Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Christmas Hutch of Red Transferware and Book Winner

My breakfast room hutch is decked out for Christmas!

I've incorporated lots of Christmas-ey cheer into my red English transfer ware collection.

There are lots of snowflakes!  Including the giant one hanging from the drawer handle.

Seven or eight of these white, bottle brush trees add vintage charm...but they're brand new. 

 I always incorporate birds into my decor, whether it's Christmas time or not!
There are a few little evergreen trees I decorated with frosted, miniature pinecones and berries and tucked into creamers or sugar bowls.

Some cardinals and faux snow tucked in amongst the evergreens adds a little extra winter cheer.

 I like to tuck floral picks here and there as well to add a little color and greenery.

This is a new to my collection piece, a hand held candle holder.  Right now, it's holding one of the bottle brush trees.

This antique, crocheted dresser scarf perfectly mimics the snowflake theme.

I couldn't capture a good photo of these Christmas lights but they're little glass balls with a shimmery, sugar like coating making them appear as glistening little snowballs.  I have had these for years and liked them so much that I bought several extra sets as back ups!

The winner of the Children's transferware book Dishy Animals, chosen randomly via is comment #6
Sheila of Note Songs

Congratulations Sheila!  I'm so glad she won because she's got a baby grand daughter who's just learning to talk!  You're going to love sharing this with her!  Please email your address and I will get this shipped out right away!

True Random Number Generator  6Powered by RANDOM.ORG

I've also got a giveaway for Shabby Apple that I just posted earlier today.  Please enter HERE!

I'll be linking up to some of my favorite blog parties:

Friday, December 9, 2011

Shabby Apple Dress Giveaway

I was recently contacted again by an online dress boutique that I simply adore..Shabby Apple, to give away a dress to one of my readers.
If you've been around blogland much lately you may be familiar with this wonderful company and the beautiful, timeless line of women's dresses they carry.

Shabby Apple offers an array of lovely, time inspired, wholesome designed dresses for women and teens as well as little girl's dresses and maternity dresses.  They also have a lovely collection of jewelry, shoes, and accessories.

Here are some of my favorite dresses from Shabby Apple...what's yours?

(I love white dresses and I love boots with dresses)

I'm giving this gorgeous
Nothin' Like a Dame dress to one of you.  

One requirement to must like Shabby Apple on Facebook by clicking HERE  and leave a comment here letting me know.

If you are a follower of my blog, you can leave a comment for a second chance.

and, for a third entry you can like my Facebook page 
and leave another telling me so.

The giveaway ends next Wednesday, December 21.
One winner will be chosen at random using a numeral generator at

The winner will need to provide me with the following so that I can in turn provide this information to Shabby Apple:

Good luck! 

I'll be back in a few hours to share the winner of the Dishy Animals Book Giveaway and my red transferware hutch, all decked out for Christmas.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Guest Post ~ and Transferware Book GIVEAWAY!!!

(the letter A on a child's plate, from Judies book, Dishy Animals)

Today, I have a guest post from Judie Siddall.  Judie is a long time collector and dealer of transferware and has written a charming little book about childrens transferware of the 19th century,  Dishy Animals, which she specializes in.    I have one of the books in my collection and Judie has generously offered to give a copy to one of my readers.  It is so charming and if you have young children or grandchildren you will want this's a fun way for little ones to learn their ABC's! 

(front cover of Dishy Animals)

Here, Judy shares some of her collection with us and talks a little about herself and how she became a transferware enthusiast.

About Judie Siddall:

 I was introduced to blue and white transferware pottery by my mother and grandmother. We ate off of my grandmother’s blue Willow plates, which were made in occupied Japan, for years. My sister still has them. I remember going to antique stores with my mother from the time I was five. My mother (now 91 and still a blue lover), liked all kinds of china, but especially flow blue and old blue transferware. I liked old blue too. I bought my first piece of blue when I was a teenager. An addiction was born! In 1990, I was told by my husband that I must either become a transferware dealer or stop collecting. What a no-brainer! This was when Merlin Antiques was born, named after my favorite black and white cat. I would have liked a blue and white cat. Merlin brought me treasures; nothing dead. Shoes, shirts, hats; anything left outside by my neighbors. Unfortunately, no jewelry.
(some of Judie's blue and white pieces)

 I always enjoyed studying transferware and sharing that knowledge with others , so in 1998 I founded the Transferware Collectors Club (TCC), along with Norman Wolf and Dave Arman.

(click logo above to visit TCC or join...please tell Judie I sent you!)

 I have served as the TCC vice president and president and am currently the membership secretary (please join!). I also am the editor of the animals category of the TCC pattern database (nearly 7900 patterns so far) and the co-editor of the children’s subjects category. I am a bit obsessed with entering patterns. I have entered nearly 1500 of them.

 I created “Dishy Animals ABC” for my granddaughter, Maya, when she was 14 months old. I dedicated the book to her and my four grandsons. Maya loves the book, and carries it around the house and says “my book”; she is now 21 months old, but the boys just roll their eyes. Of course, Forrest is 17 and the triplets, Alex, Ben and Mo, are 10. Their fathers, my sons, also roll their eyes. Having a bit of girl in the family hopefully will ameliorate all of the eye rolling!

(Maya carrying her copy of Dishy Animals)

 “Dishy Animals ABC” combines my love of children and china. I taught in the Palo Alto, California, Parent Education Program, PreSchool Family, for 25 years, and have operated Merlin Antiques, specializing in 19th century British transfer printed pottery, for 21 years. I particularly like pottery made for children.
Above, and below are some of Judie's favorites from her collection
including these rare yellow glazed children's mugs and pitchers.

Above, Judie's granddaughter Maya learns her ABC's...the transferware way!

 Who has ever heard of a Cameleopard before?  Not until I got my copy of Dishy Animals had I heard of one!  This is one of Judie's favorite pieces she shares in her book for the letter X to stand for eXotic...and that it is!  

If you'd like to enter for a chance to win a copy of 'Dishy Animals ABC'  all you need do is leave a comment here and tell me why you'd like to win it!

One winner will be chosen via in one week.  I will announce the winner on December 15th.  Please be sure you leave an email address so that I can contact you!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Lavender Transferware Snowflake Tablescape

Stay, season of calm love and soulful snows!
~ from the poem To Winter by Claude McKay~

 Do any of you remember my bird cage dining table  I made from a broken bird cage?   Well,  this table has  become one of my favorite pieces of furniture.  

I envisioned something outside of  the traditional red and green color scheme for this setting.  I envisioned a tablescape of silver and white snowflakes and ice crystals with a little bit of soft, pale color added.  I've always liked periwinkle and in fact had a previous homes bedroom wall painted a very light shade of this color.   My  inspiration were these gorgeous, ever so light periwinkle / lavender  / purple transferware plates in the Asiatic Pheasants Pattern.    I think this is a beautiful pattern depicting pheasants fluttering amongst a lush floral bouquet.  They seemed to be a perfect match for the table.   These transferware plates are not the typical English pieces I include in my tablescapes,  rather they are Swedish and made by the firm Gustavsberg in the late 19th to early 20th century.  When I came across these a couple of years ago I could not resist buying them solely for the rare,  beautiful color they are.

Asiatic Pheasants is one of the most popular patterns ever produced.  So many potters used this pattern that it is still not known just how many companies did indeed produce wares in this design. 

  Back to the table scape...I love, love, love to layer linens so layer one was a very light silver, almost white, organza table cloth.  Rather than traditional place mats I chose  white cotton/linen blend napkins with a silver ribbon sewn around the edges.  These were placed at an angle allowing the corners to hang over the table.  Next I added hand beaded silver chargers and then another clear beaded, metal charger over that.  This gave some glimmer I really wanted at the table.  I think that the beaded items, especially in silver, add light and airiness which gives a great visual impact.  

Next, of course came the plates. 
I chose to mix up the silverware.  I brought my Towle Stockholm from home and paired it with these pretty, white and silver salad forks which add another touch of supple elegance.  

Napkins are layered too...first is a white, jacquard poly blend under organza napkins that match the table topper.  The napkin rings match my chargers.

The etched goblets were on clearance a while back at Hobby Lobby.  
I love the second pic down with the candlelight shining through.

  At each setting I incorporated some pieces of Spode Mayflower ,which is another beautiful pattern in the same lilac/periwinkle shade as the plates but with hand painted roses in the center.  On each bread plate I placed these gorgeous, silver snowflake candles.  These ball candles come in a variety of colors from Zest Candles.  They're only a couple of dollars a piece.  

 Under each cup and saucer I placed a small wreath adorned with faux ice covered branches. 

To the backs of each chair, I tied matching wreaths with organza garland and a sprig of lilac to tie in the color scheme.

 My centerpiece is what originally was to be the top of the bird cage.  I decided to use it atop the table.  I wrapped three garlands around the cage top:   white and lavender floral, ice covered branches and more organza garland.  Underneath the cage topper I placed an additional beaded charger, plate and a large pillar candle.   throughout the garlands and over the table I placed an assortment of inexpensive, plastic snowflakes covered in glitter or metallic paint.

The crowning touch to the cage was draping a beaded wine bottle cover over the top.

 So many little ice crystals fell from the garland that I decided they'd be a welcome addition to the table and I scattered them all over  allowing them to stay where they fell.

 This antique tureen dish is another perfect match for this table setting.

Our hearts grow tender with childhood memories and love of kindred, and we are better throughout the year for having, in spirit, become a child again at Christmas-time. 
 ~Laura Ingalls Wilder~

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