Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Happy Mardi Gras Ya'll!

Because I'm originally from Louisiana, the beads start swinging & the masks come out in February at our house. Mardi Gras refers to the "events of the carnival" starting on the Epiphany & ending on the day before Ash Wednesday. Mardi Gras is French for "Fat Tuesday" referring to the practice of the last night of eating richer, fattier foods before the ritual of fasting for the Lenten season.
I thought that I would share some of my Mardi Gras decorations to get you in the mood to "party"!

 This centerpiece is the highlight of my kitchen on the island.  Traditional green, purple,and gold colors are featured with masks, fleur-de-lis, & beads.

 The traditional Jester figure is a classic feature in Mardi Gras decor due to the fact that Jesters entertained French Royalty.
We will keep this blog "kid friendly", so NO showing of the "you
 know whats" to get some beads thrown to you...

 Fleur-de-lis have become very popular in decorating today; however, being from Louisiana, I consider this symbol a part of my heritage and have used them in decor for many years. 

This hammered copper fleur-de-lis hangs above my stove top in the kitchen.

This is a Frankoma piece from Oklahoma that I found years ago &  it matches all of the pottery that I collect perfectly!
 This chippy concrete statue welcomes those entering our front door....

The style of the fleur-de-lis has changed over the years, but it is suppose to represent a lily. This one sits above my cabinets in the kitchen.
 In New Orleans especially, many of the wrought iron fences and gates adorn the fleur-de-lis.  This great chippy green one was found on one of my trips to Louisiana.  It sits among many architectural pieces on my mantle in the great room.
 Another piece of wrought iron from an old fence....

Let's get the party started with toasting of good cheer!!!  My wine corks even reflect this French symbol.

These canisters typically set in the center of my island in the kitchen, but were moved for a brief time.  Don't you love the rusty tops?  My mother gave these to me and they are some of my fav...

Mardi Gras flag whipping in the Alabama breeze waving at all my neighbors....
So Have a Happy Mardi Gras & if you have never been to a parade...what are you waiting for????

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Old Architecture...Pieces From Our Past

My home is filled with architectural antiques.  I am fascinated with these items that once functioned as "something" in homes & buildings, now long forgotten, torn down, or God forbid "renovated". Their stories never to be told, but to leave me wondering "where did this come from?"; "where did this piece fit into the scheme of the decor?"; what function did this have?  So today, I will share my collection & hope that it inspires you too.

 I have a "thing" for old door knobs.  Can you tell?  When I have restored or built our homes, I always have the builder use vintage door knobs.  They open the doors to the past....

Old chippy, rusty metal objects "draw me in... hook, line, sinker!"  All of these items are displayed on my mantle in my great room.                         

Don't you love these old floor grates?                           

 Old locks & porcelain casters...
Flower frogs are found all over my home & people always ask "What is it?"

             Old stain glass windows give us a "glimpse into the past"....
 Lost objects...now found & new again...

This piece reminds me of part of the columns that once graced the front porch of my Grandma's home.  It now hangs in my breakfast room.

  This beauty once was the focal point for a coal burning fireplace. Now it serves as a screen for our fireplace in the great room.

                   What did these keys open?  Treasures to the past?!?
 Pieces of trim and molding "re-purposed".  Don't you just love the original                                                       color & patina?

 I think this was a piece of an old fence possibly from Louisiana!
Chippy banisters cut to be candle sticks on my mantle in the keeping room
One of my favorite finds is an old electrical meter from Philadelphia. Look at the awesome detail! It is definitely a conversation piece that sits on my coffee table.
So just remember when your are out scouring the lands for found objects...each one tells a story of the past & you can preserve that little bit of history by finding a place for it in the present.  The Queen Has Spoken!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Housework Makes You Ugly!

All of my friends & family consider me a "neat freak."  "Annal Annie" (my middle name being Anne) is a term my hubby often used in the earlier years of our marriage.  My brother-in-law has accused me of following he & his family around with a dust buster on their visits. Although, I have mellowed over the 22+ years that we have been married, I still like things tidy & somewhat orderly.   I am really not that bad, I just have the theory "that everything has its place & should be in it."  Hey, I have 2 chihuahuas, 1 poodle mix & a 16 yr.old teenager living in our home, I have "budged"...some....

So, I couldn't resist this picture when browsing vintage clip art to use for craft night.  I love laundry room decor anyway, so I was thrilled with the way this little bottle turned out.
                                              I started with an old chemical brown bottle.  Printed images from various clip art sites & an old dictionary.  Tore them to give a ragged edge, & aged them with distress ink.  Modge podged the art on the bottle.  Then added cheese cloth & little bits & bobs with glue. Added an old starch sprinkler to "top it off.
 I had to use this comical expressions "Housework Makes You Ugly!"  I smile every time I look at this little bottle perched on my laundry room window seal. Hey, whoever said "A Woman With A Clean House Was Boring"  did not know me, The Cranky Queen!  Happy Housekeeping.