Basics for Entertaining Any Time, Any Day!

Just like keeping a pantry cupboard stocked with staples, there are a few things I believe you should have on hand for low-key entertaining. And by entertaining, I really do mean casual drop-ins, intimate gatherings, and just because!

  • Trays

Every cupboard needs at least one tray, and I recommend going with a classic in either silver or wood like this vintage Contempo Teak tray from Japan. Once you have this basic in place you can always add to and expand your options.

Contempo Teak Tray, Square, Black Enamel Back

 

  • Cheese Board

Whether you like cheese or not, let’s face it, cheese is a fundamental for almost every occasion. I bet your pantry is stocked with crackers, so take this one step further and add a cheese board to your cupboard essentials!

Karl Holmgaard Cheese Board & Glass Cover

This happens to be a 1950s-60s Mid-Century option made by Swedish  designer, Karl Holmberg. Yes, this would be a definite addition to your collection, but a vintage Baribocraft cheeseboard would be, too!

  • Condiment Utensils, aka Condiment Accompaniments

It’s all well and good to have great serving pieces, but don’t forget to add the finishing touch with out-of-the ordinary utensils like a few of the pieces in this wooden-handle vintage collection.

Wooden Handled Utensils (x4), Condiment Set
Included are a pair of sugar tongs, a medium-sized cocktail fork, cheese slicer and nutcrackers. Now, how much fun would setting out these pieces be?

  •  Teapot and Trimmings

Whether you drink tea or not, I bet you know others who do, and having a teapot on hand is a must.

Hornsea C&S & Tea Pot, Cobalt Blue

This vintage Hornsea trio makes a small adjustment to the standard t, s & c set, and has paired the sugar bowl with a milk pitcher instead. The pitcher is larger than a traditional creamer, which makes it a great piece to use for other purposes. I love this set!

  •  Salt, Pepper, Oil & Vinegar Dispensers

It goes without saying that at least one set of salt and pepper shakers is a predictable basic, but having a pair of oil and vinegar cruets is almost a second ‘must’.

Hornsea S&P, O&V Caddy, Cobalt Blue

Making your own vinaigrettes is such a nice way to dress a salad, and keeping the base ingredients handy ensures you will always be prepped. This 4-piece Hornsea set actually sits on a wooden tray. Pop over to the full listing to take a peek!

These are just a few of the basics, but if you would like to join me for a cup of tea, I bet we can come up with a few more!

The Basics...
What do you have in your cupboard that you wouldn’t want to live without?
Thanks for stopping by!
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Photographs and Polyvore Set by Sheila Zeller. Please credit and link if you choose to use!

Blueberry Summer Cocktail

I am really excited to share this blueberry cocktail recipe with you! My hubs loves to play with cocktail recipes, and he created this recipe from scratch – the base was a blueberry dessert wine made locally by Silverside Farm & Winery, and you know how I feel about working with local ingredients!

 

Silversides Blueberry Dessert Wine (2)

Blueberry Summer

Ingredients:

  • 4 parts Vodka
  • 2 parts Silverside Blueberry Dessert Wine
  • 1 part Triple Sec or Cointreau (Orange Liqueur)
  • 1 Orange Peel
  • 1 Orange Twist
  • 1 Small Handful Fresh Silverside Blueberries

Mix it up:

  1. Fill cocktail glass with ice, preferably a vintage glass from Audrey Would! ;-)
  2. Fill cocktail shaker 2/3 full with ice
  3. Measure in Vodka, Dessert Wine and Orange Liqueur
  4. Shake until ice-cold
  5. Strain (pour) over ice in glass
  6. Squeeze orange peel over cocktail to release essence
  7. Garnish with twist of orange and fresh blueberries

 Enjoy!

Silversides Blueberry Dessert Wine (3)

Hubs has called this cocktail, ‘Blueberry Summer’, and in a toast to Silverside, served it on a vintage silver coaster from Audrey Would!

I was the lucky sampler of this test run, and I have to tell you, it was really good – perfect for a hot, summer day! The blueberries were amazing, and they were also picked fresh from Silverside farm. If you are into fresh blueberries, definitely stop by the farm. You can buy them freshly picked when they are in season, and while you’re there you can pick up your blueberry dessert wine, too!

Thank you Silverside Farm & Winery for this cocktail inspiration!

Silversides Blueberry Dessert Wine (1)

And thank you Clemens for sharing the pilot run with me!

How about you? Do you like to make up your own cocktail recipes? Do you have a favourite recipe to share – we would love to give it a try, too!

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller. Please link and credit if you choose to use!

Vintage Lemonade With A Twist!

A few posts back I mentioned the new-to-me world of Polyvore, and shared a few of the sets I had created. Well, since then the fine art of self-discipline has taken on a whole new dimension! That’s right, I would if I could, but it’s probably not a good idea to Poly all day is it?

In the spirit of summer, vintage and cocktails I created this set sticking to my belief that vintage is about celebrating the basics. Now how much more basic can you get than good, old fashioned lemonade… in this case, with a swing and a twist?

When Life Gives You Lemons...

Crystal pitcher
audreywould.com

 

 

With vintage I think it’s important to let the pieces tell the story, and be the nuance of their time.

How about you? Do you let vintage pieces tell their story, too?

Thanks for stopping by!

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PS – The story behind this set… it placed 3rd overall in the Polyvore contest: ‘Juice it up: Summery Drink Recipe!’. You can check out the other sets that were entered here, but first, pick up some lemons and mix up a whiskey lemonade cocktail to sip while you peruse! ;-)

 

Vintage Tumbler Caddy Set: All Crinkled Up!

Summer is definitely here – is anyone else melting?

This latest treasure find was just listed in Audrey Would! I am featuring it because it’s the perfect accessory for these crazy, hot days, and also because there is a little history behind the pattern name of the glasses.

GlassTumbler & Caddy Set, Anchor Hocking (2) 600

 

These glasses were made by Anchor Hocking in the mid-1960s. The pattern of this set is called Lido Glass, but the original pattern was introduced in 1959 as Milano Glass. Production of the Milano pattern spanned 1959 to 1963, and was only produced in Avocado Green and Crystal (clear).

Zanesville Mould Company, a new subsidiary of Anchor Hocking at the time, was assigned to making new Milano moulds to replace the old ones. As it turns out, the new moulds were quite different from the originals,  which resulted in the pattern name being changed to Lido Glass.

The two patterns are very similar, however the Milano pattern is more textured and the crinkle more defined. One way to tell a Lido piece from a Milano is that the Lido pattern does not extend right to the rim. Look closely at the glass below, and you will see a plain band around the rim where the pattern has stopped.

Tumbler & Caddy Set, Anchor Hocking (3) 600

Lido Glass, like Milano, was produced in Avocado Green and Crystal, but it was also produced in Honey Gold, Spicy Brown, Aquamarine, and Laser Blue.

Crinkle glassware was popular at the time, and there were other companies producing their variation of this prevalent pattern trend as well. Morgantown Glass Company was one, but their Crinkle line has a distinctly different look. The tumblers are less uniform, and the crinkle is not as pronounced. In order to respect copyright, I could not share an image with you, but this link will take you to one. Seneca Glass Company with their Driftwood Casual line was another, see image here.

So you can see it’s not always easy to tell one crinkle glass from the next, but now you have a few more tips to at least tell Milano and Lido apart from one another!

You know what I love most about this Lido crinkle glass set? It’s easy… just grab your caddy and go!

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller. Please link and credit if you choose to use!

 

Vintage Luggage – We Have Some History in Common!

Not too long ago I fell in love with this vintage suitcase – I saw it on Facebook posted by one of my FB friends. You know how I roll – I love vintage luggage, because honestly, they just don’t make luggage like they used to!

8 Vintage Suitcase 093

In fact, I have a few vintage pieces in my collection now – I featured one lucky find here, and I wrote about another mystery piece here! The mystery still remains BTW – can you help me solve it?

This post looks dauntingly lengthy, but it’s actually a quick read…

I am now the proud owner of this vintage suitcase! I’m still a little in awe, because like all vintage pieces there ‘is’ a story, and I feel particularly connected to this one. This suitcase belonged to someone I’ve known virtually my entire life, and who has been interwoven with my family in so many ways – in part because of the small community I grew up in, and in part because of the way a small town works!

Rather than rewrite the story, here is the original script!

In 1964, I was a single mother working at the Royal Bank in Vancouver. I looked around and the highest ranked female was the head- teller. I had a child to support and the future for me at the bank looked bleak, so I decided to get a student loan and go to university. At least as a teacher I would be paid the same wages as a man. I enrolled in the Faculty of Education and there was such a teacher shortage that after just one year, I was able to get a teaching job anywhere north of Quesnel. I was 24 years old and all my friends were travelling to Europe. The most exciting place I could go and still take my daughter, was the Queen Charlotte Islands. Tom Perrin interviewed several of us in Vancouver while I was attending summer school to pick up a couple more courses…..French literature and chemistry…. and with the promise of a furnished place to live, I accepted his offer and started to make preparations for our trip. I had very little money, so I scouted out the Army & Navy, finding two second-hand trunks…. One large wood and canvas barrel top and a small flatter one , along with the old leather suitcase. These three pieces, packed with the few possessions we owned, were shipped to the school board office in Queen Charlotte City, along with my brother’s motor bike that I had borrowed because I didn’t know if there were any roads for my little beatle to drive on….. our northern adventure had begun.

I love this!

I am sharing a few more shots of the suitcase, because along with them a few more pieces will fall into place.

I love the colour of the aged and worn leather, and believe it or not, the tag is still intact from the move all those years ago!

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This is one side of the tag.

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And then there’s side two!

2 Vintage Suitcase 001

For those of you who know me, many of you will also know this person! And if you do, I bet you will know Charlisle Clothiers, too! Have you had a chance to like their FB page? ;-)

School District 50, as you read, was the cornerstone for this suitcase making the trip. SD50 also played a significant role in my life over the years – it’s where I went to school, and eventually was employed for 15 years. My Mom worked for the District for 25 years, and in the irony of life’s twists and turns, my husband worked there for 15 – but he wasn’t my hubs then!

One of the things I love about vintage luggage is the well-designed corners…

5 Vintage Suitcase 044

As you can see, they are made of thick leather that is secured with brass hardware. This suitcase will fall apart before these corners come undone!

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I think the corners of this suitcase are metaphorically symbolic of the journey its made. A gutsy move that took strength and endurance, and a decision that was ultimately key.

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You never know where a journey will take you, where it will start and where it might end. Who knew 50 years later this piece of luggage would journey into my life, and be filled with so many threads and connections?

This suitcase holds… well, I think… memories.

11 Vintage Suitcase 078

Did I mention, one of my first jobs was working at Charlisle? Or that I received the Charlisle bursary when I graduated from high school? Or that in the early years my Mom was a stay-at-home mom, and babysat the child in the story and her younger sister? The younger sister, by the way, is the same age as my brother and they went to school together for most of their school life. Or, when I was in my early 20s the child in the story made me the most decadent birthday cake and treats… and when we lost my Mom she made sure there were purple helium-filled balloons to say goodbye? Purple was Mom’s colour! That the child’s mom, L.J. Wilson captured memories for us through photographs, going way out of her way… Yes, this suitcase holds memories.

Vintage luggage – we definitely have some history in common!

1 Vintage Suitcase 011

Thank you L.J. Wilson. This vintage piece is a true treasure trove of collected memories, here to stay!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller; please link and credit if you choose to use!

Elderflower Martini Vintage Style

What’s not to love about a martini? Any variation, any way, any style!

Have you ever tried the Elderflower martini? Enjoy this modern twist on the classic cocktail – so perfect for a summertime sip!

Elderflower Martini 697

Yes, you can find these martini glasses at Audrey Would!

Periwinkle Blue Martini Glasses

They really are that colour, and they really are that pretty! Cheers!!

Thanks for stopping by!

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Images:

(1) Created on Polyvore - Floral, Not Stirred! by audreywould featuring blue home accessories

(2) Photo by Sheila Zeller – please link and credit this post if you choose to use!

Happy July 4th to my American Friends!

Today is a day of celebration for my friends south of the border, and in honour of the day I wanted to pay tribute to an American icon!

July 4th 6660

 

Cheers! Wishing you all a great day!!

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Image created in Polyvore. Please credit to this link if you choose to use!

On Set. Can You Locate Audrey?

Happy Canada Day!

If you’ve been following along with my Pinterest pins, the odd Instagram or Facebook post, maybe a Tweet here and there, then you have probably seen the design boards I’ve been creating. You might have even noticed them popping up on my sidebar…

Like this one. Inspired for July 1st!

Summer BBQ Party - July 1st 600

This board was created on Polyvore. Are you familiar with Polyvore? If not, it is a social commerce website where members upload products into a shared product index and use them to create collages called ‘Sets’. Audrey Would! recently became a member, www.audreywould.polyvore.com, so I’ve been having some fun creating sets.

Polyvore has a wide range of groups you can belong to as a member, and there is a never-ending flow of contests you can enter your sets in. I have been creating sets for these contests, but mainly because the contests inspire me. You don’t have to enter a contest to create a set, but I like the framework and direction contests provide. It’s also really interesting to see what other people come up with for the same theme.

Here are a few samples of my contest sets.

This one required the use of a spiral staircase as part of the room.  The Daily Spiral - Home Office 600

This is the home office I wish I woke up to every day!

Each contest has random requirements, and ‘Back to Black’ was all about featuring your favorite styling with chalkboard decor!

Back to Black - Chalkboard Paint 600

I thought this was a perfect DIY tie-in, and seriously, how awesome are these ideas? I love the chair!

With my sets, I always incorporate at least one piece from Audrey Would! That’s half the fun of it, and sort of the point. I really enjoy coming up with different ways to feature Audrey pieces.

This is one of my favorite sets.

Ice Cream Sunday

 

I think it’s because I really love the hand blown Aseda crystal coupes made by the Swedish art glass company, Aseda Glasbruk, circa 1960s… meant for champagne, but don’t you think they make a great sherbet bowl or Sunday dish, too?

This next set was about creating a ‘His & Hers Bathroom’, and this one was just way too much fun to resist!

His & Hers Bathroom 600

Ladies, do you appreciate? Or maybe I should be asking, Gentlemen, can you relate? ;-)

And then there was creating a set with a quote as the criteria, and I knew just who to quote!

Audrey Quote 600

 

Love her!!

So now when you see my sets pop up, will you take a second look? Will you try to pick out which pieces came from Audrey Would!?

Happy Birthday Canada 600

 

I hope so!

And I hope you are having a fantastic Canada day!

Thanks for stopping by!

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All images are sets created by Sheila Zeller for Audrey Would! Please credit and link if you choose to use.

Vintage Metal Milk Crates Go Curbside!

No, it’s not what you might think? Sadly, we aren’t getting our milk delivered to our doorstep in old glass milk bottles carted in vintage metal crates… but we can wish!

It all started with a quick little thrift, and somehow I ended up with these!

Milk Crates (2)

The shop keeper was so great – he told me he remembered these crates from when he was just a kid. His family owned a corner store, and the milk used be delivered in crates like these. The one in the foreground is apparently older, he thought from at least the early 1950s. If you notice, the top and bottom are different than the ones in the background.

Here’s another look.

Milk Crates (4)

On the left are two crates, one stacked inside the other, and do you see the round ends at the top of each corner? Now check out the top of the lone 1950s crate. No round ends at its upper corners. According to the shop keeper, the stacked crates are from the mid1960s and were purposefully redesigned to better accommodate storage.

Here’s a bird’s-eye view of both vintage crate styles.

Milk Crates (1)

Can you see the bar sitting towards the inside  top of the left crate? The 1960s crates were designed with two bars opposite each other at the top. The purpose of the round ends I mentioned earlier was to enable the bars to slide, and this was so the crates could stack one inside of the other when empty.

If you look closely below, you’ll see a slight taper to the profile of the 1960s crates compared to the 1950s design. In this image you can also see how the bars slip in and out of place, and that when they narrow up they also dip lower. This creates a ridge for the top crate to sit down into.

Milk Crates (5)

Both styles of crates were designed to stack. The problem was transporting and storing them when they were empty. You see, the 1950s crates took up the same storage space whether empty or full, and were cumbersome to move.

With the improved 1960s design, not only did the crates stack better when full, but the sliding rods allowed them to stack inside of each other when empty making carting and storing a lot easier! The shop keeper told me storage was always a problem, especially with the 1950s style, and that any overflow of empty crates simply got left outside. Hmmm, can you tell?

Here’s how I’m using my vintage milk crates now…

Milk Crates Potted Up (1)

Milk Crates Potted Up

Milk Crates Potted Up (2)

Milk Crates Potted Up (4b)

The fun part of this story…

I fell in love with the 1950s crate on the spot, and really wanted a few more. But when I looked around all I could see were crates that had been painted black. Now I love my black, but in this case I love weathered and rusty more. It just so happens my friendly shop keeper had what I was looking for… he just had to fetch them from out behind his storage shed, grass, dirt and all! ;-) Love it!!

I do love rusty ‘old’ things, and if you missed it, I wrote about ‘that’ crush here!

How about you? For the love of vintage, do you prefer your pieces to be aged and old, or DIYed to look new?

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller. Please credit and link if you choose to use! :-)

Vintage Marutomoware: Made in Japan

One reason I love vintage so much are the stories behind each piece. Did you grow up with something that was just always ‘there’ for as far back as you can remember? I did.

For as long as I can remember this little sugar bowl sat on the back of our stove. It was always empty, but it was always there.

Windmil 033

Now it sits on my windowsill, still empty but still there. It makes me smile.

About a month ago while out treasure hunting I came across its mate, and I actually hesitated for one suspended second.

Creamer 034

Why did I hesitate? Well, I think the pieces are really sweet, but not my normal style. I was over-thinking the process until I actually connected that we have a connection!

Tip: Never over-think vintage!

Now this little cream and sugar set both sit on my windowsill.

Windmill Cream &Sugar - 039

‘And’ I have found a handy use for this little creamer.

You see, we have a small pot of fresh basil that sits by the windowsill.

Basil

So I use the creamer to water it, because it’s the perfect size. Every time I use it, I smile.

I’m so happy I took a leap of faith and followed my heart on this one!

Windmill Cream &Sugar - 055

With all this nostalgia came a bit of curiosity, so I looked into the history behind these cottage ware pieces.

From what I’ve learned…

These are Marutomoware pieces made in Japan in a little community near Noritake. Early Marutomoware dates back to the 1920s and 1930s, and was marked ‘Made in Japan’. There were also similar wares, ‘Marumon Ware’ and ‘Maruhun Ware’, but along with ‘Made in Japan’ these pieces were marked with a ‘K’ inside a circle and often with Japanese characters underneath.

Did you know that until 1891, goods exported to America did not have to be stamped with their country of origin in English?

It was after this that all exports had to be identified in English, so this meant the Japanese exports were marked with ‘Made in Japan’ as common practice. With WWII that all changed for Japan, and exports during the years of 1945 to 1952, were marked with ‘Made in Occupied Japan’ as a result of the American occupation of Japan. It was only after the Occupation that Japanese exports were marked simply, ‘Japan’.

So, what I can determine (guess) with my pieces is this.

The sugar dish is either a Marumon Ware or a Maruhun Ware piece, because it has the circle stamp described above though the ‘K’ isn’t clear.

Windmill 065

I also believe this piece is from the 1920s – 1930s because of the ‘Made in Japan’ stamp. The heavy crazing of the porcelain is also a clue.

Now the fun part is the creamer. I believe this piece is a Marutomoware from the same period, 1920s – 1930s, because it is stamped only ‘Made in Japan’.

Creamer 064

Again, note the heavy crazing of the porcelain.

The mystery is, why do these pieces match so well if they are from different companies?

Windmill Cream &Sugar - 016

And that, my friends remains the mystery. I don’t have the answer to that – do you?

What vintage pieces do you cherish from your past? I would love to hear your stories, too!

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller. Please link and credit if you choose to use! :-)