“The Cottage Series”…….. by Trenda

cot·tage /ˈkädij/ noun

  1. a small simple house, typically one near a lake or beach.
    • a dwelling forming part of a farm establishment, used by a worker.  “farm cottages”
synonyms: cabin, lodge, bungalow, country house, shack, chantey

Cottage decorating is an unpretentious approach of displaying collected treasures and keepsakes that have been accumulated over the years, or that have been passed down through the generations.  Each objet d’art in our home is reminiscent of our family’s lives together and reflects cherished memories.  Tucked away in kitchen cupboards, displayed on bookshelves, or in free standing vignettes, I love and display these memories in what I call … “the Cottage style.”  Periodically, I am going to be writing posts about “the Cottage Style” with pictures of cottage decor … simple cottage recipes … how to fill cottage shelves, cache’s, and cupboards with collections and keepsakes … that I am calling “The Cottage Series.”  Let me know how you enjoy this new series!

Rustic Welcome

To display my collection of dishes and other keepsakes, Richard removed some of the doors from our kitchen cabinets.  I have a passion for cubby’s and shelves and just hearing the word “cupboard” my mind conjures up delightful visions of stacked plates, old creamers in the shape of cows or thatched roofed cottages, and folded piles of embroidered tablecloths, cup towels, and napkins edged in carefully stitched crochet!  I painted the interior of these cabinets a deep mulberry color and instantly loved the charm it added and how it made the cabinets look like a built-in hutch.

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I topped my shelves with a grape swag that reminds me of the picturesque vineyards we saw on the hills of Germany, France, Italy, and Spain (a surreal “thrill” from our years of living in Germany!) Among the thatch roof cottage dishes and under the grape clusters seemed the perfect setting for Beau and Belle with their bare feet, wide brimmed hats and a basket of  “just picked grapes” in Belle’s hands.

2Mon Cherie

The whole cupboard is filled with crystal stemware and different sets of dishes and cookware “at-the-ready” to be used or placed on the table.  Villeroy and Boch dishes are  are a special keepsake and gift from Richard when we visited the little town of Bacharach, Germany located on the Rhine River.  The dishes and cookware shown here are in the “Naif” collection and are designed by Gerard Leplau from Corsica, France.  His paintings feature charming family and village scenes and occasionally biblical motifs, like “Noah’s Ark” pictured on the top shelf.

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 Intermingled among the dishes and adding some whimsy to the cupboard are sweet little gifts given or made for me by our children.  A cherished collection of Boyd’s Bears collectibles, “Words of Wisdom for Mothers” complete with a tiny easel for display, a beloved birdhouse painted by dear little hands, and a miniature tea service.

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A mixed collection of antique thatch-house sugar bowls and creamers look right at home with my village scene dishes.  This cottage creamer is filled with a treasured collection of silver baby spoons, some still bearing sweet indentations of little teeth … and this exciting find at an antique store, one little fork embossed with the word Baby.

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On the bottom shelf are stacks of Kaiser Romantica (I even love the name!) porcelain china in the Marseilles pattern. Pink and blue flowers rim delicate scalloped plates and are sprinkled with tiny pink rosebuds.  Richard and I hand selected each piece of this china from the German Kaiser Porcelain factory, near the Czech border.  I was 9 months pregnant, with our daughter and we didn’t realize so much effort was going to be required, picking out our china. The porcelain pieces were displayed in stacks on shelves of planked wood which were propped up on cinder blocks.  We both began the treasure hunt, but after much bending and the stooping required to find the perfect pieces, I had to finally sit down.  I “passed the baton” on to Richard who finished the selection with precision and zeal!  He finished choosing all of our dishes, a service for 12 complete with all the serving pieces, a coffee and tea service with warming cache’s, a soup tureen with 12 darling soup bowls, a pedestal cake plate, a covered vegetable bowl, platters, serving trays, porcelain napkin rings, and decorative roses to place upon the table.  Every time I set the table with these dishes, I remember his endearing effort and patience while performing the task. ❤

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 An elegant coffee server with a clock is standing in  “good company” with some cabbage-leafed teapots, just the right size for tea parties.  Also, tucked under the cloche is a cherished souvenir glass in a brass stand with an emblem saying “San Francisco Cable Car.”  My father gave this keepsake to me when he came back from a business trip to California, many years ago. ❤

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Displayed in a vignette under the glow of lamplight and basking beneath the golden gleam from the picture frame is a recent “find” at a flea market that was unbelievably priced at only $1.50!!! … a set of silver antique bread and butter knives from England!  I “fell in love” with the little clasped case they came in before I even saw the price!

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From Richard’s and my research, the silver markings on these knives and their deep blue Bakelite handles helped us conclude that they were made around the 1930’s.  However, the age and silk lining of the case and silk “hinges” indicate, they may be even older.

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Hope you enjoyed seeing how I display some of my collections.  Have fun looking over your collections and thinking where you can “showcase” them to enjoy every day in the “Cottage Style” – and yes, I do have folded piles of embroidered tablecloths, cup towels, and napkins edged in carefully stitched crochet … perhaps they’ll be featured in the next “Cottage Series!” (:

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From my cottage to yours  ~  Trenda

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Thank you for spending some time reading my blog today!  To have all my posts delivered directly to your email address, just click on FOLLOW in the post above … or click on my site: Trenda @cottagegreenonthelake.com

This week I’ll be joining Kelly from The Essence of Home

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For all my faithful “Followers” … Though you got the last 2 posts mailed to your e-mail address, they somehow did not get posted on my Cottage Green on the Lake site.  After hours working with Word Press figuring out “what happened???” … I have to re-post those blogs you already received, in order to get them recorded on my site.

The first one is titled Spring Comes Early to Cedar Creek Lake received in your mail on March 1st and the second is titled St. Patrick’s Day and “Wearing of the Green” Lakeside Lunch received in your mail on March 17th.

I apologize that you will be getting them again, when I re-post them!  However, I am also posting a current blog that is titled Spring Cleaning at the Lake … Outside and In! with today’s date, March 30th, 2017. (:

Thank you always for all your encouragement and support!

From my cottage to yours  ~  Trenda

 

 

Cottage Green on the Lake … “Feathering the Nest” by Trenda

Living on the lake, the scenery just beyond our window panes is always the focal point. The beautiful views outside make decorating “within” a challenge.  So, rather than compete with God’s artistry outside … I try to enhance those views by bringing the outside … in!


Thinking about the “feathering of our nest” … I took pictures of all things “birdie” throughout our home.  I wanted you to see how easy it is to incorporate items that are typically associated outside of the home … in our decor.

1) Using garden statuary  …
A cement cherub, playing a fife, looks “at home” and as angelic atop our hall tree, as he does in the garden. 


A bird, made of cement, looks quite content sitting at the base of a crystal vase, among a selection of nesting materials.


2) Using miniature birdbaths and filling them with birdseed, instead of water … 

A rustic bird stands near a crystal ice bucket and a tin bucket covered in moss … nearby, an unusual birdfeeder!


A little silver bird is perched on the edge of his nest, that’s filled with millet.  Above him is a darling cake-plate, adorned with 4 sweet birds and a collection of salt cellars. 


3) Perching teeny birds in unexpected places …
A bird dangles from a pine-flowered swag.  Clutched tightly, he holds a tiny offering of pinecones.


Sitting high above a music armoire is a little bird, just outside his antique cage … and a collection of all things “birdie.”
 4) Tucking bird nests in floral arrangements or peeking out of almost-hidden niches …

A moss-covered nest with a sprinkling of flower buds looks “sweet” in an ornate sugar bowl.


Tucked among some greenery in a silver bucket, a nest adds visual interest to a stack of plates and moss-colored napkins.

What do you enjoy collecting?  Whatever your passion is, use those items to decorate and “cozy up” your home.
I hope you have enjoyed seeing our “feathered nest” and the unexpected ways you can bring “the outside” into your home!

Home is … the perfect nest!


From my cottage to your’s! ~ Trenda