Vintage mannequins

The mannequin as a design element is very popular. We’ve seen them draped in vintage clothing, adorned with jewelry; even used as a canvas of sorts for whimsical and unique art work.                   Once only used for creating garments and displaying fashion, dress forms have donned a […]

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I’ll come back to you

The swallow, which always returns to its birthplace to rebuild its nest, is now most famous for the celebration of its return to the mission in San Juan Capistrano, CA.   But it has another and much more romantic history…   The poignant love story and theme of the movie Cold Mountain was the harrowing return journey […]

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Costume jewelry, A signature look

Adorning ourselves with jewelry is as old as mankind, with every variety of style, method and material. In ancient times jewelry production was spread across all of Mesopotamia – from Assyria to the Babylonian cities of Nineveh, Ur and Sumer. Materials not common to the area; jasper, onyx, lapis lazuli, sardonyx, agate and silver, were imported […]

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Fragrant soaps cheer the spirit

No concrete evidence exists as to where and when soap as we know it was first made or used. One account has it originating in Mt. Sapo, where remains of ash and animal sacrifices washed into the river and women noticed their clothes washed up cleaner wherever these substances accumulated. Soap-like material as well as […]

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Nautical themes in decor

There’s nothing quite like living on the ocean, combing the beach for shells, being lulled to sleep by the pounding surf…We can’t all live in those magical locales but we can bring that soothing beachy feel into our homes! At the Cottage we’re so fond of all things nautical we have a room dedicated to […]

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Be My Valentine

Valentine’s Day is said to originate in the ancient Roman festival of Lupercalia, an annual fertility celebration on February 15. The Pope recast the pagan festival as a Christian feast day sometime in AD 496, declaring February 14 to be St. Valentine’s Day. Our modern day of love probably got its name from ancient Rome as well. Emperor Claudius II […]

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Red is for “Le Mois d’Amour”

Red is traditionally the color of Love and Passion. Red can stimulate one’s appetite, which is why it’s often used in restaurants. In some Eastern cultures such as China red is the color for good luck. Although many Chinese brides now wear white, it is the traditional color for weddings. In Indian culture it symbolizes purity […]

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Romancing the light

There was a day when the only source of light was the sun, and artificial light was provided by fire, burning oil, or wax. We don’t use those sources much anymore, and yet, they are a favorite when we are trying to set a romantic mood. We love the softer, muted light of candles and […]

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The history of irons

The early history of ironing is recorded in Chinese drawings dating back a thousand years. They filled pans with hot coals, while in Northern Europe people were using stones, glass or wood to smooth or press fabric. It was Western blacksmiths that began forging  flat irons during the Middle Ages, which were heated over fires or […]

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