Sunday, September 16, 2018

September Garden - Beauty in the Details

It's really been a remarkable year for landscape gardening in my Zone 7a region. Although late summer starts stressing the plants with continued heat and there's less light, the details unfolding in the garden and surroundings are very much worth paying attention to. There's still so much beauty! Come into my September garden, and I'll show you the beauty in the details. Most of these shots were captured just within days of Hurricane Florence's projected rain path over our region.

My trellis is completely covered with the hyacinth bean vine I planted from seed, and I love the shade it creates - even on the sunniest of days - as I walk beneath it, to and from the garden.
Inside the garden and looking back to the gate we just entered, you see the east wall of my landscape.  The covered trellis is in the background, the knockout roses are reblooming just in front of it, and the dwarf butterfly bushes on the ground below are also in bloom. My bee balm, which I cut to the ground in July, has rebloomed (red) below and left of the large patch of orange Mexican sunflowers. Salvia is blooming between the spirea bushes in the foreground.
Just to the right of this patch of Mexican sunflowers is my book-reading Augustine, and just in front of him some asters are blooming.
Since August, butterflies have been and are still flitting about in the garden, resting on their namesake bushes, as well as the Mexican sunflowers. 
Inside the courtyard on the opposite side of the eastern garden wall, I snapped a photo of my sunflowers while standing on a chair to catch these two monarchs. In the background you can see the western wall of my garden with the weeping cedar Atlas and the zinnias beneath. 
Autumn Joy sedum is just now beginning to turn mauve, bookending the zinnias on the western wall. I cut these more than half way back in early June to avoid them getting too gangly and splitting by this time otherwise. 
From the very back of the garden (the south end), seasonal changes can be detected in the limelight hydrangea's various shades in its blooms. I've cut several for drying. Behind it in this photo is another patch of Mexican sunflowers. I love them because they last well into October, and they attract butterflies.
Standing at the back of the southern wall of my garden and looking north, the garden flag is central to a swath of hostas blooming in front of it.
Outside the southernmost wall of my garden is the maple tree we planted to disguise our utility pole on the alley. Our home's utility lines are buried, and though neighbors' lines do not run along the street front, they are connected in back for an unsightly appearance in various directions. I suspect the power company will be paying another visit soon, but this prune job didn't turn out so badly since I was able to supervise it. 😉You can see the beginnings of color change on the top right side.
Against a blue sky, I snapped the photo below, standing next to that tree, looking up at the Mexican sunflowers. The tree top centered behind the blooms in the background is our sassafras across the street, on our riverbank.
A little surprise happened one day while I was shooting a similar photo, standing in the courtyard. I noticed petals all over the brick wall (the wall is 6'). Angling my camera downward a bit, I was able to capture the evidence of [most likely] squirrels having had a Mexican sunflower buffet. You can see the beheaded stems in the picture too.
It's mid-September, and I am still harvesting lavender, yielding weekly bouquets similar to the one below.
I am also still feeding the hummers, although their activity has definitely slowed down. They're likely migrating southward, so I'll leave my feeders out another couple weeks for those on their journey. I keep the birdbath water clean and changed every couple of days. I continue watering my containers and front porch fern. Although I have yet to replace the fern with pumpkins, I did change my wreaths, hinting at the transitions coming.
The annuals in front are still blooming, although most of the red geraniums did not survive the wet summer and/or gnawing voles.
Noticeable late summer changes include garden spiders hard at work. Early morning dew is caught in one of several webs on a landscape boxwood, below.
Other noticeable details in the garden are the berries and seed pods on the plants. Pictured in the collage below (clockwise, starting top L): nandina berries, holly berries, Japanese maple seed pods, and lantana berries. The colors will keep turning to their rich, fall shades as the days go on.
The angle of the sun is changing dramatically, leaving me savoring every bit of light I can capture, whether it's an early evening sunset (below)....
.....or early morning sunrise. We are still walking early to beat the heat, and the added perk is in seeing glorious sunrises like the one pictured below.
Our state capitol building can be seen from our home, but the shot below was taken just two blocks down, at sunrise.
A neighbor's flag at sunrise, on the river's edge.
I hope you enjoyed the beauty in the details of my September garden, and are inspired to see the beauty in yours and others' too. As this post is published, we are awaiting the remnant rains from Hurricane Florence to arrive here in WV. It has already caused much devastation in North Carolina. Please pray for all those affected.

I'm joining Pam at Everyday Living for her last garden party of the season. Be sure to go there to see the beauty in all the gardens participating.
Gardens Galore
If you'd like to catch other garden posts of mine, you can start with this link, or browse my menu and/or labels (my garden). Thanks for your visit. I'm always open to your comments and questions.


Rita C. at Panoply

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Thursday, September 13, 2018

Panoply Booths Displays: Fall Transitions

Whew, the leaves may not have started falling yet, but it's been a whirlwind of activity in our Panoply booth displays lately! You may want to go back to this blog post and have a look-see for a refresher on where I left you with our last displays of summer before you continue....

Now, let's jump to where we are currently, with our Panoply fall 2018 displays.

Pictured below is our sports-themed, mantiques area.
You may recognize many of the items in this display mentioned in my last post.
The area below is directly across the aisle from the mantiques section. It's styled with many fall-themed items on and below the wallpaper hanger's table, as well as several harvest farm tools on the wall behind it.
A shutter and shelf unit divides the fall / farm area from yet another vignette, where we have just finished an apothecary-themed display.
We three Panoply sisters found out just how many elixirs and other medical paraphernalia we had in our stash when we readied and unwrapped things for this area.
Detail of items within the cubby shelves of the various units of display are pictured as a collage, below. Of particular note in the bottom, right hand corner of the collage is an original prescription for whiskey during Prohibition, dated February 23, 1928. Also notable, although faded, is another original prescription, handwritten with the date of October 31, 1892.
On the floor in front of the apothecary smalls, we styled a small desk area with typewriter stand and two antique chairs and vintage office supplies, mimicking a consultation of doctor or pharmacist with patient.
The view of our booth spaces from the stairway, below, shows the apothecary, the fall and farm section beyond (with the shutter and shelf divider between), and the sports-themed mantiques in the background.
What we call our primary booth space - our original space rented - still retains a bit of romantic, refined, and Victorian appeal. If you will notice, there is a LOT of furniture absent in this booth as compared to our summer styling. I'll come back to that shortly.
First, let me show you a couple other transitional displays we made in August in anticipation of fall. The big red truck was a piece I was fostering at home and let go. It sold within days.
We also set up a back-to-school vignette. It was dismantled, and several of the smalls became part of other vignettes.
We also set up a Grim Reaper behind our main booth, near the service elevator.
The reason for much of the furniture absent from all of our booth spaces, particularly the main booth, is we have made a conscious decision to stop pursuing furniture for resale. There are several reasons: 1) it's pricey insofar as rental space it consumes, 2) many other dealers in our mall sell furniture (competition), 3) furniture is too hard to haul for the return it renders, 4) no one wants to pay anything for 'brown' wood furniture because the majority want to paint what brown furniture they do buy (and they want it dirt cheap).

So, pictured below are ten items we sold - dirt cheap - just to purge the furniture (clockwise, starting top L): farm hutch and enamel table, reupholstered antique rocker, china hutch, matching sideboard to hutch, chest of drawers, wicker cart and folding rocker, washstand, and Baker coffee table.
Other furniture which sold without the extensive markdowns this summer include the heavy wood, claw foot and ball chair, work table & metal stool, and garden swing.
You probably now understand much more clearly my opening statement that it's been a whirlwind of activity lately with Panoply. Shopping, hauling, organizing, pricing, moving and styling are all very time-consuming activities related to selling antique and vintage items. All that furniture we sold was used for display, too, so now we are faced with resolving how we will maintain our displays going forward. We know we don't want to handle anything bigger than we are. 😉
We just celebrated our 10th anniversary of styling and selling in the South Charleston Antique Mall this summer, and don't see ourselves quitting anytime soon! Panoply booths are located on the first floor of the South Charleston Antique Mall, 617 D Street, South Charleston, WV. It's an easy on/off of WV I-64, Exit 56. We hope you'll stop if you're traveling through Charleston, WV on I-64, I-77 or I-79, all of which converge in Charleston, WV.

Thanks so much for your readership. Your comments are always welcome! And for anyone in the path of Florence, my heartfelt thoughts are with you in that you will find the energy and stamina to salvage and rebuild in its aftermath.
Rita C. at Panoply

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Monday, September 10, 2018

Vintage Finds 3Q18

Hi readers! Are you ready for another armchair shopping trip? I hope so, because today's post is show and tell of Panoply vintage picks for third quarter 2018. My finds are primarily the result of three picks this past quarter: a trip to Ohio with my Panoply sisters, J & M, and two different, local estates. Most of these items already are or willdry be styled in our booth spaces at the South Charleston Antique Mall, 617 D Street, in South Charleston, West Virginia. Let's have a look-see!
While shopping together in mid-August, my sisters and I found ourselves gravitating toward some vintage sports things, both individually and collectively. Pretty soon we found ourselves with an upcoming theme for booth styling. I'll share the booth spaces in a separate post soon, but the following are some of what I purchased.

I was pretty excited to find a vintage and not-so-common women's basketball trophy from 1948. I already had a 1926 vintage AHS (Aspinwall Hall School, Pennsylvania) County Champs girls' basketball team photo, an even rarer find.
I also had a vintage 1922 boys' basketball city champs photo (St. Joseph's of Ironton, OH). I added the vintage jump rope (purchased several years ago from an expat dealer's finds in the Vanves Paris flea), and a wooden dumbbell purchased this quarter as part of the sports paraphernalia I'll be selling.
A new old stock (NOS) pair of youth leather bowling shoes is coupled with a bowling pin from a local historic bowling alley.
An old leather football and accompanying trophy for the armchair quarterbacks.....
A set of cane rattan polo mallets will be displayed with various riding helmets and other horse tack we already have, leftover from Derby displays.
Billiard balls are always well received in our mantiques section. I purchased this set, and placed them in a vintage wire basket for styling in the booth.
Although an Anheuser-Busch crate may not seem like a sports-themed item, this one has a unique twist.
The lid flips and becomes a bottle cap checkers game. There are 24 Budweiser caps (red and blue) for game pieces.
Changing gears from the sports theme, the Bronkin' Buck vintage valance caught my eye for its pattern appeal. I thought how cute it could look in a treehouse or other child's playroom or bedroom.
Also in the children's department, I found this Die Spiegelburg rolling suitcase in excellent vintage condition. This luggage is manufactured in Germany.
A bugle horn sconce I purchased was embellished with a couple of tassels and candles. The textile on which it is perched is also a recent find. It's tartan plaid, round tablecloth, with the bugle horn motif.
A fun surprise was finding the box of place cards pictured next, especially the three with tartan plaids. For a self-professed glitterphobe, this was a notable purchase, but the love of tartan overcame the phobia!
Religious relics always catch my attention. Can you believe someone once stole a Baby Jesus of Prague from my booth space?? My latest is celluloid. The Madonna with Baby Jesus benetier, or holy water font, next to the statue is of bisque porcelain. The thief could use some holy water!
Summer and the patriotic holidays are over, but when I found this wicker picnic basket with leather belt closures, I was immediately drawn to it for its price. Not only that, but the plates are ceramic, and the flatware is labeled Luibinox France. The flag clips are weights for a tablecloth. The tablecloth was purchased from a separate dealer, but it's a wonderful plaid on a clean white, cotton texture.
Were any of you Aigner brand junkies back in the day like me? I don't remember this bucket bag, but I did lust after its smaller, iconic style little sister handbag that I finally scored second quarter 2018. My next in age, older sisters and I all had the Aigner penny loafers, but I guess Mom drew the line on getting the handbags. Note to heaven: Mom, now I have two!
My next item is unique. It's a brass and copper ship's lantern with articulated handle. I just now noticed the way I have it folded flat in the photo (L frame) should really be turned the opposite way so the wick is upright. Safety, mates!
Hardware and tools are picked up whenever there's a great price. Not only are both used for their original, intended purposes, but many people look especially for hardware when they are working with older furniture and homes. 
The walnut stool pictured below was snapped up for its regional and utilitarian appeal. Walnut is a native wood in West Virginia, and my research has led me to an historical article on the Mountaineer Craftsmen, a cooperative for homesteaders in West Virginia started in the 1930s. I love rich, old wood patina. This is a keeper for now. I use stools as display risers at home, just as we often do in our booth spaces.
The following items were picked from my brother's residence, left by the previous owner and stowed in the garage rafters where he currently lives. Farm tools include a primitive apple butter paddle, two pitch forks (Farm King and Ames) and a Seymour No. 2 wood snath with attached (and extremely sharp!) steel blade scythe. Two mid-century sleds (Yankee Clipper and Flexible Flyer) are in great vintage condition. Lastly, a wooden Coca-Cola crate.
The next item was a serendipitous find while at an estate sale. I lusted after blogger Debbee's [Buzz] wallpaper hanger's work table in this recent post and, lo and behold, this one appeared! It's super handy in the way it folds for storage. I only cleaned mine up, and we're already using in the booths for display purposes right now.
Last but certainly not least, these little table place cards just cracked me up. They're called "Conundrum Place Cards", several in each vellum packet labeled, "fold question or answer and insert in slit". In the lower frame of the collage below, you can see one standing up with the folded insert. The top L frame gives an example of one conundrum. Intended for table conversation in their day, these little things in a stray box just had to come home with me. The word conundrum is one Mr. P. and I have laughed about for years, ever since a mutual friend used it many years ago (that, and that awesome Art Deco, Erte-like graphic figural design grabbed my attention!). The estate sale hostess threw the place cards in my pile, gratis.
Sometimes I foster things for awhile before letting them go, but eventually all these things will leave my house, one way or another. Thanks for tagging along, armchair shopping, while I did show and  tell. Again, my Panoply sisters and I are located on the first floor of the South Charleston Antique Mall, 617 D Street, South Charleston, WV. It's an easy on/off of WV I-64, Exit 56.
I'll share our booth spaces in their latest styling in an upcoming post. Be sure to check back for that. My sisters and I have been very busy selling off furniture and shifting focus to selling primarily smalls. I've also participated in one yard sale, and getting ready for another community yard sale in early October, so it's safe to say Panoply shopping is closed out for 3Q18. You can always check my menu bar at the top of the page under 'Panoply Antiquing' for more of what I buy and how we style. If you're on a mobile device, scroll to the bottom of your screen page and click on 'web version'. You will then see the menu bar at the top of my blog.

As always, your readership is much appreciated, and your comments always welcome.

May anyone in the path of Florence be spared any major losses and rest with a sense of security.
Rita C. at Panoply

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