Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Blue Willow Woes

It is after 7:30 p.m. and my computer tells me it is still 100 degrees outside. Do I hear the same weather song today in August that I heard all of July? Yep, and I’m mighty tired of the music. It was also windy today which is unusual in August. It is now quite dark at 6 a.m., but it is a little cooler then. By the time I get flowers watered and bird baths filled, it is tea time and light enough to read. I would have ridden my bike this morning, but I was up a little later than normal.

I baked some sugar-free blueberry muffins before the heat began to compete with the air conditioner. They were rather ugly things because the blueberry color ran throughout the batter, but they were tasty enough to overlook their appearance. I will make them again someday when a toasty oven will be appealing on a winter’s day.

Yesterday I designated Blue Willow day in the spirit of weeding “stuff”. It was an exercise in futility! I dragged out two bins in the living room and then added pieces from the bottom of a hutch. I ran out of living room floor and had no idea what to do with the pieces. I have more in the top half of the hutch, in the kitchen cupboards, on tables throughout my house. I couldn’t part with any, didn’t know how to organize it. I have 37 dinner plates in the kitchen area alone. We use them daily but still that is a lot of plates!

Anyone who knows me knows my love of Blue Willow and the history behind it. When I was a child, I had a perfect set of child-sized Willowware made in Japan. I was child who always took care of her toys, and there wasn’t a chip in any piece. A five year old friend came to play. We put out a tea towel tablecloth, set every piece on my child’s table, and put marshmallows in the tea cups. She wanted to show me a trick. She grabbed the tea towel edge, said Abracadabra, and pulled. I screamed even louder than the sound of that breaking china.

Santa brought me a new set the following Christmas but it wasn’t Willow. He could only find a nice floral, lovely, but…. After I was married, I had a nice set of ironstone and another of pottery, but when I saw a Blue Willow cup in a flea market, I remembered my first love. The search began and DH got into it the Willow saga too. We have picked up pieces here, there and yonder. That is why I have so much and why it is a jumbled assortment of odd pieces.

A few years ago, I found a pin and ear rings made of Blue Willow at a craft show. Now if you go online you can find Broken Plate jewelry made of all kinds of china pieces. Most of it is very expensive due to the silver it is trimmed with today. I would be willing to trade some of my chipped pieces for a silver trimmed piece, but no takers locally. So while I had the chipped pieces out, DH did try his hand at shaping some pieces that I think will work as pins. We are still thinking of creative ways to use the chipped and broken pieces of Willow Ware, as I cannot toss them out. But then again, we have to have room left in the house to live here too!

Have you seen Broken Plate Jewelry in your area or are you a craftsman of such pieces?

1 comment:

Rebecca said...

Claudia, I have the same dilemma with MY blue & white! I can't part with any of it. Most of mine doesn't match. Not sure if I could put together a complete place setting for 6!

I also collected rose patterned dinner ware. Had the same problem. So I just boxed it up and it's sitting in the attic. Shame on me.