$10 Thriftshop Challenge ~ A Couple of New Pieces

Today is  another $10 thriftshop challenge day here at French Ethereal and as you probably already know I love heading out and seeing what’s out there at the thrift stores!

This week  I found this lovely cut glass bowl with beautiful deep carvings and a lovely serrated and  scalloped edge for a mere $4.00. I think I may have shared this story before but it’s worth sharing again.

My great-grandmother Julia Foley collected lots of cut-glass back in the early 1900’s ~ during the time when Americans were taxed on how many things they owned {or on certain things they owned, I’m not entirely sure on this point).

Julia ended up having to sell all but four of her cut-glass pieces to pay the taxes. She kept one for each of her children to have later on. A bigger bowl similar to this one was handed down to my grandmother Helen, who handed it down to my mother Ginny sometime in the late1960’s or early 1970’s.

It always held blown and dyed eggs during Easter and pinecones or colorful glass ornaments at Christmas each year. It was just part of my memories of home as far back as I can remember.

Love the swirls and little star cuts in this glass bowl!
 Mom then handed it down to me back during one of my visits to their last home in Connecticut in the mid-1990’s sometime. I have loved it ever since and I think both of them will look lovely this next Christmas holding colorful vintage ornaments,
don’t you?

Trying out different plates and bowls while at Twice As Nice thriftstore.
The second piece I found was really the first found ~ this lovely silverplate chafing dish made by Raimond Silver Manufacturing Company  The company began manufacturing silverplate wares in the early 1960’s and later was “acquired by W. and S. Blackington, Co.” in 1966.

The Raimond hallmark is plainly seen on this leg. This pretty chafing dish is in mint condition with no scratches and little tarnishing on it. I believe it may have a lacquer coating on it to protect the finish.

This silver dish cost only $6.00 and I thought the two pieces were good bargains!  I plan to use the two together and separately.  My first thought was to use this silver chafing dish in our new master bathroom to hold towels rolled up between the two lavatory bowls…

Until then… these two thriftshop finds will grace our Prairie Home and decorate our window quite nicely!

Joining a merry band of goodies looking beautiful
for Valentine’s…

Day or night.

What fun thriftshop finds have come home
with you lately?

Sharing with
Sweet Inspiration ~ The Boondock’s Blog

Happy weekend,

Cleaning Silver the Easy Way for Your Holiday Table

Today I thought I’d share this quick
and easy way to clean your silverware…

I like buying baking soda in bulk as for one, it’s cheaper,
to use in everyday baking and cleaning, but also because
this is a handy trick for cleaning your silverware and
silver pieces without a whole lot of scrubbing
and blistering your fingers.

Back a couple of years ago I shared a similar post on
cleaning silverware
and I thought I’d re-share this technique.
Maybe you’ve never heard of it before or you have
but you haven’t tried it yet.
It works pretty well on silverplated items and really is a combination of the heat of hot water working with the
aluminum taking the oxidization off of
the silver.

What you will need

aluminum foil
hot water
baking soda

How to create the silver bath

*Stop up your sink drain with the stopper.
*Line the sink with a large piece of aluminum foil.
*Place your pieces of silver on the foil,
not letting them touch.
Single layers, please!  I tried double decking with layers of aluminum and
silverware but that really didn’t work at all and just wasted the baking soda.

*Add baking soda all over covering the silver pieces
or silverware.
This works best with flat pieces of silver rather than say a gravy boat or a teapot.
Those are still better off using a hot rag with baking soda or silver polish on it and
lightly rubbing away the oxidization.
*Pour boiling water over the baking soda.
The interaction of the foaming soda, the aluminum and
the hot water will foam away the
oxidization for you.

I haven’t cleaned my silver plate in months… These two forks are looking sooo much better!
It’s not a perfect technique but it does the hard work
for you and the bits that are left on ends of some of the
fork tines or in the grooves of the pressed and raised
repousée designs tend to look really pretty with a
little bit of the tarnish left.

Sharing with
Totally Terrific Tuesday ~ The Savvy Apron
Wow Us Wednesday ~ Savvy Southern Style
Feathered Nest Friday ~ French Country Cottage

<!– /* Font Definitions */ @font-face {font-family:"MS 明朝"; mso-font-charset:78; mso-generic-font-family:auto; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:1 134676480 16 0 131072 0;} @font-face {font-family:"MS 明朝"; mso-font-charset:78; mso-generic-font-family:auto; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:1 134676480 16 0 131072 0;} @font-face {font-family:Cambria; panose-1:2 4 5 3 5 4 6 3 2 4; mso-font-charset:0; mso-generic-font-family:auto; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:-536870145 1073743103 0 0 415 0;} @font-face {font-family:"Edwardian Script ITC"; panose-1:3 3 3 2 4 7 7 13 8 4; mso-font-charset:0; mso-generic-font-family:auto; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:3 0 0 0 1 0;} /* Style Definitions */ p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal {mso-style-unhide:no; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:""; margin:0in; margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:12.0pt; font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:"MS 明朝"; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast; mso-hansi-font-family:Cambria; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} .MsoChpDefault {mso-style-type:export-only; mso-default-props:yes; font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:"MS 明朝"; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast; mso-hansi-font-family:Cambria; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} @page WordSection1 {size:8.5in 11.0in; margin:1.0in 1.25in 1.0in 1.25in; mso-header-margin:.5in; mso-footer-margin:.5in; mso-paper-source:0;} div.WordSection1 {page:WordSection1;}

amzn_assoc_placement = “adunit0”; amzn_assoc_search_bar = “true”; amzn_assoc_tracking_id = “frenchetherea-20”; amzn_assoc_ad_mode = “manual”; amzn_assoc_ad_type = “smart”; amzn_assoc_marketplace = “amazon”; amzn_assoc_region = “US”; amzn_assoc_title = “My recommended Amazon Picks for you”; amzn_assoc_linkid = “bed23b4f0f0367442552d642f98615f6”; amzn_assoc_asins = “B002SKVZIQ,B00UNT0Y2M,B002IKHEJU,B00UFQ2LJ2”; //z-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/onejs?MarketPlace=US

Happy Holidays to you,

Thriftshop Fall Finds Redo ~ Painted Silverplate Trays for Today’s Home

Several years ago when we were still in our 
former home in California I began
collecting silver trays.
I have several small ones and other larger ones of various sizes
some with handles and others without
that I have shared in different displays over the years.

Last week I found four silver serving trays down
at an upscale thriftshop called
Twice As Nice
in Denton, Texas…

Having fun playing with the focus and light! 😉
Twice As Nice is a beautiful thriftshop carrying gently used
shoes and sandals, Brighton belts and housewares.
But my favorite thing to find when I go is
finding these older silverplate serving trays.

Silverplate trays are nice as they can serve many purposes:
from holding the mail to their original purpose of holding 
crackers and cheeses and for serving drinks at parties when they
were first made in the 1940’s through the1980’s.

Similar trays can be found in specialty engraving shops
inside shopping malls and larger department stores
as well as online.
Fun when they aren’t always available when we
need them!

I like to use serving trays to hold tabletop displays
on a coffee table or in the center of my dining room table
seasonally with candles or Christmas trees on top.

These are the products I used this time to paint three trays white.

Back several years ago, my friend Kathy would pick up
silverplate trays at thriftshops whenever she could
find them and then she would spray paint them
white and use them as chargers.
I copied this idea and have a set of six
currently in storage.

She found some really lovely ones with stylized flowers
pressed into their metal edges and I always loved that look.
Happily I found one this past week and knew it would
look lovely redone in white!

Loving the swirls and tiny flowers pressed into the edges of this silverplate tray!
Here’s a quick tutorial if you’ve never painted
metal trays before…

Painting silverplate trays

I have cheated and skipped this part before, but then the paint
peels off, so… If you’d like your trays to remain painted
here’s how you do it:

*Use a piece of 4-ought steel wool and lightly sand the fronts and backs of each tray. 
This will make the paint stick better to the metal and
help prevent its peeling and flaking off later on.

*Cover your table outside or use an old tall cardboard box and follow instructions on the can of spray paint.
Shake can as needed and spray off of the silverplate trays
first to check for lumps in the paint.

*Spray the bottoms first and try not to over spray the edges
too much to prevent dripping onto the fronts.

*Paint in short even strokes ~ I painted on an afternoon when
it was over 90 degrees F outside so I was able to paint
over edges several times overlapping paint strokes
easily without drips.
*Move around after about 30 minutes preventing sticking.
Once dry, flip over and place supports underneath.
{I used gravel rocks under each tray’s back ~ worked great and the irregular surface
really prevented the semi-dry paint from sticking to the rocks.}
Paint the fronts as before using short bursts of paint.

*Paint a second coat on the fronts after the first fully dries.
Mine I had to paint again the next mid-morning.

*Sand back the dried paint with some 220-grit sandpaper
to reveal some metal ~ highlights and picks out the tray’s details.

*Finish with acrylic sealer in desired finish of
matte or a gloss finish.

Loving the way these painted
trays turned out!

Here’s a Pinterest pin-worthy pin to share:

Later this week I’ll be sharing these trays in a
festive fall tablesetting along with that
brass feathered cutie also found
while out thrift-shopping… 

Sharing with
The Hearth and Soul ~ April J. Harris
Feathered Nest Friday ~ French Country Cottage
Create Bake Grow Gather ~ Shabby Art Boutique

I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program
an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means
to earn a small amount sometimes just a few pennies by linking to
Amazon.com and affiliated sites. I appreciate your checking it out!
This will help me continue providing you with wonderful content.

Happy Fall, ya’ll!

amzn_assoc_placement = “adunit0”; amzn_assoc_search_bar = “true”; amzn_assoc_tracking_id = “frenchetherea-20”; amzn_assoc_ad_mode = “manual”; amzn_assoc_ad_type = “smart”; amzn_assoc_marketplace = “amazon”; amzn_assoc_region = “US”; amzn_assoc_title = “My Amazon Picks”; amzn_assoc_linkid = “3803287d65d7e04afbb7a8a830b641bb”; amzn_assoc_asins = “B0021G6ND4,B06XFWTVGZ,B06XDCY9RM,B000BQRFDS”; //z-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/onejs?MarketPlace=US


Maker’s Marks on Serving Piece and What They Mean

Makers’ marks on the 
undersides of teacups, 
saucers, plates and other pieces of dishes and 
silverware have been used for centuries.
They can tell us roughly when a piece was made
who made it {what manufacturer} and 
in the case of silver and pewter
the content purity of
the precious metals used in a
piece’s production.

Makers’ Marks

Those little stamped, painted or impressed marks 
can tell a lot about a piece of pottery or silverware.
They are a manufacturer’s registration marks
showing that a piece came from their company.
A lot of “copying” was going on between potteries.  
Blanks were often created at one pottery 
then sold to others who would decorate the
blanks with their company’s designs.
Multiple marks can be on the backs
of your china pieces.
This occurs in silver production, too, which is 
why you will sometimes see up to
four distinct markings on your
fine silver trays and other fine silver and 
pewter serving pieces.

Colors ~ What do they mean?

Whether black, green, blue or another color
those colors signify in what year
a piece was produced.
Often a maker would keep the same
“stamp” but just change the print color.

I have a book about Royal Winton china and 
in it the author’ speaks about colors 
signifying approximate date years
when pieces were produced.
To see some of their colored back stamps
please check out:

These backstamps are really fun to look at
then the more you look
time goes by and you may not realize that
an hour or more has passed!

This set came with 46 married pieces.

Just like people, you may find that your
new favorite china set or piece may come
with a few bumps and bruises.
But that’s okay.
We pick up the pieces, patch ourselves up
and get right back in the saddle.

The repaired creamer is the piece to the very far right.
This transferware set above has a creamer
which has had the handle repaired
but is still lovely nonetheless.

Finding complete sets of china in thriftshops
or antique stores is always a challenge.
Most are married sets and this one
is absolutely no exception.
I flipped all these pieces over and studied
those backstamps looking at the colors
and registration numbers.
Mine is a married set of two different
firings, but that’s okay.
They all go together.
Royal Winton’s June Roses, I believe ~ a lovely vintage teacup in my collection.  Now “for looks only.” 

Something to note

It’s important to have vintage china checked 
for lead leakage before eating anything hot off of it.
I was sick, really sick, about 10-12 years ago
because I was drinking hot tea fairly regularly
out of the above chintzware teacup 
that I had purchased online.
This chintz teacup was made in the 1930’s or earlier
and I was inadvertently poisoning myself.
Losing my hair in small clumps
vomiting once everyday
and diarrhea
became the norm for a month!
Only several years later did I realize
that that was what had 
made me so sick.

I’d never thought about the fact that 
it could be poisonous!
Not the way you want to lose 20 pounds
in one month
trust me on this one…

So, enjoy those makers’ marks
on your lovely china. 
The next time you pick up a china piece at an 
antique store or a flea market,
enjoy thinking of where that piece came from
and the many people who worked 
to create that “lovely”
you now hold in 
your hand.

Sharing with
Create Link Inspire ~ The Crafty Blog Stalker

Totally Terrific Tuesday ~ The Savvy Apron

Wow Us Wednesday ~ Savvy Southern Style
Feathered Nest Friday ~ French Country Cottage

Blessings and Happy Teatime
to you,

Places to Stay ~ The Beverly Hilton

Beverly Hills a land of enchanted
movies, movie stars and more
and a 
most luxurious hotel…

I loved that Esteem Media 
chose the 
Beverly Hilton 
as their venue to hold the 
Design Bloggers Conference.

Every morning we were treated to 

gleaming silver urns filled with 
coffee and hot water for our
morning cuppa.

Below each urn, sweet square silver catchers 

collected drips and solid hotel silverware and 
cream colored china
were provided for an elegant breakfast
reminiscent of a time gone by.

The conference finished late Tuesday afternoon
and last year I had hurriedly 
flown out as the conference finished.
This year I decided to 
stay one more day…

early shots before dawn

Wednesday morning dawned bright and sunny.
 In just a few hours it would be
time to check out so
thoughts of capping off this
hotel adventure by having a little 
breakfast in bed
swirled through my head!

A young woman brought my bagel and hot tea
from the hotel’s kitchen and she giggled at 
my delight in “ordering in.”
Of course I had to take some photographs
to remember the day!
Just a few quick pics then
hopping up in bed
breakfast was enjoyed.

More lustrous silverware was placed
“just so” on a large tray
alongside a
chocolate orchid set inside a 
grooved cylindrical vase
and tiny 
salt and pepper shakers ~
a bit of 
royal treatment 
from a romantic hotel 
where hallways are hung with portraits of
Cary Grant, Judy Garland and
Katharine Hepburn.

A lovely way to cap off a
working holiday in the land of
magic and movie stars!
Happy St. Patrick’s Day, btw…
xoxo Barb

Thank you for liking and sharing ~ merci!

Sharing with
Friday Feature ~ Oh, My Heartsie Girl!

Sweet Inspiration ~ The Boondocks Blog

$10 Thriftshop Challenge ~ Chalkware and Silver

Good Sunday morning to you!  Hope your weekend is going well. Today I thought I’d share my latest $10 thriftshop challenge finds with you. I’ll probably do a double header today as I am still in the process of finishing up the write-up for the blue jeans craft project.  Hope to have that out later this afternoon for you now that Hubby helped me to get my computer back up and happy.  Computers… gotta love ‘em!  😉
Our new dining area situated in our new “Little Home” ~ bright and cozy!
Turns out Apple says I need a new “top” to my computer as it is the battery which is giving us problems.
With that, now you know why I have been struggling to get posts out the past couple of months.  Okay, plus the move to the new “Little House,” but that was only these past two weeks.
I had fun photographing in different lights
as the day went on… 🙂
Now that all the housekeeping is done
This past Tuesday when I went out for a few groceries I thought I’d just stop by some of the local thriftshops to see what I might find.  This day turned out to be a super thriftshop day in that I found two items I have long looked for: 
 a maiden bust and a small silver tray.
A “new” vintage thriftshop silver plate tray with more thriftshop finds on top.
* An added benefit of becoming one year older: it garnered me a 10% discount at one thriftstore.  I call that a win any day!
This chalkware or plaster bust is similar to one I found years ago at an antiques and gift show staged at a woman’s home in Oceanside, CA.  That one was priced at $80 and although lovely, it wasn’t in the budget.

Tuesday’s maiden bust cost a total of $4.32, I think, and it was the piece which received the discount.  The purchase price was $3.80 discounted before sales tax.  The silverplate tray I found at another thrift store and was another good buy at $5.35.  
Living in a space where larger items really stand out, I was really pleased to find a small enough silver tray {approx. 9″ x 16″} which we can use for breakfasts in bed, tea in the evenings while watching a movie, or just as a beautiful silvery decoration as is.  This sweet silver plate tray may end up all over the place and holding many different roles!  It will definitely feature as a serving piece holding goodies when we host parties outdoors and it is just the perfect size for life in an RV.
It is slightly pitted from something leaking onto it but overall it is in good shape and is level. {something to consider when picking up old trays at flea markets, thriftstores or garage sales}

If later I find the pitting a problem, it is easy enough to paint over the piece.  I have several larger silverplate trays in storage and one I painted for just that very reason ~ also because I was really wanting a white tray at the time! J
Here a larger charger is used as a tea service in a Thanksgiving post I wrote a couple of years ago.

A few of the other silverplate trays found at thriftshops in California and currently awaiting the move to Texas…

{I may grab a couple when I head back to California during these next two weeks… we’ll see!}

If you’d like to read about cleaning these silver beauties ~ click Here.

Well, that’s it for today’s $10 thriftshop challenge! 
Next up is the finished blue jeans craft project I began on 
Thursday afternoon.  I think you will like it!  
Check back later today as it is a 
Double Header Sunday…
Will be sharing with
Inspire Me Monday ~ Create with Joy 

Create Link Inspire ~ 

Feathered Nest Friday ~ French Country Cottage
Blessings to you on this lovely 
Sunday morning!

Favorite Things ~ Silver and White

Silver and white ~ these two beloved hues
two of the most beautiful colors to ever
lend their beauty and light
to the everyday world…

Silver Stoic and sturdy, quiet strength and polished poise.
Etherealness in everything created from it.
White ~ whispers gracefully of angels and clouds,
creamy milk and glittering new fallen snow,

Two colors transcending the marks of time.
Favorites throughout the centuries
first of nobility
later of all classes.

<!– /* Font Definitions */ @font-face {font-family:"MS 明朝"; mso-font-charset:78; mso-generic-font-family:auto; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:1 134676480 16 0 131072 0;} @font-face {font-family:"MS 明朝"; mso-font-charset:78; mso-generic-font-family:auto; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:1 134676480 16 0 131072 0;} @font-face {font-family:Cambria; panose-1:2 4 5 3 5 4 6 3 2 4; mso-font-charset:0; mso-generic-font-family:auto; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:-536870145 1073743103 0 0 415 0;} @font-face {font-family:"Chaparral Pro Light Ital"; panose-1:2 6 4 3 3 5 5 9 2 3; mso-font-charset:0; mso-generic-font-family:auto; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:7 1 0 0 147 0;} /* Style Definitions */ p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal {mso-style-unhide:no; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:""; margin:0in; margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:12.0pt; font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:"MS 明朝"; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast; mso-hansi-font-family:Cambria; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} .MsoChpDefault {mso-style-type:export-only; mso-default-props:yes; font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:"MS 明朝"; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast; mso-hansi-font-family:Cambria; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} @page WordSection1 {size:8.5in 11.0in; margin:1.0in 1.25in 1.0in 1.25in; mso-header-margin:.5in; mso-footer-margin:.5in; mso-paper-source:0;} div.WordSection1 {page:WordSection1;}

“The Dove, on silver pinions, winged her peaceful way.” 

                                                                 James Montgomery

White goods




Just a little poetry to brighten your day…


This last week has been crazy busy
with working on getting our vehicles and 
licenses registered here in Texas.
So, I apologize for not having a
new post out since early last week.
Been looking at new vehicles, too.

Happy Tuesday!
Barb 🙂

Sharing with
Wow Us Wednesday ~ Savvy Southern Style
Create Link Inspire ~ Nap-time Creations


Old Holiday Photos ~ Decorating Inspiration!

I’ve been reading other people’s blog posts 
this past evening and so many ladies 
shared their wonderful homes…

Made me want to revisit our last home with you!
And after reading all these wonderful blogposts, 
seeing all the Thanksgiving tables decorated so prettily with 
sparkly goblets flashing prisms of light from flickering candlelight,
and gleaming just~polished silver and china laid out so carefully
made me nostalgic.
Then all of the photos of newly decorated Christmas trees
all festive and glowing
just brightening up 
every room…
I became inspired to share some favorite
decorating goodies with you!
Style Favorites:
French cane~back chairs 
The two shown in the photo above at the head and 
foot of our antique dining room table
are the same ones 
I have had out all summer while we were in our 
“Tiny Home” at Lake Skinner.
They await their return to a new home 
in this coming new year!
As do those plates, teacups and saucers… 
Oooh! The mugs I just purchased from
go with this set!!!
{I forgot to mention that yesterday! I was really excited to find them!}
Dried Flowers in Baskets
The blooms are darker here but that wonderful 
wicker basket is still going strong!
This is one of my favorite table settings 
for family and friends, by the way…
Style Trends: 
Silver~plate platters
If you haven’t gone thrift~shopping 
for those old 1960’s/1970’s {maybe even more recent}
silver~plate serving platters to use as chargers 
under your dinner plates,
you’ve got to go!

They are my “go~to” pieces 
underneath everything!
Some I spray painted white and I’d use them
underneath big plates the same way.
Most I kept just as they are as 
I like the silvery look.
They are fun to stack with glassware
in between, too, creating towers
to create large tiered serving pieces
to present cupcakes and other goodies
at parties!

And this generic 1980’s chandelier
turned beauty!
My friend Kathy gave me the idea of 
decorating one’s chandy while were still in our first home.
One year at Christmas time, I found this dangling garland
at Michael’s, I think.
This pearl garland is a favorite!
Kathy used these garlands on chandeliers
all over her house and hanging off picture frames!
Super cute!!!
Remember how in all the decorating magazines
back in the early 2000’s you’d see these 3′ long strands of 
crystal garland and teardrop pendants for sale 
in the advertisement sections??
Well, that’s where I got these!
You can see the teadrops attached to each of 
the bobeches sitting atop each candle sconce 
underneath each bulb.

Then I just kept finding more crystal things
and other beautiful decorations to hang off of them!
Especially at Holiday~time!
Here are two of Kathy’s chandies!
Sorry the left photo is so blurry ~ I must have shook
when taking it with my old phone.
Hanging greenery whether faux or real
looks lovely with all the dangling 
Christmas ornaments!
Inspiration galore!!!

This post is a little random plus it’s getting very late… 
but I thought you might like a little random decorating and also to 
see the home we loved and lived in for 13 good, long years.  
Good memories!
And, I’m so glad I am able to share
them with you!
Happy Decorating!
Barb 🙂

As always, feel free to share! Please sign up if you’d like to receive
emails when I have new posts!  Thanks!

White and Silver Daydreams…

Tea, cake and scones ~ a study in whites and creams… {sigh!} 

White and Silver…
Some of my most favorite colors…

Today’s post sharing some past
lovelies with you!!!

A few of the ecru and white lace napkins, a table runner and an
Irish tablecloth {far right, bottom} picked up in England. Shot when
I was still learning how to use the aperature on our camera to let in light. 😉

Do you ever feel the need to

just daydream?
Bringing out my favorite pieces of china and 
those lacy linens
and just the act of decorating our tables
{whether they are big or small},
set me off daydreaming…
Great for decompressing from life’s trials and also
just because it’s a lot of fun to decorate
with all that china!
I feel that need a lot.
Do you??

A few of my favorite pieces… found at various thrift stores, flea markets, and
antique shops.  Most of my silver-plate pieces are
1847 Rogers Bros. ~ Remembrance pattern ~ above, far right
We usually have a few get-togethers
over the summer with family and friends.
Our daughter’s birthday starts the summer parties
here in June and in the past
we always had her school friends over
for a cookout and to swim
then to eat cupcakes or cake
depending upon the birthday girl’s wishes 
each particular year.
Our son’s birthday is just on Labor Day weekend,
so his birthdays were always a little quieter
with just a couple of friends over
for a sleepover and swimming,
movies all night, and more cake and ice cream.
It was always rather nice having their birthdays
as bookends to the summer season!

For this summer, I’m making plans
 to invite a few of my friends over for tea…
Okay, it’s always 
my favorite thing to do I admit
but even with the tea craze 
having come and gone
I feel there is always a place
for a good tea and fellowship with friends.

A favorite photo of a tea at friend Kathy’s former home with all of us from our tea group.
This was taken nine years ago now! My how time flies!

I haven’t really had anyone 
over to our new place as last fall was simply too crazy 
moving every couple of weeks to new locations among the campsites as we took on our camp host positions, 
then, winter was windy and freezing 
{no outdoor entertaining for us!},
and we have just been too busy
this spring with track season.
now summer is here!!!
the weather is balmy, 
the afternoon coastal breezes soft and cooling,
and lovely trees providing the 
necessary afternoon shade ~
just perfect to invite some guests over 
to see our new digs and experience 
all that this area has to offer!

One tea I have planned is for the friends 
I’ve known for many years now and met 
through the 
Victorian Tea Society
The second is a party for my new friends
met while working here at The Lake!

The photograph just above 
was taken after a tea when all the 
silverware was sparkling 
in the late afternoon light.
A favorite time of day to daydream is when 
I’m making
all that china and silver 
with a good cleaning!

Our powder room downstairs at our Big House. ~ dressed for company!

Did you know that one of my favorite things 
to do after giving a tea for friends 
is to wash up all of the 
tea luncheon’s dishes and all of the silverplate 
while listening to music and 
watching birds 
peck seeds at the bird feeders outside?

I still do that here at our Tiny House, 
now I just have to turn around and 
sip a cup of tea while peering out the 
sitting area window.
Is birdwatching a favorite for you, too??

A favorite setting with the rose plates and bowls brought back from England along with my
great~grandmother’s crystal bowl passed down to the daughters. My daughter will be the
fifth generation to have it grace her tables! 

The lake here attracts so many species of birds
than we ever had at our bird feeders back in Murrieta!
Juncos, towhees (really large brown birds with barrel tummies!), 
field and Nevada sparrows, blackbirds, 
crows, ravens (so enormous and they love sunflower seeds!).

I’m sorry I don’t have any good photographs 
of the towhees for you today.
They are rather shy birds and I’ll just 
have to be sneaky this summer and 
set up the camera the evening before
so I can nab pics early in the mornings
through our sitting area window!

What kinds of birds are attracted 
to your backyard?
Let me know as I love hearing
about everyone’s feathered friends!
I hope you enjoy having them visit you.
(I know you do!)

Pieces of a cake we had at the “Snowman Tea” I gave for friends a few years back.
I Love birds on china, too! 
This is a set of dessert plates I bring out each winter
to celebrate special occasions with
and also “just because days.”
You may have seen this set at the big stores like
which is where I believe I bought a few of these 
at an after-Christmas sale.
Some came years later from
I would stack them in our cupboard and use them
myself for tea and muffins in the mornings
and for special dinners
with the family.
So pretty and fun for every occasion!
My daughter also likes to use them
for her breakfasts.
A cement piece I’ve had for many years ~ still looking to create something with it!
Anyway, Just a look back at some
“pretties” dressed in whites and silver  
from Our Home to Yours!

Please “Share”, “Like” and sign~up as a 
“French Ethereal Friend” if you’d like to receive more of my ramblings.
Thank you ever so much! 
Let me know what things interest you and
 things I could talk about or 
help you learn to do.

Blessings to you, always,
Sharing with ~
Feathered Nest Friday ~ French Country Cottage

Bridal Shower Tea…

A little tea party for two set in the garden ~ sign found at Hobby Lobby and
tea mugs are at Target “Simply Shabby Chic.”
To Have and to Hold ~
Love those words!

In this season of bridal showers 
and weddings
there isn’t anything better than helping friends and family
with planning their events!

Just a little party ~ 
Just a little bridal shower tea
through the internet
for my future
When you plan your bridal shower,
send out invitations at least a month in advance
and a “save the date” for the wedding date
even further out
so none of the party or guests 
gets caught unaware.

When it is time for the bridal shower,
dress your table in lovely lace
and set out your finest china
in pretty spring colors.
Have a tea light candle or two
along with a festive bouquet
in the bride’s favorite colors.

One thing I really wanted to do especially
was use monogrammed silverware.
For my children when they were young,
I found spoons that had their initials
on the handles.

We always used these as their ice cream spoons;
however, I always had 
an ulterior motive
{yep, it’t true}
and that was to use these special spoons
at a future bridal shower party…

Love in the garden…

Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove.
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wand’ring bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me prov’d,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.  ~  

                                               William Shakespeare,   Sonnet 116

lavender for love ~ playing with words…
Plan a menu and share some fond memories
of your bride with her bridesmaids
with those in attendance.

Bridal Shower Games

Have a party game or two, and then 
when the bride~to~be opens her gifts
for all to see…
Save all the ribbons and bows, 
threading them through
a paper plate creating a keepsake 
“bouquet” of the day…

Happy Bridal Shower Day
to everyone 
getting married this year!
Sharing with:
Create Link Inspire ~ The Crafty Blogstalker
Feathered Nest Friday ~ French Country Cottage

Blessings to you,