Monday, December 3, 2018

OLD REDO: Repairing an Antique Tree Stand.

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Maybe you will remember this Antique Christmas Fence from my post: Vintage Christmas Downsizing from two years ago.

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I had dragged home a wonderful---OLD, very OLD---Christmas tree fence mounted on a slab of wood and wheels. When I used it for two years---I selectively edited to show only the undamaged pickets in my photos. Actually, it was missing many tips and a bit rickety.

Warning: This IS NOT an antique restoration, it is an OLD REDO repair. Since I'm not planning on selling this---ever---I just want it to function and not be so fragile. My desire was to achieve a look  close to the original finish from many years ago, not to duplicate it.


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I married a craftsman, and the missing pickets and busted corner piece drove him crazy.
He did the REDO of 12 pickets and a corner post on our Dremel Jigsaw. You could hand saw a few with a coping saw, but there were so many that were needed and we have the power tools here. We also have the luxury of a power nailer--which can use different 'nails', so he chose very thin pin nails---which would do the least damage to the original structure, especially the rails.

So after the rebuild, 12 new pickets and a new corner post ----my Craftsman wanted me to NEW spray paint (not a GREEN thing to do) the whole thing to match-----HORROR! He had replaced the rickety wheels---but then---many repairs had been made on this piece over the years. 
But, I couldn't spray paint the whole thing and lose all that ANTIQUE PATINA! 

YIKES!

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I had to convince him I would be able to match the original 100 years of dirt/paint treatment---somehow with NEW  'modern' paint and some careful mixing. Drawing from my color theory course and from the stash of paints I have in the basement, (I taught craft painting for over 15 years) I pulled some of my craft acrylics and also my Liquitex Perma Enamels to test all the reds I had. I also brought up raw umber, black and a charcoal gray which I didn't have to use. (I have craft paints from 20 years ago---I store them upside down---to seal damaging air out of them) A GREEN thing to do.

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Acrylic craft paint has basically a matte sheen to it, so after testing all the colors I decided to use the acrylic PERM ENAMELS. These are a water based acrylic that dry with a semi-shiny surface. They are fabulous on glass, plastic, and just about any other surface. Downside---they tend to be transparent--so you need multiple layers of paint. (I apologize if these colors are no longer available...companies change colors just like the designers do.)

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None of the three colors above was just quite right...so I used the middle 'Country Tomato' and bits of  
Red Red and Light Burgundy. I knew I would probably have to do three coats and I could tweak the color as I went along. When I got really close to paint---I realized the fencing had once been dark green. No wonder I was going to have a hard time matching the red on top. Colors over opposite colors can really affect a finished product.

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The first coat---told me I was on the right track. Nice part about enamels, you really don't need to pre-seal the wood-the first coat does it for you.

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Yes, I told you the Perm Enamels are semi-transparent---so I wasn't concerned that the coverage was weak at best.

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After three coats, from three feet away---you honestly can't tell, which were replaced.

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Closer, the five pickets on the right are the replaced ones and the corner post---you can tell..because all the old nail holes of the older pickets have a hundred years of dirt in them.
LOL, I have no bottles of dirt,
 although I have used burnt wood---to antique cracks before a final seal on REDO-ing furniture.
I resisted touching up all the other 'flaws' and scrapes....best not to---to keep it as antique as possible.

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Next was to match the soft dull silver on top of all the pickets and posts. I had two bottles of silver in craft acrylic. I chose to use the darker one on the left. I had tested these on top of the red dry mixtures on my plate.

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To not drip---I used a foam brush and just daubed it on---once. None of the old pickets were exact or pristine. I also touched up the four corner post tops lightly as these were the most scraped. Better less than too much. Even the craftsman gave his approval...Thank Goodness!

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Tuesdays at Our Home

Now, for some NEW snow, OLD animals and toys, the tree, and oodles of lights...
and it will feel like an OLD REDO fashioned Christmas.

Warning: This IS NOT an antique restoration, it is a repair. Since I'm not planning on selling this---ever---I just want it to function and not be so fragile. My desire was to achieve a look as close to the original finish from many years ago, not to duplicate it.


All the opinions and photographs in this blog are my own, unless otherwise designated. I have not been paid or reimbursed in anyway for my opinions, posts or any products shown or anywhere I shop.


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I will try and respond to every comment and answer every question.
Thank you for your cooperation,

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Sandi Magle











Thursday, November 29, 2018

Royal Copenhagen Table Setting

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Royal Copenhagen Porcelain from Denmark celebrated their 240 year Anniversary in 2018. 
We inherited Grandmother's Dinner service and tons of odds and ends and Mom's coffee service in this lovely pattern originally designed in 1779. 

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The pattern is the second pattern of RC, simply called Bleu Fleur meaning Blue Flower began production in 1779.  Every pristine porcelain piece was unique and hand-painted with cobalt under the clear glaze. Each item of dinnerware was marked with a unique dating system and signed by the artist who painted it. While no longer in production there are oodles of pieces out there if you want to pick up a 'Blue Flower' item.

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Gathered and collected from various family members from Denmark and America---we are blessed to be able to host more people than our small house can hold.


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The centerpiece was very low and designed for conversation I added a few leaves all set in my antique enameled fish poacher with dried gourds, garden pumpkin and super market squash. This arrangement left lots of room for serving pieces on the wide table.

I'm not a professional blogger, by all means I'm not a professional anything anymore. Retired and aging---I get a bit 'fermisht'--at times, not sure on that spelling. But, it means getting scrambled in the head, a perfect Yiddish expression that sounds exactly like what it means. 

Anyway---Thanksgiving came and went with much preparation and enjoyment----AND, I never got proper photos of my formally set Thanksgiving Table. 

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Except after the fact. 
Well, everyone imagine adding a bit of green and some red candles--- and you could do Christmas with my Thanksgiving Table Setting!

The tablecloth is April Cornell...vibrant and forgiving cotton. 
Our Sterling is Danish (Princessin) and a I added a few pieces of American. Denmark doesn't believe in salad forks, so my mom's salad forks were added.

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Our fabric creamy yellow napkins were still not washed from TD, and we had a few fleeting moments of sun. I substituted these cute paper ones for this photo session. 
The silver pattern has a very George Jensen-look. The pattern is discontinued, but was a perfect choice for my style, way back in 1963 when I picked it out at age 15, long before I even met my husband.

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The tall goblets were my grandparents'. The smaller goblets are Orefors (1968)---we chose for our wedding.

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I have many unusual silver serving pieces passed down from family to augment our own pattern.  Some have hallmarks of the late 1700's. The meat fork was part of a set I purchased in an antique store for a song. The carving knife and fork are sterling---it's heavy, and Danish, and very unique. The silver gravy server I purchased for my parent's 25th wedding anniversary. You can never have too much gravy at a meal.

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I love this detailed flowered spoon, a sand rose grown on the shore dunes of the North Sea, from the 60's.


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The large potato spoon (or berry spoon) was a gift from my maiden aunts in Denmark for our wedding in the Princessin pattern.

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We had a lovely Thanksgiving...a mere memory now---and dishes washed and silver freshly polished it is time to think of Christmas...I'm 'fermisht' all over again!

All the opinions and photographs in this blog are my own, unless otherwise designated. I have not been paid or reimbursed in anyway for my opinions, posts or any products shown or anywhere I shop.


Thanks ALWAYS for visiting!

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Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Midwest Gardening STORM November 2018

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For those of you who follow my Chicagoland gardening posts---
this post pretty much ends the gardening year! 
Sunday afternoon and evening through the next morning, we were blasted with 50mph winds from the NE and a wicked storm coming up from the SE...rain/ice/sleet/snow to the tune of 10"+.

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The three trees in our frontyard..take on a Whoville look, and one has been topped I dont' even know for sure where the top went.


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You can see the mosaic bowling/gazing ball with it's cap. I took these pics on Tuesday---we spent 1/2 of Monday digging out, wasn't in the mood for photos.

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Those two lumps are the fishing pond kids. 

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I slogged through 10+inches in the east yard to put the last of the tools away. I don't know how much kitchen waste will be going in the composter.

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This morning we already long icicles. Sun is as fierce as winter storms. Oh, a comment on the dish---which basically is a pain in the butt in bad weather. We will be shopping for another alternative, soon.

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More on the garage---note all the decor---frosted...LOL. Tie a few bows on and I'll be done.

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Still is something magical about icicles, unless you are bonged by them.

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I had removed all the Fall decor---but missed this lamp, bow, and the leaves on the wreath.

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Our mailbox...now a snow mound

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Already a snow piled almost 4 feet high next to the driveway.

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Sore muscles forgotten as I take photos today. Every branch is encrusted in glorious sparkles.

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The poor birds, the feeders need more seed. 
Our outside Christmas decorating may be a bit curtailed this year.
I suppose the seed catalogs are only a few weeks away, LOL!


All the opinions and photographs in this blog are my own, unless otherwise designated. I have not been paid or reimbursed in anyway for my opinions, posts or any products shown or anywhere I shop.


Thanks ALWAYS for visiting!

I will try and respond to every comment and answer every question.








Thursday, November 15, 2018

Are You Ready for Thanksgiving?

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Yesterday, Wednesday, I finished cleaning the entire China cabinet full of OLD dishes and figurines.

Most items I did in the dishwasher on gentle, but the glassware (not shown) was hand washed as were many of the figurines. Phew---that is a big job, and my legs ache from going up and down the ladder.




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The next project was the buffet, which I still need to add some lights to. This buffet is in our living room and stores all our dishes, and many serving pieces. The above cabinet has the  inherited Royal Copenhagen Danish Porcelain. I will be using this pattern for Thanksgiving. We are eating formal this year, as there will only be eight of us.

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The buffet is all American---well, nostalgia wise, anyway. I use garden natural gourds and corn to fill in around my 'Pilgrims and Turkey' that Hubby brought home for me two years ago. I do really love the colors---and it's fun to move them around from here to the table.

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The matching Pilgrims Lady stands guard for an OLD Vintage turkey plate, English(various potteries) Cottage serving ware. I do love these pieces, but a favorite is the NEWer Pumpkin Plate which is recent Better Homes and Gardens---and I purchased at a deep discount at Walmart.


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The OLD vintage glass candlesticks are from Jamestown which we visited in 1986, and we watched them being made at the glass blower. Corn and gourds. We had bright sun and this plate looks faded, but it actually has some rose tones instead of red. The little box with the cornucopia held food miniatures which have migrated to the Barbie room for their Thanksgiving!

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The huge platter is more yellow, green and blue on the brown transfer ware. This goes great with the English cottage pottery. The impressed American pottery saucer holds potpourri.

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The ANTIQUE pottery saucer is very old, probably late 1890-1910, and unmarked. I have a clay pipe from my grandfather---similar to those used by the Pilgrims. The potpourri is a cinnamon scent and the different pods, seeds and flowers look like Fall all natural elements.

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Here's a more accurate colored photo, I had to close a drape to get the light just right. There still is a beam of light bouncing from somewhere.

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One of our small garden pumpkins hides behind a cottage set of salt, pepper, and mustard. All the cottage pieces are marked England from different potteries.
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Behind them is a platter of hand-painted porcelain, probably from pre-1920. It is a true work of art, and the colors are beautiful for Fall. I love the matte gold handles, so subdued.

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These gourds have dried natural on the vine and have such interesting markings. I oiled them with vegetable oil when they were first dried to bring out the markings. I use battery candles here as the upper cabinets are very close to the buffet.


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Well this corner is finished--now, the kitchen, the table, and oh, yes, the FOOD! We did the bulk of our shopping last Monday, because you never know when there will be a snowstorm in Chicagoland, like TODAY!...
We have lots to be thankful for, and our Grand is coming for a sleep over this weekend. 

How are your holiday preparations going? 


All the opinions and photographs in this blog are my own, unless otherwise designated. I have not been paid or reimbursed in anyway for my opinions, posts or any products shown or anywhere I shop.


Thanks ALWAYS for visiting!

I will try and respond to every comment and answer every question.
Thank you for your cooperation,


Sandi Magle



Midwest Gardening November 2018

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I enjoy seeing the changes of our yard as well as the rest of our area throughout the seasons.



Yesterday we had some brilliant sunshine, so I grabbed the camera and took photos of the yard just as it is. With Fall being so delayed, we had to scramble the last two weeks, not everything was accomplished, but maybe we will have another nice day.


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I've been in a bit of a mood, so my Fall decorating was confused, lol, and less than usual. Nothing I did this year was NEW, everything was a REDO or used.

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Since flowers were frosted in late October...I just shoved a few faux bushes here and there, for some color. Blowing leaves has been twice daily event.

 

It was noon, but the shadows were so long---and the sun is already low! That yellow pot had some flowers that just gave up. Have to put it in the shed! The urn will stay and hopefully I can do some Holiday decorating in it, if the dirt isn't frozen.

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Part of our Fall gardening---is chopping up all the leaves and dumping them into the flower beds. This is a GREEN thing to do. We do not burn leaves, they are composted or blown into the flower beds making great fertilizer and insulation for perennials. 
Yesterday Hubby blew the last of the leaves into the flower beds. Mostly from our Maple trees, they are colorful and dry already. They will provide a nice blanket for the plants.

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Very low key decorating here---we had flowers until the end of October and holiday greens will go out in a week or two, after Thanksgiving.

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I swear blow up decorations were designed by seniors---it took me 10 minutes to set 'TOM' up and put a spotlight on him. Even Chicagoland wind hasn't upset him. Look at the difference in the trees from a week ago...!

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I did arrange some leaf garland in the wreath. Echoing the Maple trees we have in the yard. An ancient plaid bow is a REDO...still a nice subdued touch.

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I put up our bird feeder flag and our lone scarecrow squats in a pot with a pumpkin over a battery light, a GREEN thing to do. It glows a bit at night.

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Our mailbox planter is finally dead totally. I will pull everything out next week, when I add faux greens for the Holidays. (GREEN REDO--Christmas trees'-branches from Garage sales or thrift stores are great for exterior decorating)

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Our bird feeders are empty. They have so much to eat on the ground from the plants around our house, we will start to fill the feeders with the first snow.


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Behind the garage is the pond---frozen with leaves imbedded in it. See the bits of white, that is snow from 10 days ago...we only got a half inch, but it stuck in shady areas. I didn't get the pond drained this year, and the turtle needs to go into the shed. We had such cold and wind here, we are lucky what we got stuff done!

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On the east side----near the concrete of our foundation is this Giant Sedum...frozen, but holding its blossoms and waxy now transparent leaves. Normally, I use these for Thanksgiving arrangements, not this year as they will thaw and crumble.


They are the last bit of color---

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We cleared the side patio and blew the leaves into the beds. 
My Dragonflies are the only color and the old OLD chair.

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We didn't get the garden tilled, but we did dump dirt from some of the pots---in places that need amended soil. Thirty-three years of amending soil...since it is crappy clay! Maybe by the time we are here 50 years...it will be good.

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Impromptu photo of leaves imbedded in the iced tarp over the sandbox. 

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I managed to drain and flip the pond. Hanging on is the marjoram, the front right. I picked so much and cut back so much and it is still growing.


So many branches down from our wind! The fire pit is full of them, this one landed in a fenced area.


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We have a low roof on this ranch house---it's noon and look how long the shadows are.

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I did get all the pots sorted and emptied and stored for another year...! They didn't get washed and bleached---it was just too, cold!

HOW HAS YOUR GARDENING...? There is always NEXT year!

Update: Today Noon



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This is snow starting which we weren't supposed to get.

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No sunshine, no long shadows.

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I hadn't notice we actually had berries on our Barberry bushes....the Pond frozen in cold stillness.

I think this little guy has the right idea...a good book and a cup of coffee. Only one more post for Midwest Gardening, in December. Happy Thanksgiving

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All the opinions and photographs in this blog are my own, unless otherwise designated. I have not been paid or reimbursed in anyway for my opinions, posts or any products shown or anywhere I shop.


Thanks ALWAYS for visiting!

I will try and respond to every comment and answer every question.
Thank you for your cooperation,

I will post at the following Link Parties, I hope you visit them.

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 Sandi Magle