Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Dressing up Willow Baskets full of Coleus Plants for Indoors

A couple weeks ago I brought in some coleus plants that I had displayed outside on my porch. These plants were part of my son's biology project 3 years ago ... hard to believe they have not only survived at my house that long but they have also reproduced. When a piece breaks off I put it in water until the root system develops and then plant it. This spring they were attacked, several times, when I first put them out on the porch by racoons (I'm guessing) until a friend of mine suggested sprinkling red pepper around them. That did the trick and I was able to nurse some of them back to health.

So, I've brought them inside and decided that the willow baskets needed a little vintage vavoom (I am loving this book) . I was at a tag sale not too long ago and bought a bag of scrap pieces of lace and some trinkets and I really like the effect.

They even look good on the porch...

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Vintage Kitchen Towel Ticking Stripe Fabric

Something draws me to the old ticking striped fabrics ... it could be the softness of the fabric, or the various stripe layouts and colors, or the simpleness of them ... I just love them!

Most of these pieces of fabric that I have acquired are linen, a textile woven from fibers of a flax plant, and measure between 15″ to 17″ selvage to selvage. These narrow fabrics were woven to be used to make kitchen towels or I've seen them used as curtains in pie safes that had wire mesh window openings.

Linen tends to make a good kitchen towel because it is a very strong fabric, highly absorbent, lint free, it resists dirt, and lasts for generations. Linen will also soften on repeated washings.

Linen wrinkles very easily adding to the vintage charm but if you don't like the wrinkles, after delicately washing them in cold water with regular detergent, line/tumble dry them until just damp and then iron.

You can certainly use them in projects to get that soft romantic Vintage Vavoom look as I have done with this basket that sits on the island in my kitchen. I was experimenting with chalkboard paint and created this cute plaque from a silver serving plate that was damaged and spoon angel. I thought it was kind of "bistro romantic" but had no place to hang it in my kitchen. So I found this basket in the basement and decided I could hang the plaque from it. I then used one of the red ticking striped pieced of fabric which layered nicely in the bottom and now my basket becomes a welcome to the kitchen and a fruit basket (or at Halloween time - a treat basket). Works great on the island in the kitchen.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Vintage Tins and Bottles ... more History

I've done a little more research and have found that this Bokar tin bank is a replica of the package of Bokar Coffee sold by the A&P stores. Bokar Coffee was a brand of the Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company in the 50's and 60's. It measures 4" tall x 2.25" wide x 1.75" deep and has the classic bokar colors, black, red, and gold. Not dated but from my research, it appears to be from the 1950's-1960's.

This colorful tin once held 2 1/2 ozs of Mellomints by Brandle & Smith Co., of Philadelphia, PA. The tin measures 3 3/4" x 2 1/4" x 1 7/8". There are some speckles of white paint on the lid adding to the vintage character. Again I couldn't find a date but from my research, it appears to be from the 1930's.

This advertising dose glass shaped like a druggist graduate has a pedestal base and the glass flares to a wider opening at the top. There is vertical embossing along one side, "UNCLE SAM'S HERBS" and the reverse side has "TEA SPOON" 1-12 and "TABLE SPOON" 1-3 measurements. This glass measures 4" tall with a 2" diameter. I am unable to come up with any dates for this unique glass.