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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Pink Majolica Breakfast

I had been thinking about doing a post with these dishes for a while.  I especially wanted to use them during berry season.  I have been collecting pieces of this for a long time.  These are large dessert plates, or maybe small luncheon plates.  At any rate, they are just the right size for breakfast and that's how I used them here.

Whole Foods had these gerbera daisies and I thought they looked so much like the flowers on the plate.  (I bought berries that looked like the ones on the plate, too!)  I put them in this small square pot from the floral wholesaler.  I think it was about all of four dollars.  I bought a couple extra for gifts, I thought they were so cute.

Here's the way the table looked, but disregard how it clashes with the rug.  With a round table, the rug is going to show, ya know!  I started with this plain green cloth from Crate and Barrel.

Just look at the detail on this plate.  Isn't it so sweet?  It has a large "F.G." carved into the bottom and the words "Hand Painted, Portugal" in script stamped on it.  Does anyone know anything further about this?  It resembles majolica.  I've found pieces lots of different places, but nobody seems to know what it is.

I found these mugs that aren't quite the same, but they go together pretty well.  They are marked "the haldon group" on the bottom.  The inside is a beautiful, soft shell pink.  These have a blue ribbon, while the plates have pink, and the basket weave is a little larger and creamier than the plates. 

My vintage LuRay china had the perfect size little berry bowl to go with this.

And, of course, this pink flatware was my choice for utensils.  Pretty and dishwasher safe!

I love these scalloped linen napkins and I used an acrylic frosted green napkin ring.

My sweet friend, Jan, gave me these glasses years ago.  They make me smile just to see them in the cupboard, because they remind me of what a good friend I have.  There is nothing like treasures from a treasured friend!

So here's the simple table.  Just a plate for a sweet roll and a bowl for berries.  I can't believe I couldn't even remember to photograph the berries.  I guess that I lost my focus around food again!

The sweetener is in a little ceramic box that my mom gave me a while back, and I chose these jadite pieces for the cream and sugar. 

And, oh yea.....look what I found in a little shop in Chagrin Falls, Ohio.  A juice pitcher!  Score!!! I was really doing my happy dance, that's for sure.

Can you see the inside of the mugs?

These little guys lasted days and days.  Don't you love it when that happens?

Here's an invitation to visit these blog parties in which I'm participating this week:

Tablescape Thursday at Between Naps On the Porch

Home Sweet Home at The Charm of Home on Friday

Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage

Show and Tell Friday at My Romantic Home

Inspiration Friday at At The Pickret Fence

Fridays Unfold at Stuff and Nonsense

Seasonal Sunday at The Tablescaper

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Turquoise and White Summer Dinner Party

First, I found these beauties!

Then I found these to go with them.

I already had these.....

And these.....

And these!

And a dinner party was born.

Place mats are from Homegoods, dinner plates and salad plates from Z Galleries, and soup tureen from Target.

Here's the way the table came together.  We were expecting six, but ended up with a cozy four. 

I wanted to keep the turquoise and white and coral thing going, so the center of the table was a very simple gathering of a large piece of white coral surrounded by white shells.  Then I threw in a few pieces of turquoise sea glass to give a tiny bit of color.

Couldn't be easier.

I put these large extra-white roses in some clear turquoise glasses from Martha Stewart.  There was an arrangement at each end of the table.

Here's the bread and butter plate I used.  It says "Made in Italy" and the mark reads "Andrea Galvani, Pordemone" and has "Carbone" in script.  I have about 6 complete place settings, lots of serving pieces, and an espresso set.  I bought it years ago at a consignment shop in Shaker Heights, Ohio that benefited the American Red Cross. These butter shapes are made in a Wilton candy mold from Micheal's.

I put a Greek Gazpacho in these.  It was a new recipe that I had never tried and it was yummy.  Perfect for our hot summer night.

We aren't martini drinkers and not many of our friends are, either, but I totally had to buy these at Tuesday Morning.  They are deeply etched in such a cool beach theme.  I immediately envisioned a crab salad in them, but because I was serving seafood for the main course, I used them for dessert.  I just grilled a slice of pineapple, and put a scoop of Hagen-Daz pineapple-coconut ice cream on top and sprinkled a bit of toasted coconut over all.  I diced the pineapple to fit the shape of this glass, but I usually just put the ring on a plate and top with the ice cream.  Listen..........this is great........this is easy..........people love it!!!!  Why bake a cake? 
The flatware is my off-white French knock-off.  It looks great and was a fraction of the cost of the set that I thought I had to have.

Salt and pepper in a shell with horn spoons.

I took most of these photos the night before the dinner.  The lighting was not great and these turquoise pieces seem to be sort of fighting, but truly, it was a beautifully harmonious table.

This rattan runner and sea-themed stuff has been on the dining table for a couple of weeks.  I moved it to the sideboard for the meal.

Just a Pottery Barn bowl with sand and shells and a little sea glass.

These Pottery Barn hurricanes have the same treatment.

The small chest in the dining room has a clear turquoise bottle filled with a few simple snips from the yard.  It has a very narrow neck, so only a very few pieces of greenery will work.

I set up some glasses in the bar with these Caspari cocktail napkins.

And here's the coffee service with a shell-handled spoon for the sugar.

We had this appetizer out in the garden after we all got drinks.  Do you remember fixing this all of the time in the late '70's?  It's a veggie pizza on crescent rolls with a ranch dressing mixed with mayo and cream cheese.  Then any veggies (I used broccoli, zucchini, summer squash, green onions, and grated carrots.  Then top with shredded cheddar.  It is so refreshing and tasty, especially for summer.  I garnished it with basil leaves and garlic chive blossoms.

Here's a close-up.  Does it make your mouth water?  I took the left-overs to a picnic the next night and they were licked clean.

I was wishing that my blogger friend, Alycia Nichols from Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One could join me that night.  I really must find a way to meet her for a "for-real" hug.  Do you think that it was Alycia-worthy?


Veggie Pizza
(served in the garden)

Greek Summer Gazpacho
(Southern My Way by Gena Knox)

Beach Street Cajun Shrimp
(Susan Branch's The Summer Book)
served over
Orzo Salad With Corn
(Stonewall Kitchen's Harvest)

Pineapple/Coconut Sundaes

* pics of most of the meal.  I just can't talk and serve and photograph at the same time, it seems!

I'll be posting at:

Between Naps on the Porch for Tablescape Thursday

The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home

French Country Home for Feathered Nest Friday

Designs by Gollum for Foodie Friday

At The Picket Fence for Inspiration Friday

Stuff and Nonsense for Fridays Unfond

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Entryway Before and After

Welcome to our home!  This is what you will see when you step through the front door.  This furniture is hanging around from our early marriage, but it definitely is not going to be replaced, so this is a good place for it.  The highboy is located perfectly next to the dining room, since it holds napkin rings, candles, flatware, etc. 

This is what it looked like when the previous owners lived here.  They were from Florida and the house had a feel of the tropics.  Since it is in the woods in northern Georgia, we felt a "mountainy" touch would be more appropriate.  We refinished and darkened all of the hardwood floors and since we didn't care for this exaggerated faux finishing, we painted over the rough plastered walls.  I may glaze these, but I haven't yet decided.  The color we have now is Benjamin Moore's White Dove in flat with the same color in semi-gloss for trim.

Here's the approach to the front door.

And here's the inside with the "speak easy" grille door open.  We had an antique French door here, but it had been poorly fitted to this space and an inappropriate set of hardware was added, so we replaced it.

I fell in love with this natural brass lantern and elected to hang it without glass.  I think I'm going to take the glass out of some of our other lanterns, too.  I love the shadows this throws on the ceiling.  If you're over 6'7", you might want to watch your head, though!

These watercolors are some of my favorite art pieces in the house. The entryway in our last house had a yellow and red Zoffany wallpaper with tulips on it.  I found this at The Stalls in Buckhead and thought it was so perfect, but I needed two.  I contacted the artist, C.Whitlock, and provided a piece of the wallpaper.  In only two weeks, she painted me another tulip to partner with this one.
I just love the detail she put in these.

The matting and framing is exquisite and makes the pieces so much more interesting.

I found these tole brackets in Chicago at Alexandra Branca's shop.  I had decided that I wanted Staffordshire dogs on top and had two beautiful old ones on hold.  Then I saw these quality reproductions with the yellow and red baskets and decided that I liked them better because of the color interest.  I struggled with the snobbery of antique vs. repro and the new ones won.  I have not regretted it.

The entryway goes on through this doorway.

This is the cherry piece that sits there at the bottom of the stairs.  I bought this waaay before it was knocked-off everywhere!

These bronze stag candlesticks give this vignette some height.  I just wish I could get those dang candles to stand up straight.  I bet I straighten them several times a week.

The small leather-bound books are held by these black forest acorn carved bookends.  Love!

We call this "The Chairman of the Board".  It is a strike-off of an English antique lithograph that is hand colored.  We had our English Springer Spaniel, Nittany, for seventeen years and there is lots of dog art and many dog accessories in our home.  I can't bear to get another puppy just yet, but I know I will someday.

Lots of leather-bound books here.

I bought this old mirror years ago at a consignment shop in Indianapolis.  I'd love to know it's story.  Anybody have info on it?

This is looking back toward the door.  You can just see the bottom step of the stairway here on the right. 

That's it!  A lot of stuff in a very small space, but I hope it feels warm and welcoming. 

I'm posting at
for Metamorphis Monday

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