Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year!

Thank you bloggers, customers and friends for all of your support these past years. I am overwhelmed by your continuous interest and enthusiasm, and truly humbled by each and every one of you that take time out of your busy lives to leave comments on this blog.

May 2010 bring you peace, health, happiness, and all good things.

Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

New Year's Eve Supper~ 1913

Oh how I wish that I could go back in time and attend this New Year's Eve supper at the Hotel Oakland. Can you imagine how grand it was in 1913? I have this elegant menu in my collection and just had to share.

The Hotel Oakland was a grand hotel that opened in the early 1900's and only survived a few decades.

"Monsier, I would like an extra helping of the Nineteen-Thirteen Fancy Ice Cream, please."

Happy New Year!

Goodbye Tavern on the Green.

Tavern on the Green will have its last seating tomorrow night. The legendary restaurant located at New York City's Central Park and West 67th Street, has been in operation since 1934 and is closing due to bankruptcy. So sad.

Many memories for so many of us. My first trip to New York in 1981 included a dinner there. I'll always remember the massive twinkling lights outside with topiary plants. Breathtaking Baccarat and Waterford chandeliers in all colors filled the ceiling of the Crystal Room. Very over-the-top!

My last visit was with Janet and Larry in 2002. We had tea and chatted. The room was kind of empty, but ethereal nonetheless. It was a great memory.

Guernsey's Auction House will be auctioning off the restaurant's interiors, which include decorative items from the 25,000-square-foot restaurant. Previews take place Wednesday, Jan. 6 through Tuesday, Jan. 12, noon to 8 p.m. each day. The public auction is Jan. 13-14 with 1 p.m. afternoon sessions and 6 p.m. evening sessions each day. The auction will take place in the Tavern's Crystal Room at 67th Street and Central Park West.

Some of the items being auctioned include:
  • Antique Tiffany stained-glass lamp shades
  • large, art nouveau mirrors, etched glass and Venetian glass
  • Baccarat crystal chandeliers
  • Japanese lanterns
  • china place settings, silverware, glassware and linens
  • canvas murals from the walls
  • outdoor topiaries
So, Goodbye Tavern on the Green. We'll miss you!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Painting the Town PINK!

I've been dreaming of pink champagne & pink cupcakes for New Year's Eve. I don't even have any party plans -- the usual -- stay home and watch movies. But, ended up on Flickr for hours, pulling up all of these pink images...bubbling pink champagne, frosted cupcakes, ladies in pink flowing dresses and gents in black tuxedos...

Last but not least are these yummy cake pops from Bakerella. Pink candy coating over chocolate cake. Yum! You can find the recipe here.

What kind of plans to you have for New Year's Eve? Are you staying in, or painting the town pink?

photo credit: cake pops, Bakerella

Monday, December 28, 2009

Your Holiday Gifts...

Therese's lovely ironstone set

Thank you bloggers and Facebook friends for sharing your vintage holiday gifts with us! I asked and you delivered. This was great fun and I was thrilled to receive your photos.

Everyone ready for a little show and tell?

The first photo (above) is from Therese at La Dolfina. She received this lovely ironstone coffee pot and sugar bowl from her Mom for Christmas. Therese believes the pattern is called "wedding band." She is thrilled with them, and I quite like them too! Very elegant indeed.

Next we have the, "IboughtthisformyselfforChristmas" gift. Love that! I think we can all relate. Ruth at The Beautiful Life had been eye-balling this antique industrial steel cart for over a year. She finally broke down and treated herself. It helped that the shop owner had marked the price down 50%!

Ruth was so elated to finally own her "dream cart," but puzzled as to where to put it. So, it sat on the porch for awhile. And then, walla! The kitchen was the perfect spot to use it as a sideboard/island. Look at all the cute things she put on it. Good job Ruth!

The kitty enjoyed the "dream cart" before its kitchen destination

Don at Civility Design was absolutely in love with this Art Nouveau 'Seau a Glace' (ice bucket) from the early 1900's. He purchased it from a dealer in France and gave it to his partner Jaymes for the holidays. What an exquisite piece!

"Breathtakingly beautiful, elegant and artistic in person, that is as much a piece of art as it is functional! Objet d'art to the highest degree!!" --Don (I couldn't agree more. I would love to have one grace my sideboard!)

Thanks again to all of you for sharing your lovely gifts. It was fun being a part of your excitement!

Photo credits: Ironstone pieces; La Dolfina, Industrial dream cart; The Beautiful Life, Art Nouveau ice buckket; Civility Design

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Holiday Wrap-Up ~ Whaddya get?

Well, the holidays are almost over. Hope you had a wonderful one, filled with joy, laughter and memories to cherish.

I'm sure many of you are still putting your goodies away, admiring them...discarding wrapping paper and boxes...taking a breather...

I was just wondering... did any of you receive any vintage gifts that you'd like to share? Well, they don't have to be vintage... AND...please email me photos of the vintage gifts you've received...I'll be blogging about them this week!!

photo from Mary Ruffle

Saturday, December 26, 2009

New Year's Giveaway at Fanciful!

What a fun way to start off the New Year! Noel at Fanciful Designs is having a giveaway with some very special treats...

The lucky winner receives this amazing decorative tea block made of real compressed black tea. I've never seen anything like it before. An ornate scene on a tea block--and it's edible. Amazing!

The winner also receives a 2010 calendar -- an exclusive poster from one of my favorite shops, 'Tail of the Yak' in Berkeley, California. So beautiful!

So take a trip over to Fanciful Designs here and leave a comment to enter this generous and fun giveaway. The winner will be announced on New Years Day.

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas.
Good luck with the giveaway and Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas.

May your day be Merry and Bright...

photo from Such Pretty Things

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Should I Quit my Day Job?

Perhaps I should stop selling antiques and sell these. Seriously, these natural hot & cold herbal packs are the best stress relievers ever! Manufactured by Nature Creation and made in the U.S.A., these packs contain amazing selling natural herbs including chamomile, cinnamon, lemongrass, peppermint, rosemary, spearmint, etc. etc.

Sitting at the computer so much, my back, neck and shoulders are constantly hurting. Well, stumbled upon these goodies in the mall. Yes, one of those kiosks in the mall, and I was sold. Heat these babies up for two minutes in the microwave, rest on your aching body, and walla! It loosens all of those muscles.

There are packs for every muscle on your body; neck, shoulders, feet. And, they smell divine!

Do yourself a favor and get one now! It will be the best holiday gift to yourself. Here is a link to their site.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Holiday Show & Tell

2004 Holiday Card - Toasting in the New Year with Frank Sinatra

This year we're not sending out holiday cards. Since my grandma died recently, I'm just not in the spirit. But, as I was going through her things recently, I found all of the cards she saved from us. So sweet. I thought I'd share some of them with you.

1994 Holiday Card - Us as kids

It's been a tradition in our home the past 15 years to do wacky holiday cards. The card above was the first of what became an annual tradition. My husband Leif and I as little ones, lighting the Chanukah menorah and holding Santa. One in Sweden and one in the USA.
2000 Holiday Card - Vito celebrates Chanukah & Christmas

The card above was when Vito was a puppy. My friend photoshopped the antlers. The inside read, "May this holiday bring you much joy and no humiliation." Poor Vito, always humiliated!

2002 Holiday Card - Cable Car ride in San Francisco to do some holiday shopping

The card above was one of my favorites. I found an old photo of San Francisco in the 1930's/40's. My friend took a photo of Leif and I dressed in 40's attire and photoshopped us into the photo. Vito too. Seriously, we dressed up for this one. Even had the old City of Paris hatboxes, which was a famous department store in downtown San Francisco, now Neiman Marcus. The card read, "For Auld Lang Syne...Happy Holidays!" Hats off to David for doing a great job on this card!

2005 Holiday card- Hanging out in the Haight

In 2005 it was time for a 1960's theme, so I found this photo of the Haight Ashbury neighborhood with people just hanging out. Once again, a talented friend had us come into his studio, photograph us, and photoshopped us in with those 60's people. Leif is the guy on the right with the afro wig. I'm in the brown tunic. Do you see little Vito? The card read, "Peace, Love & Happy Holidays..." Some people that received the card thought that we were really there. Come we dress like that?

So there you have it. A few of our quirky past holiday cards. They may not look like traditional holiday greeting cards, but it's always fun to be a little different.

Hopefully next year we'll come up with some new theme to share. Until then... Happy Holidays from our house to yours!

**Oh, and the first photo, our heads are photoshopped on Bing Crosby and Grace Kelly's bodies. I actually went to a hair salon and had my hair teased for two hours for that card. Lots of bobby pins!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

How Much is that Doggie in the Window?


The San Francisco SPCA & Macy's join together every holiday season to give homeless dogs and cats a warm and loving home. Holiday shoppers come from all over the world to see the amazing window displays that Macy's creates for these precious animals.

I used to get really sad watching hundreds of people glaring at these little animals and taking photos. Then I spoke with my neighbor who has been volunteering this year. She said that over 200 animals have already been adopted.

All cats and dogs up for adoption have been medically screened, vaccinated, micro-chipped and spayed or neutered. SPCA representatives are at Macy’s while the pets are on display to answer questions from anyone interested in pet adoption.

Here is a link to view the adoptable cats and dogs from three live webcams. Sooo cute!

Holiday shoppers can catch a glimpse of some of San Francisco's cutest animals in the Macy's windows at Stockton and O'Farrell Street through January 3, 2010.

And, if you can't make it, give the best holiday gift by donating to the SPCA here, or the local San Francisco shelter that puts the Macy's window together here.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Renegade Craft Fair Holiday Sale

This weekend San Francisco hosts the Renegade Craft Fair Holiday Sale at Fort Mason. I've never attended one before, so I thought I'd check it out! Great to support small businesses during this holiday season.

There were over 150 vendors selling everything from jewelry and clothing, to ceramics and stationery.

I love the beautiful paper products by Diva Pyari at Linea Carta. Diva grew up in the fashion industry in California, later living in the north of Italy, and all along practicing new forms of craft; painting, printing, jewelry-making, clothing design, graphic design and calligraphy.

Love these cards. Original illustration and hand-lettering, individually screenprinted by the artist.

Beautiful linen "Under the Sea" calendar...

There were a ton of folks flocked around this booth. Ex Libris Anonymous creates one-of-a-kind journals that are all made from recycled book covers.

Since I love typography, the Ork Posters line intrigued me. Their neighborhood posters have wonderful graphics.

Each poster features a map of the area, with each neighborhood listed in beautifully twisted typography.

But, of course, San Francisco...

Recession Clothing. What an apropos name. Recession Clothing started in 2007, in the midst of the economic downturn, with the belief that it’s time to go "small."

Each piece of clothing is meticulously made in small studio in West Oakland, California. I'm kind of loving their Heather Snap Neck Dress. What a great layering piece.

What's a day at a craft fair without some sweet treats? P.O.P. Candy's booth was brimming with shoppers. Their yummy handmade brittle is delivered fresh from Santa Monica, California.

But of course, I purchased 3 bags; the traditional mixed nut P.O.P. mix, Rosemary Almond, and Pecan Butter Crunch. Yummy. One bag eaten so far...(no...not just by me...)

And finally, San Francisco-based 3 Fish Studios. Husband and wife team Annie Galvin and Eric Rewitzer are gifted painters and printmakers. They carry an amazing array of original paintings, digital prints and postcards.

Their 49 Mile Drive Series caught my eye. Each of these 8×10 paintings is individually painted on canvas by Annie Galvin.

The 49 Mile Scenic Drive signs are recognized by San Franciscans, and highlight many of the city's major attractions and historic structures. I see the signs every day, but I've never done the full "tour" drive.

Well, I couldn't resist purchasing one for my office. This is the lovely Annie holding my newest addition!

If you can't make it to the craft fair, all of the vendors I've mentioned have online shops. The links are below.

Thanks for joining me at my first craft fair!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

The Key to the Palace

What have I been doing since Tuesday? Looking up at the sky for a balloon. That's right, a yellow helium balloon with a magical golden key to the Palace Hotel.

Why you may ask?

The Palace Hotel in San Francisco is celebrating its 100 year anniversary, recreating a great moment on Dec. 15, 1909, when the Palace Hotel, the symbol of old San Francisco, reopened after being rebuilt from the devastation of the 1906 fire and earthquake.

On Tuesday they released a dozen balloons, one holding a magical key. The balloons drifted over the city, off toward the bay, and headed nobody knows where...

Whoever finds the balloon and its golden key will get a special prize - a three-day stay in Room 888, the Palace's Presidential Suite, a luxurious accommodation that comes with a tragic history. President Warren G. Harding died in the Presidential Suite in August 1923.


100 years ago, the Palace sent off a golden key in a balloon and it just disappeared. Perhaps it fell in the bay or resides in a winery in the Napa Valley. We'll never know or will we? I'd be happy to find either key.

So... gotta go now... head in the sky... searching for the golden key...

photo credits: Lance Iversen, The San Francisco Chronicle

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A Delightful Morning

What a lucky day it was for me yesterday. My dearest friend Janet (FrenchBlue & Co.) and her beautiful daughters, Jeanna & Noel (Fanciful Designs), took an impromptu trip up to Northern California to visit family. We got to spend the morning together which was an unexpected treat!

First we had brunch at the Claremont Resort & Spa nestled in the Berkeley Hills. The Claremont Resort opened in 1915 as the Claremont Hotel, and is one of the most beautiful properties in Northern California.

Oh, such a stunning family... models for sure... (left to right) Janet, Jeanna, Noel

Us gals ready for our egg breakfasts...with fruit of course...

What would a short visit be without a little shopping? Of course, a trip to Addison Endpapers was on the agenda.

Addison Endpapers is located on Telegraph Avenue in Oakland. Yes, the same Addison family as in Wendy, who I blogged about a couple of weeks ago. This is one talented family. Okay, I'm divulging one of my favorite secret spots...ssshh....

The shop is filled with the most beautiful items like handcrafted paper boxes, gift wrap, notions and vintage jewelry.

Noel & Janet admiring the beautiful paper goods...

Noel's little pile is building up. So far, miniature mushrooms and fancy paper tags...

These gorgeous boxes are entirely handcrafted by the Addisons...

One of my favorite boxes...what amazing workmanship...

Love the wrapping paper...

Jars of notions await you as you walk in...

Janet & I with our silliest grins!

Thanks Solomon girls for including Auntie Lynn in your little jaunt up North! Love you guys!

If you're in the East Bay Area of Northern California, be sure and visit Addison Endpapers and perhaps a night at the lovely Claremont Hotel? They have a spa too!

Claremont Resort & Spa
41 Tunnel Road
Berkeley, CA 94705
(510) 843-3000

Addison Endpapers
6397 Telegraph Avenue
Oakland, CA 94609
(510) 601-8112