "Transferware is so named because its designs are transferred by paper from engraved, inked copperplates to china forms."

As for influencing my mix and match style I offer you this observation from the article from ten years ago: "Rare indeed is the hostess who can bring out a whole set of antique dishes in a single pattern. But for a festive table, a play of patterns in a unifying color can be even more intriguing."  Well, there you have it!



"Rows of spotless plates winked from the shelves of the dresser from the far end of the room....
The ruddy brick floor smiled up at the smokey ceiling; the oaken settles, shiny with long wear, exchanged cheerful glances with each other; plates on the dresser grinned at pots on the shelf, and the merry firelight flickered and played over everything without distinction....

In the embracing light and warmth, warm and dry at last, with weary legs propped up in front of them, and a suggestive clink of plates being arranged on the table behind, it seemed to the storm-driven animals, now in safe anchorage, that the cold and tractless Wild Wood just left outside was miles and miles away, and all that they had suffered in it a half-forgotten dream."

Mr. Badger chapter, The Wind in the Willows, by Kenneth Grahame

 Thanks for joining in the festivities!
 Please come again soon.
Ciao! for now!


Links to Between Naps on the Porch for Metamorphosis Monday
A Stroll Thru Life for Table Top Tuesday
A Delightsome Life for Victoria--A Return to Loveliness
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia for Tuesdays Treasures
Savvy Southern Style for Boring to Better
Common Ground for Vintage Inspiration Fridays
My Romantic Home for Show & Tell Friday

Saturday, November 27, 2010

The Festive Season

"Even the poorest cottage welcomed the festive season with green decorations of bay and holly--the cheerful fire glanced its rays through the lattice, inviting the passenger to raise the latch and join the gossip knot huddled round the hearth...

  ...At other times we derive a great portion of our pleasures from the mere beauties of nature... The song of the bird, the murmur of the stream, the breathing fragrance of spring, the soft voluptuousness of summer, the golden pomp of autumn;

earth with its mantle of refreshing green, and heaven with its deep delicious blue and its cloudy magnificence, all fill us with mute but exquisite delight, and we revel in the luxury of mere sensation.

But in the depth of winter, when nature lies despoiled of every charm, and wrapped in her shroud of sheeted snow... The dreariness and desolation of the landscape, the short gloomy days and darksome nights... make us more keenly disposed for the pleasures of the social circle...

Heart calleth unto heart; and we draw our pleasures from the deep wells of living kindness...."

Excerpts from OLD CHRISTMAS (1875) from The Sketch Book by Washington Irving describing the traditional English Christmas.

Thanks so much for coming by!
Ciao! for now!


Please join me at How Sweet the Sound for Pink Saturday
The Tablescaper for Seasonal Sundays
House In the Roses for Show Off Your Cottage Monday

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Olde Times

In the same way that I like to embrace many of the old traditions I grew up with, I like to use old things in my decorating too.

Part of the appeal is the connection to the past. But the very substance of an object has a greater attraction to me.

I find that old paper, drawings, and colors draw me in closer for a look, and make me want to stay for awhile.

Old china has a heft and character like nothing that exists in the contemporary world.

An old chair can transport the imagination effortlessly to the time of Dickens.

Add a few fragrant greens to the mix, and for a fleeting moment there are a handful of things you want to believe in again.

Thanks so much for coming by!
Here's wishing you a little Vintage in your life this Season.
Ciao! for now!


Please join me at the following links. . .
  Common Ground for Vintage Inspiration Friday
Color Outside the Lines for Vignette Fridays
French Country Cottage for Feathered Nest Friday

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Just Desserts

Greetings all! Hope you're having a wonderful time right down to the dessert, which is what my tablescape is about this week.

A simple buffet dessert seems like a good option after a big feast. A dramatic centerpiece makes it more festive.

I'm always looking for ways to use my mixed collections like these small transferware plates that are the perfect size for dessert.

Royal Staffordshire Willow by Meakin

Adagio cup and saucers by Noritake

John Maddock & Sons English china, "Bombay"

Vintage Ruby Liqueur glasses

Old Hall Ware, Bristol England

Thanks for stopping over for dessert!
Ciao! for now!


I'm joining  Between Naps on the Porch for Tablescape Thursday
Funky Junk Interiors for Saturday Nite Special