Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Birthday Parties

Today is my birthday. I spent it simply because we are leaving on vacation on Thursday. We will spend about ten days at my in-laws condo in Ormand Beach FL, and then on August 11th we will go to Orlando to pick up my youngest son who has been studying in Europe this summer. Having him back will be the best gift of all. However, even though I didn't have a birthday with all the bells and whistles, I had a blissful birthday. I took our oldest dog out to stay with my parents while we are gone so that the other dogs will not be able to bother her. While I was there, Kerry who came with me, and I visited with my parents and they took us out to lunch in a local place where I had never eaten. It was so great to spend the time with my parents. I am an only child and most of my birthdays have been spend when we are on vacation and so my parents don't get my company. Last year, when I hit the big 50 my mother specifically asked that I, my husband, and the kids spend it with them and my mother outdid herself with dinner and a rainbow cake (my absolutely favorite cake. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the cake, it consists of about three tiers of around white cake (homemade of course), the tiers are then split horizonally, and different types of filling are used for the different layers, such as pineapple, pastasio, strawberry,lemon, etc. Then the whole cake is frosted with a frothy butter cream icing. It makes a very elegant and delicious cake. But I did not have it this year, there wasn't enough time. I had a delightful afternoon and lunch with Kerry and my parents and then I went home and ate pizza and rewatched one of our funny movies with my husband, my eldest son and Kerry. Birthdays do not always have to be about parties and cakes and presents. Sometime the best birthdays are spend quietly with the ones you love. I have always enjoyed the birthdays I spend on vacation, but it has been very sweet and blissful to spend the last two with my beloved parents without whom, I would not have any birthdays to celebrate.
May your birthdays be blissful.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

People of Bliss

Today the world did not start out on the best of footings for Kerry and I. Anyway, as I was fussing about this, Kerry reminded me of all the lovely people we meet through the store. There is Debbie from The Peddler House and Carol from The Red Barn who give so much of their time and talents to the merchants association and have been so helpful and kind to us as new shop owners. They are truly delightful ladies. Please visit their lovely stores when you are in Waynesville.
There is also the lovely woman who came in the other day and really blessed me with her presence. Sadly, our doctor's son, who is only 16, died last week of a brain tumor. Our doctor is not only our doctor but also a friend and I was having problems dealing with the death of his son and I was so worried about the pain he and his wife were going through. The lovely lady who came to the shop to return an item had lost both of her daughters, her only children. She told us that she started antiquing after the death of her first daughter while the other was in school. She was laughing with us and we were having such a good time that I realized that eventually he and his wife, even though they would never be the same and would always miss their son, would laugh again and would be able to enjoy life again, if that life was different. That made me feel so much better.
There is our favorite Texan who visits us with her mother when she comes to visit her mother. I can't thank her enough. There is our customer, who we call our linen lady. We also have a good time when she comes in. There is the mother and daughter that love the soaps we carry that always brighten our day. There are many others who I know were sent by God at just the right moment that unknowingly bring a message that I needed to hear at the time and help me renew my faith. I thank God for all of them.
There is Sister Mary Martha, one of our absolute favorite bloggers, who left a lovely comment and offered her help. You really must visit her blog. I think you will be very surprised and it won't be what you expect. She is a hoot and never fails to make us laugh. Thank you Sister.
There are so many others and they add to our bliss. May lovely people come your way today, and as they do, I hope you appreciate the gift of bliss that they bring.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Elements of the Table: Chic China

I would like to apologize for the length of time between posts, we've been having some technical issues and just couldn't post anything for a few days. Continuing along in my little series on the ingredients for a lovely table setting, I would like to share a few pictures of china and some of the different sorts of vintage patterns and pieces that are available for your table. As there are so many to choose from I will try to share some other patterns in the future. One of the joys of using vintage pieces is that you have such a wide variety of themes to choose from. You can use a whole set of matching dishes if you would like or you can mix and match favorite pieces that share a theme of some sort like color, flower, transferware etc. And as you know, think outside the box. One of the items below is actually a jardinere but could be lovely for holding a salad, fruit or even a pudding on your table.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Second Sunday Stroll Artisan Profile: Marcia Matell

Today is the Second Sunday Stroll for July and we are pleased to welcome Marcia Matell of Contemporary Handicrafts to our porch. Her medium is clay and she makes lovely pottery as you can see in the pics. If you see something that you don't feel you can live without, you can contact her at Playswithclay@gmail.com and tell her Trendy Bindi's sent you!

Elements of the Table: Scrumptious Wooodsgift Farms Memory Foods

I may be jumping ahead of myself here, the table isn't yet set but I am already bringing up the food! But I am just so excited about this that I can't wait to post about it later. For years our family has been going to a local festival and every year our main mission has been to obtain curds and jellies from one vendor, Woodsgift Farms, which we would then stockpile for the rest of the year.

Not only do they taste AMAZING but the couple from Tennessee who make them are just the sweetest, nicest, godly folk you could imagine. Just as good-old fashioned "good people" as the product they sale. When my little brother Josh had torn his ACL (I can't remember if this was his first or second one) and was consequently suitably less than his usual happy self, these lovely people prayed for his quick recovery.

This year, we were thrilled to find out that we would be able to carry it in our shop! Let me tell you as I picked out our first order I was smiling like a little kid at Christmas! We are now pleased to be able to offer this product to our customers. While they make some traditional jams and jellies like strawberry, raspberry and blackberry, they also make what they refer to as "Memory Foods" that your great-grandmother might have made like Honeysuckle, Rose Hip, and my personal favorite of the Dandelion jelly which we currently carry. These are just a few of the delicately delicious floral jellies which they offer and we hope to carry. They also make simply divine Lemon and Lime curds (the lemon slightly edges out the lime as the family favorite and we could all sit down and eat it with a spoon...a healthy treat which I love is take the lemon and mix it with some plain yogurt, DELICIOUS!) and fruit butters. For breakfast, snack or tea, no table is complete without these delicacies. Take a look for yourself. We can always ship!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Elements of the Table: Terrific Tablecloths!

No romantic vintage chic table can be set without one--a beautiful vintage tablecloth, whether a dainty damask, vibrant and sweet cottage floral, classic gingham or stripes or a whimsical novelty print. The addition of your favorite tablecloth truly sets the tone. They are also a cute addition to the cottage decor in your home when displayed. They can be shown off draped about your home in a nonchalant fashion or they can be put to new creative uses as curtains or slipcovers. I certainly believe that personal appeal is the most important qualification for picking a tablecloth. However there are things to keep in mind when shopping for your own. If you are seriously collecting or see your linens as an investment, then condition will be important to you. To be truthful, I feel a little more comfortable actually using ones that might have a small issue here or there that way I am not so crushed if I have a clutzy moment. Tablecloths with serious issues can be used as cutters but I urge discretion with your scissors! Also, names like so many other collectibles can be important. Some names to remember are Wilendur, Broderie, Startex and Simtex.

Here are a few pics of tablecloths from our shop:

Would you believe that this has been embroidered on all four corners with this mill scene? It is one of my favorites, I just can't imagine the patience and skill taken to create this sweet tablecloth!

In future postings, I will give examples of other elements such as china, glassware, and tabletop embellishmet as well as some examples of complete table settings that bring the various romantic vintage cottage elements together.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

July Summer Getaway Ladies' Day Gifts

I just wanted to share with you some pictures of the gifts that are being given away this month for the Therapeutic Thursdays and Fantastic Fridays. If you make a purchase on one of these days you get a handcrafted tussie mussie such as the ones shown below!

More books...

In addition to the Nancy Drews and Hardy Boys, we also got a bunch of Trixie Beldens in the shop. So here are some pics of those plus some Bobbsey Twins and other misc. children's series books including Tom Slade, Bruce Campbell and my absolute faves as a child, The Happy Hollisters! I think they look particularly cute in this lovely green kitchen cabinet (which I am not too sorry to say is Display Only! As soon as I get my own place again this little cutie is coming with me!). Just remember the key to decorating in the vintage romantic style is to see the potential in vintage items beyond the original purpose!

New Old Books

We just got a bunch of "new" Nancy Drews, Hardy Boys in the shop, so I decided to take a picture of them as well as some of our other great vintage series books to share with all of you. There is something just so cozy about these old books that have been read and loved and the great stories that they contained that just makes you want to curl up with a cup of tea or some milk and cookies on the sofa!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Stored Treasures

Often a customer will say that she has items like the ones we carry in her attic or basement, packed away. I would love it if all of you came to the store to buy decorating items but with gas over $4.00 a gallon, I realize that many of you are on a budget. If you have lovely items in your attic or basement, get them out and display them. Rotate them with some of your other decorative items. There is no decorating law that states that you can't store some of your pieces that you have displayed now and get out your grandmother's china. I personally think that your heirlooms should be used as well. You would also be suprised how a vintage or retro piece can fit into any style. If you really no longer want the item, give it to another family member. Lovely things should not be stored for years and not seen. For some items, storage can be lethal and no one enjoys them. If you can't think of anyone who would want the item, remember that we do consignment. However, I must say I would rather that your family treasures stay in your family and be enjoyed, but sometimes it may need to go to another family. I know that many of my lovely things were owned by unrelated kindred spirits and I treasure them as though they had been in my family for years. If you do not have family treasures of your own, then come and visit us, I am sure that you will find something lovely to treasure.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Waynesville Days Clearance

Waynesville Days are next week--from the 10th through the 13th. We have decided to have a blowout sale. With the high cost of gas, we want to share a little bliss with you by clearing enough items to nearly fill our back room (we have only 3 rooms) and we are using garage sale prices. We have vintage decor, furniture, linens, and toiletries marked down. We need to make room for new items. So stop by and see what we have. We have started the markdown already so many items are already on sale. We won't be open tomorrow, the 4th, but we will be back to regular hours on Saturday. Have a safe and blissful 4th.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

cottage decorating

I had a customer come in on Sunday and she loved the store, which always makes us happy. She stated that she loved the romantic cottage look but that her own furniture was dark. Like me, she had been married for quite a while. I too have a lot of dark furniture--some family antiques and some items that I have bought over the years. I loved cherry furniture. I have found that you can incorporate the cottage look with a few pieces of white or painted furniture. Maybe it is just an end table or, like I have in my dining room, a lovely vintage tole painted folding sewing table. My dining room set was my great aunt Faye's and I would never readily part with it. But the sewing table, against a wall, makes the dining room cozy and cottagy. A white cabinet or a cupboard can also such a difference and a statement. I was lucking enough to find a wonderful white cupboard that could be taken apart to travel in a wagon and now it sets in the corner of my family room.
Other small things that you can do is incorporate vintage cottage style accessories. I have a collection of handpainted vintage floral paintings. I also have vintage sewing baskets. I have some lovely porcelain (again floral) pieces that I put on tables, shelves, etc. Take vintage linens, such as hankies and tea towels and use as window dressings. Whether you start a collection or have just different items, make sure that they are items that you love and that make you smile when you see them. I believe that that is the secret of cottage decorating. Simple changes can make a big difference. Make your house or apartment a blissful place to be. Life is stressful enough so add beauty to your surroundings for your enjoyment.
Live the blissful life,