Wednesday, March 16, 2011

St. Patrick's Day

St Patrick's Day has changed a lot for me over the years.  First of all, I am not Irish (as far as I know) so growing up, we did the usual school things for St. Patrick's Day and that's about all. 

In my mid-twenties, I moved to Chicago where there is a HUGE Irish presence.  I met my friend Bill there in the mid 80s (he is still one of my best friends).  He is first generation Irish so we went to the many Irish pubs, festivals, and music venues.  I adore traditional Irish music and have a huge collection.  Anyway, celebrating St. Patrick's Day with Bill was always a great time (though I rarely drink alcohol...I was right there with everyone who does!).  For those who don't know, the Chicago River is dyed green every year (using orange dye) and they paint shamrocks on Dearborn St. where the parade route is.  Now THAT'S a city with lots of Irish in it's blood!!!
Green Chicago River
 Fast forward to today...boy, things do change.  I am back living in the upstate NY city where I grew up, with my English husband, and those days of going out to the pubs til all hours are long gone!  I think I will  have some tea and a treat and listen to some traditional music.  I have a book of Irish mysteries or maybe I'll pop in the "Riverdance" dvd and watch's so wonderful!  Bill and I went to see it in Chicago in 1996!! 
I don't have much in the way of St. Patrick's Day table things, but I was able to find enough  to have my little St. Patrick's time.
Just a little set up for tea.  Mostly, I am a coffee drinker, but will sometimes drink raspberry herbal tea in the evening.  I love this shamrock scarf but since I am working at home, I won't be wearing it on SPD this year
I have had this cup for a looooooong time and love the sweet shamrocks dancing around it
Here's a closer look at those shamrocks
 How about some green frosted cookies to go with tea...yummy!
These roses have been seen on a few tables lately...they certainly did last!!  I added a few green carnations and put them in an Irish glass with shamrocks all around the bottom
I love murder mysteries....and here is a WHOLE book of them.  This should make for a great evening!
...especially with some of my favorite music playing
Here's a little peak at the underside of the sauce.  This is "Royal Tara" made in...where else?

So I'm planning to have a quiet but wonderful St. Paddy's Day at home!  Hope you enjoy your celebrations!!

Now for the dish on the dishes:
  • The cup and saucer are Royal Tara (made in Ireland) from my teacup collection
  • The plate is my "Val D'Or" which shows up frequently here
  • The teapot and cookie tray are from "Tea with Grace"
  • The teaspoon is Reed and Barton "Rathmore"
  • I have had the shamrock scarf for years
  • The Waterford Marquis glass makes a great little vase for the roses and green carnations
  • That green napkin with the gold thread and the shamrock garland around the vase are both from Dollar Tree
  • The lace tablecloth is from my collection of tablecloths
  • Those cookies are NOT homemade...I am sorry to say
 Thank you for stopping by.  Be sure to visit Susan at "Between Naps on the Porch" and see all of the gorgeous tablescapes there. (click on the button up on the right)



Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Royal Albert

Royal Albert Hall in London...

Royal Albert China
(hmmmmmm...I think you might already know without any explanation ;-)

I've set the table for a nice tea with different patterns of Royal Albert China...there are so many wonderful patterns and these are my favorites!  Each place is set with a different pattern and the ever-versatile Val D'Or is used at each place.  Here we go!

Choose the pattern you like best and take a seat

Here is an overview of each place setting...
This pattern is called "Celebration" with beautiful white and maroon flowers

This one is called "Victoriana Rose".  It was originally a Paragon pattern, but I believe that Royal Albert bought them.  It is just delicate pink roses (sorry the picture isn't very good)

And here is the famous "Old Country Roses"...what else is there to say about this one!

This is "Moonlight Rose"  which is the pattern of "Old Country Roses" in blues and lavender.  You know how moonlight gives things a blue-ish cast.  This is exactly what this pattern does. 
(I don't have a salad plate in this pattern, so I used the "Val D'Or)

For the center of the table, there are beautiful real roses in an OCR teapot.  Don't worry...there are more tea pots in the china cabinet so we can still have tea

A closer look at the "Celebration" pattern

. . . "Victoriana Rose"

. . ."Old Country Roses"

. . ."Moonlight Rose"

Now for the dish on everything else!!
  • The lace tablecloth  I have had for years
  • The maroon placemats are from ebay just this past year (not the best fit for a round table!!)
  • The silverplate is Oneida Vanessa/Francesca
  • The fresh roses are making their second appearance. They were a grocery store buy
  • The pink damask napkins are from ebay
  • Napkin rings are Royal Albert Old Country Roses from TJ Maxx

I'm sure everyone has a favorite china pattern that you collect.  Thank you for stopping by to see my favorites!  Please visit  all of the lovely tables with Susan at "Between Naps on the Porch".  Just click on the link up on the right!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

I Love Chintz!!

I really do love chintz!  I know that the word "chintzy" has a negative connotation, but I love floral anything and there is nothing jammed with more flowers than chintz fabric and pottery!  To me, chintz just means colorful and happy!!  Here is a short history (or maybe it seems like a LONG history!!) of chintz.

Chintz is glazed calico cloth printed with flowers and other patterns in different colors. It was originally a woodblock painted or stained calico produced in India from 1600 to 1800 and popular for bed covers, quilts and draperies. Modern chintz usually consists of bright overall floral patterns printed on a light background but there are some popular patterns on black backgrounds as well.

Chintz is also pottery covered with a dense, all-over pattern of flowers or other objects. The pattern is applied by transfer printing as opposed to the more traditional method of painting by hand. The main firms making chintz (including Grimwades-trade name Royal Winton) were English and turned out a great variety of chintz dinnerware, teaware, and ornamental pieces mostly in the 1920s to the 1960s. The Royal Winton and James Kent factories began reproducing a few of their chintz patterns again in the mid-to-late 1990s. Royal Winton is still producing chintz today. (excerpted from Wikipedia)

I don't have much chintz pottery, but what I have, I really love!    I am setting the table for coffee and a few sweet treats.  Please join me and we can talk about chintz and china and all sorts of "table" things!

My FAVORITE pattern is Royal Winton's "Welbeck".  It has a sunshine yellow background with beautiful flowers crowded all over!  I don't have any of this myself (it is too expensive for me), but I do love the pattern.

Isn't this square plate just beautiful...
And this teapot is just adorable...again that square shape is so pretty
Here is my little set...I bought this from a little second-hand store.  It is so pretty and the price was right.  It was just $25 for the entire coffee set for six! 

I love the square-ish shape of these pieces

This is so cute for a little afternoon coffee and sweet treat

These cups are small...almost demitasse size, but we can just refill more often!

Here is a close-up that shows the overall floral charming!
This feels very pastel and spring-y

Here are the only other chintz pieces that I have
I also have this pretty chintz Old Country Roses teapot which was a gift from my friend Terry...she knows I am a nut for OCR!  That little creamer is from my mother-in-law in England.  It is actually Royal Winton.  The pattern is "June Roses".  It's hard to see, but the background is pale yellow. 
 I don't that that rose colored bowl even counts as chintz, but I love it!

Now for the dish on the dishes...
  • The chintz coffee set was a great find at a second hand store
  • The tablecloth is another that my sister brought to me from Ireland
  • There isn't much in the way of silver, but I used my Oneida "Damask Rose"
  • The flowers are from the grocery store...$9 for the whole bunch of roses!!
  • The dish with the cookies is Limoge...given to me by a very close friend

Hope you enjoyed my "chintz-y" post today!  Thank you for stopping by.  Please visit Susan at "Between Naps on the Porch"(the button is up on the right).  You will see AMAZING tables!