Tuesday, April 29, 2014

WHAT IS...............Ironstone?

First off, I want to say thank you to all the people who sent out comments, emails and insta-love about our dining room and my off hand comments about knowing your own style yesterday. I felt the love for my somewhat strange title of vintage eclectic global farmhouse style. I think in our world of blogging it is easy to find yourself getting lost or not feeling as "up with it" because the white style bloggers seem to have all the followers or are asked to participate in all the tours. We must remember that while those things are nice, we have to love where we live and it is where our families are created. No one wants to spend a fortune creating a space that isn't even one they want to live in just to impress others.

Now,I know that title to many of us blogger seems silly as most bloggers know exactly what ironstone is and how sought after each piece is.

As I am gearing up for my next show on May 31, I thought I would do a little series named 

What Is.......

on some of the items that local non-blogging people may not know about and share here and on facebook with the new followers I have gained since the last show in October.

 There were a definite few items I noticed people giving confused glances about during the show that seem like such treasures here in blogland so it is time to do a little eduma-cation Oliver and Rust style.

First up is


Ironstone china is defined on Meriam-Webster as:

a hard heavy durable white pottery developed in England early in the 19th century with first known use in 1825

Ironstone is made in everything from plates, cups, pitchers, tureens, pedestals, and chamber pots.

Ironstone is seen in transferware patterns (decorative printing transfered onto ironstone usually in scenic patterns of blue, green, brown or red) and the most sought after whites in blog land adding instant farmhouse chic to your place settings and decor

Most ironstone is made in England with some pieces being made in China/Japan.
Ironstone is usually marked on the bottom by a maker. This piece above is an ironstone toothbrush holder. Amazing display piece.

Vintage white ironstone cream and sugar set 

I bought my first piece of ironstone right after starting my blog and immediately a new collection was born. I found a chamber pot and plopped in an orchid and have had plants in my chamber pots ever since. I love the hunt to find new pieces especially as we do not live in an ironstone rich area like some people, ahem.... Miss Mustard Seed.  i swear i see green when she shows the table loads she comes home with in 1 day. it takes me a year to collect that amount to sell.
I myself am not fussy when it comes to chips and cracks as I am not seeking perfection with my ironstone just the look and love of the different whites.

Faded charm.........TIMEWASHED, ceramic display, open shelving, 

Most pieces are pure white ranging to a cream-brown tone. The deeper the tone usually reflects some sort of micro- large fracture in the glaze of the ironstone and after years of washing/handling the white stone turns colour. The piece may also develop little lines in the glaze called crazing. Most collectors find these deficiencies just as beautiful as a perfect white piece as they are using them for display or adding to some serious collections as seen in the above and below photographs.

Hvítur LAKKRÍS How does she find all these beautiful things??? 


Great places to start looking for pieces of ironstone are garage sales with the warm weather coming. Ebay, and Etsy especially yield some fantastic finds in a range of prices. Certain styles and pieces (ie. sugar bowls and tureens) command higher prices because of their rarity  but a little hunting around and patience will help you get a good start.

If all else fails and you are heading out to our show, there will be a ton of great pieces from perfect condition to display at Oliver and Rust show on May 31

Hope you enjoyed the first in What is....?

Have a great day,

Monday, April 28, 2014

Spring Dining Room

Good morning blog friends!

Well now that Easter is over and we are still having winter like temperatures here in Southern Ontario (I seriously don't ever remember bitching so much about the weather ever and as a dental hygienist seeing 10-14 people a day it gets a lot of lip), I have brought our dining room into spring mode sans rabbits.

I love taking photos in this room, as I really enjoy all of the angles and we also spend a lot of time in this room eating, talking, drinking sometimes singing and the like.

I notice that it is easy to be swayed by all of the styles we see out there in magazine land, Pinterest and the like. I am finding that I am drawn to certain styles and even when I try something different, I tire of it easily. My vintage eclectic farmhouse global style does not mesh with the sometimes rachel ashwell shabby chic pretty I occasionally try to add on our main floor. It ends up looking too precious against our homes background. Something to be said for knowing your own design mind and finding your OWN design voice I suppose.

 Here's what our room looks like right now for the time being. I am enjoying the neutrals a lot more lately and letting certain statement pieces take pride of place ( ie in this room the buffet and ironstone collection)

To the photos......

the fabric for the runner i had shipped from europe and the rest of it will be making pillows for our outdoor room. it makes a relaxed runner that doesn't get in the way of eating for right now and makes cleanup quicker. i also scooped up a lovely white begonia in a walk through a local nursery sighing at the plants that can't come home with me yet.

the seagrass baskets on the doors are from #target and give the room a bit more of a relaxed spring/summer vibe.

it has been said many a time. collections make more of an impact when put together. none of these ironstone pitchers are new to us but they were scattered throughout our home. i revamped the buffet top and grouped them all together and love the impact.


views from the other end of the room into the kitchen


 and this seasons fabric offerings from left to right: charcoal grey and white cotton ticking, antique hemp sheet, sanderson angel ferns in charcoal colourway

Thanks for joining me today
Make it a great one,

Monday, April 21, 2014

Easter Tablescape

Good morning friends!

What a lovely weekend it was. Sunshine and gradually increasing warmth made for a fantastic weekend of getting caught up on house chores and visiting with family.

Easter is usually my turn to cook so I managed to set the table up after removing all the paraphernalia from the bathroom and take a few photos.

I got some of the bunnies out of their boxes and gave them their shot in the spotlight.


i am so happy that brass is back on trend, not making me the wacky gold girl anymore. i found a set of brass plated utensils a few weeks ago for 5 bucks and they looked great on the table. i am also thoroughly enjoying using the new green ball jars for drinks.

my mom found these green and white antique napkins for me last year and i was excited to put them to use last night

Happy belated Easter everyone and enjoy your day!


Thursday, April 17, 2014

Graphite chair before and after

Good Thursday morning everyone!

The sun is shiny, the birds are chirping and the cold weather is being banished.

A little before and after furniture transformation for you today. As I prepare for our show on May 31 (are you coming? did you sign in to the event page on Facebook?)
there will be more furniture transformations and or just general sharing of some of the great pieces we find that you might just be able to bring home with you.

Today is a simple chair and side table.

this is a fantastic solid oak chair that had a dated shiny finish wreaking havoc with its image. my original intent for this chair was to strip and leave lovely wood with hemp oil but, the amount of curves in the "6" legs would have taken forever and many toothbrushes to get all the poly out. i choose classic black and used #anniesloan chalk paint in graphite with a lot of dark wax. i like my furniture to be long lasting and i have found that the area i live in does not appreciate colour so much.  many of my coming makeovers will be black, white and grey as i never intended to be an orphanage for furniture with funky colours. this also suits me fine as the natural tones are what i love anyways and i think that love is reflected in those pieces.

the little marble side table saw the same finish and they actually look quite lovely together. a perfect pair for a living room or bathroom corner with space.

i styled up this chair with my favourite grey and white ticking pillows i was raving about in my bedroom. these are also in the shop and will be at the sale if you fancy.

the direction of the light gives the seat an aged look that works with the piece. i did some wear distressing where it would be found with age on this chair around the arms and seat front.

as with the last show, i will try to use items in my shoots that will be present at the sale. concrete birds with spring decor, milk glass vases galore, terracotta pots.

here is her before shot. such a beautiful chair just needed some updating to be relevant to today.

Well have a fantastic day everyone,

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

A touch of spring in the bedrooms

I haven't done too too much decorating for spring this year on account of the bathroom and the bunnies are looking at me through their plastic boxes because I haven't let them come out to play this year yet. I have taken away all the dark fur blankets and pillows in our bedrooms upstairs and done a little *refresh* to make the rooms feel lighter for the coming months. A little tour of the details for you today.

on the chair: blanket is apart of Threshold collection from #target, pillow fabric is Sanderson Angel Fern charcoal colour way. (i have more of this and it will be at the show and on etsy soonish)

 the paisley blocked duvet cover from #westelm is out again and i still love it all these years later. i wish they would introduce a blocked line like this again.

the striped pillowcases are new from #westelm in charcoal and white. the large lumbar got changed out to my favourite grey and white ticking(also available in store) and the small lumbar got the antique linen sheet treatment

i retired my winter leather purse and let stella wear it for the summer time. she looks quite fashionable i think.

the pillow on this chair is made out of antique indigo fabric from thailand. i am not generally a blue person but this antique indigo has been coming onto my radar and i am smitten. i am making some for outside on our patio and of course i will make some to share. 

i swapped out the lampshades on these lamps again to a lighter linen shade i found at #homesense. the dark charcoal was too heavy for this time of year. call me the lampshade hoarder. the collection of green vases is vintage and comes from my childhood neighbour that sold them to me last summer. she used to give my brother and i ice cream all the time and had the biggest dog. i like that they remind me of her.

Thanks for stopping by today

Have a good one,

Monday, April 14, 2014

Woot Woot, the tile is in!

So the tile is in and the grout is in its second day of drying. The tile process made our tiler want to pull his hair out, as our renovated old home has the wonkiest walls and makes getting a straight line not simple.

I am super loving my choices of the floor and tub deck tile.When the grout went in it was almost black and I was having a super stroke that I made a huge mistake with the Delorean Gray from #homedepot. The 1x1 mosaic on the tub deck uses a lot of grout so it takes a few days to dry completely and the colour it is now is still not even the tone it will end up.
There is also the added bonus that grouting up against bead board in a small space means there is grout drying in the wood grooves that we can't get out until it is dry.

and the toilet is back in the bathroom! we have some small projects we will be finishing in here but now we are at a stand still waiting for the faucets so we can finish everything else.
major bummer alert. i knew the lead time was 4-5 weeks for the taps and since we just hit the 4 1/2 week mark i called the company to see if there was a ship date yet and low and behold the entire company is closed for passover. UNTIL APRIL 23!!!!! information that might have been useful prior to me placing the order, as that puts them at 7 weeks. i even double checked with them about the lead time prior to ordering. don't they know how important a schedule is to us bloggers? their message said they are monitoring email so i am hoping to get some kind of a response back this week.

Have a great Monday all.

I have a little spring tour tomorrow for you and a great furniture makeover later this week.

See you then.