Cherished China in Vintage Life

I am so happy to share that I am one of the makers featured in a book called Vintage Life. It is published by Janine Vangool, my flea market friend and editor-designer-extraordinaire who also creates Uppercase magazine, a quarterly for the ‘creative and curious’. This book Vintage Life is part of a larger series called Encyclopedia of Inspiration — other editions are about printmaking, ephemera and quilting. This book features individuals who have vintage style, artists who make things with vintage objects and those who have obsessively collected vintage items. I was thrilled when Janine invited me to submit to be part of this publication so that I could tell my story about my products made with vintage saucers from my large collection of fine bone china.

Paige Smith Vintage Life CoverFlipping through the 448 pages, it feels so amazing to be featured alongside such talented woman who I have admired from afar: Fiona Richards of Cartolina, Kaari Meng of French General, Ki Nassauer of Junk Bonanza, Wendy Addison of Theatre of Dreams and Marcia Ceppos of Tinsel Trading, just to name a few. (I wrote a blog post about Tinsel Trading back in 2011 while it was still located in NYC) And what a treat to discover and appreciate other like-minded artists and makers.

Below I have incorporated a few of the quotes pulled from the book. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves ‘vintage’ and to see how creative individuals are living the Vintage Life. The book is printed in Canada and recommend ordering Vintage Life sooner than later, as Uppercase prints limited editions of the publication.

Paige Smith Vintage Life Intro Spread

Paige Smith Vintage Life China Cabinet“My personal mantra is to only ever repurpose single saucers that are missing their matching cup. I rescue them from flea markets and thrift stores — found close to home and abroad. Many stunning saucers have been ‘inherited’ from the estates of other life-long collectors.”

Paige Smith Vintage Life China Cabinet Drawers“In my home studio, nearly 700 saucers are stacked neatly in the drawers and shelves of my French cabinet. Dating back 50 years or more, the saucers come from well-known English manufacturers: Royal Albert, Aynsely and Paragon to name a few. I’m always in awe of the stunning beauty and seemingly endless array of colours and different designs of china patterns. Saucers in pastel colours and intricate gold patterns catch my eye and heart the most.”

Paige Smith Vintage Life Satin Ribbon

Paige Smith Vintage Life Saucers New Work“I am in my happy place when I am designing new work — matching colourful satin ribbon to the saucers and seeing the personality of each piece come to life.”

Paige Smith Vintage Life Saucer Holes“I’ve had to overcome some fear in regards to using large power tools. In making a ring holder, I use a tabletop drill press to create a small hole in the centre of the saucer. For most people, the idea of drilling through china is daunting and scary. But with patience and practice, I’ve learned that despite its dainty appearance, china is quite durable. After years of drilling holes through hundreds of saucers, I’ve also saved the little ‘donut holes’ of fine bone china. It is so interesting to capture just a few fragments of the manufacturers’ markings on the back of the saucer.”

 
 

Jewelry Holders

Jewelery holder figurine in black outfitLady Verona

 

Jewelery holder figurine in cream outfitLady Grace

 

Jewelery holder figurine in cream outfit detail shot

Jewelery holder figurine in amber outfitLady Madeleine

 

Jewelery holder figurine in boudoir outfitMiss Ooh-La-La

 
 

DECASO: My Bucket List

Back in 2015, I participated in the Shabby Chic Mix & Match Design Challenge for Chairish, an online marketplace for vintage and used furniture. Chairish has now expanded with a sister website called DECASO, which features an ultra-curated selection of exceptional antique and designer furniture offered by the world’s most respected dealers.

To celebrate the launch of DECASO, I have accepted to participate in their Interior Design Bucket List Challenge. (Thanks for inviting me Gabrielle! ) The collections are definitely a lot more upscale and pricier (some items are out-of-this-world crazy expensive). So, I have been asked to pick my bucket list items from DECASO’S collection and put together my dream space. Uh…yeah! So with a virtual unlimited budget in hand — ta da — here is My Bucket List picks:

1 Sunburst Mirror  Rosenthal Fornasetti Temi E Variazioni Motiv 5 Plate, 1980s  Porter Lamp by Stone and Sawyer  Antique French Louis XV Style Bergere Chair in Old Paint  Antique French Louis XVI Ebonized Mahogany 3 Over 3 Commode w/Marble  Regency Style Designer Taboret Bench by Randy Esada Designs  Two Spirited Carved Alabaster Cockatoos Perched on a Branch  Italian Neoclassical Gilt Tole and Crystal Chandelier

The inspiration and starting point for my dream space was the French Louis XVI commode. Isn’t it gorgeous? Very bold, but yet sleek and sophisticated for my girly taste. I must admit that in addition to my obsession with glass domes/cloches, my next home décor hoarding compulsion is anything in the shape of star/sunbursts. I just love the ‘celestial’ mirror. The Antique French Louis XV Style chair has a bit more ‘patina’ than I would like, but the colour of it is divine — like butterscotch or caramel, which I prefer to call ‘old gold’. I read somewhere in a decorating magazine that every room needs something whimsical and these cockatoos fit that perfectly.

Awww, now I wish my bucket list was ‘for real’. Thanks DECASO for letting me dream!

 
 

Decorating for Fall

Fall is one of my favourite times of the year and it’s so easy and fun to decorate around the house. Bringing in aspects of nature like mini pumpkins, pinecones and wheat is both affordable and beautiful. Here are a few key ways that I decorated my house for Fall this year.

Decorating for Fall titleSet the Table
On the quest for a table runner for quite awhile now, I finally found the perfect one made of a burlap material. Yay! It provides a neutral colour and brings in just a bit of texture to the table. For my tablescape, I gathered items that I already had tucked away, like the pinecones and mini quail egg nests and only needed to purchase the mini pumpkins. I added some tea light candles and the table was set for a warm and inviting dinner with my family.

Fall TablescapeI must confess, I have a fetish for urns of all sizes, and I was delighted to top these little white urns with mini pumpkins. I was only able to find a few white pumpkins so gold spray paint came to the rescue to glam up the orange pumpkins.

Decorating for Fall TablescapeDo you have a box of dinnerware inherited from your family and buried in the garage for years? That was the case for me until I realized that the plates I received from my mom are ‘kind of cool’ after all. The white plates with the leafy band design feels very elegant and modern to me now. Wish I knew how old this pattern is, maybe from the 60’s or 70’s?

Fall TablescapeDecorate the Stairs
If you don’t have a fireplace (like me) to display decorations, then an alternate area is the stairs. (Sorry, this might not be an option for those with small children and curious pets) Since I grew up on a farm in Saskatchewan, sheafs of wheat always remind me of the Fall harvest. The lit candles add such a wonderful glow and sparkle.

Decorating for Fall on StairsCreate a Vignette
Pulling together a few of my favourite things — a decorative pillow and faux-fur throw — I created a vignette on a bench next to the stairs with pumpkins and the sheaf of wheat. Makes for a cozy and inviting spot to sit and enjoy a cup of tea with a good book.

Decorating for Fall in Home

 
 

Makeful Challenge: Vintage Keys Cell Phone Case

As a contributing maker to bemakeful.com, I was really excited participating in their next Makeful Challenge; decorating a cell phone case. Initially, I was not sure what I was going to do to transform a cell phone case.

Paige Smith Designs_Vintage Keys_MG_2710I have always loved the patina of vintage skeleton keys; the ones pictured here are from my very own collection when I was pulling together inspiration for my wedding. So when I was rummaging through my dresser of crafting supplies, it sparked the idea when I found a stack of rub-on decals I had purchased from Michael’s craft store many years ago.

Paige Smith Designs_Cell Phone Case_MG_1908_2Using the decals of the vintage keys, I layered different sizes to look like a pile of keys. I love the contrast of the vintage look and feel of the etchings/illustrations against the modern-day technology of the iPhone. I am so happy with the results and I hope you like it too!

Paige Smith Designs_Cell Phone Case_MG_1885Materials & Tools
• Various images of rub-on decals
• Popsicle stick

Step 1
Plan design for inside clear plastic cell phone case.

Step 2
Place decal artwork side down inside the cell phone case and using the popsicle stick, rub the decal onto the surface.

Step 3
Once layering multiple decals inside the clear cell phone case to the layout of your liking, pop the case onto your phone. You are now done and ready to show it off to the world.

 
 

The HighBoy: My Favourite Picks under $500

As someone who adores fine French furnishings, I was thrilled to discover a curated online marketplace called The HighBoy for beautiful antiques, jewelry and fine art. Collaborating with hand-picked antique and fine art dealers across the United States (international shipping to Canada available upon request), The HighBoy is known for offering a huge selection of exceptional antiques with a range of styles and prices from all over the world. It’s amazing having the ability to search the website by category, style, origin, theme and price for that unique and coveted piece.

Under500_revisedOne of my favourite features of the site is shopping in the category Under $500. As like most fashionable and design-savvy ladies, I don’t always have a stockpile of funds to match my imagination and desires. But I am always sure to find a gem on The HighBoy that I would love to bring home with me that is affordable and won’t break the bank.

Here I have curated my own wish list of my favourite picks from The HighBoy. They have amazing tables/desksarmchairs and side tables to be discovered as well as lighting and decorative objects. All items were under my $500 range — except for the Secretaire Desk. A girl can dream big, right? Sadly, the Hollywood Regency round end table was already sold to another lucky soul. But I will be sure to check back to The HighBoy for more gorgeous vintage & antique finds.

The High Boy_Products1 French School, “Portrait of a Pretty Woman” 2 French Louis XV Style Secretaire Desk Stamped Jansen Louis XVI Style Armchair 4 Hollywood Regency Round Granite End Table 5 An Elegant Pair of Matching Vintage Solid Brass Sheath of Wheat Bookends 6 Antique File Boxes

And if you love looking into the lives and apartments of celebs like Molly Ringwald and Marisa Tomei, check out The HighBoy’s editorial journal, The Weekly.

Sponsored Blog Post

 
 

Bride to Be Chair Banner for Wedding Shower

As a bride-to-be myself, I had so much fun creating this chair banner craft for my wedding shower concept. As you may have noticed, I love absolutely everything pink and gold, but recently I have been finding myself appreciating the colour yellow. On a recent antiquing trip with my dear friend Jennifer of Tufts and Toile, I found the perfect pale yellow tablecloth to compliment my wedding shower tablescape, which was a great score that only cost $10. I can’t wait to have my very own wedding shower — to come one day

01_Paige Smith_Bride to Be Chair Banner_Wedding Shower_MG_1339wedding shower bride to bannerMaterials
• Various crafting card stock in complimentary colours and patterns (yellow & pink)
• Alphabet letters (spray painted gold)
• Foam adhesive circles
• Washi tape to coordinate with paper stock
• Seam binding ribbon
• Decorative flower

wedding shower bride to bannerTools
• X-acto knife and blade
• Ruler
• Hole punch

wedding shower bride to be bannerStep 1
Measure and cut out ten rectangular cards in card stock of your choice that are 2 5/8″ wide x 3 3/4″ tall. You can use alternating paper designs for variety. Cut a triangular notch at the bottom of each card.

Step 2
With the hole punch, create 2 holes at the top of each card on both the right and left side.

Step 3
Arrange each letter of ‘Bride to Be’ on a separate card. You can either use glue to attach the letters to the cards. Or as I prefer, to use small foam adhesive circles that give dimension to the letters.

Step 4
At the top of each card, lay a strip of washi tape and trim the ends on either side of the card.

Step 5
Thread the seam binding through all of the holes in the cards to hang the banner.

04_Paige Smith_Bride to Be Chair Banner_Wedding Shower_MG_1424wedding shower bride to be bannerdessert dome for wedding showerMacarons by Sweet Philosophy

wedding shower pink lemonadewedding shower chiavari chair decorationFor each of the guests, I decorated the chiavari chairs with vintage jewelry necklaces for added sparkle and charm.

wedding shower chiavari chair decorationwedding shower pink and yellow ribbon

 
 

Mother’s Day Tea Party + Charming Soap Gift

02_Paige Smith_Mothers Day Tea Party_MG_0815mothers day tea partymothers day tea partyVanilla cupcakes from CakeStar Bakery

mothers day tea partysloane tea for mothers day tea partyA selection of my favourite teas from Sloane Tea Company

mothers day tea partyHandmade flavoured heart-shaped sugar cubes by Sweet Bee’s Tea Party

Materials & Tools
• 4.5″ mini fine bone china saucers
• 5/8″ single face satin ribbon
• 2.5″ scented round soaps
• Charms with lobster claw
• Small clasp ring
• Scissors

mothers day charming giftThe following instructions are for one soap favour.

Step 1
Cut a strip of ribbon to 18″ and lay flat on table with the shiny side down. Place a round soap in a mini saucer and lay both of these elements in the middle of the ribbon.

Step 2
Feed both ends of the ribbon through a small clasp ring and pull it down till the ribbon is tight against the top of the soap. (Visual not shown)

Step 3
Open the lobster claw and attach the charm to the small clasp ring that is holding together the ribbon in the middle of the soap.

Step 4
Grab both ends of the ribbon and tie a bow in the middle of the soap. Trim ends off at a slant with the scissors.

mothers day tea party charming soap giftmothers day tea party soap gift

 
 

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