It was a gorgeous day here in Connecticut. Sunny, dry, perfect weather which helped to make my mind-numbing, end-of-the-month paper work tolerable. Right now, fresh breezes are wafting in and the setting sun is illuminating my little sewing corner. So pretty.
Yesterday, I arose at the crack of dawn to meet up with my friend Keri. It was a beautiful Sunday morning and we made plans to head north to the Elephant's Trunk Flea Market.
Located on 55 acres in New Milford, Connecticut, we arrived at 7a.m., just as the gates were opening and the mist was rising.
You never know what you'll find at the ET Flea. Below are just a few of the items I passed while walking the many rows of dealers. Don't you just love the oval silver-plated tray covered in chalk board paint (bottom row, middle photo)? What a great idea!
I got a kick out of this pair of technophiles, below . . .
They both stopped smack-dab in the middle of an aisle so they could tend to their gadgets; him on an iPad, her on an iPhone. I'll bet they were researching prices on something they wanted to buy.
Keri and I both agreed that the most unusual item of the day was this 8-foot tall creature — part Ostrich, part Big Bird. So wacky!
It was fun browsing and chatting our way through the flea market. And even though I only bought a few things, I really love what I found. I'll share those yummy finds with you in my next post.
Have you heard of Shabby Apple? They are an online company offering vintage-inspired dresses that are a return to what dresses were always meant to be — a one-piece outfit that doesn't need anything else; no tank tops, no cardigans, nothing!
After years of not being able to find stylish dresses that covered enough skin to make you really feel comfortable, Shabby Apple owners Emily and CK decided to do something about it.
They visited trade shows, marketplaces and designer studios only to discover the problem was not that stores weren't buying the right dresses, but that designers weren't designing them. So they began ShabbyApple.com, the place to find great women's dresses that make dressing simple.
At Shabby Apple, you'll find a vast selection of dresses in all kinds of colors, fabrics, and lengths — white dresses, long dresses, pink dresses, silk, and even some elegant dresses for that special night out. And they cater to all sizes, from plus-size to petite. Whatever you’re looking for, there is a good chance they'll have something you will love.
Below is my favorite dress, called the Trevi Fountain, from their Roamin' Holiday line. And... it could be yours! I am offering this lovely dress as a free giveaway to a lucky T-Cozy reader.
Isn't it sweet? A bouquet of cerulean blossoms flutters across the scoop neckline of this slim waisted A-line dress. Made from lightweight Cotton Poplin fabric consisting of 97% cotton and 3% spandex, this dress would be flattering on all body types with its princess seams and dainty cap sleeves accentuated by a fitted and flared skirt. Bold and bright, this dress is sure to be a standout for seasons to come.
There are several ways you can enter my giveaway for Shabby Apple's Trevi Fountain dress. Feel free to do one, or all of them, which will increase your chances of winning.
#1: Become a fan of T-Party Antiques on Facebook. Click HERE to be redirected to T-Party's fan page. Once you are there, click "Like." Then leave a comment on this post stating that you did so.
#2: "Favorite" my Etsy shop. Click HERE to be redirected to my Etsy shop. Once you are there, click the heart at the top. Then leave a comment on this post stating that you did so.
#3. Follow T-Party Antiques on Twitter. Click HERE to be redirected to T-Party's Twitter page. Once you are there, click "Follow." Then leave a comment on this post stating that you did so.
#4: "Like" Shabby Apple on Facebook. Click HERE to be redirected to Shabby Apple's fan page. Once you are there, click "Like." Then leave a comment on this post stating that you did so.
#5: Help me spread the word! For more opportunities to win, blog about my giveaway, tweet, or comment on Facebook with a link to this post. Then leave a comment on this post stating that you did so.
Remember that you must leave a separate comment on this post for each of the ways you choose to enter. (If you are already a T-Party Facebook fan, Etsy favoriter, or Twitter follower, you can leave a comment about that, too.) And be sure to include your email address so that I can contact you if you win. Please note that the winner must have a U.S. address and there are no exchanges for the winning dress. This giveaway runs through Monday, July 4.
Here I go again; reorganizing my studio to make it function better. My latest tweak is a small area devoted to packing. Now every time something sells in my Etsy shop, you'll find me standing right here.
A wicker chair used to sit along this half wall of my studio, but I hardly ever sat in it. So I transformed this space into a much needed packing center.
I chose to use a vintage ironing board as my work surface. In my attic, I have a collection of several wooden ironing boards. I like to use them when we have summer parties in our back yard. Two or three ironing boards placed end to end make a simple and rustic buffet table.
Within easy reach is my vintage Scotch tape dispenser. I much prefer relics like this one rather than new, plastic models. An old kitchen canister that was missing its lid is now used as a small trash can. I spiffed it up with some red rick rack.
My other vintage ironing boards are plain wood. This one is extra special. It's The Rij-o-Matic, so fabulous with its green paint and original label.
On the bottom shelves next to the ironing board are a couple of baskets filled with packing tape, bakery twine, glue sticks, scissors and postal scales.
The remaining shelves store a few Etsy items that have yet to sell.
I've grouped the antique gardening books together. Quite frankly, I'm kind of hoping they don't sell too quickly — I love how they look on the shelves.
Today, I had lunch in one of my favorite rooms — our screened porch. We added this unheated room to our house almost twenty years ago. We only use it in the warm weather, so it's kind of like a forgotten room that I get to discover all over again year after year.
Measuring 10 by 11 feet, it is just big enough for a small dining table, a comfy chaise lounge and a wicker chair. What more does one need in a warm weather space?
One wall of the room consists of three screen door panels. The outer two are stationary and the center panel is the actual door. In the cold weather, we replace the screens with glass windows and use the room to store outdoor items like teak deck furniture, adirondack chairs, flower pots, and more.
The porch's upper walls and vaulted ceiling are painted the color of a cloudless summer sky. Its wooden floor is painted a darker blue-green like the ocean, and the bottom half of the walls are wrapped in crisp white wainscoting.
The porch is simply furnished and filled with things that I love, like the primitive cottage painting, below right, found at a neighbor's tag sale many years ago. Isn't it wonderful?
This vintage tray has folding legs and comes in really handy when I want to use my laptop computer while chaise lounging.
We enjoy eating at the wooden table and chairs in the corner. Having our meals in the porch is the next best thing to eating outside, which I tend to shy away from because the mosquitoes make a meal of me!
With a fan and two large skylights in the ceiling, our porch is always bright and breezy.
Hannah and I can't seem to leave any beach we go to without bringing home a free gift from the sea.
The origami crane mobile is from Vermont and the hand tinted landscape photo is a vintage find.
The chaise lounge is the most comfortable reading spot. It's a great place for a nap, too!
Right now, I'm reading At Home, A Short History of Private Life by Bill Bryson. The book was a birthday gift from John who knows I am a Bryson fan. I've just started it, so I can't give you my review just yet, but here is a brief synopsis:
Bill Bryson and his family live in a Victorian parsonage in a part of England where nothing of any great significance has happened since the Romans decamped. Yet one day, he began to consider how very little he knew about the ordinary things of life as he found it in that comfortable home. To remedy this, he formed the idea of journeying about his house from room to room to “write a history of the world without leaving home.” The bathroom provides the occasion for a history of hygiene; the bedroom, sex, death, and sleep; the kitchen, nutrition and the spice trade; and so on, as Bryson shows how each has figured in the evolution of private life. Whatever happens in the world, he demonstrates, ends up in our house, in the paint and the pipes and the pillows and every item of furniture.
I hope you've enjoyed this peek at our back porch. Do you have a special summer place in your house?
I've spent all day photographing and Photoshopping my tag sale acquisitions for my Etsy shop. Love those vintage gardening books! They really inspire me. So I just took a much needed break, grabbed my camera, and headed outside.
Things are blooming nicely, even though I've been too busy to give our garden much attention lately. Perhaps I'll find some time this weekend to get out there and get my hands dirty. What are your plans for this weekend? I hope you have a good one!
As promised, here are some peeks at the vintage goodies I found last Saturday at a local church's annual tag sale.
A fan of cozy chenille, I was thrilled when I came across three vintage beauties, so perfect for summer.
I found a stash of wonderful old gardening books. I am particularly enamored with the one below, titled Roses and Rose Gardens, published in 1911.
This book has over forty full color plates of roses and gardens individually tipped onto cover stock. Every one is frame worthy!
I plan to sell the three books, below, together in my Etsy shop as an instant collection. Nature's Garden, published in 1900, is an aid to our knowledge of wild flowers and their insect visitors. A Woman's Hardy Garden, by Helena Rutherfurd Ely, was published in 1908. It is filled with nice black and white photos of the author's garden. The Wise Garden Encyclopedia, published in 1951, provides a complete and practical guide to every detail of gardening.
Love this one. The Burgess Flower Book for Children was published in 1923.
Chock full of pretty pictures, it is a young reader's introduction to the fascinating world of flowers.
The Gardener's World, published in 1959, has the subhead "The great literature of plant lore and gardening from Homer to Thoreau, from Boccaccio to Edwin Way Teal."
Inside, it contains 128 selections spanning the whole of literature and covering virtually every aspect of man in nature and man, the gardener. It is filled with stunning illustrations printed on chartreuse paper stock.
Continuing the gardening theme — this bright blue wooden carrier would be useful to hold garden tools or books. Or how about little terracotta pots of flowers?
This vintage art pottery vase has a cornflower blue glaze and is all ready for a bouquet of flowers from the cutting garden.
On to some kitchen items — this set of Bakeite handled flatware is perfect for a summer picnic.
A set of tomato and steak knives sports sunshine yellow Bakelite handles.
I love this cheerful Hazel Atlas nut grinder with its rose decal.
More books! I discovered a complete set of six of the My Bookhouse series from the 1920s, edited by Olive Beaupré Miller.
Filled with classic stories and rhymes, each volume is profusely illustrated. Just look at these beautiful drawings!
And just a couple more — these two children's chapter books from 1924 will also be listed together in my Etsy shop.
Lastly, I found a great set of 1950s metal serving trays. I think they would be fun to use as placemats on a picnic table.
Or add a few magnets and they become instant message boards.
Quite a haul, don't you think? What fun I had finding these vintage treasures. Now the real work begins — getting them listed in my Etsy shop.
I love it when I have happy customers. And I also love it when they share how they have used one of my items in their house. Here's a great example: The item, below, recently sold in my Etsy shop and then went on to a very special new house.
I made this pennant banner from vintage pink sheeting, braided trim and red buttons. It now resides in the sweetest hand built tree house fit for a princess.
This structure was a labor of love constructed by blogger Kim's husband Chris. Here is my pennant hanging in its lovely new home in the trees. Too sweet!
This darling tree house is a sight to behold. You must check it out! To see it in all of its glory, go to Kim's blog called Musings from Kim K. You'll be glad you did!
My daughter has always been an adventurous eater. She is truly a foodie who enjoys cooking and loves a wide variety of foods. While we had lunch together at a seafood restaurant on Tuesday, Hannah realized she had never eaten raw oysters. So she decided to give them a try. (And of course I had to document it, because that's what wacky bloggers do.)
Thumbs up! Hannah is now officially an oyster eater! And aside from a few blisters from all of the walking she did in New York yesterday, she had a great first day at her internship, too.
It's really quiet in my house today. Jacob is at school and I just dropped Hannah off at the train station. She is heading to New York to begin a summer internship. I've so enjoyed having her home from college. Yesterday, we went out to lunch and shopped for some work clothes. Now she's all ready and is on her way to the big city.
I have to admit, sometimes I miss Manhattan. I worked there for seven years and although it had its stressful moments, it never failed to be interesting and inspiring. But these days, I enjoy working in my cozy studio with its 30-second commute. And on nice days like today, I often take a break and head to the beach. Want to join me?
I do hope Hannah has a terrific first day on the job. I can't wait to hear all about it this evening.