Thursday, November 23, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your families.  May your travels be safe, may your families all get along and may your turkey and stuffing be divine!  Gobble Gobble.  And may you find some sanity and free time to stitch!

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Thanksgiving Over Easy

After several years of killing myself, spending too much time at work and then being totally exhausted by the weekend after cooking for hours on end, I "retired" last year from cooking Thanksgiving dinner for 10-12 people every year.  Last year we were invited out.  This year, we are going out again, to venue about an hour away, with music before dinner.

Thursday morning, I am planning "Thanksgiving Over Easy" - it's easy and it's over, quickly.
While I watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade, I'm cooking my favorite soup, Sweet Potato With Rum Cream from The Inn at Little Washington, making a few appetizers, sipping a great bottle of White Burgundy, and I may even go for a ride before I leave.  I'm setting my table with my equestrian china.....

Have a great holiday!

Linen Lament

I am peeved at the quality of linens today.  Have you tried buying a nice set of sheets lately?  It is almost impossible.  The Fieldcrest sheets that I purchased at Target last year (not cheap either - the most expensive sheets they sold at the time) feel like paper.  I use them because it's all I can find without spending $300-400 on a set of sheets.  Have our standards dipped to rock bottom in this category?  It seems so.

Towels are a bit easier.  You can buy towels that look nice but may not hold up but at least they are good for the eyes.

At the reasonable end of the spectrum, these hand towels from an Etsy shop are very affordable.



I am partial to these monogrammed Matouk towels. While expensive, these should last a long time. Not all towels are created equal and you tend to get what you paid for in terms of quality and thickness.  I really dislike velour towels. They may look nice but they don't do their job which is to dry you off after a bath.

These sheets from Matouk are on my watch list, meaning I am hoping they will go on sale.  At the end of the day, you get your money's worth if you figure out how much you use these.

(Pine Cone Hill)

I've also had my eye on these sheets by Serena & Lily (now 20% off) but am unsure, again, of the quality.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

J Crew - New Arrival Picks

J Crew rolled out some new holiday items and there are some cute clothes for a change. Many are on back-order unfortunately but it's the first positive sign from this brand all season.  Hoping they will stick to their roots and not follow the shallow style of "fast fashion" that seems to be the new normal.  This is a good step in the right direction.

I am in love with the bomber jacket and this one is fully lined. Black and white, will go with most everything.

This fair isle sweater so reminds me of my youth when we wore Deans Sweaters from Scotland. 

I love these pants for the holidays!

These black watch loafers are also festive:

This sweater is interesting and may be a big hit or a big miss, not sure, but it's worth considering.

Another fair isle sweater!

I love the deer print!

And these are great pants for the season!

And this silk scarf is so cute!

And lastly, these socks - a great stocking stuffer!

It's great to see some "old" J Crew styles again!

Support Small Business Saturday on Etsy

As small, individually-owned retail stores in towns across America become a relic of the past we can support small business by shopping this Saturday locally for "Small Business Saturday." These businesses are the backbone of many small towns, and as store fronts shutter weekly, the resturants soon follow, and eventually there's nothing left but law offices, real estate companies, and insurance brokers.  But if can't venture out to your local market you can shop Etsy, which is a "go-to" place for my Christmas shopping every year.  It seems to get better with age.  Here are a few gift ideas in case you need a few more...

I love these floral monogram note pads, which are perfect for the person who has everything.

I also love this monogrammed tub mat.  

Or these monogrammed napkins:

This cute candle is perfect for the book lover, without giving a book!

This is a great Christmas gift for a teacher:

And I have had my eye on this monogrammed Sherpa Top for a while.  So cute!

Cute tassel necklace:

Another tassel necklace, in case you know someone who does not have one!

I love these hand-painted wine glasses:

Or this fox hunt pillow....

Support local business!

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Horse Country Chic Wedding Registry - Part 2

A few weeks ago, I put together a mock "wedding registry" for "casual" entertaining at the suggestion of a reader.  Today, I am back with Part Two, the "formal entertaining" registry, which is so much harder to select. There are so many fabulous patterns out there and I love them all.  But I tried to think about selecting items that will stand the test of time, that will go with various decors (if I move) or will be able to be used during all the seasons and holidays. So here it goes.

I love green, and while I toyed with blue china, I keep coming back to green. I would pick a "base" dinner plate or even a charger like this Herend pattern in green.  This is Princess Victoria Green.  I love Herend china and have a set of Rothchild Birds which I adore.  But if I had to do it all over again, I'd pick dinner plates and cups and saucers in a pattern like this.

I'd then select 2-3 patterns to use as accent plates.  By choosing accent plates, you'll essentially have several sets of china that you can use by just changing the plates, the linens, etc. 

This is a good accent pattern Royal Crown Derby pattern, Gold Aves. You could use this with white dinner plates at Christmas and add green and red accents to make a Christmas china.  This pattern is timeless too, it will never go out of style.

I might also use Herend Blue Garland as an accent plate:

Or Tobacco Leaf:

Or this pattern, Haviland & Parlon Matignon Green.

It's so hard to pick as I love them all.....

Selection for linens is equally important and I love these in green from Matouk.

Monogrammed linens are a must like these napkins:

I'd pick something plain for flatware, like this pattern, Albi from Christofle:

Glassware is equally important.  I tend to like "lighter" stemware like this pattern from William Yeoward:

There is so much stuff out there now, it is just so hard to pick it all out.  This is where I would start if I had to do it all over again!
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