Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Tablescape Thursday - Victorian Lace

Its ten o'clock Monday morning and I have an idea.  For the last several years, I have met with some girlfriends once a month for a dinner night out.  We usually go to a restaurant for dinner and then go to one of our houses for dessert so we can talk and look at decorating magazines or books or just share our lives.  Well, I decided at the last minute that I wanted everyone to come over for dessert.  It all started when I saw an "Easy Strawberry Cake" recipe on line.  Since I am all for easy, I felt I could bake a cake, set the table for girlfriends, clean the house, and all the other things one does when having company.  When my sweet husband said he would stop by the grocery store to pick up some items I needed, I knew it was a go.  I immediately emailed my friends to tell them dessert was at my house so now I was committed.  This is how the day began.

My house is Mediterranean style but the "Victorian at Heart" in me loves to use lace whenever I can so out came the vintage white lace tablecloth.

Adding a layer of a cream colored lace tablecloth reminded me of a beautiful dress with the petticoat showing.  

The rose crystal candleholders were added next.  The scrunched tablecloth makes the layered background interesting.

The lace just called for my pink dessert plate called "Victorian Lace".  On top I added the pink swirl glass dessert plate for a touch of sparkle.

Since the temperatures have been in the 70's and even made it to the 80's I wanted to celebrate Spring by serving ice tea instead of hot tea so I chose the matching stemware.  I purchased these pink glass swirl pattern dishes many years ago because they reminded me of the vintage depression glassware.

The vintage white napkin was wrapped in a pink rose bud napkin ring...I think it is really a candle ring but it has multi uses.  A floral printed napkin was used to cushion the fork.

 These Rogers forks were purchased at an antique mall.  I want to research the fork pattern.  If you recognize it, I would appreciate finding out more details.  The silverware is like adding jewelry.

Since the tablescape was all about the strawberry cake, I decided to add a faux cake as the centerpiece.

Using my pink Kitchen Aid mixer just makes a strawberry cake that much better.

As you can see,  being in a hurry, I either didn't let the cake cool long enough or I needed more sugar in the icing.  Trust me....no one noticed.  As my friend, Ruth, said "This was the best cake I ever ate".  

We didn't have a problem with eating the cake.
I have to tell you that was one of the biggest strawberries I have seen.

I can't thank Robin at All Things Heart and Home enough for sharing this Easy Strawberry Cake recipe.  Get this easy and delicious cake recipe by clicking here.  Just a little note, Robin used 1 1/2 x of the frosting recipe and I used 2 x...do you think that is why my cake was drooping?  I kept it refrigerated and added a spoon of whipped cream on each piece.   Try for yourself...you won't be sorry.

I would love for you to leave a comment and if you visit with Robin, tell her you found the recipe on
Victorian at Heart.

 I am, also, joining Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for Tablescape Thursday.  Click on TT button on sidebar to take you to some amazing tablescapes.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Bird of Paradise Silverware

While I was posting my last post about my Mom's silverware (click to go back to previous post)  I wanted to find out more information about the pattern "Bird of Paradise" on her silverware.  I googled the pattern name and was pleasantly surprised to see that some of the vendors on Etsy make jewelry out of old pieces of silverware.  So, I ordered a "Bird of Paradise" bracelet and ring.  The pieces turned out perfect so I thought I would share another way to use your silverware.

The bracelet has two handle that are connected with a ring.   They can custom make the ring any size.  It is a special treat to get to wear this memorable jewelry.  I have included a link to the vendors that I used.  Click on the item you are interested in bracelet or ring to find out more information.

Hope this brings you lasting joy.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Tablescape Thursday Mom's 89th Birthday

I'm featuring another double post for Tablescape Thursday because it seems we celebrate occasions around the table.  I hosted a family lunch for my Mom's 89th birthday last Sunday.  That isn't easy since she now has 33 direct descendants and with spouses it gets around 48.  My Mom still cooks at least three times a week for family members and cooks meals every day for her 91 year old sister.  She comes from a family with five children and a single parent.  Much of her life she lived with relatives and said the men ate first, then the women, and then the children.  She said when she had children they were always going to eat first so my two sisters and I and the rest of the children are very fortunate because she always kept her word.

This is a picture of my Mom and I.  I used my three-tiered milk glass cake stands to serve giant chocolate and white cupcakes so everyone would have their favorite.  The kids were disappointed I didn't put 89 candles on a cake but I chose to use the candles with numbers 8 and 9 instead.

I had to show my Mom and her three great-grandsons (also, my grandsons).  One of Mom's favorite meals is tostadas so we had a buffet with all the makings.  The sugar-free angel food cake was served with strawberries for my Mom and others that are diabetic (actually we all had some).

 I just had to show my Mom's Great Great Granddaughter, Riley, smelling the flowers in the yard.

The tablescape began with this colorful paper napkin.  The bright colored tulips set the mood. 

The other side of the napkin has stripes so I alternated the prints.
My Mom didn't have much growing up but she did remember having the silverplated flatware called "Bird of Paradise".  It was manufactured in 1923 by Community and later in 1935 by Onieda Community .  I always look for this pattern when I am antiquing.  It is hard to capture the image of the two birds with long tail feathers because they are upside down in this photo. 

  My Mom's name is Lucille and my friend, Sally, had given me a book titled "Lucile" so I used the book along with photos of Mom's younger years for the centerpiece along with this brightly colored spring bouquet planted in a green wooden basket.

The plates are "Fiesta",  They just have to be used when having tostadas. 
The bright cheerful colors make you want to celebrate.

Thank you for stopping by to help us celebrate the life of a beautiful woman.
Happy 89th Birthday Mom!

Please leave a comment that you stopped by for a visit.  It is always fun to hear from you.

I am participating in Tablescape Thursday with Susan at Between Naps on the Porch.
Just click on the button below to see many more beautiful tablescapes.

"Streets of Bakersfield" - White Forest Nursery

Does this title sound familiar?  Well, that good old song of Buck Owens "Streets of Bakersfield" might give you a different image of Bakersfield California than what I'm going to share but hang on for a bucking good ride.

What beautiful weather we are having today in California?  It is 80 degrees with blue skies so my husband and I decided to get ideas for our backyard .  I hope to show some before-and-after photos of our backyard  when there becomes an "after".  Since my husband is a do-it-yourselfer it will take some time to complete but I have learned over the years, it will be worth the wait.

We took a trip to "White Forest Nursery".  Now that sprinklers have been installed and curbs and walls have been built, we are ready for some color.  Here are some ideas we are considering.

We found other ideas besides plants.

This is what we brought home and planted.

Two creeping fig to cover block privacy wall.

Two warm and fuzzy mini Rose trees for the inside of privacy wall.  Hope to include fountain and more plants in front of tiled wall.

Several Marguerita Lipstick Daisies to line walkway.

White Forest Nursery owner, Jere White, has a radio and TV program in our area. Also, you can get some great ideas from their website just click here.

Happy St. Patrick's Day
Hope you are enjoying some green.

If you have some suggestions of colorful plants you like, please leave me a comment.

"The love of gardening is a seed once sown that never dies." 
Gertrude Jekyll

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Tablescape Thursday Friends and Fabric

I'm doing a double post here because I purchased some fabrics that I liked to go in my dining and living rooms.  The rooms are open to each other but I wanted the drapes to be different but compliment each other.  My kitchen has black in the granite with a soft green so this printed fabric blends in well. 

This is a picture of my patio door valance and roman shade.  The striped roman shade can be let down to cover the entire window for privacy.

I wanted to bring a little Spring in my tablescape centerpiece so I started with this ceramic planter.  I first used an olive topiary to give a touch of  French flair with some greenery bushes all around the bottom of topiary. Anytime it is Spring, I think of birds so I added a nest so she is comfy.

The bird is hovering over a cute cement bunny.
The centerpiece is quite simple with a bouquet of Spring flowers.

The color scheme started with these beautiful paper napkins.  The contrast of the black background with yellow flowers just set the stage.  My yellow plates are big enough to use as chargers. The black Fiesta dinner plate pulls the color scheme together.  I used my black flatware that you can see in an earlier post.

This is the detail edging on the charger plate.

I used yellow glass stemware.

You can view the setting from this angle.  The black bamboo placemats anchor the settings with the table.

I sometimes add an accent plate such as this butterfly plate.

I used this tablescape when my friend
Beverly at My Sew Sweet Studio and her husband came over to put the final touches on my drapes that she made for my dining and living rooms.  Click on Beverly's name to see the full story.

Leave a comment and let me know if you think that black is a spring color.

See other Tablescape Thursday ideas by clicking on the TT button on the sidebar.

Thank you for visiting.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Tablescape Thursday A Quiet Place

One day last month when it was still a little chilly outside, I set aside some time in the afternoon to find  a quiet place.  

 A table in front of the fireplace seem to be that special place.  I served hot tea for myself  in my Old Country Rose pattern teacup which always makes a beautiful peaceful table.

 This is a close view of the ribbon I used around the candle.  I purchased it at a flea market a few years ago.  

I used a gold charger with a gold rimmed dinner plate to highlight the old country rose dessert plate.  The gold plated fork is like adding jewelry.

I didn't include this Victorian booklet about salads to remind me that I should have been eating salad instead of brownie, instead because of the simple tablescape.

With the candle and fireplace flickering and with the scent of red rose buds in the vase, it was time to reflect on the beauty around me. 

I encourage you to set aside some time in your busy day to pause long enough to smell the roses and turn your attention on the beauty of life.

Have a Blessed Day.

I am participating in Tablescape Thursday. If you want to see more tablescapes  just click on the TT button. 

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Spring is Around the Corner Adventure

I was just talking to my friend, Sally, she said she always looks forward to my posts and since I haven't had time to post lately, I decided to post a few pictures I took while on an antiquing adventure last weekend in Agoura Hills, California..

Since it was 70 degrees on Sunday when I was shopping in Agoura Hills California it felt like Spring was in the air.

We, also, shopped in the Agoura Antique Mart.  There are many great stores in this shopping center.

The floral pillow and chippy teal wood bench just felt like Spring.

The Gibson Girl printed boxes and compacts along with the pale blue quilted divided tray and touch of crochet would add a feminine touch to any Spring vanity table display.

All the chintz and floral pieces just scream we are ready for Spring.

The touch of teal on the wall gives the neutral fabric on this Victorian styled sofa a cozy feel.  A perch for a friendly conversation or a good place to enjoy reading decorating magazines while enjoying  the Spring weather .

Cute napkins with the teal background with "Poire" or floral napkins could all be used for a Springy tablescape.

We would sure have to use those cute 50's napkins if we were eating that banana split. Yum. Celebrating Spring....I'm ready.

Being surrounded by  flowers,  like these vintage mirrors, reminds me of Spring.

The little ivy topiary tucked in the silver urn reminds me of Spring.

The floral pitchers and vases  along with the doll dressed in pink satin and lace say Spring.

A trip by this Simi Valley Athropologie store window caught my eye. Couldn't you just imagine riding that vintage bicycle with the basket full of plants.  The teal colored top with a light sweater would be perfect for a bicycle ride in the Spring .

I thought you might like a better look at that vintage bicycle.  Too cute.

I didn't take a peek inside this cabinet but it sure would have many places to store treasures.  That shabby green color adds a punch of Spring.

Springtime in Paris... sounds good. 

au revoir