Papier Mache Vintage Christmas Angels

Good morning, friends! Today I want to share with you my vintage papier mache Christmas angel collection. I shared this type of angel years and years ago on my blog, but my collection has grown a little bit, so I’m sharing it again.

I’ve never seen or heard of anyone else who collects these. They are, of course, made of papier mache. Mine are all either marked “Made in Japan” or “Made in Korea”. (Many types of collectable Christmas decorations came from this area of the world.)

I own angels in gold dresses and some in ivory colored dresses. However, these come in many colors. I just happen to like the gold and ivory.

These aren’t particularly valuable. I think you can find a set of three for around $30-$40. But they have a great sentimental value to me. Growing up my mother had a set of 3 that were always set atop our family piano at Christmas time. Over the years all but one broke. None of the ones in my collection are from my mother’s set…they are all ones that I found on my own.

These are displayed in our foyer. They were kept up higher when our kids were small, but now that everyone is grown they are set on a table for all to see and enjoy. I hope your Christmas season is off to a wonderful start. You don’t need any vintage or fancy decorations to make it special – paper chains and coffee filter snowflakes will do just fine!

Love, Abby

Plaid Christmas, I gave you my heart

I am excited to share my first Christmas 2020 post with you today! For the first time, this year I decorated our master bedroom for Christmas. I have pulled back on Christmas decorating for the past few years, and normally I save Christmas decorating until the day after Thanksgiving. However, 2020 really felt like it could use a little MORE Christmas.

You can shop for many of the items in our bedroom by using the affiliate links by going to my Liketoknow.It page. (BelleAntiquarian) or clicking HERE.

I switched out a pillow on our bed for a down-filled, red plaid one. Other new additions to the bed are the red crabapple garland and some green velvet bows.

Above each nightstand I added the sweetest little wreaths. On the nightstand shelves I folded up some of the many plaid, wool blankets that I’ve been collecting over the years.

My favorite addition to our bedroom for Christmas is the flocked Christmas tree. I’ve never had a flocked tree, and I’ve never had a tree in our bedroom. This one was fairly inexpensive as far as artificial trees go, but I am very impressed with the quality of the branches. I added two types of plaid ribbon to the tree. The bows at the top and the plaid tree skirt were both items that I picked up on Christmas clearance last year.

The ornaments on the tree are a mixture of new, already owned, and vintage. If you follow me on Instagram, you have seen these vintage Holly brand ornaments that I picked up on one of my recent Thrifty Thursday stories. (We really have a lot of fun on Thrifty Thursdays. If you haven’t found me on Instagram, please join in the fun. I’m @ BelleAntiquarian.) I wanted to continue the red of the berry garland and plaid bed pillow over onto the tree, so you’ll notice the red ornament theme carries that over.

Below are a few more pictures of our bedroom decorated for Christmas. Have you had a Christmas tree in your bedroom? It’s quite magical and makes watching Hallmark Christmas movies even more fun. I’ve linked many of the items here on my Liketoknow.It account. Our bedding, pillows, and many of the Christmas decor items can be found there if you want to recreate this look.

2020 Round Up Thanksgiving Table Options

If you follow me on Instagram, you have seen several Tabletop Tuesday posts with place settings that I was considering for our Thanksgiving Table. In this blog post I am putting them all in one place.

The place setting above is using a vintage Fire King milk glass swirl plate with a gold rim. Layered on top of it is a Pottery Barn tidbit plate. The napkin is also vintage. The charger is from Home Goods. I only have 4 of the chargers, but would really love to have 4 more!

The plate above is probably my favorite Johnson Brothers pattern, “His Majesty.” My set is vintage, but it is still in production today and can be found easily.

This is another Johnson Brothers pattern, “Historic America, Thanksgiving Frozen Up.” This set is circa 1930 (brown multicolor) and is no longer in production.

You guessed it, another Johnson Brothers pattern, “Hearts and Flowers” which some people mistakenly refer to as “Old Ironstone Granite” because that is also stamped on the back. This is the one set of china that I have the complete service for – everything from gravy boat and butter dish to covered vegetable and coffee service. We didn’t have wedding china that I registered for, so I consider it my wedding china due to the lovely couple on the front. This was produced in the 1970s and 80s and is no longer in production.

Above is another Pottery Barn plate layered on top of vintage Churchill Blue Willow. Churchill still produces Blue Willow.

And last but not least, above is another Churchill pattern from their fox hunt series, this is “Country Life, The Meet.” This is from a reproduction set made in the 1990s and is no longer in production today.

Happy, happy Thanksgiving friends. I am thankful for YOU! Every time you read, like my blog posts, comment on them, follow me on Instagram, or pin one of my images you are helping to support small business in America! Thank you!

Wear It Wednesday – Vintage Ralph Lauren Jean Skirt

I forgot to post my Wear It Wednesday outfit last week, so here it is! In a lot of my posts I feature vintage Ralph Lauren pieces. One reason that I love Ralph Lauren is because his clothes are usually classic and timeless. They are also usually made from quality materials such as real wool, cotton, and leather. I feel like I get a lot of value for my money whether I’m buying RL new or used. However, a word of caution: If it is truly a vintage Ralph Lauren piece, you’ve got to keep in mind that the sizing will be different. Beginning in the 1990s, many companies began to do what is called “vanity sizing.” That means that they made their bigger sized clothing labeled with smaller sizes. So, for vanity reasons, you’d want to buy a certain brand because you wore a smaller size in that brand. What that means for me is that while I wear a size 4 in almost all modern made clothing, in vintage Ralph Lauren I might wear a 6 or even an 8.

In this outfit I am wearing a vintage Ralph Lauren jean midi skirt. Here I’m pearing it with boots. It would look nice with flats or even sandals in the summer. My sweater is new from Old Navy. I am really into this ‘pecan” color this year. I sized up in my sweater because I knew I was going to layer it over other shirts. And my shirt I bought new from J. Crew, but about 6+ years ago. (If you follow me on Instagram you saw me buy one very similar lately while thrift shopping. it has some different colors in it, though, and it is made by GAP.)

If you want to save this for later, click on the Pinterest button at the bottom of this post.

Have a great day!

Abby

Wear It Wednesday – Cozy Thanksgiving Outfit

I have to say that my biggest source of inspiration for outfits continues to be Pinterest. If I happen to see a photo of an outfit I like, I’ll often look to see if I already have items in my closet that are similar to what my inspiration photo uses. I am not trying to copy the outfit exactly, instead I am really trying to use it for inspiration for items that I already have in my closet.

For example, below is my inspiration photo that I found on Pinterest. I found this on Pinterest, but it originally came from another blogger’s post here.

Not only is my outfit cute, but it’s sooo comfortable. Since I have used a lot of blazers in Wear It Wednesday photos recently (more to see on my Instagram account!), I decided to use a new sweater that I picked up. This sweater is soft on another level. It’s long, has pockets, and a hood. It’s cozy on the level of “Can I just live in this, please?”

Originally the sweater sold for $99, and I paid just $15 on the TJ Maxx clearance rack. I showed these Loft pants in another outfit recently, but I really like how they fit on me. I picked them up this summer from their website for just $10! The shirt is from Target, several years ago. The purse was a Christmas gift from Ken (Amazon) last year. I picked it out to be a travel bag, but Covid killed all my 2020 travel dreams. The belt is from Goodwill. I have no idea what brand it is, but it’s 100% leather, and that’s all I cared about. (Leather lasts forever.) The shoes were another clearance rack find at TJ Maxx. They’re leather, too, and they were also $15.

Total price for this outfit: $45

  • Sweater $15 (Originally $99)
  • Pants $10 (Loft clearance)
  • Shoes $15 (TJ Maxx clearance)
  • Belt $5 (thrift store)
  • Shirt, already owned, purchased 5+years ago from Target
  • Purse, Christmas gift last year

As you can see, my outfit is not a copy of my inspiration photo. It’s more of a “hey, I have something similar that would look well together.” I hope you find some inspiration today! Have a great Wear It Wednesday!

Abby

2020 Thanksgiving Table

2020 has been a dark year in some ways, so I wanted to keep our Thanksgiving table on the lighter side with white accents and greenery. I think we can all say that although this has been a tough year, and one that we’ll never forget, it has also made us very aware of the small things we can be thankful for every day. Things that we take for granted like being able to buy whatever groceries we want or see our loved ones whenever we want.

Plate: Johnson Brothers “Historic America: Thanksgiving Frozen Up”, circa 1930. (Yes, we are actually going to eat on them!)

You may have seen me using these hyacinth placemats before, especially if you follow me on Instagram. But they are currently my favorites. I like the natural material and the neutral color. The only new things on our Thanksgiving table are the tablecloth (TJ Maxx, $12.99) and the faux eucalyptus garland (Target, Hearth & Home). Well, obviously the pumpkins are from this year (used them for Halloween on our porch) and the chrysanthemum are also fresh. But I already had everything else, even the giant pinecones, which I have used previously in Christmas decor.

This year I will be cooking our meal as I always do. Our son, Jackson, will be home from college, and it will just be the four of us together that day. We are not promised tomorrow, nor are our parents or grandparents. If you have the opportunity to gather with extended family this Thanksgiving, I hope you do not shy away from doing so.

I am still trying to think of something for our family to do together after our Thanksgiving meal. Our tradition for many years has been to go see a movie in the theater together. The theaters around us are either closed or have gone out of business. I am mourning the loss of that tradition a little bit, but I am just happy that we are all healthy and generally happy. I truly hope that next year I can look back on this post and things will have reopened and returned to normal.

In closing, I am truly thankful for each of you reading this post, saving it to Pinterest, or sharing it elsewhere online. You are helping to support my small business, and I am truly grateful for you. (More photos below.)

Abby

Black Eyed Pea Picnic Salad

A few months ago there was a guest “take over” on the Garden & Gun Instagram page. If you are aren’t familiar with Garden & Gun it is a southern cultural magazine, not actually about guns. It is the only magazine I still subscribe to and look forward to receiving in the mail. Anywho, the guest created a “Reels” and showed a copycat version of a recipe he serves in his restaraunt, Black Eyed Pea Picnic Salad. I had to watch it several times to make sure I got the ingredients all listed correctly. He doesn’t really provide amounts for the ingredients, so in the recipe below I have listed the amounts as I use them. For months I have used this recipe from a post-it note inside my spice cabinet. I am glad to finally have it down, officially on my blog, should something catastrophic happen to my post-it note!

If you follow me on Instagram (@ BelleAntiquarian) then you know a lot of times in my Meal Plan Monday posts I say that I meal prepped Black Eyed Pea Picnic Salad. This is one of my favorite things to prepare ahead of time to have for lunches and snacks. It is SUPER healthy and actually tastes better after a day or so.

The fresh ingredients that you will need for this recipe are celery, a bell pepper, and parsley. A lot of times people think of parsley as simply a garnish, so they omit it from recipes. The parsley adds a really important flavor to this dish, so be sure not to skip on it! Also, I just want to point out that there is no onion in this recipe. Did you know that a lot of times when people get food poisoning from picnic food, it is actually from the onions? Really!

You’re going to want to do a small dice on the pepper and celery. If you are using the Fullstar food chopper that is all the rage right now, use the smaller dice attachment. And if you don’t have the Fullstar, I recommend getting one. It can be easily washed in the dishwasher.

This recipe calls for canned black eyed peas. Not all canned black eyed peas are created equal. In this case, the recipe called for no-salt, canned black eyed peas, which I have never been able to find. This brand, Hanover, has the lowest sodium content that I can find. I also prefer this brand for this recipe because the liquid in the can is not thick and drains easily. (I use a different brand when not using them in a recipe.) You’re also going to need some Chow-Chow. If you aren’t from the south, Chow-Chow is a relish. Oddly enough, when all of the Covid shortages were happening, Chow-Chow was one of those items that you could not find anywhere. I can still only find it at one local grocery store, and I’m not telling where so that I can get it when I need it. HA!

Below you will find the complete recipe, which you can print or save to Pinterest for later. I usually double this when meal prepping and keep it in an airtight container. I hope you enjoy it! Please be sure to let me know in the comments if you like it as much as I do.

Black Eyed Pea Picnic Salad

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

A fresh and flavorful salad with earthy black eyed peas.

Credit: BelleAntiquarian.com

Ingredients

  • 1 bell pepper, small dice
  • 1 stalk of celery, small dice
  • 1 handful of fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 can of low sodium black eyed peas, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup of Chow-Chow
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Dice the celery and bell pepper (small)
  2. Chop the parsley (fine)
  3. Drain and rinse the black eyed peas.
  4. Combine all ingredients in a bowl.
  5. Cover tightly and refrigerate for a minimum of one hour, best if overnight.

Spiced Cranberry Limeade Cocktail

Normally on Thursdays we have Thrifty Thursday over on Instagram. I post pictures of items I find in thrift stores and ask questions like, “How much is this worth?” or “Would you buy it?” But today I had a last minute change of plans, so instead we’re having THIRSTY Thursday! Hopefully next week THRIFTY Thursday will be back in full swing. (Be sure to follow me on Instagram to join in the fun. @ BelleAntiquarian)

One of the ingredients for this cocktail is sold at Publix Grocery Stores, which I understand is regional and not nationwide. But you can easily swap it out for OceanSpray Cranberry Juice Cocktail with Lime. It won’t be exactly the same because the juice we use from Publix does have a “spiced” flavor. In addition, the Jack Daniels “Winter Jack Tennessee Cider” is seasonal. You can usually find it after Halloween. If you haven’t had the Winter Jack before, the bottle says it’s a seasonal blend of apple liqueur and Tennessee whiskey. The alcohol percentage in the Winter Jack is much lower than original Jack Daniels, and their website suggests drinking it warm. But today, this cocktail uses it cold.

Spiced Cranberry Limeade Cocktail

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

A quick holiday cocktail made with only 3 ingredients.

Credit: BelleAntiquarian.com

Ingredients

  • 1 part Spiced Cranberry Limeade (or replace with OceanSpray Cranberry Juice Cocktail with Lime.)
  • 1.5 parts Winter Jack Tennessee Cider
  • Freshly squeezed lime juice

Directions

  1. Pour the ingredients into a shaker.
  2. Shake well until blended
  3. Pour over ice into a lowball glass.

Free Housewarming Printable

My closest friends and family know that I am a horrible gift giver. It’s not that I am stingy; it’s just that I am not big on receiving gifts myself. So coming up with gifts to give others often causes me a great deal of procrastination and stress. Earlier this week i dropped off a housewarming basket to a friend that moved just a few minutes down the road. And since I struggle with gift giving ideas, my stand-by housewarming gift is inspired by the movie, It’s a Wonderful Life.

In the movie, George and Mary Bailey give the Martini family a loaf of “Bread, that their may never know hunger. Salt, that their life may always have flavor. And wine, that joy and prosperity may reign forever.” I love this for several reasons. First, the gifts in the basket are almost certain to be used and consumed. It also keeps me from having to stress about what to give when I might not know.

I do bake bread, but in this case I thought a cranberry walnut bread from our local grocery store would go with the wine I picked out. I just added a piece of ribbon on the bread for seasonal color. And, full disclosure, I know some of my friends may be looking at these pictures and thinking, “Hey, Abby gave me a Thanksgiving kitchen towel exactly like that one!” Yes, friends, I did. When our local William-Sonoma store closed I bought about 10 of them on super-duper clearance to give aways as gifts.

I want to share the printable that I made to use in my housewarming baskets. It’s free, and there’s no sign up or anything required. Just click on the link to save or print. This looks very nice printed on a piece of cardstock. I hope you find this useful and your friends and family will be blessed in their new homes.

Click the link above the photo to download the printable for free.

For more of my blog posts with free printables, go to BelleAntiquarian.com and search “printable”.

Pendleton Wool Camel Blazer – Wear it Wednesday

I’ve been trying to redecorate with our Thanksgiving decor, and with these dogs it’s like trying to get something done with two very nosey toddlers. I have to be careful where I set stuff down because they inspect everything!

I’m so glad that we’ve had more “fall” weather this year than we did last year. But in Georgia fall weather still means that we start off cool and heat up in the afternoon. That’s why I love layers so much! I bought this vintage Pendleton blazer online, and I’m always a little worried about the sleeve length when I order online. I’m 5’4″, and my arms are more on the petite length. But it fits perfectly, and I am very happy with it.

I hope you’re enjoying your fall clothes this year. Here’s what I’m wearing:

  • Pendleton blazer – vintage
  • Target white v-neck and leopard belt (current)
  • Pilcro and the letterpress jeans
  • Vionic shoes