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Sunday, February 14, 2010

A Library Dinner Date on Sunday Favorites

We are still debating which old dining room table we should buy. We looked at both of them on Saturday.
(For pictures,
click here and scroll to the end of that post.)

The first one is in decent shape, needs a good polish and scratch treatment, and its pedestals are really different and interesting. Love them! The finish, though, is a little reddish for my taste. The second table, the high quality Henkel Harris one, is a substantial beauty, but its tabletop needs reviving; the lacquer is crazed. Leaves and pedestals are in excellent condition. Question: do I want to fuss with refinishing a table top? Aarrgghh!!!

Plus, I've put a bid on Ebay for six dining chairs, as we will probably sell our current chairs when we sell our smaller table. We looked at the Ebay chairs on Saturday too, and they have nice patina and age and are sturdy. I bid low. We'll see what happens.

But today is Sunday, Valentine's Day, and I'm reposting a story from back in September.
And it all takes place on our dining room table . . . .


You are invited for dinner in the Library at That Old House!

Only . . . Dinner is not really in the Library because we don't have a Library.

So what we have is our Dining Room pinch-hitting for a Library. If I were going to set a table for two in a library, it might look like this. . . .

Yesterday I moseyed on down to my daughter Anne's college, where she is in graduate school. She wrapped up her day at 5pm, and we headed off to Goodwill; Anne needed to shop for some pieces for a play she is costuming.

On the way we stopped at Dollar Tree. Need I say more?

Here, tucked at the end of our dining room table
(so you can't see the dishes waiting to be put away at the other end -- reality check!)
is a Tablescape for Two.
(Another reality check; that poor ivy plant is half dead. Ivy doesn't thrive indoors.)

We can dine by candlelight, although that
makes it hard to read the books in the library. :-)

What's in it? I popped the pieces into a mosaic.

And they are . . .
**Dollar Tree dishes; they were in the Christmas aisle, but they don't look particularly Christmas-y to me.
**Dollar tree tea light holders; I have seen these on other blogs, and I am such a copy-cat.
**The white porcelain "parakeet" I featured yesterday, a Giveaway win. Here.
**A couple of boxes that look like books.
**Dollar Tree placemats and napkin rings; I love the khaki and red together.
**T.J. Maxx bowls.
**Home Goods napkins.
**Crystal Pilseners -- can't remember where we got them, but they pre-date my dedictated thrifting days, so they may have come from (gasp!) a regular retail store.
**And my trusty century-old Georgian pattern silverplate, from Ebay.

Oh! Almost forgot. That candleholder, the one that looks like mercury glass with
a twisted glass stem? $2 at Goodwill. There were two for sale.
Ask me why I didn't take the second, and I can't give you a good answer.

That's it!

Thanks to Chari of Happy To Design
for her hosting of Sunday Favorites!

Go visit!

And Happy Valentine's Day to all!


  1. Cass, I love this! We've also been struggling with a huge ivy that had to be brought indoors because of this unusual Carolina winter. And I frequently set one end of our dining table for 2 or 3 of us. I wish our Dollar store carried good stuff like I see here in Blogland- I've only rarely been lucky there
    xoxo Pattie

  2. Very pretty. I love how you gave it the library feel, so cozy and inviting. Love the birdie candle holders. Happy Valentine's Day, Cass....Kim

  3. My opinion is that I'd keep looking -- there must be a good table out there that you don't need to fuss with at a price you'd like. With a bigger table, I'd buy more chairs like what you have -- to seat more -- rather than trade the six you have for six different ones. That's just MO (from a person who has 12 dining room chairs -- several of whom live in the basement becasue I have no where to put them . . . but I can seat 12 on matching chairs if need be!)

  4. Hello sweet lady...

    My...ohhh my! I would have never guessed that your fabulous little tablescape WASN'T in the library! It definitely has that ambiance to it, my friend...I love it! Love how you used the stacked books/book boxes and pretty gold candleholder...ohh, and those sweet little bird votives! Okay...I think your ivy looks pretty darn good! Hehe! Such a pretty tabletop vignette!!! You know, I have seen those pretty white dishes with the red pattern at the Dollar Tree and thought to pick a few up...several times, but have yet to do so! Hmmm...maybe I should get in gear! I love how you paired them with the khaki! I love the khaki and red paired together as well! Such pretty place settings, Cass! I really...really enjoyed your beautiful tablescape in the library, my friend! wink! Thank you so much for sharing it with us for Sunday Favorites today!

    Well Darlin', I clicked on your link to take a peek at the dining tables that you are considering. I love the Queen Anne styled table! Best wishes in your endeavours to find or choose the right table! I have complete confidence that you will find the perfect table! You have some of the most beautiful furniture that I've ever seen, my dear!!!

    Thank you for the Valentine well wishes...may you and your honey have a fabulous Valentine's Day as well!

    Chari @Happy To Design

  5. Any tablescape with books has my heart! Happy Valentine's Day!
    Oh, I know what you mean about the reddish look...I'd vote for the other one. Does that one really have to be refinished or is the crazing kind of neat looking...something that says I'm old and proud of it. :-)

  6. Cozy just like a library should be...even if it is only a pretend library.
    I think you really did capture the library feeling.

  7. Boy you sure know how to find those bargains don't you? They look beautiful too.
    If you aren't totally 'in love' I'd keep holding out on your table until ya find the one that has everything you want.

  8. Happy Valentine day my Dear Cass...Love this girl..I felted like I was having dinner in the Library ha ha!! Oh Cass I hope you get the table you want it's a shame that us kind of gals just can't run to Pottery Barn and get what we need ha ha!!Hope it's a GREAT Day for you and Howard my friend...Much Love...Gl♥ria

  9. Good morning, Cass. I've just had a lovely catch up on your Old House. Have fun with the table selection! I'd love to be choosing a new table but The Great Dane is VERY attached to the one we have - I've learned to pick my battles! He can prevail on the plain wood as long as I have last say on any upholstry or drapery!

  10. Hi Cass,

    I'm catching up this morning. I love your table pretty and's snowing here again! I love the layered books with the candleholders! Just gorgeous.

    Have a wonderful Valentines Day!

    Miss Bloomers/Sonia

  11. Thank You Cass - - - this sweet little SIMPLE place setting is something even I might be able to 'DO' at my house.

    Of course, I'd have to give up the "eating directly from fast food bags" in the family room idea - - - but this is at LEAST in the realm of possibility for me.

    Happy Valentine's Day and please, toss a Valentine's chocolate kiss or two down to the hungry ghosts in the cellar and tell them it was my idea!!!

  12. Happy Valentine's Day, Dear Cass! Oh, I hope you can decide which table to get!
    Now your table now or then is beautiful! Love everything. Now I have to admit - I'm a copycat too! I found some of those little bird tea lights and just love them.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  13. Hi, i love the library feel,it looks so cozy.The birdie candle holders are so cute....Kathy


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