Friday, May 7, 2021

Panoply Vintage Finds in Covid Times

The last time I gave y'all an update to my Panoply vintage finds was in an August 2020 post. I've done a lot of shopping since then! Whenever my Panoply sisters and I shop together, we often do a show and tell once we're back at home base, so that's what I have for you today: highlights of my vintage finds in Covid times since last August. It's a long post, but lots of eye candy. Grab a drink, let's go armchair antiquing!

I'll start with boomerang items, or items I previously purged which came back to me, lol. In early 2019, my two married daughters and their close cousin took a lot of furniture when we downsized. I told them if they ever wanted to get rid of it to ask me first if I wanted it back. The chair and versatile table below are boomerang items. 

My second daughter is pregnant and was furnishing her nursery, so when she no longer wanted the chair and table, I took those the booth space, that is. They both sold within a week of styling. I purged another area rug for the nursery in this takeback, so I consider them all wins. The chandelier shades were an estate find, ready to go into the booth.

Textiles are always an easy acquisition for me. I can stuff another linen with the best of 'em, especially when I use vacuum-sealed storage bags. Of these finds below, I want to point out the bottom center doilies and runners. These were gifted to me by a fellow blogger, Linda from Best of Long Island and Central Florida. They were her mother's and grandmother's, which I absolutely cherish in knowing and receiving. Thank you, Linda! The daisy afghan (center) has already sold, and the vintage floral cotton tablecloths (bottom left), Battenburg placemats and vintage hankies are or will be in the booths. The top left runner will be used in a tablescape next week, and the gorgeous fabric in the top right was purchased to be used in an upcoming tablescape sometime this summer. I am in love with those rich colors.
Vintage Kitchen Bakeware, (and pottery). My goodness, I hit the mother lode of bakeware with an estate sale my sister landed last September, which we split. I picked the 4-piece nested Cinderella Friendship set, the Avocado Crazy Daisy and Yellow Sunflower Daisy (all Pyrex), plus the Corning Ware lidded white daisy bouquet and French Arcopal partridge and tulips bowls. Those were all sold within a few short weeks! I just put the Pyrex turquoise Butterprint in the booth, and the black snowflake (also Pyrex) will go in later this fall along with the black & white canisters. The yellow ball jug pitcher is vintage Hall pottery. These were/are all in excellent vintage condition.
Fostered finds are a job hazard when antiquing or shopping estate sales. All of the framed artwork, prints and panoramic photo below are currently in the loft, either already hanging or ready to hang in rotation. I'm a Flapper girl, so the 1927 panoramic photo is right up my alley, along with the Erte print (middle left). The central winter scenes are mid-1970s Ben Hampton Southern Series. All the rest are water colors by noted local artists.
More fostered finds in the form of glass vases and small ceramics are currently in the loft, most already in seasonal decor. As you can see, the two large vases (top rt), as well as two of the framed water colors pictured above are in the recessed fireplace niche. The cream Haeger vase and small bird are situated in our great room now. The parrot pitcher will likely make its way to a tablescape coming soon, and the dog.....well, he looks like one of my granddogs so I couldn't resist.

Asian decor is something I am drawn to, and of all the items acquired below, I am definitely keeping the blue vase (bottom left) and the chinoiserie napkins rings. The vase is already styled in my great room. All the other items are potentially saleable items, with the Asian figurine planters (bottom rt) already in the booth.
Seasonal decor items already in the booths and/or sold include all of the items pictured below. Hand painted Weisley china rose bowl, Aynsley shamrock c/s, Fenton custard glass bird, and handmade ceramics and needlepoints are among the items pictured.

Decor and vanity items pictured below are a mix of items fostered for home use before letting go, already in the booths, or ready for sale. Those I will keep a while include the candle holders (top rt) and the black & white carrots (bottom center). Vintage compacts and perfume bottles are small case items in the booths. The doll is made of corn husks! The silverplate biscuit tin and cut glass basket are in booths now, and I need to get that metal candelabra in soon for seasonal appeal! 
Vintage barware/entertaining items are a category I love sourcing. They seem to cross boundaries for both male and female collectors. Pictured below are some mid-century modern trays, glasses and mugs. The shaker and ashtray are also advertising pieces (as are the 1970s Playboy bunny mugs). Fun items!
Books and primitives are items one of my other sisters usually gravitates toward, but these were items I found at a good price. The framed prints are coal mining, school days and railroad. The books are to be shared among my sisters, an overwhelming number of Nancy Drew mysteries from one estate. Crates are a no-brainer pickup, especially when graphics are good. The spools were a good deal, and the rusty scale face drew me in like a magnet. 
Mantiques, as I refer to the items below, are things I love looking for. Again, both men and women seem to favor them (hey, I bought them!). The picnic vignette is in the booth - a 1950s Pepsi cooler and 1970s Pepsi glasses sitting on a Basketville Putney Vermont splint basket. I love the paint by number sailboats! The marbles were made in West Virginia. The 1950s Doepke toy trucks I wrote about here already sold. Bottom left is a Libbey "firsts" commemorative space glass and medallion; bottom right are rarely found Matchbox cars with original boxes. That bottom middle photo is an old snuff can - full!
Militaria, Vintage Office and more Mantiques. Another really great group of finds is pictured below: beneath a WWI era West Point panoramic photo is an authentic WWI doughboy helmet and field binoculars (top left). Just below that is a tabletop lighter in the form of WWII P51 Mustang fighter plane. Also pictured are mid-century office supplies (center rt), and vintage camera light meter, Mack bulldog hood ornament and another set of binoculars. The helmet, field binocs and lighter are sold.
Last but not least are Holiday Items. I picked up all the items below with the intention of selling (the tumbling Santas are already sold), but I may foster the two trees and napkins rings for a while. I contemplated using the green ornaments but will likely sell those this year.
I hope you're still with me and found things that kept your interest. I was so overdue in getting this post written, but I find it's an excellent way for me to trace my purchasing and prompt myself to pull things from storage for both home and booth spaces, and to reference back. 

My sisters and I have remained in business at the South Charleston Antique Mall in South Charleston, WV since 2008. Three separate interstates go through the area (I-64, I-77 and I-79), with strategic billboards placed along each for high visibility. We are conveniently located off of Exit 56 on I-64. So, if you or someone you know is a collector and is traveling this year, be sure and tell them about our mall. We have over 60 dealers in 3 floors + a mezzanine totaling 18,000 square feet!
Thanks so much for your visit. Leave a comment, let me know what you love to collect.

Rita C. at Panoply

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Two Years Later: Before and After

Most of my readers who've been with me over the years know that in 2019 we made a major downsize, going from a large home and garden to living in a loft. I have no regrets, and am very happy with a downsized lifestyle. 

A couple weeks ago while walking in our old neighborhood, we ran into the wife of the couple who bought our former home. She invited us in to see what changes they've made to both the home and garden.  I thought you might like to see a few of the major changes they've made.

The Courtyard: Before and After

What the new owners did with the courtyard is tear out all the old brick pavers, plus lower the enclosing brick wall to open it to the adjoining landscaped yard. They put in a new bluestone patio, and added a pergola from the sunroom and family room French doors. They also took out the hot tub we had (not seen in the above photos).

Here's a photo of the wall and landscape as it looked before the brick wall was lowered, early May. The spirea had yet to bloom, and the bee balm was coming up along the wall, just to the right of the roses and iris. Black-eyed Susans surrounded my garden statue and were mid-summer blooms. All of those are now gone. I was happy to see the irises still remain, as do two of the three climbing roses.
Here's a couple photos of the courtyard while we were living there (below, in Fall). The brick wall not only provided some afternoon shade, but it also gave a lot of privacy.
The photo below shows the hot tub still in place.

These next photos are what really blew my mind. When we renovated the landscape back in 2004 we also had architectural plans drawn to renovate the unfinished basement, but that never happened. When we sold the house, we gave the architectural renderings to the new owners.

Basement: Before and After:
You could've used our basement as a skating rink, but instead I filled it up with storage for my Panoply antiquing and household goods. My picture below is after I emptied it, just before our move in 2019.
Here's what the new owners did with the space. First, they had the stairs finished in wood to match the first floor and stairs leading to the second level.
The photo collage below represents the basement space to the right of the stairs once you're on the lower level. It compares to the upper half of the unfinished collage photo above. They made a bedroom, and a full bath to the rear about where that window is in the unfinished space photo.
Next, coming down the stairs and turning left, this space is now finished as a family room. The fireplace was there before as you can see. They haven't decided on whether they'll install gas logs or not.


In gardening, before we moved, I dug up several of my plants to share with others. My daughter had moved into a home the year before, so her garden beds were ones that I helped add to. Here's one of her flower beds pictured just a couple weeks ago, when her transplanted irises were blooming. She also has love-in-a mist (nigella) growing and yet to bloom beside the irises. Transplanted lavender is doing well in pots in the front of her house (not pictured).

Wow! is what I say, what say you? We had a lot of projects on our list when we moved that needed checked off had we stayed. The new owners were in a great position to get those and their own started. One thing I always wanted was to take out all the carpet upstairs and have wood floors to match the downstairs installed. They did that, and they're beautiful. I also wanted to ditch the hot tub (and install a she shed). They disposed of the hot tub, but I'm not sure if they plan to replace it with anything.

They say you can never go back, but it really wasn't hard for us. The first thing Mr. P. said when we walked away was, "I don't miss it at all". I don't either. It's nice to see it's being loved.

Have you ever moved and gone back to be able to see what the new owners have done to the property? 

Rita C. at Panoply

Friday, March 26, 2021

Fun with Food and Flowers

I do not know where I saw it (probably Facebook, as I'm not on Instagram, and I rarely scroll Pinterest), but a recent recipe caught my attention that inspired some fun with food and flowers: egg salad filled 'carrots'. 

The recipe called for using sheet form crescent rolls, but I couldn't find them in my grocery. I tried improvising with a regular can of crescent rolls. They ended up a sticky blob of a mess in handling so I trashed them. Plan B? I went for a refrigerator pie crust, and that worked.

What you'll need:
  • Crescent roll sheet form or pie crust
  • Cream horn molds
  • Natural, plant-based food coloring (orange, or a mix of yellow and red to make orange).
  • Brush (I used silicone)

After rolling out the pie crust, I used a pizza cutter and gauged six slices (I did not measure or roll out the dough to make it rectangular before cutting, just winged it🤣). After each slice is cut, roll it into about an 18" string, about 1/2" wide. Start at the pointed base of the cream horn mold and roll the dough around the mold. "Paint" the food coloring on the crust and place seam down onto a foil-covered cookie sheet. I baked mine at 425° for about 8 minutes (the pie crust recipe calls for 450°, 10-12 minutes. Again, I winged it.) Let cool about 5 minutes, and remove the 'carrots' from the molds, and finish cooling completely.

I mixed my egg salad (hard-boiled eggs, sweet relish, celery, mayo and onion powder to taste), and stuffed the carrots. I garnished with parsley. I think Peter Rabbit would approve! Ham salad or even chicken salad would also be good fillers.

Mr. P. picked out a bouquet of flowers for me at the grocery 'just because', so I set a place for fun with the food and flowers. The little cakes in the foreground are lemon bites I buy at Walmart in their bakery (Sam's Club sells a larger packaging size). If you like lemon like I do, they are so good!
Then I played just a little with dishes. I still have my table set from St. Patrick's Day, so those are my backdrop. I just switched up the napkin and salad plate, and now it looks like Easter.
These 'carrots' would be perfect for any springtime fete - Easter, a garden tea, or even a baby shower. I hosted a baby shower for a niece several years ago (see my post here) in which we made foods inspired by children's books. It was a lot of fun, and the idea of gifting books in lieu of cards was a relatively new concept back then. Fun with food and flowers!

Thanks for your visit. Let me know if you try these. I'll keep my eyes open for the crescent sheet form to do these again, but the pie crust version was good enough to repeat, too.

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Early Spring, Easter '21 Tablescape

The official start of spring is just days away, Daylight Savings Time has begun, and I can see and feel new life energy around me each day. Welcome to Panoply, where I am celebrating my favorite season at the table! Several other bloggers are joining me today, and you'll find links for their tables near the end of this post.
I love spring! Bright green leaves contrasting against dark mulch or tree bark is so appealing, especially with a blue sky backdrop. These are the signs of spring life I wait for after the winter months. My favorite color combination in early spring florals is purple, green and yellow gold. I always loved my pansies planted in that color combo, and to see them among my sunny daffodils and purple hyacinths was pure joy.  
My table inspiration has come from my favorite spring color combo, and actually began with a quilt topper I purchased from my blogger friend, Carole, last year. Carole is a master quilt maker, was purging some of her inventory, and I quickly took advantage of her sale. The topper set the tone for spring, and also works for Mardi Gras, which inspired Carole in a previous tablescape she created. 
My plate stack is resting on a bird's nest charger: a yellow square dinner, lime green round, and cabbage leaf salad bowl. A purple napkin is vertically placed between the two plates. A gold starburst napkin ring is resting at the top center of the charger. Its tines mimic the look of a dandelion ready to go to seed, and can be used as a place card holder here.
My centerpiece rabbit compote was a vintage find a few years ago. It's filled with glass eggs which I made in a Blenko Factory Eggstra Special workshop. Forsythia is appropriately used as filler, as it's blooming in my region now.
My salad set and tureen were vintage estate finds, handmade ceramics from the early 1970s. The wooden utensils are West Virginia crafted by Allegheny Treenware. I have a nice collection of these very functional utensils made by Stan and Sue Jennings. Each tool is label burned on the handle underside, marking the wood type used (most are cherry), maker initials, and the year handcrafted.
The base tablecloth is one I love using frequently. It is so versatile throughout the seasons - a texturized neutral that's not too white or too tan. If you saw my last tablescape, you're probably thinking I just kept the cloth and flatware for this one. Fun fact: this table was actually set in 2020! I was decorating for spring at the time, playing with dishes, and couldn't decide among three different tables I created to use for a spring or Easter tablescape. For 2021, since Easter is April 4, just two weeks after the start of Spring, this table combines both - Early Spring and Easter! I'm sharing my complete source list, some with links, but none are sponsored. My blog is personal, not monetized.

Early Spring, Easter '21 Tablescape Source List
(for informational purposes, no sponsorship)
Tablecloth - April Cornell
Quilted Square - Carole, From My Carolina Home
Chargers Napkins, Crackled Glassware, Salad Plates - Pier 1
Napkin Rings (as place card accents) - HomeGoods
Dinner Plates - Fiesta 
Flatware - Target
Wooden Salad Utensils - Allegheny Treenware
Cabbage Salad Set, Tureen and Centerpiece Rabbit Compote - Vintage Finds
Glass Easter Eggs - Blenko
I want to thank Chloe, from the blog Celebrate and Decorate, for being such a constant over the past several years in organizing these tablescapes with the various stylists. I've made some really good friends through this activity of tablescaping, and hope you enjoy the topic, too. Below are the list of bloggers participating in this Easter tablescaping event. I encourage you to visit each link:

My love of vintage is how this blog of mine started, and continues since 2013. Two of my sisters and I pegged the name Panoply, a collective antique shop within our local antique mall since 2008. Over the years, dishes became one of my collections / obsessions while on the hunt. Naturally, tablescaping became a hobby, and I love incorporating vintage finds into the mix. If you like vintage shopping - whether it's thrifting curbside, shopping estate sales or attending auctions - I invite you to visit my blog again. I share our booth spaces, vintage finds, home styling, travel with my tote tribe, and sometimes the miscellaneous musing. 

I'd love for you to leave a comment and join in a friendly exchange with me. Thanks for your visit today!

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

An Unpretentious St. Patrick's Day Tablescape

Welcome to Panoply! Today I'm sharing my St. Patrick's Day tablescape with you, labeling it as unpretentious. 
  1. not attempting to impress others with an appearance of greater importance, talent, or culture than is actually possessed.
My intention for this tablescape was a straightforward approach - simple and classic greens for celebrating the feast of St. Patrick and the changing of seasons. It's unpretentious in that I mix high and low end items, and almost always something vintage, whether it's my tables or anything else in my home. My complete source list for my table is provided near the end of this post (for informational purposes only, no sponsorship).
My sister was given this set of china I'm using today, and she asked me if I wanted it. Um, hellooo. Yes, I will set a table with it, at least, I told her. 
In researching, I found the china was manufactured by Taylor, Smith & Taylor between 1955-1960. It is called Classic Heritage Green. Kismet, I thought, as we are Irish by my father's heritage. And, fun fact: Taylor, Smith & Taylor Co. was in operation from 1900 until 1981 in Chester, West Virginia (my home state). They were the creators of the Lu-Ray Pastels of the 1930s. While I only used dinner and salad plates in this tablescape, there was table service for eight, including cups & saucers, berry bowls, as well as several serving pieces.
A simple bouquet from the grocery store in greens and creams became my centerpiece, with boxwood orbs flanking the arrangement. Once the table was set, Mr. P. walked by and made a comment about how nice it was. Needless to say, I think I have yet another set of china among my dish collections. 
The napkin rings I'm using are beaded blossoms, intended to be shaped as a fully open bloom. I rather liked them as a closed bud, giving the impression of a tulip in early spring.
Look at the magnitude of the beads of the bloom's center! They're quite heavy.
I played with candles on this table, but decided adding a string of little lights was better suited to the look I was going for in the simply classic approach.
A little surprise came about five days into having the bouquet. I knew there was a lily among the bunch, but what I didn't know was that it was a yellow bloom! Yellow is such a happy color. Beyond St. Patrick's Day, this table segues nicely into early Spring in our condo.

An Unpretentious St. Patrick's Day Tablescape Source List
Tablecloth, napkins - April Cornell
Placemats, Napkin Rings - MacKenzie-Childs
Chargers - Pier 1
Dinner, Salad Plates - Taylor, Smith, & Taylor Co.'s Classic Heritage (Green) - Vintage
Flatware - Target
Stemware - Dollar Tree
Vase - Blenko
I would like to take a moment to thank Debbee from the blog Debbee's Buzz. She organized all the bloggers whose links you will find below for even more St. Patrick's tablescaping inspiration. Be sure to visit each one. Each stylist has her own distinct take on the celebration.

Debbees Buzz  Vintage Dishes & Lucky Clover Fold Napkins 

Home is Where the Boat Is ☘ Loads of Shamrocks St. Patrick's Day Table

Panoply ☘ An Unpretentious St. Patrick's Day

My Hubbard Home  Putting on the Green & Yellow

Life and Linda ☘ Keeper of the Traveling Shamrock Cloth

Corner of Plaid and Paisley ☘ Reprise of Ewe & McGreggor St. Patrick's Day Table

Me and My Captain  Not Lucky, Just Very Blessed

Red Cottage Chronicles ☘ Channeling My Inner Irish

Celebrate and Decorate ☘ St. Patrick's Day Luncheon Tablescape

Calypso in the Country  St. Patrick's Day Table Decor

Design Morsels ☘ St. Patrick's Day Table

The Painted Apron ☘ Celebrating the Green Table

Hyacinths for the Soul ☘ Lucky in Life ~ Celebrating Green Table

Zucchini Sisters ☘ Green & Orange St. Patrick's Day Table

Thank you so much for your visit. I'd love you to leave a comment to let me know you stopped by. If you were here in real life, I'd offer you a piece of my Irish apple cake I made with this easy recipe!
Whether you're Irish by heritage or by choice, have a safe and fun celebration!