french ironstone compote

by | Sep 3, 2014 | Artistic Endeavors, Favorite Finds, Ironstone | 52 comments

I had my second full day in the studio and it was awesome.  I am loving getting up in the morning and heading out of the house to a place of business.  I’m still a little scattered, because there are so many things I want and need to do and I don’t know where to start.  I would go into the bathroom to get a trash bag and I’d end up cleaning something, then moving something else and then I’d entirely forget what I was supposed to be doing until I tried to throw something away and saw there was no trash bag!  Welcome to my day.

I know I’ll get settled into a routine soon and will find my stride.

As I was working, Jeff brought in a package I was waiting for…

French potato box | miss mustard seed

Come on…it was mailed in a French potato box!  I’m sure those are very boring in France, but it was kind of fun for me.  What was inside was even better…

French ironstone compote | miss mustard seed

Oh, hello French ironstone compote.  You’ve found a good home.

French ironstone compote | miss mustard seed

It’s the design on the bottom side that won me over.

French ironstone compote | miss mustard seed

…and it’s my first piece of French ironstone, which makes it special.  I bought it on Etsy and it was priced really well.  The shipping was expensive, but shipping is always expensive and this was worth it.

French ironstone compote | miss mustard seed

I mean, I needed it for photo shoots, right?  Right.

French ironstone compote | miss mustard seed French ironstone compote | miss mustard seed

See…it’s already serving the purpose I bought it for.


We made more progress in the studio today.  My dad and Kriste helped me hang pictures…

miss mustard seed's studio

I sold these WC signs and arrows at the Chapel Market last year, but I reserved one of each for myself.  Now, I have the perfect place for them!

miss mustard seed's studio

I had the “MAKE” letters hanging in my old home office and then languishing in my basement for a few years.  They now have a home above one of the large windows in the “workshop space.”

miss mustard seed's studio


My dad whipped out a shelf to hold the milk-painted table legs…

miss mustard seed's studio

I painted those when I first launched the milk paint line, as a way to show the colors in my retail space at Lucketts.  Once I left Lucketts as a vendor, I put them in the basement until I had a place to put them.  I was talking over display options with Kriste and was even unsure if I should keep the table legs or try another way to showcase the colors.

“Oh no.  The table legs are iconic.”

Well, if they are iconic, I think we need to keep them!  So, my dad built a way to showcase them and keep them accessible if people want to handle them or try to pair colors, etc.

miss mustard seed's studio

I only had eleven legs painted, so Kriste and I worked today on painting the other colors to round out the full line of 18.  Every time I brush on a color, I’m reminded of how much I like it.

miss mustard seed's studio

miss mustard seed's studio

I distressed, waxed and labeled them tonight while the boys were at Awana.  I now need to find four more table legs to introduce our six new colors that will be coming out in 2015.  The six colors will be the start of our European line of colors.  They will be available in the US, but our retailers aren’t required to carry them, so they will be available on a limited basis.  I’ll be unveiling the colors and names soon!

Tonight, I also finished the piece that Kriste’s husband found at a yard sale for $10.  I will style it and take my first “after” furniture pictures in the new studio tomorrow!

miss mustard seed's studio


Here are some other random pics I snapped today…


miss mustard seed's studio

miss mustard seed's studio

miss mustard seed's studio


Yes, I have ridden that scooter around the studio.  It’s kinda irresistible.


  1. Sandy A

    The French Ironstone Compote is gorgeous!!!!!!! Can’t wait to see the church pew made all pretty and scruffed…Don’t you wonder already how you created before you had this amazing studio…..

  2. Debbie

    So glad you kept the table legs! Your colors have to have a leg to stand on, plus they are just plain fun. They look good standing on a shelf, can’t imagine them anywhere else!

  3. Janell

    Love the compote. So beautiful. Your new studio looks just wonderful. And you are already filling it up with lots of wonderful pieces. The way you displayed the table legs is so cute. Maybe your dad could come visit my studio? 🙂

  4. Gail

    Congrats on your new work place!
    It is so nice to have a space you can shut off the lights & go home to your house house, not the work house! I
    remember my first studio, my first store etc. I felt so proud to take the next step, just like you. You will look back on this progression in your business and your family will be glad to have you home as “MOM” not Miss Mustard Seed!!!
    Enjoy don’t forget to take a pic with your family in your new space, years from now you will love seeing how much your children have grown from when they first came to tour your studio!
    Best Wishes,
    P.S. I am friends with Reni!

  5. karen hines

    love the new space! i have been looking for one of those wc signs. may i ask where you found them?

  6. di@Cottage-Wishes

    You have quite the sweet haul there! Love you workspace. Di

  7. Monica

    You must be absolutely giddy!! I can’t wait to attend a workshop or two…or ten!! And that church pew makes me swoon 🙂 You already amaze us with how much creativity you possess, but now that you have this awesome space I think you’re really going to blow us away!!

  8. teresa

    Your studio looks like a wonderful place to create. Wish I live closer so I could attend a class there =)

  9. A Speckled Trout

    Oh dearie, I am so happy for you I am living the dream with you.

  10. Mollie Culpepper

    In love with the space! The lighting is AMAZING! Congrats!

  11. mary w.

    If you schedule a weekend-long workshop, I would drive from Detroit!

  12. Rita C at Panoply

    Beautiful compote, gorgeous space! It’s hard to believe you had all that stuff in your basement!

  13. Marie Claire

    You have such great light in that space. It makes everything look beautiful and already styled just sitting there.

  14. kristin

    Great call Kriste. Definitely MUST keep them. They are on your Milk Paint card and so unique and wonderful–like a piece of art. What a dream you are living–what a dream. I imagine walking out the door thinking “I am off to my studio!” is such a great feeling!

  15. Marlene

    A church bench like that is on my bucket list! Looking good!

  16. Anna Mack Severn

    Oh its so fun to see the colors side by side! Just stumbled across your blog recently and am dying to try milk paint!

  17. Gina

    The french compote is beautiful as well as your new studio!! It is so inspiring! I’m sure you absolutely love it!! 🙂

  18. Debbie w

    I do not usually make comments…BUT…..I had to today! Your studio is gorgeous! Looks like a lot of fun…and work!

  19. Mary B

    Congratulations Marian!!! Your new space is certainly “swoon worthy”!!! What a wonderful new chapter for you and your family! I wish you much success and above all, happiness!!! I am wondering if you have any idea when you will start workshops at the new space and how you will determine who gets to come as I am sure there will be a waiting list that goes on for years! However long it is, I will definitely be on the list!!!

  20. Sunny

    I live in California. How do I buy one of those WC signs from you????? Pretty please!!!

  21. Jessica @ Dear Emmeline

    So pretty and inspiring over there! Makes me want to come over and hang out!

  22. Cheapdiva

    Coming to Chapel Market, from Wisconsin, this year. PLEASE tell me you’ll have the WC signs again!

  23. Sarah

    You are just too cool. I adore what you’re doing, and your new place looks wonderful. Keep up the fantastic work!!

  24. Becky

    Marian, what a great space! So exciting. I could just come and sit and enjoy looking at all your great finds. Keep all the great ideas coming. Just bought my first bottle of your hemp oil and I’m going to try it out this weekend. I do get a little worried at times that milk paint, hemp oil and a couple of vintage chairs constitutes an exciting weekend for me but it does!

    • Alicia T (from Whittier)

      Don’t be worried…I would feel the same way! Don’t you just love the smell of hemp oil? Enjoy your weekend!!!!

  25. Gloria @ glutenfreepoodlehome

    Wednesdays are my day off from my real job and I go around my house starting things just like you described and getting sidetracked. I just call it thinking about the hereafter. What am I here after?

  26. Patti

    Hi Marian – loving your new space! I plan to be at Chapel Market in October – my first time. I need a 34-36″ wide 2 or 3 drawer chest to place between twin beds. I’d love to buy one from you – maybe in “typewriter” 🙂

  27. Celeste

    You’ve been collecting for this space for years. Each thing hidden away in a closet, corner, or basement has found the home where it belongs. It’s a lovely and inspiring place and I look forward to seeing many beautiful photos.

  28. Susan Takeda

    I’m swooning over that compote. Like you, I love beautiful blue and white dishes.

  29. lisa

    Oh MY!!! I cannot WAIT to be able to come here! We WILL be able to come here, right? Oh, Marian, I am so happy for you! God is soooo good!

  30. Sheila

    Squeeeee!!!!! The French ironstone compote is so gorgeous! Oh, how I wish I was closer to PA, sigh… On the other hand I’m tickled that you’ve found your studio space!

  31. Rose

    I know it is probably in one of your previous posts but where is this Chapel Market being held and when? My husband is in the Canadian military and has been posted from the west coast of Canada to the East coast. We will be making a road trip through the States and I am hoping I will be able to fit in a stop to see some of your amazing stuff if I can time it right.

  32. Sue O'Mullan

    LOL “Yes, I have ridden the scooter around the shop, it’s irresistible”…. so so funny!!!! I can picture you doing that smiling away “weeeeeeeeee” !!!!!

  33. Traci Gilbert

    So wonderful to see someone realizing a dream! You go girl!

  34. Paula Carli

    I am so excited for you!!! Fun fun. I saw this today and have to share it with you, you will really enjoy the photos of this store and how they used antiques and other items for display. Reminded me of what you are doing.
    It is, their article today is about Bailey’s Home & Garden Store, I think you will love looking at it and maybe get some ideas although I really don’t think you need inspiration, you give all of us plenty of it!

  35. kathy

    What a wonderful thing, to go to a workspace that is so “you”! Love the lighting in your studio and can’t wait to see what happens next! I would love to have a workspace where I don’t have to clean off the counter to cook dinner! Oh well, I am a pre-k teacher who “picks” on the weekend and I have a booth at the best antique mall in Chattanooga. I only started this a year ago so who knows where I will be iin another year. Congratulation on reaching another of your dreams!

  36. margo

    I am french and i like very much what you call iron stone (terre de fer in french) plates with various sorts of flowery sets in delicate colours. So nice, Margo from Paris

  37. Shirley@Housepitality Designs

    Your studio is coming along beautifully….one day I hope that I can pay you a visit on one of my travels!!!…

  38. Kathleen Frederick

    At our house when we forget what we were supposed to be doing we call it “SQUIRREL”. You know like you took the dog outside to do her business and a squirrel runs by and off she goes chasing it.

  39. Olivia

    Is your house starting to look empty? Love your new studio.

  40. AnnW

    I guess you didn’t know that “Make” was a New York yiddish expression for “Make
    water.” “Did you make?” Not yet. The place looks lovely.

  41. marian

    LOL, no I didn’t! I mean make, as in “make something.”

  42. Lynn Dumouchel

    I am so excited for you, you are living a dream lots uf us milk painters have!!!

  43. Judy H.

    Marian, is it wrong to love an object as much as I love that compote?? It is priceless! And yes, you DO need it for photo shoots and when you are finished, is it for sale? 🙂
    Your office is coming along beautifully and so creatively. Those milk painted table legs are as charming as they can be. I can’t wait to see the finished product, I know it will be awesome.159

  44. Joy Schumann

    Marian: You are my kind or person…just moved in, surely not settled and here you are painting table legs. I am sort of like that; that is why after 8 months I still am not totally settled in my new townhome! Love the compote of course and even the potato box could be strengthened a bit and used for something…seems to cute (and has a story) not to display it!
    Enjoy your new diggs,

  45. Alicia T (from Whittier)

    Marian, Your new compote is like an early Christmas present! What a timely arrival. I can see why you chose it. We are all enjoying your new journey as a shop owner!

  46. Addie

    YOU GO GIRL!!!!! ….. And on that scooter too!!!!
    God is soooo good!!!!
    This IS the perfect plan.

  47. Jane

    Every time I read a post about your new workshop, I can’t help but think that is was made for you, just waiting for you to find it. So happy for you!

  48. Tina

    The space seems perfect, you must be like a kid in a candy store! God certainly does move in mysterious ways! Just when you were your lowest with the house sale etc. he lifted you up! As you already know God always gives us what we NEED, sometimes that need just doesn’t match up with what we think WE think we need. Looks like the new space was just what you NEEDED:) you are such an inspiration to woman and girls, it is so refreshing to see and get to come along with you on this new journey that this new space in providing you with!

  49. Angela Wallis

    Marian, LOVE your new space and sooo looking forward to watching it take shape. recently I picked up the letters to spell CREATE and would love them to look like yours. Did you spray them gold or is it gold leaf? Thanks. Hoping to meet you in Toronto.

  50. Tina

    The very day I read this blog post I went to an antique store here in Ramstein, Germany and saw an entire set of these dishes. Unfortunately, the store owner would not part with them. They are beautiful and I’ve decided to keep an eye out for them the next time I’m in France.


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Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…


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