Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas in Dordrecht

I am way behind. While I see decorated Christmas trees, presents, homemade cookies, all kind of decorations in every blog, I stil have to do an awful lot. Let's start to blog about the weekend of the 13th and 14th. Due to swaps and blogparties I haven't been able to show you this:

This is the Groenmarkt in Dordrecht on an average day (who thought these grey shutters could only be found in France?)
But half December it looks like this:

There is a Christmas market in the streets;

At one side of the street there are all kind of booths.

Like this one from 'de onderneming', one of my favorite antique shops.

On the other side there are houses

Some beautifully decorated to contribute to the Christmas atmosphere.
The best is this one; 'Wonen in de winkel' in translation: 'Living in the shop'

Two guys who open their home for public to sell all they have. And I have to say they have a lot. Even this cupboard was for sale, though it has a firm price ticket; 4.000 euros. You can walk through their house;

Enter the kitchen. I love it; it's the famous American kitchen designed by Raymond Loewy, who also designed the Coca Cola bottle and the Lucky Strike logo, to name a few.

Admire some clever ways of showing the merchandise.

These guys told me that they were getting tired of buying new cupboards so they decided to built one in. This one isn't for sale obviously. They buy at least one new antique or vintage complete dinner service every year.

The decorated Christmas tree was for sale too.

But I already decided not to do that. Neither did I buy a large tree this year, I bought a small one and I already had a plan how to decorate it;

Yep some shoes...

Some fine white embroidery....

a mask...all ingredients for:

The evening dress Christmas tree!
I have such a large tree every year that I wanted to do something special with this small one. Like every year the tree is decorated with glass ornaments; vintage ones;

like this one, that has belonged to my parents and is at least 50 years old. One of my favorites from childhood.

Or this vintage one, found during the last brocante hunt with my cousin.

We have new ornaments too.
There is no plain ball in our tree though.
I love these kind of ornaments that are still blown as they used to, real craftmanship;

I cannot help showing you this Kees ornament. A swan like bird, blown by a friend of my fathers' who died at the age of 54 of cancer. This time of the year is filled with memories, some good, some bad. I do hope everybody has a great Christmas with the ones you love, a Christmas to remember. Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Flotsam & Jetsam

Last month Stacey and yours truly agreed to have a personal vintage Christmas swap. Stacey is the lovely writer of the blog 'Flotsam & Jetsam' a title I had to search in my dictionary. As I understand Stacey and I both are collectors of 'flotsam and jetsam', little thingies, right? and ephemera. Mmm, vintage Christmas could be a problem to me, because our country hasn't got a great Christmas tradition, but Stacey told me that every day vintage (probably and hopefully she meant flotsam and jetsam) was quite well too, as, in her words,'every day is a holiday'!

A swap is always fun! The gathering, the crafting and then the moment you receive your box:

Look at this!
This box is filled with layers and layers of white tissue paper, this beautiful paper, the scrap pictures and the card in Stacey's beautiful handwriting on top and between the layers presents!

Layer 1:
vintage millinery violets (good research Stacey!) and a lovely glass glitter anchor.

Layer 2: vintage Christmas decoration! I love it! Already some feeling of panic: Ohh what did I sent? This is sooo good!

We both are button floozies!

Another layer...

A vintage brooch that is already clipped on my favorite vest. I wear it every day.

You have already seen these small (2") bottle brush trees in my previous post!
These Christmas trees will stay in my cupboard all year!

And so layer upon layer was unfolded with the most lovely presents! You'll see a photo of the whole loot at the end of the post. In the process of getting to know each other better I managed to squeeze in a large wish list...:$}
I am fond of the Somerset publications, so could we please trade a magazine? Stacey promised me immediately to send me one, but she said she didn't want one herself.

And she didn't send me one, but three of the finest magazines. They are all very good, though Somerset life is simply the best. I wish I could buy it here too.

As I told you before: we both collect ephimera. Look at this!

And we promised to craft something for each other and these lovelies were made by Stacey, can you believe that?

I made her this:

A personalized portfolio, her blog banner was my inspiration. Check Stacey's blog to see what I have sent her! Or check my Flick'r album for more detailed photos of what I received and what I sent. 

And I had another wish; I was so curious to taste the famous american candy corn every one was writing about and decorating with during Halloween. So Stacey managed to get a lot of candy corns even though Halloween was already over. And I wanted a cup cake ballerina
badly. I have seen them in so many blogs, but cannot find them here.
So Stacey, like the fairy grandmother of Cinderella, just send everything I wished to me!

On the bottom of the box, just when I thought this cannot be better, Stacey managed to fulfill my last wish; an original Ledger!! Aaaa awesome:

Look at the inside; written with real ink in the 30ties, I love it!

The loot, but I bet you cannot see anything on this photo :-(
But you can click to enlarge the photo of course and then wonder; was this all in one swap?
Yes it was!

This swap was so much fun and the perfect beginning of Christmas 2008 to me.
I hope you have enjoyed it too and I want to thank Stacey for all her lovely gifts and for being such a nice person and blog friend, hugs LiLi.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Pretty little Christmas at LiLi's!

Thanks for all your good wishes for my daughter who turned 15, which we celebrated big last weekend. We cannot begin decorating for Christmas before December 5th, so there is really not much Christmas decoration at my place. With a little pain in my heart I told Heather, of Pretty Petals, that I couldn't join her party. The truth is that there is a little Christmas party at my place. Come on I'll show you:

In my antique doll's room, which is in my December banner, it is always Christmas...The little stable in a wallnut is standing under the Christmas tree, where red parcels are waiting to be unpacked.

In my cupboard

there is a little antique angel orchestra playing. The light is bad, but these are the dark days before Christmas, you know. With the little stable there are three mini bottle brush trees, which I received from Stacey in a swap package. This package was soooo beautiful, I'll post about it when she received mine too. Which is any moment now, I hope.

A closer look.

In another cupboard which really is too dark, there is a little childrens' prayer book with a small angel,

So I took it out of the cupboard to make a photo for you!

Now that you are here and I am here too, why not cheat a little and take a look at some photo's of previous Christmas in the digital era;

In our 19th century town house we have two large windows at the front, which I try to decorate in a different way each year. 2005 was a year of white and peacock feathers.

2004 big wreaths (somebody will hate me...but I think he is so cute this way)

Last year I hung up white branches.

Some details.

Under the branches there were birdhouses and bird candles.

We have a huge tree every year. I never had a fake tree in my entire life though there is some discussion about a real tree this size, because (as we live in a city with lots of environmental regulations) it has to be shredded to be removed. The one who shreds wants an open discussion about a fake tree. But the smell of a real tree...ahh!

The mantle is decorated in another way every year too. With that large mirror it is always good to have candles, the more the merrier!

Or bling and candles, the mirror seem to double the bling, cannot be enough for this girl.
Hope you enjoyed my little Christmas party. Stay tuned for the decorations of 2008. There are a lot of pretty Christmas parties going on, so don't forget to join them. You'll find a list here. Thank you so much Heather for hosting this party. Have a lovely Christmas everybody!