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!

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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!

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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!

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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‘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!

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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.

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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’.

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Again, note the heavy crazing of the porcelain.

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

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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! :-)

NOVICA: Helping Artisans Around the World!

NOVICA is a leading fair trade artisan website working with National Geographic to help talented artisans around the world promote their work. I am a fan of collaborative efforts such as this, and was honored when NOVICA contacted me to do a product review on an artisan product of choice offered on their website.

With my love for the clean lines of classic Mid-Century Modern design, AND a husband who has an affection for the suave style of the Mid-Century cocktail era, these sleek cufflinks handcrafted by artist, Sarote Lochotinunt were a perfect fit!

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Sarote’s designs are predominantly for men, and he enjoys using natural materials in his work. He is known for his wood encased silver pieces, and works with Indian elm wood from the Circar Mountains.

This set of cufflinks is made of brushed satin sterling silver which encases pieces of the Indian elm wood. Each design has its own name, and these cufflinks are called ‘Naturally Rugged’.

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One of the things that intrigued me with Sarote’s encased wood pieces is the process he’s perfected for curing the wood. Because wood expands and contracts with the changing weather, Sarote had to figure out how to fix the wood permanently in the encasing.

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This led him to study how to bake the wood dry to prevent the expansion/shrinking obstacle. Once the wood is properly dried, Sarote uses a special glue and chisel to attach the wood to its silver encasing. In mastering this technique, Sarote now not only hand crafts his own designs, but he also works with clients to craft their custom designs for them.

I can attest to the quality of this process as there are no visible gaps or hairline cracks showing between the wood and the silver encasing on either one of these cufflinks!

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Everything about the craftsmanship of these cufflinks is exquisite, with the care and attention to detail being evident right down to the beautiful box they come in.

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Sarote is from Bangkok and he studied Metal Forming Process at the Industrial Engineering faculty in university. After working for a semi-industrial jewellery company for five years Sarote left to pursue his passion for creating jewellery, starting his own workshop at home. Today he has grown his business to employ an artisan family of 12!

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Visit Novica’s site {here}to see more of Sarote’s beautiful pieces, and {here} to learn a little more about artisan Sarote Lochotinun.Artist Sarote Lochotinunt

Thank you so much NOVICA for this opportunity – it was my pleasure to provide this review! And… I should also mention, the shipping time was incredible – I received my package just one day after making my selection!

Thanks for stopping by!

Signature 100x47 b&wPS - NOVICA currently has a special on wood rings… click {here} to see what treasures await. ;-)

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

 

 

 

An Inspired Bloggers Get Together

I mentioned in my last post, my next stop was a bloggers gathering hosted by Heather from Inspire Me Heather. If you follow Heather’s blog, then you will know exactly what I mean when I say Heather is a true inspiration!

Have you met Heather? Let me introduce you.

Heather Inspired

Heather is a DIYer, a bee keeper (yes, you read that right!), a mom and wife, she has a job and writes an amazing blog that never seems to skip a beat.

When we arrived we were greeted by a lush setting that felt like we had traveled to another time and place.

Table Setting (2)

Heather’s spacious back yard is beautifully kept, and has neat features tucked here and there.

Hanging Chair

Off to one side was the bee hive I’ve been dying to see. If you want to learn more, check out Heather’s posts here and here.

Bee Hive

Heather did such a nice job with everything and made us feel completely at home…

She printed out recipes of each offering for us to keep.

Onion Dip Recipe

And adorned the table with these sweet vases of beautiful blooms picked from her own thriving Azalea bush.

I loved the perfectly sized serving ware Heather used for our delicious treats, and was especially smitten with these Pier 1 mini dessert flares filled with Caprese salad.

Caprese Salad

They reminded me of mini martini glasses, and I’m pretty sure you know where that concept leads with me… #Audrey Would! ;-)

Little mini spoons were part of the dessert flare set – so cute, and the perfect bite size option!

Napkins

I have a secret thing for beverage dispensers like this, which was filled with a refreshing fruity, ice cold mix.

Punch Fountain

I keep thinking I need to add one of these to our collection of things for summer time fun in the sun!

I loved Heather’s white crate that she turned into the refreshment stand… 

Crate for Refreshment Stand

Such a good idea, wouldn’t you agree?

For all of you who read Heather’s blog, you will appreciate when I tell you she also gave us a sneak peek inside…

Heather Inspired Bloggers Gathering (2)

It was very, very cool to see so many of Heather’s projects we’ve read about come to life! It was so much fun to recognize this one and that one, and see them with our own eyes… but I’ll leave it to you to go to Heather’s blog and figure out which ones we might have seen!

As the evening drew to a close, and we were ready to toast to new friends…

Crate of Wine Glasses

Heather had one more surprise in store. She seriously thought of everything! Through the luck of the draw, each blogger left with a nice party surprise.

Like this set of outdoor lanterns Lorrie from Fabric Paper Thread won!

Lanterns

They are truly awesome little lanterns – battery operated, and believe it or not, they are super compact as well.

I was pretty excited with my prize, and have been dying to share – I know you DIYers will appreciate…

DIY Measuring Tape

An adhesive measuring tape – what a genius idea! Have you ever used one before? I can’t wait to give this a try!!

Heather is such a gracious host, and went above and beyond to ensure we enjoyed our time.

Heather Inspired Bloggers Gathering

I am grateful I was able to be a part of this evening, and that finally, after a few years of blogging friendship, Heather and I have gotten to meet! Would you believe me if I told you we only live an hour and half apart? That’s the nature of life and the beauty of blogging!

Thank you Heather for hosting this get-together. You truly inspire me!! :-)

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

Where I’ve Been From A Bird’s Eye View!

Yes, I’m back!

I stepped out for a bit, and basically these last 3 weeks have seen me as part of a team working behind the scenes for a client in preparation for a conference at the Vancouver Convention Centre. Our team was involved with public relations and event planning – lots and lots of long hours, late nights, and time away from  home. Rather than tell you all about it, I thought I would just share a few pics with you instead.

It all started here in Victoria.

Harbour Air

Harbour Air was my mode of transportation to and from Vancouver – I haven’t been on a float plane in at least 12 years! I’ve always enjoyed float planes.

I loved flying into Coal Harbour – the weather was amazing for each of my trips, and well… what can I say about this view?

Vancouver Sky Line

Vancouver is like a second home for me. I {heart} Vancouver! The glass walled building right on the water front is the new West Building of the VCC, and what felt like my home away from home for a week!

Well, that and my hotel. I have to say, staying where we stayed was a definite treat…

Ice Bucket

Complete with a chrome and leather clad ice bucket. Why, of course I appreciate… after all, we know Audrey Would! ;-)

And how about this urban view? With a corner window overlooking the city at night, to the left is Canada Place -Canada’s Pavilion for Expo ’86, now known as the East Building of the Vancouver Convention Centre.

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At the risk of dating myself, I worked at Expo ’86 fresh out of college, so this building holds a little nostalgia for me. Do you remember the 5 sails?

I couldn’t resist sending the next pic to my hubby since I knew he would enjoy this view of the Sears Tower, too!

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After long days and short nights, all our hard work came together for a rewarding end.

Sheila at VCC

Yes, the cocktail appies were A-MA-ZING! And notice the ‘green’ rooftop behind me? All part of the architectural plan!

Leaving Vancouver and another beautiful day for flying…

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Flying over Victoria and almost home!

Victoria from the air

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My next stop…

The Bloggers get-together at Heather’s from Inspire Me Heather. Will I see you there, too?

Thanks for stopping by!

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

Vintage Haddon Hall – Star of the Show!

I offered a little teaser on Instagram not too long ago… do you remember this?

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Just a quick snapshot of a vintage Haddon Hall coffee/tea set that came my way. Did you catch the post on the Ronson tabletop cigarette box? If not, you can see the very chic and glamorous Art Deco box here! This Haddon Hall set also came from our long time family friend.

In the meantime, here is a closer look at the Haddon Hall set.

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This is the underside of the serving tray. You can see the detail of the engraving, and hints of patina showing in places. I asked for your feedback on patina – should it be left intact, or polished away? The feedback was mixed with half of you liking the patina left as is, and the other half liking a shiny, polished finish.

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Tea & Coffee Pots, Haddon Hall Silver Plate, 5-pc

I’ve been dying to list this 5-piece coffee/tea set, but decided to wait for a special day, May 4th – the date of Audrey Hepburn’s birthday. Do you know Audrey would have been 85? I just think this set is so representative of the beauty and glamour our iconic Audrey was so well known for. Always beautiful, always elegant, and never overdone…

Coffee & Tea Service, Haddon Hall Silver Plate, 5-pc

 

 

What do you think? Does this set remind you of our leading lady?

I think, star of the show!

Thanks for stopping by!

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

Ronson Silver Plated Cigarette Box… Yes, Modern Audrey Would!

It’s not what you think!

I was so excited when a long time family friend offered Audrey Would! this silver plated Art Deco cigarette box. I love featuring unique pieces like, and of course, giving you first dibs to find them in the boutique!

Ronson 1940s Cigarette Box

This tabletop cigarette box was made by Ronson in the 1940s, and was a popular item for coffee tables back in the day when smoking and glam went hand-in-hand. We know things have changed a lot since then, so it was great fun envisioning a new use for this vintage piece in today’s setting. Here is just one way I think our Modern Audrey would put this Regency piece to use.

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Ronson 1940s Cigarette Box (4d)

Ronson 1940s Cigarette Box (4c)

Ronson 1940s Cigarette Box (4b)

What do you think? Can you picture this piece on your vanity, too? How else do you think our Modern Audrey might integrate this beautiful piece?  I bet you have some great ideas of your own to share!

Thanks for stopping by!

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

Happy Earth Day… Where Are You Walking?

Today in honor of Earth Day I thought I would share a photo from our recent Seattle trip. Love these little pig brass hoof steps!

2014 - Earth Day - April 22

Let’s join the pigeon, and follow in the steps of the pig… why not walk instead of drive today in honor of Earth Day. Heck, why not walk every day that we can?

Happy Earth Day! Thanks for stopping by!!

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

Votive Holder Becomes a Vase!

I’ve had this pretty cool set of  chunky glass votive holders for quite a few years now, but have stopped using them. In fact, I even set them aside to donate with my next thrifting purge.

Chunky Glass Votive Holder

I still actually quite like them, but you know how it is. Sometimes you just move on.

And I really had moved on… until I brought home a bunch of tulips the other day. I have vases, but I was feeling restless, and wanted a change.

For some reason these votive holders came to mind, and then it all fell into place.

Chunky Glass Votive Holder turned Vase

Sometimes it pays to think outside of the box!

Tulip Collage

An unexpected bonus – the inverted dip for the votive became a great stabilizer for holding the tulips upright and in place!

Tulips in Votive Holder

I have decided to keep them after all. Whether or not they’ll see candles again is hard to say, but I know they’ll see tulips again soon… I have three of these chunky vessels and I think a trio for Easter might be kind of nice!

How about you? Have you given something a new purpose lately? If so, what did you do?

Thanks for stopping by!

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