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Thursday, August 6, 2015

Vintage Blog of the Week

When I started blogging about 4 years ago I thought it might help my antique business by highlighting some of my things for sale. I had no idea that I would make friendships across the internet by sharing a love of similar interests. I have discovered that bloggers are the nicest people who are there to help and encourage each other!

 My newest blog friend is Diana over at Adirondack Girl at Heart. I discovered her when I saw her post on ironstone and knew we were kindred spirits!  Diana has chosen to feature me as her Vintage Blog of the Week. 
I am flattered with her lovely write up.

Pay Diana a visit and check out her beautiful photography and helpful price guides.

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Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Danish Dishes

Are you familiar with Royal Copenhagen of Denmark? They make some of the most beautiful porcelain and earthenware dish sets. I can't call myself a true collector because I only have a very few pieces. I recently spied four of these plates while  out thrifting, for only a few dollars each, so of course I had to have them! This is the Blue Tranquebar pattern.
 No, I have no idea how to pronounce it!

The company was founded in 1775 and is well known for it's annual Christmas collectors plates, charming figurines and exceptional Fine China.

The plates have wonderful detail with it's basket weave border and hand painted cross hatch design.The blue flower in the center is also hand painted so each dish is truly unique.

 You know if it is authentic Royal Copenhagen by the distinctive maker's mark.
There are  three wavy lines above each other, symbolizing Denmark’s three straits: ├śresund, the Great Belt and the Little Belt.
Denmark is a seafaring country so many of the motifs in their china reflect the colors and themes of the ocean.

I bought this lovely salad bowl many years ago for only $3. I'm so happy now to have plates to go with it! 

I have a couple of other random pieces of 
Royal Copenhagen-  a large rimmed soup bowl, a candlestick and a beautiful tureen lid,  alas with no tureen to go under it! These are in the Blue fluted pattern which is perhaps Royal Copenhagen's most popular pattern. My grandmother had a full set of this and I loved it when she would  pull it out for family dinners.

I've set it all on a clean white matelasse coverlet  to show off the crisp blue and white pattern.

There are many, many serving pieces to go with Tranquebar so I'll keep looking! 
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Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Silver Tip Trays

Do you know what these tiny silver trays are for? 
They are lovely little pieces of history - hotel silver tip trays. Tip trays like these were used in finer hotels, restaurants,  and long distance railroads to leave a gratuity for the waiter or housekeeping staff.

 Here is a tray from the Arlington Hotel made by the Reed and Barton silver company.

Hotel silver is usually heavy for it's size.

A small tip tray on your nightstand is the perfect place to keep pocket change or jewelry.

They are not very expensive, maybe $5-15, if you are lucky enough to find one!

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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Glittered Sugar Pine Pinecones

A couple of weeks ago my husband and I vacationed in the San Bernadino mountains The charming  town of Lake Arrowhead is nestled up in the California hills about an hour and a half from Los Angeles. The air was cooler and the forests were full of Redwood trees, Sequoias and Giant Sugar Pines. Have you ever seen the pinecone from a Giant Sugar Pine? Well, they are ENORMOUS! Seriously, they are 12-17 inches in length. 
And up in Lake Arrowhead the ground is littered with them!
 So every morning on my morning walk I would pick a bagful to bring home. 

Are you a pinecone collector like me?
 I  honestly can't resist them.

I thought these would be great all glittered up and hanging from a large Christmas tree. 
So here's how you turn these into frosty, glittery pinecones.
 First, be aware that sugar pinecones are covered with sticky sap. To remove the sap you have to bake the pinecones. That's right. Line your cookie sheets with foil and layer the pinecones on top. Bake at 250 degrees for 20 minutes. The sap with drip down  onto the sheet. Plus if there are any stray critters living in the cones this will take care of that too.

Next I screwed a small eye hook into the top of the pinecone.
Then I brushed the pinecones with Elmer's glue and sprinkled them with German glass glitter. It has a wonderful sparkle to it. But be careful handling this kind of glitter, it  is sharp! 

To finish it off I tied a satin ribbon  through the eye hook and a loop to hang it with.

My first Christmas craft project of the season completed!

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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Beautiful Battersea Boxes

It started with this tiny box.
 For my 40th birthday (several years ago!) a few of my dear friends surprised me with a day out in New York City and then presented me with this adorable 
enameled Battersea Box.

What's a Battersea Box? In the 1700 and 1800's small enamel trinket boxes were made by the company Bilston and Battersea. They were especially  popular among Victorian ladies and collected as souvenirs from their 
visits to the seashore.
 But by the 1830's their popularity had waned. 
 In the 1950's the antique shop Halcyon Days specialized in English antiques and collectibles. The little boxes were once again popular and had become rare so they formed a partnership with Bilston and Battersea Enamels to start making them again.

These tiny boxes are works of art, depicting flowers, birds, lovely ladies, architecture or charming quotes.There are hundreds if not thousands of designs.

So here is my modest collection. I have my original 
Noah's Ark box, a couple of Alice in Wonderland, and several that my dear husband gave me for birthdays or anniversaries.

They can be quite pricey, usually $100 and up so if you see one for less, treat yourself to a little piece of history.

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Thursday, June 18, 2015

Charming Charleston

I took my first trip to Charleston, South Carolina last week and it was a delight. Charleston is a southern gem full of history, beautiful architecture, and good food. My daughter and her husband honeymooned here three years ago and were anxious to revisit so my husband and I joined them for a long weekend. We started out with a walking tour of the historic downtown.

Charleston is known as "The Holy City" due to the prevalence of the many churches that make up it skyline and it's religious tolerance during it's early years.

Charleston boasts one beautiful home after another, many of which offer tours.

This street is called Rainbow Row, for obvious reasons!

This "Wedding Cake" style house has a very unusual addition on it's rooftop - a small Arc de Triomphe!

The Dock Street Theater has been lovingly preserved and still is in use.

The downtown has an old slave market that  has been been saved and turned into a flea market  for local artists and artisans to sell their goods.

A favorite attraction with the guys was Patriot's Point where you can tour a decommission aircraft carrier, submarine, and destroyer from WWII.

And then there is the food! the Noisy Oyster is a local favorite  where we enjoyed a shrimp boil dinner.

We also had great seafood at Tommy Condon's.

Kilwin's is a candy shop that I was not familiar with. Let's just say I took advantage of the opportunity to get to know them!

And then there were the cupcakes!

 It's a beautiful city with lots to offer!

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