The afternoon sun comes through my living room windows and I’ve always wanted to have tea on the little drop leaf table that sits in the window.I started with the snowflake lace tablecloth that I got for Christmas. I was inspired by Diane’s beautiful tablescape at An Extraordinary Day.
When my neighbor’s household goods were sold after her death, I snatched up her collection of silver teapots. Some, like this one, didn’t have a lid and were black with tarnish, but I know that there are a million ways to use silver teapots. In this tablescape, it holds pink carnations (fake, but for a real dinner I would use real flowers). I was wearing a red sweatshirt when I took these photos, and had to dump a lot of them because you could see me reflected in the newly polished silver. 🙂
Our wedding “china” was a collection of mismatched depression glass that our relatives bought us. It was a such a thoughtful gift for people who already had years of adult living but were starting anew together.
I picked up a pink damask tablecloth and twelve napkins at an antique shop and my mother-in-law gave us the collection of twelve silver napkin rings, each of them different. Looking at these photos, I think a white napkin works better –what do you think?
I collect all kinds of silver and I always grab the black silver trays at garage sales. This one probably cost a dollar. All I have to do is clean it up with some tarnish remover and polish it with a high quality polish and it looks like it’s a family heirloom. I use silver on the patio, as a vanity tray, for serving drinks, and always on my buffet tables and for meal service pieces. The silver’s patina gets more beautiful the more you use it, and it’s not much more difficult than washing a dish to keep it polished. Nan at Silver Magpies is my go-to source for all things silver.
Although I actually have a matching silver tea service, I thought that for this informal setting I would use a mix of colors and ceramics along with the silver. The Sadler teapot from England is the perfect coloring for matching with the depression glass cream and sugar. The mint meltaways found a home in a hand-painted German dish, and I put a crocheted doily on the platter to protect it from drips and scratches. The M&O pink votive was gift from a friend and its chunky texture complements the dainty glassware nicely.
Over the years, I have been lucky enough to have built a large collection of dishes, but a lot of what I have was purchased at reduced prices at garage sales, church sales, and consignment shops. Once you decide the direction you want your collection to go, not only will you see beautiful additions everywhere, but people will give you gifts to go with what you already have.
The point is to use it; don’t let it sit in a cupboard or even worse, sit unused in those storage containers. Once your stuff is packed up, it will seem like too much trouble to drag it out. Keep your silver flatware in a convenient drawer in your kitchen and your grandma’s china in your cupboard. You and your family and friends deserve beauty in your lives; every day is a special day!
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