Welcome to PlumsandHoney!

Come join me in learning more about vintage and antique treasures. Collectors of valuable antiques, pickers of auctions and rustic barns, as well as those with an eagle eye, will find information, guides for identifying true vintage, and some just plain fun here at PlumsandHoney. Come on in!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Come On In Out of the Storm


Currier and Ives Serving Tray

Winter Blizzard Scene

This country needs some warm sunshine! Many of us have been caught in the throes of a serious winter, with feet of snow, sub-zero temperatures, and the ensuing cabin fever. Let's let the sunshine in!


Definitely this little bird is basking in the sunshine. An original acrylic on canvas painting, it warms us up with its mustard yellow background and bright magenta flowers. 

This original oil on canvas sun face painting will help melt the white stuff and warm our bone, with its bright golden yellow hues. 

 Succulent Centerpiece

As the sun grows stronger in our hemisphere, we begin to see gorgeous colors in nature. Here, in this succulent centerpiece, the combination of blues, green, chartreuse, and magenta signal summer has arrived. 

Suddenly, we find ourselves enjoying a favorite lunch and perhaps a glass of wine in our courtyard, while flowers vine and bloom all around us. 

Not only are we humans happy in the warmth of the sunshine, but all of nature is, as well!

Stay warm, and have happy days!



Wednesday, February 18, 2015

French Shabby Chic, Anyone?

For me, no decorating style can match that with a vintage and antique French shabby chic flair. I love the elegance in the fine detail, the romance of the French, and the overall cozy, comfy feel of shabby chic. So, this week, let's decorate our Parisian apartment with lovely shabby French and French-style decor, just in time for Spring!

Let's begin by throwing open these gorgeous, sky-blue French doors. 

Sky Blue French Door

Hubley French Basket of Flowers
Let's prop them open with this sweet Hubley French Basket of Flowers cast iron door stop. Even though this piece was manufactured in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, the cast iron basket fits perfectly with our theme and adds a hint of nostalgia to our apartment decor. 

18th Century Louis XV Settee Watercolor
The apartment foyer will seem so inviting, with this sweet, 18th century Louis XV style shabby settee to welcome guests. 
Shabby Chic Slipcover
No shabby French apartment can do without comfy, cozy furniture to nestle into. This lovely slipcover, with its loose fit and deep ruffle and elegant white-on-white embroidered pillow shouts out to visitors to come sit a while.

Needlepoint Bench
A small, beautifully worked needlepoint bench can act as a side table for sitting a cup of tea or a footstool for weary feet. This one fits perfectly in our apartment, with its rose colored background and floral motif in pink, yellow, and white. The vintage gimp finished the look off with an antique touch.

Decizy Etching of "After a Day's Work"
No French apartment would be complete without lots of art lining its walls. Let's start with this wonderful antique French print etching by E. Decizy, taken from the Claude Joseph Bail painting, "After a Day's Work." Haven't we all felt like this - taking that precious moment to sit, relax, and contemplate the day? Decizy's etching of Bail's painting offers a study in realism in darkness and light and adds a fine touch to our apartment.

Needlepoint Tapestry
Complementing the soft textures in the Decizy etching, is this joyfully colorful needlepoint tapestry from the 1980s. The deep red and maroon, surrounded by multiple shades of brown lend this piece a rich and vibrant look for our place.

Finally, what shabby French apartment would be without an artistic rendering of the Moulin Rouge? This antique painting by Caroline Burnett, the American artist, who lived and worked in Paris for a number of years, depicts the renowned cabaret and high-class brothel in all its glory. Its impressionist style lends a lovely touch to our vintage, shabby art gallery.

Caroline Burnett Moulin Rouge

La Vie en Rose Teapot
Having entered our beautiful blue doors, passed though our foyer and settled into our comfy, cozy chair, our visitor will need a cup of warm tea to complete the day. This darling, mod teapot, titled after the Edith Piaf song, "La Vie en Rose," gives our decor a bit of whimsy and humor, as she spies us with her sultry and slightly sad eyes.
The French Classical Romances 1902
As our guest sips a bit of tea, a good read is definitely in order! What better than a collection of French classical romances for forgetting the worries of the day? Choices abound from Dumas, to Gautier, to Hugo and many more. What's more, this set's chartreuse covers with the fleur-de-lis and crown gracing the volumes' spines look marvelous with the color scheme.

So, we have decorated our shabby French apartment and made it a lovely, welcoming, and cozy space to live and share with friends. Thanks for coming along, and I hope you will join me next Wednesday for a brand new adventure.

Have happy days!


Wednesday, February 11, 2015

A Stitch in Time

Welcome to my weekly blog post! I write a blog post every Wednesday and always like sharing things I've come across during the week that I found unique in some way. I hope you enjoy!

1940s Quilt Top
Since I deal in vintage and antique items, I'm ever cognizant of items that women used, made or cherished in times past. The quilts they made have now become art work, many bringing large sums of money at auction. The quilt top to the right, with its bright pieces and variety of shapes gives an overall design that is reminiscent of a flower garden or meadow. In fact, most women who quilted, embroidered or did other kinds of needlework took their inspiration from the natural world that surrounded them.

1940s Needlepoint Pillow Cover
1940s Needlepoint Pillow Cover
They found design patterns everywhere they looked and were true artists, who used whatever was available to them to create useful items to bring beauty and color to their lives and those of their families. The needlepoint pillow cover to the left was worked by a woman in the 1940s, who lived in what is now referred to as Old Louisville, one of the most well preserved areas in Louisville, KY. This woman lived in a second floor apartment and rarely ventured out, but she loved watching the flowers and birds outside her windows. Here, she created a gorgeous needlepoint pillow cover with pansies and hummingbirds in still vibrant shade of yellow, blue, pink, and red. The companion piece is shown to the right, with roses, rather than pansies. You can see the lovely and delicate detail and imagine the time and love she put into these additions to her home.

1800s Lace Collar
The effort women put forth to create beauty was not limited to home decor, of course. Many, if not most, were responsible for clothing themselves and members of their families. This delicately stitched, antique lace collar is a wonderful example of design, beauty, and utility combined.  This treasure remains in excellent condition, but one could imagine when something of this quality had worn thin, the maker would salvage pieces of it to re purpose it in another creations.
Antique French Pincushion

Perhaps this sweet, antique pin cushion had once been parts of other items. The elegant handmade lace might have been made especially for this cushion, or it may have been a lace collar, glove, or other item. The silk ribbon and backing may have been salvaged pieces of a dress.  What a marvelous find this beauty is!

I hope you have enjoy this small stroll through vintage and antique needlework and will return next Wednesday for my next blog post.

Have happy days!