Thursday, September 22, 2016

A Sneak Peak at Fall, 2016

I adore Fall.  It's my favorite season of the year, and in our neck of the woods, Autumn always presents us with the most beautiful, good for the soul weather of our entire year.  Did I say that I love Fall?  I also love to decorate for and entertain in Autumn; but I must concede that if I start in September, by the end of November, I am completely over the color orange and all things pumpkin!  As a result, I usually prefer to introduce Fall into my tablescape designs a little bit at a time.

 Today the Garden Friends Bible study reconvened for another year of fellowship and sharing the Word.  I invited them for lunch and a time to catch up with each other.  Some of us are still out of town, so I set a table for 6 at the games table in the living room.  I considered this wonderful Pier One copper charger (probably still available at a Pier One near you), but I decided to wait to use it later in the season.  Today I wanted to design an Autumn tablescape with a lighter touch.
Cone on in ...

My always favorite blue and white cozied up nicely to the lightest touches of coral and orange.  Four small pumpkins made the show at the last moment.  They were really just an after thought.

 Keeping it soft, I chose an ecru matelasse tablecloth as the underpinning for my design.

 Here's the shot for Marlis @ Creative Journeys.  Marlis likes to see the Fortuny silk screen tucked behind my piano. I've had the cotton lace trimmed napkins for eons.  They seemed to be the perfect choice to go with the reticulated dinner plates.

There are some new additions to my collections that I want to share with you today.  Making its premier appearance, the Mottahedeh Cornflower Blue Lace Charger makes me smile a great big goofy smile each time that I use it.

Ditto, the Hartley Greens Leeds large pierced plate.  Word to the Wise:  This pattern has been on my "list" for years.  I never got around to buying it because quite frankly, it was pretty high priced for my wallet.  When I finally reached the point that I felt I could begin to collect it, I ordered 4 from Williamsburg Market  After placing my order, I told the operator that I was excited to call again the next month and order a few more.  The operator then informed me that I had just bought the last four plates that they would ever have in stock because the Hartley Greens of Leeds Pottery had gone out of business.  I was sick to my stomach!  The lesson...if you see something that you really want, don't wait too long to make the purchase.  You may never get to have it.  Luckily, I recently found a company in Great Britain ( ka ching, ka ching) that has some, and I am now collecting more as quickly as possible.   Sometimes silly dreams really do come true.

Topping the stack, another new baby...the Wedgwood feather edge Queensware luncheon plate in that peculiar Wedgwood lavender blue. I bought 12 for a steal on eBay.  Accompanying the place setting is my wedding sterling flatware, Reed & Barton Grande Renaissance.   

La stack for you detail lovers!

The Waterford Simply Blue goblet and the Tiffin Elyse wine paired nicely for our luncheon.

 If you're just down the street, I still have time to add another place setting for you!

The Hartley Greens Leeds Chestnut Bowl was an obvious choice for the centerpiece.

I surrounded it with a quartet of coral colored bouquets...

...set in the Lenox Classic Urns.  I use these urns in so many situations.  They are some of my favorite appointments.  Look for them when you go to estate sales.  I usually find them for around $25.00.

 The menu for today consisted of Chicken Tetrazzini, green salad, hot rolls, and a chocolate mousse cake.  Which reminds me...we have a brand new Trader Joe's opening this week.  I may never cook again!  Well...unless Cuisine Kathleen is coming for a visit at my house!

 It's so good to be together again with my Garden Friends.  We dined and laughed and shared stories well into the favorite kind of day.

 I really would love for you to come join me for lunch!  Let me know if you are coming my way, and I'll have the  table set by the time you ring the door bell.

This week I'm joining:

Tablescape Thursday with Susan @ Between Naps on the Porch

Thursday, September 15, 2016

English Oak Centerpiece Accessories for Lunch

Where do you find inspiration for your tablescapes?  Typically, my inspirations never come from the same place two times in a row. Today I happened across a selection of antique English Oak pieces that I hadn't thought about in quite a while, and I was off and running. 

 I found this silver rimmed oak pedestal bowl on eBay.  I had seen one in a Carolyne Rohm
book and had been searching for one of my own for a long time. The day that I found it, I was definitely doing a happy dance. Since I'm your buy everything possible in pairs girl, I'm still looking for a mate for my bowl.  Some day....

A pair of English Oak biscuit/cookie jars contributed handsomely to my wooden vignette.  One was an eBay find and one was discovered in a local antique store.  One of these would make a delightful centerpiece for a smaller round table.

A quartet of Barley Twist candlesticks provided the finishing touch for the centerpiece.   Plop, plop, plop, and I was done.  So lovely.

The Williams - Sonoma striped linen tablecloth  set a subtle tone for the luncheon.

From the bottom:  The Caspari rattan charger held  the Wedgwood Queens Plain dinner plate and the Copeland Spode Tower Pink luncheon plate.  The Tower Pink was the everyday pattern that Sweet Mister's family used every day.  We are blessed to shepherd these dear old dishes through this generation.  We also use them as one of our everyday patterns.  Their familiarity is heart warming; they bring a quiet smile each time that I pull them out of the cabinet.  A caramel colored hemstitched napkin held by my Cuisine Kathleen's beaded napkin rings balanced atop the stack of dishes.

Beverages were served in the Vieri amber and the AJKA Arabella red goblets.

 Completing the design, I used the L'Argent Sophia Gold flatware ( Horchow's online and Tuesday Morning).  I used old individual Tower Pink ashtrays as butter pats...thinking outside the box can yield fun results.

 Lunch will be ready shortly.  In the meantime, come on into the living room.  We can visit for a bit before we eat.  For me, it's just another delightful day doing what I love...Entertaining Women!  Won't you join us?

This week I'm joining:
Tablescape Thursday with Susan @ Between Naps on the Porch

Thoughts of Home with White Spray Paint

Dishing It and Digging It with Linda @ Life and Linda

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Coalport Leighton Sprays & a Birthday Party

I love birthday parties, and my favorite birthday celebrations are the ones that I get to host for my precious Garden Friends Bible Study.  This day we were celebrating Barb's birthday. 
 Barb loves blues, and pinks, and greens...lots of color, color, color!  We're seated in the dining room, and I've set a table for ten guests.  Come on in...

Not a lot of stacking going on today.  There are just some plates that it kills me to cover, and this is one of them.  I knew that Barb would adore the Coalport Leighton Sprays dinner plate.  I was also certain that she would love the extra pop of color provided by the Bormioli hot pink glass charger plate.

 My wedding sterling flatware, Reed & Barton Grande Renaissance, was close at hand, so on the table it went.  The Williams Sonoma white hemstitched linen napkin was quietly caught in the Coalport Countrywide napkin ring.   Continuing the color theme, the Stelle pink scroll goblet, a great get at Home Goods, partnered nicely with the  Waterford Simply Blue goblet.   I collected the Waterford Simply goblets over a span of probably five or six years on eBay.  I use them often.

A special birthday deserves a special centerpiece.  I have been pretty much gaga over the Mottahedeh Musee Des Arts Decoratifs tureen since I found it on eBay.  eBay Tip:  By the way there is currently one of these available on eBay, if you should want one.  The one that is listed right now is priced for about half of the usual list price.Still not dirt cheap, but comparatively it's a good deal.

The tureen was flanked by our Val St. Lambert crystal candlesticks and the Lenox urns filled with flowers from Whole Foods Market.   Easy peasy!  

 The Williams Sonoma soft blue linen hemstitched tablecloth provided a gentle, feminine  underpinning for my design.  Soft, feminine, colorful, and relaxing....elements for a  delightful afternoon of celebration and fellowship.

 Be still my heart...I so love to set a pretty table to honor my precious friends and family.  I pray that each of my guests always feels like the guest of honor.

Chicken pasta salad, fresh berries, hot bread, and a chocolate mousse birthday cake was served for lunch.

It was a delightful day.  We visited long into the afternoon.  Let me know if you're coming my way.  I would love to set a table for you.

This week I'm joining:

Tablescape Thursday with Susan @ Between Naps on the Porch

Inspire Me Tuesday with Marty @ A Stroll Through Life

Thoughts of Home with White Spray Paint

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Blue and White for Four

Once again, I've missed you all terribly.  Let's just say that it's been an interesting year health wise, but as of now I'm feeling and moving better than I've felt and moved in years.  I'm pretty excited about the possibilities.  I'm going to give my blog another go.  I certainly have a backlog of tablescapes to share with you.  At times I'll probably share two tables at a time, or I'll never catch up.

This luncheon took place in early February, 2015.  A small group of close friends joined me for lunch, and the menu was Soup Soup.  Soup Soup is a wonderful company that literally makes homemade meals and stocks the display cases every single day for customers to come by and pick up meals or a la carte items to go.  They will even accept a recipe that you particularly like and prepare it especially for you.  When I say home cooking, I mean home cooking.  I may never cook again. Come on in.  We're dining in the living room at the games table.

I'm a died in the wool blue and white girl, and once I move past the holidays and hit the first of the year, I find myself heading straight for the blues and whites again and again. 

 A creamy matelasse tablecloth, an eBay find, suited my mood this day.

 Keeping it fairly simple, I found myself happily choosing a variety of blues.  Flowers were kept to a minimum with roses in a array of colors placed in small Waterford posy vases.

 This is Copeland Spode Ermine.  I love the design work on the finial and the handles.

 A pretty tureen is often one of my go-to centerpieces.  There are several reasons that I enjoy utilizing them.  They are really pretty.  They are a great height for a dining table, and your guests can easily see across them to visit with each other.  Finally it takes about five minutes to create your centerpiece, and on occasion you can even put soup in them.  ;-)  The quartet of candlesticks are cobalt depression glass.  They and the centerpiece are more of my eBay finds.

 The Zrike cobalt charger rested peacefully under the Copeland Spode Ermine dinner plate.   Today our everyday stainless steel flatware, Wallace Antique Bead sufficed nicely

Water was served in the Goddinger Sutton Place goblet, and the Libby cobalt goblet from Dollar Tree was available for guests who wanted wine with lunch.   

 Once you are seated, enjoy your view of the table!

 Lunch was comprised of King Ranch Chicken, simple salad, and an incredible, giant dinner roll...all courtesy of Soup Soup.  For dessert, I served my homemade Brandy Ice.

It was a cold winter's day, and after lunch we visited long into the afternoon.  At some point we all need to "Stop the World, I Want to Get Off." (Anthony Newley/Leslie Bricusse musical from the early 60's.  Most memorable song: "What Kind of Fool am I")  Next time you're having one of those 'Stop the World' days, come on by.  I'll pick up Soup Soup when I know you're on the way.

This week I'm joining:

Inspire Me Tuesday with Marty @ A Stroll Through Life

Tablescape Thursday with Susan at Between Naps on the Porch

Thoughts of Home with White Spray Paint


Thursday, May 12, 2016

Coalport Leighton Sprays for a Birthday Lunch

It's been way too long since I last blogged.  I think that it's going to take a while to regain my rhythm in my posts.  I can't say that there have been any giant catastrophes in my world, other than the loss of my precious Yorkshire terrier Dickens about 6 weeks ago.  He had been in a "failure to thrive" mode for a number of months.  He was 15 years old, and his tiny warrior body just finally wore out.  He went peacefully in his sleep after spending the morning sleeping in my lap as I visited with my sister, who was our welcome guest for the weekend.  Dickens was such an important part of our family, and his absence left a gaping hole in my heart.  On a better note, my knee replacements have changed my life in a major  way.  I go for days at a time without ever thinking about my knees.  If you have knee issues, you can totally identify with that statement.  Why, I can  even wear a modest height heel now for the first time in three decades!  Admittedly I walked like a 13 year old for a while after taking my little heels for a spin. Life is good.

This week, I'm sharing a tablescape from February, '15.  The Garden Friends gathered to celebrate a birthday for our intrepid leader, Barb.  We're at the games table in the living room.  Come join us, please!

Barb loves bright clear colors.  I love blue and white.  I thought that this table would please both of us.

I made the blue and white gingham check tablecloth many years ago.  Today it added a degree of easy going comfort to the design.

A large AJKA rose bowl anchored the centerpiece. I bought it at an estate sale...great get.  A quartet of cobalt depression glass candlesticks surrounded the bowl of roses in assorted bright colors.  A pair of crystal decanters held water for my guests to refill their glasses.  Small Waterford posey vases featured additional roses.    

The Anna Weatherly cobalt charger was a graceful frame for the dinner plate.  Today I used my wedding silver, Reed & Barton Grande Renaissance.

The star of today's production was the Coalport Leighton Sprays dinner plate.  (I forgot to take a photo of the closeup the day of the luncheon. This picture is acting as a fill-in.)  I adore this pattern, and I use it on a somewhat regular basis.  It's a new addition to my collection, found during my recovery from my knee surgeries.

If you have read my blog for any time at all, you know that I really enjoy using cased crystal.  The addition of sparkling color always makes me smile.  Today the Waterford Simply Pink goblet and the AJKA cobalt Xenia were featured players.

The Glastonbury-Lotus bowl and plate were used for my homemade Gazpacho, another neat shot of fresh color for the table.

Finishing the tableau, Madeira napkins were caught in white Coalport Countrywide napkin rings.  The Val St. Lambert crystal open salts added yet another bit of lovely reflective light.

I'm so glad to be back in blogworld!...

I hope that you will want to join me at my tables once again.  Thanks for dropping by for a visit.

This week I'll be joining:

Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for Tablescape Thursday