Placesettings: Star-gazing at lunch

Are these gorgeous or what?

Are these gorgeous or what?

I just planted a clump of Stargazer lilies near our front door. A year ago that space was our old driveway, so I had a blank slate for planting, so to speak. A blank plot, I guess.

I love Stargazers because they’re big. And showy. And so fragrant! Just right for near the door.

When I was done watering them in I remembered that I had this big and showy tablecloth to match.

Don't those look like Stargazers?

Don’t those look like Stargazers?

It has a creamy yellow center with a white border and bold lily motifs in the corners. No markings on this tablecloth, so I don’t know who made it.

Yep, there’s more!

Revealing my spaciness on the 45th anniversary of Apollo 11

Lest you think of me as all afghans and tablecloths, dishes and kitchen doodads, here’s a glimpse into my inner geek. I grew up as a child of the Space Age when CBS ruled the airwaves with NASA mission coverage.  Astronauts were national heroes. People thought a New Age (Aquarius!) was dawning when space travel would be routine and we’d all wear silver jumpsuits and own flying cars. (Most recently I followed Canadian Chris Hadfield when he was Commander of the ISS. Check him out on YouTube.)

So when we downsized my parents’ house not too long ago, I claimed all the space-related paper stuff. One piece was this 1969 National Geographic map of the Moon. (click to make all these photos bigger)

1969 National Geographic Map of The Earth's Moon

The folks at National Geographic were in on the Moon Race excitement, too.

But wait! There’s more!

Tiny vintage table toppers, part 2

Tiny tablecloths were never on my mental list of things to collect. I have to admit that the moments of discovery (Oooooooh! A tablecloth!) have always been followed by a letdown (Shoot! It’s small!) But that hasn’t stopped me from buying them anyway.

A Facebook commenter pointed out that some tiny tablecloths are merely cut down from larger pieces. Here’s a Wilendur that’s hemmed on all four sides. It was sewn by a perfectionist who made it exactly 34″ square.

tiny Wilendur red dogwood tablecloth

More background than pattern, this common Wilendur is still BRIGHT red after all these decades.

But wait! There’s more!

Tiny vintage table toppers, part 1

We were happy to have house guests for a week–our son and his wife came to stay. I haven’t had much time to think about writing. So here’s some eye candy!

Every once in a very long while I find a miniature vintage tablecloth. In all my years of collecting I’ve only come across eight. Take a peek at the first four!

Let’s start with the color of summery skies and rosy gardens.

tiny vintage tablecloth with big floral border

This little tablecloth is almost covered with big flower garlands.

Yep, there’s more!

The guy’s guide to rainy-day fun


This would’ve been perfect for your Fourth of July picnic!

He says: “Hon, the guys and I will be out in the garage tuning in to the Red Sox game on the radio.”

She says: “Looks like a nice radio. Made by Royal London. Huh. Where’d you get that?”


It’s pretty portable, all right, with that convenient carry handle. And the tough plastic case means it’s survive just about anything.

He says: “Oh, from somewhere. And if we can’t get the Sox game we can always tune in to the police or marine stations.”

What happens next? Tune in to find out!


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