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Friday, April 30, 2010

Bold And Brassy

The first time I saw the parlor fireplace in That Old House, I knew
it had to have an old Federal style convex mirror over the mantel.

And more than a year later, I got one
. Story here.

No, that's not my Show And Tell for Friday . . .
this is:

There are three light switches in our front hallway.

One is a triple, and operates the porch, foyer, and upstairs hallway light.

The other two are singles. One is for an outdoor lampost near the stone steps down to the street,
and the other operates . . . well, we don't know. And neither does our electrician.
Just one more of the mysteries of a very old house.

The switchplates are the ones that were here when we moved in.

"Oh, you are going to replace those ugly old switchplates, right?" asked my sister.
"Ummm . . . " said I. Ugly? I hadn't really thought about them as being ugly, or not.

They just were.

They belonged.

So, they stayed.

This morning I took their pictures; glamour shots I hope. Yes, antique dust and all.

But as I was photographing them, I glanced into the parlor and saw the mirror over the fireplace.

And it hit me!

These old beat-up brass switchplates are pretty much exactly
like the old beat-up mirror I scored on eBay last summer.

Coincidence? I think not.
I think That Old House had it planned all along, and I was just the helpless dupe.

Show And Tell Friday is hosted by Cindy at My Romantic Home. Click to join or visit!

And if you love flowers and burgeoning blooming things, pop on over to Tootsie Time, where
we're Flaunting Our Flowers on Fertilizer Friday. Click and go!

I love bonus plants, plants that we inherited along with the mortgage to That Old House.

I am grateful to the previous homeowner who tucked a few tulip bulbs into the flower borders.

I'm especially glad she chose this deep dark purple -- so dark it is almost black.

This one is fading. When they are newly blooming, they are the most amazing rich color.

Look into its heart:

Our single red tulip is just about exhausted from putting on one heck of a show for the last couple of weeks,
tucked in among the branches of the white bleeding heart.

And the yellow tulips?

Some of them are beginning to look a little bedraggled:

This straggling old rosebush will soon be covered with the buds of deep red blooms.

Those buds will open, and almost immediately be devoured by the deer.

Oh well, the critters have to live, too.
Mrs. Plaster Bunny keeps watch over the daylilies and sedum.

And here, a chipmunk's-eye view from the top of our stone steps up to the driveway:

Sshhh... don't rat us out to the neighbors about that dandelion!

Ah, one more picture.
Why are there tables stacked up in our front hallway?

I will tell you, but not till next week! -- Cass

You can click on either logo, below, to visit the Friday blog parties mentioned above.


  1. I quite like the old switchplates and the mirror. I think you may be right, they belong together. We have an old convex mirror that was given to us as a gift long ago. It is round and has the little balls around the inside, but no bits on the outside of the frame.
    As for your tulips, they are lovely.
    I am curious about the tables.

  2. I like those old switch plates and think you were wise to leave them right there - who knows what bad karma might have bee unleashed had you removed them!

  3. I love the old switch plates - I would keep them right where they are. I noticed that you have Cavaliers! I have two - a Blenheim and a Ruby...aka - Brighton and Conan! Have a great day! ~Marcy

  4. Well, what a really great story you have told about the mirrors and switch plates!! I LOVE IT!! I often feel the same way. We have a house built in the 40's which came with older light fixtures and switch plates etc and I feel it is just part of the house's personality ;-)

    nannykim at

  5. Oh my! I LOVE those switchplates! It would have been tragic to change them! That old house is so lucky to have found you
    xoxo Pattie

  6. The switch plates and the mirror belong there. :) Your tulips are beautiful.
    Have a great weekend.

  7. Nice story about the switch plates and the mirror. I love your tulip photos. They are absolutely beautiful! Have a great weekend.

  8. Oh I love the switchplates and the mirror is one of my all time favorites. Your flowers are just stunning. Gorgeous. Hugs, Marty

  9. Warning, cancer!

    Someone in blog lands needs help, go to my blog and read about
    Marilyn, or just go to Marilyn's blog,

    Our you people in blog land as nice as you write on your blog?

  10. Cass,
    Another great post about your great house. Love the switchplates.

    The tulips are gorgeous.


  11. Thanks so much for your prayers for my cancer recovery!
    Your blog is absolutely beautiful & your home is gorgeous!! Love it!!
    You are in NJ & I am actually in NE Pa!!
    Come back soon!!

  12. Those dark tulips are really pretty , I have an Iris that is dark like that. The dark flowers can be really striking.
    The mirror looks really good over the fireplace , and goes well with the switch plates.
    Have a great weekend!

  13. I love your old switch plates, as well as the matching mirror. They look great together and add character to your old house. Your tulips are beautiful. Can't wait to see what you are doing with all those old tables. Love & blessings from NC!

  14. You Old house stories as always so much fun to read! The two of you work so well together! It is so awesome how you are keeping history alive in all its glory :)

  15. The Old House has great decorating taste. The plates and the mirror look like they've been together forever.
    Can't wait to see what you are up to with the tables.

    Have a great weekend.


  16. The tulips are beautiful! I do enjoy peeking into them. The mirror is lovely. We have been blessed in our travels to have lived in some old houses; they are always so fun to decorate.

  17. You sure have a wonderful blog here! What a beautiful home you have to! Enjoyed my visit and will be back for more! Hugs, Maryjane

  18. Loving the spring shots of the tulips. Ours have come and gone in Nashville. Pretty

  19. Cass, those switch plates are perfect in that old house with the mirror you found. Super tulip photos and looking forward to see what you are up to.

  20. Cass, I agree...they just fit and how cool that you scored the mirror all belongs together.

  21. Hi Cass,
    Your tulips are so pretty! Love the light switch plates no wonder you had a hankering for the mirror!


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