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Anatomy of a Shop Vignette

For me, often a reset of a table display starts with one idea or one grouping of goods. In this case, it was the new ceramic scalloped dishes & platters we just received from Seattle artist Monika Dalkin. I knew I wanted them to be the anchor for this vignette as you first walked into the door of the First & Spring shop. Food safe, I am loving that each piece is a little different and has a slightly earthy organic vibe to it. Then I start layering. The vintage watering cans we found a Brimfield had a coloring I liked with the ceramics. Which led me to the table being about flowers in many forms. Books, soaps, cards, plates, mugs, coasters and jams all became part of the flowery mix. Then the Livia Cetti paper geraniums got placed, pulling the whole floral theme together.



 

 

Original Works of Art

An original work of art has a specialness to it that always pulls at my heart strings. There is not another like it. You see the strokes or brush marks and you see the intention. You are there for a second with the artist. Our shop walls are brimming with one of a kind works. They speak to me. Their individual beauty a prize. With a variety of art in a mix of mediums, I like to keep in varied for all sorts of tastes. Be it a gift or something for your home, we have you covered. Here, an assortment from our WK e-mailer that went out the other day. I pulled two works by some of the fine artists we show.



 

 

Lifetime Scissors

We have carried these hand-forged scissors made by artisans in India since we first opened. I call them lifetime scissors, as they just get better & better with use. They have been part of our wrapping ensemble at both locations, always. The other day at the Market shop I sold a pair and it got me thinking about how much I love having them be part of our mix. A staple. Not only incredibly functional, they also have a beauty that makes them a stellar object left out on your desk or coffee table to admire.



 

 

Summmaaaaaa Coasters

Just In, made of Italian marble from Verona coasters that have a very preppy vibe going on. Perfect for Summer entertaining, outdoors or in. A coaster is one of those utilitarian things that can be bumped up style-wise considerably when a cool pattern is added. Some folks like them all to match while others like an assortment. These best selling coasters have been a winner since we first opened the shops–this latest crop, sure to please.



 

 

Ted’s Tip No. 205

A simple bloom or blooms are always welcome in the bathroom. Lovely to have your eyes land on them in the morning as you get ready for your day. Then again at the end of the day when you are getting yourself ready for bed. The joy of surrounding yourself with beauty during your daily rituals.



 

 

Market Stunners

The Pike Place Market flower stalls are brimming with bucket after bucket of peonies that are so good I could weep. The season in full swing. Dreamy. A lovely Flower Friday to you all!



 

 

The Blue Continues

The blue from the shop windows has me all energized and wanting to use the hue all sorts of ways. For a Sunday supper for two out on the island a smattering of blue came together quickly while the meal cooked away in the oven. The white peonies making the whole thing sing. The season for them might be short, but we are grabbing every chance we can to enjoy the heck out of the fluttery beauties.



 

 

My Blue Period

I have always loved the color blue, wearing it more often than using it in interiors or the shops. But over the last few years I find myself more drawn to the hue in goods. So much so that the new windows that replaced the pink & green plaid are two shades of glorious blue. Thought the timing with the upcoming sunny season seemed right. Beach-y, sailboats, anchors, whales, seashells–things to get us all, and the folks that walk by the First Avenue windows each day, in the mood for Summmmaaaaaaa! Speaking of sunny, the weather of late in Seattle has been crazy good. When I shot these images it was so bright outside the reflection off the glass pretty intense and you see lots of the street action in the background. Oh well, the sunshine like a vitamin after a rainy few seasons. We will take it!



 

 

Ted’s Tip No. 204

Sometimes a limited palate can be soothing to both the eyes and the soul. A mixture of similar toned blooms, candles and object can create a simple table setting where the guests & conversation become the most colorful part of the setting.



 

 

Red Striped Umbrellas and a Table for Two

We flew back to Seattle arriving late Friday evening. We hit the ground running and worked the shops over the 3 day Memorial Day weekend. Nothing like getting fully immersed the moment back, but it is a lovely few days to be at the stores as it is busy with folks shopping from near & far. Mister Sive had potted up oodles of things (like geraniums and lavender in above photo) out on the island in pots right before we headed to New York, so we were excited to see how things were shaping up. It had been rainy a bit while we were away, but sunny a good stretch too, so we knew everything would we thirsty. So we hopped on the ferry Tuesday morning to squeeze in a few island days. (For those local readers, we are looking for a handyman/caretaker for WestWard. Our longtime person has moved away. If you can think of anyone you really like, let me know.) The plants thrived while we were away and were indeed thirsty when we got there! It was also our first time using our new red striped umbrellas. Country Living had gifted us one after the photo shoot last year and I was able to source a duplicate. They tilt, which our last umbrellas did not. Great for moving around when the sun gets intense. Plus we like the jaunty stripes. While we were away new red French bistro glasses arrived at WK. I had to set a table with them in their honor. They are the perfect size for a glass of juice or wine. So it was a very red few days. The color has always played a big part of the design out here. I fall back in love with it over and over again as we find new things to incorporate into our beachside living.