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Tag Archives: china

About 30 years ago, my oldest daughter gave me a beautiful set for Christmas that included a tiered plate, a basket, two candle holders and 4 mugs.  They were purchased at Lazarus department store in downtown Cincinnati and I have loved them and used them every Christmas.

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On Saturday, we visited a lovely thrift/consignment shop (Vintage Market & Thrift, Loveland, Ohio) and saw eight dessert plates to this set on display.  The original price was reasonable, but there was also 75% off on Christmas items, so I snatched them up.  They were still in their original boxes which were in mint condition and  still had the remnants of a Lazarus label on the side.

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I also picked up a plaque to add to my Dutch collection …
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…and a Homer Laughlin platter.

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The total cost was $14.95.  Now, that’s a bargain.

From the archives – January 4, 2011

Black Bean Soup


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My oldest daughter and I are the only ones in the family who celebrate Sweetest Day.  We give small bags of candy to my other daughter and her family, but we try to have something special for each other.  My daughter made this wonderful mosaic of pieces of a favorite Roseville vase that I had dropped and shattered along with slate-like remnants from my old childhood home which had been torn down.   The center picture is one of me with my mother, sister and if you look closely, our beagle Sissy, taken in 1945 near the back porch of the now-demolished house.

She also gave me a vintage gravy boat with a wonderful design.  Today it held some premium toffee from a local candy shop but in the future it will hold one of her sweet fresh flower arrangements.

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We went out for lunch and then stopped at a favorite antique mall where I picked up a few more small pieces for my daughter to use for flowers:

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There’s no lid for the sugar bowl, but that really doesn’t matter since I only want the pieces used for decorative purposes.

I couldn’t resist a more practical bowl for my kitchen.  I like the 1930s-40s Hot Oven bowls which measure about 4 inches in diameter and I especially like the vintage design on this one.

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Now, we’ll settle in on this rainy night to watch a show from the Lewis and Hathaway  series via Netflix.  It was a very good Sweetest Day.

Click on pictures to enlarge.


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My vacation plan this year is to spend one day a week during September to have lunch and browse an antique mall with my oldest daughter.  This week, we revisited Glendale, an area near Cincinnati that we love.  The village was begun in 1851 by 30 gentlemen who wanted to live in a rural area but still work in downtown Cincinnati.  The first house was built in 1852 and many of them from the pre-Civil War era are still standing and in beautiful condition.  We like to just ride through the streets and look at the old homes and gardens at different times of the year.

A more modern addition in an old building is the Cock and Bull Restaurant.  We had never eaten here before and in the spirit of vacation adventure, decided to give it a try.
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We sat by a window with a view of one of the early houses in the village.
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I don’t usually order fish but staying with the Cock and Bull theme, I decided to order fish and chips.  It was wonderful – two large portions of thick white fish with a great, light, crispy topping.

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My daughter ordered a fish sandwich and a glass of Guiness.

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After lunch, we drove a short distance to Fairfield, Ohio, to the Ohio Valley Antique Mall  This is a huge mall and a favorite of ours.  My daughter rented space and sold antiques here a few years ago.

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The store occupies 65,000 square feet (plus an in-store café) and every inch of it is filled with pretty booths and displays.  I liked this booth which included a lot of replacement lids along with its other treasures.

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I was drawn to this old refrigerator and thought a bit about buying the paper storage unit on the wall with a Dutch motif.  I liked it a lot but I just don’t have the wall space for it.

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I did buy a small creamer pitcher that I love.  I like these little pitchers for serving sauce for dessert or for a small arrangement of flowers.  The piece was marked Germany.

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When I got home, I realized I had a sugar bowl on the mantel from the same line, only with a water lily instead of roses.

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I’m really enjoying this vacation.

Click on pictures to enlarge.


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In the early 1980s, we had just moved to a home in the country, on the Ohio/Indiana border.  It was a complete lifestyle change for me and as I was preparing for Christmas, I decided I’d like to have china that had a holiday theme.  I told my husband that’s what I wanted for an early Christmas gift and asked him to pick it out for me since I wasn’t familiar with the stores in the area yet. 

He stopped at one of his favorite stores, a small version of a discount store called Van Leunen’s.  He came home with a box containing four place settings of International China (Japan) in the Country Christmas pattern.  It was love at first sight for me.  The next day, I stopped by the store and picked up 8 more place settings to be sure I had enough for my growing family and to insure against breakage.  I never saw the pattern again anywhere until I chanced to look it up on eBay where I found it was selling for more per plate than we had paid for four place settings.  It was just perfect for our home in the country and has been used for every meal from St. Nicholas through New Year’s Day for over 25 years. 

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Last year, I had the idea to make a kitchen wall hanging incorporating some of the design elements in the china and made this piece with a cow leading Santa’s sleigh. 

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My oldest daughter liked it and asked me to make one for her.  Since she likes sheep so much, in this version a wooly sheep is pulling the sleigh.

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To get the pattern, I took digital photos of the china, re-sized them and printed them out in black and white.  Then, I traced over the various pieces onto fusible material, ironed that onto the back of the individual fabrics and cut out the pieces.  An applique mat is really helpful in putting together the small pieces before fusing them to the background.  In each case, I used a vintage buckle as a hanger.  I enjoyed using a lot of scraps from fabric that had been purchased on our trip to Holmes County Amish country earlier this year.