Holidays, Home Decor

Add Style with Thrift Shop Finds to Your Patriotic Mantel + Good 4th of July Movies to Discover!

Happy weekend to y’all, dear friends! All of the patriotic decorating posts I am seeing out on your sites has inspired me to redo my mantel!! A trip last week with my mother-in-law to her appointment with the Texas DPS in Gainesville to get her driver’s license (about 30 minutes north of us) had me out thrifting and antique browsing… And guess what I found?

While she waited for her turn, I went out to look around town’s shops and found a consignment antiques/thrift store just catty corner across the main street from where the Department of Public Services’ building is.

We had just stopped for lunch at Braum’s for burgers (they have great ice cream, too!), after touring the historical Medal of Honor outdoor park sites over the course of an hour-plus, and this little store was nice and cool on a hot 95 degree day…

Henry Hunt is a novel which was given to my husband by his mother who met the author at somewhere (B&N?). The book is signed. The blue textbook is one from my Political Science class in college. Really enjoyed that class!

The shop owners were very nice and I met a lady adding items to her section of the consignment shop. There were three floors inside and I was good and didn’t buy any more dishware (though I could have; always!).

What I found is this patriotic couple which are stamped Occupied Japan ( from the late 1940’s/early 1950’s is my guess) along their bases. Gini was excited about this little couple’s beginnings!! Of course she would be, she lived through that time right after World War II when Japan was occupied by the United States military and later as the Japanese military and people began rebuilding their country.

This man and lady in their 1776 costumes are a welcome addition to my small but growing collection of figurines! They go quite well with the French Sweethearts which I found in Denton a couple of years ago.

“L’homme et la femme parlent.” I have been busy studying French in both Duolingo and Rosetta Stone. Moving along and my pronunciation is getting better! I played with the chroma here. Our walls really look more this tan color, but it’s hard to catch it without “browning” everything else, lol!
Here is another look. I like this photograph better as the French couple’s colors are more true to life.

They also go equally well with the pair which Mr. Ethereal has had since forever…

Bluish-grey book on left: Of Plymouth Plantation ~ 1620-1647 by William Bradford, edited by S.E. Morison and found at Half Price Books, Austin, TX. That location has a massive older book section with a nice variety of used and signed books.

Hubby says that this couple (pictured above left, and another pair that are over at my MIL’s house) have always been in the Chapman family. It wasn’t something that they picked up when they toured Independence Hall in Pennsylvania during one of the summers when they traveled cross-country. Every summer for years they would drive to visit family and visiting historical sites over a two week period. I’ll have to ask Gini where they came from.

Sorry this is kinda blurry! I had to really lighten it up and pull out the blacks since the sun comes in through this westerly window late in the afternoon. Summer is really dark inside this house; winter photographs much better as the sun moves around more North-West in the late afternoon with the Earth’s rotation.

Our 4th of July mantel

  • Books ~ History and poli-sci books from school, that one Plymouth Plantation/Colonial history book, and a children’s book I picked up at our Scholastic Book Fair this spring are what I used as our mantel books this year.
  • Patriotic transferware plate ~ bringing in one blue dinner plate with Independence Hall on it as a central focal point was all that was needed. *
  • Colonial French and American figurines added the final touches with their red, white and blue.

*This set is Liberty Blue – Independence Hall made in England, Staffordshire Ironstone and says that it is “detergent and dishwasher safe.” I found some on Replacements Ltd. but there seems to be quite a few sites which carry them from anywhere from $10.80/plate to $23.00 (Replacements, Ltd.)

Back in 2019 I went with this on our mantel ~ sharing American Civil War and anything military since Hubby was a Marine. We have several sections of our big bookcases in the living room which hold a bunch of great tomes covering United States military campaigns and our country’s history, in general.

This second patriotic post was part of a Pinterest Challenge back in 2020, I believe. I need to redecorate our coffee table again but I’m in the middle of carpet cleaning and moving furniture around. I’ll share the new look as I get things finished!

More books up on the right side of our fireplace mantel. Really interesting reads!

Favorite Movies

Oh!!! If you haven’t seen the HBO mini-series John Adams, you should! It’s good!!

John Adams

I really liked Paul Giamatti’s portrayal as Adams. Laura Linney does a nice job of showing us Abigail Adams in much of their early married lives as the “harried housewife.” Mrs. Adams was busy raising kids in the late 1700’s, running a farm, and dealing with being a single mom much of the time while John Adams was away running the country.

At least that’s part of my take on the movie and the Adams’ lives! I recommend watching it over the 4th of July long weekend since it’s going to be super hot anyway… 😉

1776: 50th Anniversary 4K UHD

My inlaws introduced me to the musical 1776 back when Mr. Ethereal and I were first married and I instantly fell in-love with this film! It is based on the play of the same title by Peter Stone. Released in 1972 (I was 10 years old then.), I’m sure we saw it on reruns once a year on television, since my parents loved musicals, but I was probably too busy playing outside then and might not have been interested back then. 🙂

And that’s a wrap on our Patriotic Mantel (and a bit more) for this summer! I hope you have enjoyed this post and learned about some new books to check out at the library. I added the movies since you might be looking for copies of them, too. We actually don’t have 1776 so I think I will order. We’ve always just sat down and watched Gramma’s grainy video copy, though I think she has since updated to DVD or Blu-Ray. The old video is kinda nostalgic, I have to say. 😉

Happy 4th of July hugs,

Barb 🙂

Holidays, Tablescapes

Share Your Style #351

Welcome to this week’s Share Your Style #351! We have a lot of great features to share…

This link party is for home decor, DIY, crafts, recipes and the like, but you are more than welcome to share any of your family-friendly posts with us all. Please feel free to share this post too and join my small but loyal band of friends. I appreciate you! I appreciate your subscribing, also. As always, I am glad that you are here… 💜

I am Barbara Chapman and I’d love it if you’d follow me here on my blog and on any of my other social media sites, too.  Thank you!💜 

French Ethereal: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest

I am Barbara Chapman and I’d love it if you’d follow me here on my blog and on any of my other social media sites, too.  Thank you!💜 

French Ethereal: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest

Welcome everyone! Can you believe tomorrow is the end of June already??! Well, with that, next week is the 4th of July!!!! Our lovely Independence Day and we have lots of wonderful patriotic posts for you with bold tablescapes to fun craft ideas to make with family and friends!

So, let’s get to our features, shall we? I’ve added a few of my old posts in the links, too, for more inspiration. 🙂

Here’s what I shared this past week at French Ethereal…

Summer Projects: Painting the Little Metal Chair How-2 ~ I’m feeling the white look again, friends! If you haven’t painted metal chairs, or anything really, it’s super easy and here is a quick “How 2.” <3
Spruce Up Your Front Porch with Bunting for the 4th of July ~ I totally forgot to write into my post that I have never used bunting before over a doorway (or ever, really), which would have made more sense with the title, lol! I’ll have to go add that in… 😉

And here are this week’s featured posts…

We kick off this link party with Debra from Common Ground‘s completely festive post ~ Mini Patriotic Makeovers on the Hearth Room Mantel. Love all of our national symbols!!!
Judy from Life in Kentucky is back with her star spangled tablescape ~
Stars and Stripes Forever – Celebrating Freedom. Can you hear the fireworks going off? I can! 😉
Do you like to paint? It’s usually a summertime thing for me. This week Jeanie from The Marmelade Gypsy has a wonderful post sharing all of her recent works of art. Do stop by and check them out! From the Paint Box.
Beth over at Whispers of the Heart shared her lovely Lady Liberty on a 4th of July Tablescape. Wouldn’t this be fun right after attending the 4th of July parade?? So festive!!!
BLUEBERRY LEMON LAVENDER BREAD with two cups of blueberries and lemon slices
Elizabeth from Pinecones and Acorns shared this yummy recipe for Blueberry Lemon Lavender Bread… It’s perfection!
Penny from Penny’s Treasures takes us on a mini tour and talks about Embracing an Open Floor Plan in the Master Bedroom and Bath. LOVE those mirrors! Bet you’ll like what she’s done, too!
Carol from The Scribbling Boomer (love that blog name!) shared what’s she’s been up to this summer in this post ~
My Garden Art Retirement Hobby. Love garden art!!!
Amber from Follow the Yellow Brick Home shared her summertime Vintage Thrifted Garden Treasures in the Backyard Cottage Garden.
So in love with all the gardens!!
Things to Do and See in Vancouver
Carol from Bluesky at Home shared just a bit of she and Hubby’s adventures in Canada in her post ~ 5 Awesome Things to Do and See in Vancouver.
On the bucket list!!!
Totally love this!!! Lisa from Fresh Vintage by Lisa brings us this totally fun craft idea full of patriotic pride ~ Patriotic Holiday Assemblage in a Vintage Tin.

Thank You so much to everyone who linked up this past week. A special thank you to everyone for always promoting Share Your Style on your blog and on your social media channels! I do see it when I stop by and I appreciate the love. 💜

If you’d like to follow my Share Your Style board on Pinterest I’d appreciate it, thank you! I do post all of the featured posts from each week’s SYS there plus usually other photos from those posts to my boards. 💜  Thanks so much!!! If you are new to French Ethereal, I hope you will think about subscribing to my blog.

If you’d like to follow my Share Your Style board on Pinterest I’d appreciate it, thank you! I do post all of the featured posts from each week’s SYS there plus usually other photos from those posts to my boards. 💜  Thanks so much!!! If you are new to French Ethereal, I hope you will think about subscribing to my blog.

Happy 4th to y’all!!!!

Barb 🙂

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Sparkly Patriotic Decor in the Living Room

Welcome to  this month’s Patriotic Decor Pinterest Challenge hosted by my friend Cindy of County Road 407. If you haven’t visited our Pinterest Challenge before, Cindy shares a photo from another blogger with us as home decor inspiration and to makeover as our own. Thank you, Cindy!!! Let’s go Americana, friends!!!

Red white and blue

Our inspiration this month comes from Liz Marie Blog whose fun sophisticated patriotic farmhouse-decor is breezy-coastal and fresh. I love her combination of comfortable-casual style where you just want to sink into the sofas and enjoy a sweet glass of lemonade!!

If you are coming over from Laura at Everyday Edits, welcome! I love Laura’s fun interpretation of this month’s Patriotic Decor!!

What strikes me with Liz’s decor:

  • white slipcovered sofas and a squishy slipcovered ottoman
  • soft reds in her gently faded American flags and red in her vintage-style tricycle
  • blue stars and stripes in those same flags and the sofa’s pillow covers
  • a round coffee table with a large round natural-wicker basket to corral everything together
  • an olive bucket with greenery
  • a sweet family photo in a white frame
  • three vintage canning jars in soft turquoise
  • and a demijohn of clear glass to hold the tall American flags
  • a big cabinet and some other decor off to the right of the main sofa
I love the idea of old canning jars for summer styling as it reminds me of catching fireflies and the glass demijohn with its gently faded patriotic flags soften the decor. The wood furniture is nicely stained in light and dark tones and a fun window with a jack-a-lope trophy round out her farmhouse style.

Well, I can’t come up with a jack-a-lope, but last year I shared a summertime patriotic post with soft reds and blues of my own in this post for July 4th. I do love this lighter take on our country’s patriotic colors. 

This was my first take on the look sans patriotic-coastal pillows.
So this year I am also going for the softer side of Americana. My style is a little more French-country but softer Americana colors fit me just right. 

I made drop-cloth slipcovers for my two camelback sofas when I first began my blog six years ago. If you’d like to read those posts, you can find the first post in that sewing series here. So, first need for this challenge ~ check!

My take on our Patriotic Decor Challenge

I knew right away I’d use this round tobacco basket as my centerpiece. I found it last fall at Joanne’s as a door hanger for $7.00 on clearance! Can you believe it? 

It had to come home with me that day. Originally it was stained dark brown and for this post I’ve dry-brushed the basket with grey chalk-paint then layered on highlights of white chalk-paint. I like its lighter soft-grey look now and even Mr. Ethereal commented on how much he likes it! (He has good taste!)

I was also able to bring in 

  • A small oregano plant in a well-worn clay pot sitting on a red transferware plate that became my greenery and brings in a little red to this tablescape vignette.
  • A tall LED lamp with its soft grey woven cover in a pear-shape atop a small vintage red leather-bound book (for added height) ~ mimicks the tall demijohn of the inspiration piece. 
  • I added in some fun red, white and blue with a pinwheel and  some “sparkle” with this tall “fireworks explosion-sparkler” ~ these two pieces take the place of the two large flags. Two tiny American flags tucked into the oregano add in the American flags that would be missing otherwise, and that would be unpatriotic.
  • Two canning jars in turquoise and a deeper green ~ from some pepper jelly a friend gave me ~ add in the green jars. I did try two of the turquoise Ball jars but they just wouldn’t quite fit so this was my compromise.
  • A French flow-blue dish filled with summertime deep-red cherries outside the basket is my own little addition ~ it takes the place of the blue in the ottoman’s striped slipcover and brings in a little more red to the scene.
  • An antique clear-glass apothecary jar (now clouded) brings in the clear glass from Liz’ tablescape and is the final addition to the centerpiece. This jar belonged to my husband’s grandfather and he collected old glass.  I found this in a pile of things Mr. Ethereal was cleaning out of one of three sheds while we were back helping his mother.
  • A small cabinet and tall planter with hydrangeas stand off to the right to stand in for the wooden case piece in the inspiration photograph.

The final elements of my Patriotic Decor

  • For the background: We just returned from two back-to-back trips and I brought home this faded and slightly torn American flag from my inlaws’ home in California, from our second trip. 

I tried to fade it more with bleach but it must be 100% polyester so it refused to fade. A 100% cotton flag will fade beautifully and is something I’ll have to look for next!

Yoda wanted in the photos, too!
  • My son and daughter’s heavy-duty tricycle brings in the family aspect of what Patriotic Decor means to me. My parents found this 28-year-old tricycle at a garden center near their last home in Southbury, Connecticut. It is soooo heavy-duty that my son was still racing this tricycle around our last home’s backyard pathways even at 17 years old! It will go up to our sweet grandson (his son) as soon as little Milo is old enough for it… 💝
  • Reversible Coastal-Americana pillowslips I just made bring in the stripes from the original plus a little extra fun with the  coastal look on the reverse print! This was a quick fun project done in less than an hour giving our sofa a new summertime look.  Love how these have turned out!
With the fireplace right behind the camera, this is as big and wide as my living room can show, lol!! Pretty happy with how this whole patriotic tablescape and vignette turned out. Here is one side of the pillows.

To make these pillow slipcovers

These pillowslips are easy to make with just sewing straight edges and leaving about 1/3 of the bottom edge open for stuffing before either pinning, putting in buttons and buttonholes, or a zipper for closing.

You’ll need 1 yard each of two complementary fabrics. Cut them to fit the width and length across the pillow, stuffed, plus 5/8″ more to each edge for the seam allowance. You’ll also need two pillow inserts, matching thread and a zipper or buttons to finish your pillows.

Big tip: Put right sides together and sew down both sides from the top of the pillowslip. Sew outward from the middle of the top seam to each side, overlapping slightly in the middle. Do the same on the bottom but leave the middle-third open for turning and stuffing.

***This technique is how you prevent “pulling to one side,” or something like a shirt that pulls in only one direction (You’ll not know why you hate that shirt but you’ll end up getting rid of it…). This is one of those reasons… 🙂

Lastly, grade your seam allowances ~ except the middle of the bottom seam allowance. Keep that full-width in case you need it for putting in a zipper or buttonholes. 

Cut diagonally across all four corners eliminating the fabric bulk. 

Turn your pillow slipcovers, press, and stuff in your pillow inserts. 

Voilà your pillows are done!

Here is the other side of the pillows.

Thanks for stopping by today and be sure to check out all the wonderful ideas my friends have created for you on today’s Patriotic Decor Pinterest Challenge tour!!!

Up next is Amber at Follow the Yellow Brick Home and I know you’ll enjoy her patriotic homestyle decor!

Here are some links to the Coastal-Americana fabrics and the sparklies from Joann Fabrics that I used. This post isn’t sponsored but I will earn a small commission if you buy anything through my links, thank you.

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Share Your Style #210

Welcome to week #210 of Share Your Style and I am
Barbara Chapman your host. I hope your long Memorial Day weekend was fun and filled with cookouts, friends and family!

Since the summer season has officially started we have a bunch of featured posts for you today! 

Here’s what I shared and will be sharing

this week…

My back patio and the beginnings of a garden. 🙂
This month’s Pinterest Challenge revolved around a 4th of July and Patriotic theme. I’d love it if you’d stop by, share a pic or two and leave me a comment! I had a lot of fun putting this patio look together and I know you’ll love all the ideas shared by my friends (yours, too, I’m sure!) as part of this monthly blog hop. 

Thank you! 

Mr. Ethereal and I have been working on rebuilding part of our backyard fence and making a new gate as the old sections were blowing down (and open) with the slightest wind. 

The thing I ordered which will make this gate special arrived via UPS today!!! More on this soon…

The rock wall is DONE but I am waiting on a friend to bring over some free rocks for drainage before I put in the plants, so… This is all I have to share for now.

Here are this week’s wonderful features!

Lit tea lights, How to make a Nautical Lantern from a Grill - Int'l Bloggers Club Challenge
Mary from The Boondocks Blog shared a pretty nautical lantern she made from a really unlikely object ~ check out her post to find out just what she used. Love this soft blue and white look!

Sandra at Dinner at Eight linked her Patriotic table with it’s eye-popping firecrackers and tableware. Stop by and hear a little history of how Memorial Day began! Do sign up to receive her posts, too, as she has great style. 

Here’s Roxy smiling because he loves his home!

Awwww, isn’t this whumper the cutest??! You simply must visit Pat’s garden at Bringing French Country Home! Pat’s garden last year was just incredible and I love how she’s changed it up a bit this year. I think Roxy likes it, don’t you?

I’d like you to meet my friend Jeanie of The Marmelade Gypsy. If you’ve never been over to her blog she writes from her home and vacation home near a lake in Michigan. Recently Jeanie went with friends to the gardens at Southern Exposure for a hanging garden workshop and lunch

Isn’t this gazebo stunning??!

DIY Floating Curtain Panels | DIY Outdoor Curtains | How to Make Outdoor Curtains | Outdoor Curtains for Porch or Patio | DIY Outdoor Decor

Jenna at Rain on a Tin Roof shared her while-at-Home -Depot-idea-inspired DIY Floating Curtain Panels and they are perfect shading her family’s patio! (You’ll have to check out her current video, too… Her little daughter is so cute in it!)

Just four ingredients are all you need to make this incredible frozen peach bellini! Slushy, fruity, and perfect anytime you're in the mood for sipping a fantastic champagne cocktail.

Erin of Delightful~E~Made shared her recipe for this summer cold drink of Frozen Raspberry Peach Bellini. I am thirsty just looking at it, aren’t you?

Teen using a Swiffer Sweeper on the kitchen floor.

Since dogs and summer just seem to go together, here is another sweet dog Oreo. He lives with Jenn’s of Clean and Scentsible and together they share some easy cleaning tips for anyone with pets!

Ann at Apple Street Cottage brought out her super creativity with these awesome Macrame Garden Lights!
Do check these out ~ I am totally going to make these…

Three French Country Trellis Tuteurs in a Narrow Flower Garden
And Judith at Botanic Bleu shared her gorgeous French Tuteur Trellis(es)! Ils sont trés magnifique pour le jardin!!!

If you’ve ever been featured here at Share Your Style
I’ve created a button for you to share (don’t know why I didn’t do this before, Lol!). Please feel free to copy it to your site and your featured posts, thank you!

Be sure to follow the Share Your Style board on Pinterest
(under French Ethereal)

Thank you to everyone who linked up last week and congratulations to everyone who is featured this week! Please stop by and let them know how you like their posts, thank you. And if you’d subscribe to my blog and share the party it would be greatly appreciated. A backlink would be lovely, too. Thank you!

Now onto today’s party!

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Share Your Style #209

Welcome to week #209 of Share Your Style and I am
Barbara Chapman your host. Lots of fun features to share this week with a bit of summer fun and patriotic themes, too!

Here’s what I shared this week at French Ethereal…

One of my “quick posts” which is easy to copy for any of America’s patriotic celebrations like Memorial Day or the Fourth of July ~

The follow up post as to why every piece was chosen for this mantel scene ~ The Story Behind This Patriotic Mantel.

*Finished up the rock wall late last week so will be sharing it in a tutorial soon. Do stop back by and leave me a comment and please share as I appreciate it, thank you.

So let’s get to this week’s wonderful features
shall we?!

It’s all about roses over at Penny‘s place, Penny’s Treasures, with two potted Iceberg roses given to her for Mother’s Day. Come see what changes she’s made for summer and her lovely home.

Debbie at Debbie Dabble shared her sweet Fairy Garden ~ so much fun packed into a small space! Wouldn’t this be fun to create with your children and grands??

New over here at Share Your Style is Linda of Paper Seedlings who created this ethereal card with its sweet chirping birdies sharing what’s new in the Stamping Up catalog just coming out for 2019.

Fun for everyone who loves to use their great products!

Jennifer at Mommy Evolution shared this White Bean Dip recipe plus how to make your own pita chips in this delicious post. My Yummy for this week.

Over at Celebrating Everyday Life, Jennifer shares her free printables featuring wonderful Scripture quotesLovely!

Beautiful summer tablescape with blues, yellows, and greens.

Jenn at Clean and Scentsible brought a beautiful summer tablescape to share with us all. Love the little yellow and green pops among the restful blue… 

Honorable Mention ~ I want to share a sewing tutorial video from Stephanie at Sewing with Stephanie which is part of what I learned in several sewing classes way back when. Copying a sewing pattern you love into a permanent pattern you can use again and again ~ great tips!

Thank you to everyone who stopped by and shared their posts last week! Please share everyone’s here and let these ladies know you appreciate their hard work.

If you’ve ever been featured here at Share Your Style
I just created a button for you to share. Please feel free to copy it to your site and your featured posts, thank you!

It’s my first attempt so will keep working on it over time!

Now let’s get this party started!

Happy Memorial Day to you
your family!

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The Story Behind This Patriotic Mantel…

These colors don’t run… 

In my previous post sharing this patriotic mantel just a couple of quick highlight photos were shared. Today I am going to share the story of why I chose each of the items in this mantel scape.

How these small treasures honor our American patriots and veterans on this Memorial Day, 4th of July and Veterans Day…

Many of  you know my husband is a U. S. Marine Corps veteran who served eight years in California at Camp Pendleton and at H + S Battalion, Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego. 

Between those two posts, he served seven months in the Gulf of Oman during Operation Desert Storm (1990-1991) aboard the USS New Orleans, part of the USS Tarawa group stationed in the Gulf.  For his part, he received the Navy Achievement medal, a gold crossed-palm trees Kuwaiti medal and another medal for helping during hunger relief in Bangladesh.

When the operation was first announced no one knew if this would be another Vietnam or erupt into another world war; there was no way to know. I was terrified for Charles and am grateful that he came home with only five crushed disks in his back (a slip off the ship’s ladder during a storm with a full 70 lb. pack on his back) and a permanent skin rash. I prayed a lot and so did everyone else whom I knew who had loved ones in the air or on ship or land.

This is us at our engagement party during the summer of 1987. Charles officially went into the USMC in January 1988.

The hair got a bit shorter after this photo was taken! This was phase one of the haircuts. 😉

It is with great honor and respect that I share this post with its leaning books about Congressional Medal of Honor recipients, Navy Cross recipients and other wonderful books written about our great nation’s military.

I have also included a book on The Civil War which my father stayed up until the wee hours reading it cover to cover when he was out to visit when my daughter was very small. I think he would approve of this post!

Why are they leaning?

These books are leaning to show the men and women who have fallen in the line of duty. The leaning also convey that our military service personnel may get knocked down in battle or by post traumatic distress but they get back up, dust themselves off and keep going. That is the way of a soldier ~ resilient, humble, God-fearing, loyal… and brave.

The burning candles are for those soldiers who didn’t get to come home ~ like the continuously burning light and watch (guards) at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery who stand at attention 24-7-365. These candles are for them.

The transferware plates

Two blue transferware plates show part of America’s history ~ “Independence Hall” created by Liberty Blue, Historic Colonial Scenes, on Staffordshire ironstone; and Johnson Bros. Historic America “Covered Wagons and the Rocky Mountains.”

I found four of the “Independence Hall” plates while thrift-shopping in California a couple of years ago and shared them in this past post.  The Covered Wagons plate was one given to me by my sister-in-law Linnea 21 years ago when I drove out with the kids to visit she and my brother Gene in Weatherford, Texas. Small world that it came back here…

Flow blue delftware and a French plate

When I was an exchange student to Germany in 1981 my host family took us to Holland for a long weekend. A little of the money I’d taken with me to Europe brought home this pair of Dutch Delft shoes with little twirling windmills plus this sweet Delft cow.*

They are reminders of that special time learning about the people and culture of the Netherlands, but here later in life they have also become reminders of the sacrifices made by the Dutch people in recent history during WWII. 

The Nazis entered Holland in May 1940 destroying cities and peoples in their wake. The Netherlands were finally liberated between September 1944 and April 1945 as part of the Allied Forces surrounding Germany and ultimately forcing Hitler and the Nazi party’s surrender.

*A little more about Delft and Holland in case you are interested.

France also suffered greatly with the Nazi invasion of WWII, therefore this French soup plate “Eglantine” by K + G, Luneville, France, is my tribute to the French resistance and the people of France and their part in helping to win the war. The quietly hidden fleur-de-lis on a ribbon of  gold also shares in this patriotism.

And of course a bouquet of flowers lies there for all the fallen and for all the victories our military members have seen in 243 years of America as a country. 

A special pin to share…

Mr. Ethereal and I will be watching war movies like we usually do on Memorial Day and having a few cookouts. But this year as in most years I spend time remembering… I’m happy to share this special mantel vignette with you.  Enjoy yours!

Happy Memorial Day,


A Quick Post ~ An American Patriotic Mantel Vignette

Patriotic decor is easy to recreate here in America taking our cues from our flag’s deep red and white stripes and the navy blues in the background field behind our stars.  With that I thought I’d create a quick patriotic mantel styling post for you with those
same rich American colors…

America’s colors  look beautiful in the evening light here on our mantel and I had fun putting this vignette together from my own “Capt. America,” Mr. Ethereal, and his collection of military books. From the books to the plates and several brightly burning white candles everything quietly says, “I am an American.”

I chose these particular things with great care and I’ll share more of why I chose what I did for this mantel in a post later this month.

 For now though I thought I’d just share this little vignette with you.
A precursor of more to come!

“Where flowers bloom so does hope.” 

                                                                         ~ Lady Bird Johnson

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Friday at the Fire Station ~ A Fireman’s Wife

Blessings to you,