When I shared about the antique butcher’s rack from Maria of Dreamy Whites, I shared a preview of a few other things she sent me. They were worth sharing in their own post because the items are so special.
I’ve been sitting here for several minutes trying to think of how to describe the unboxing of these gifts and I’ve found it difficult. I think it has to do with the overwhelming generosity of Maria’s gifts. Not only was she generous, but she seemed to pick out the perfect pieces for me; items she knew would have a place in my home and that would touch my heart, bringing joy. They wouldn’t just be appreciated and liked, they would be cherished and loved for a long time. They would join the ranks of some of my favorite things.
I received two large boxes from Dreamy Whites and I immediately felt butterflies in my stomach, anxious to reveal the contents. I hauled the boxes in my studio after the painful experience of letting them sit in the garage for 24 hours! The anticipation built to an apex and I could finally cut them open and satisfy the curiosity. The largest of the two boxes was filled with packing peanuts, so I had to dig to find the contents. I came out with two large, heavy balls of bubble wrap.
It took several minutes to cut through the bubble wrap, but I knew what the items were when just a few layers were removed. They were antique German ironstone cake stands. When I got them out of the wrapping, I set them down on the floor and literally had to catch my breath. If there was a witness to all of this, they may have assumed I just heard shocking news. I sat still and quiet, just breathing deeply. I just needed a minute to appreciate such a tremendous gift. Not one, but two gorgeous, large, heavy, German ironstone cake stands.
If you know me, you know how perfect they are. If you don’t, well, let me tell you…
#1 – Ironstone is my very favorite thing to collect. I have hundreds of pieces and the crown jewel of the collection is an 1800’s American cake stand.
#2 – Ironstone cake stands are rare and expensive when they surface. (Except for my friend Cheri who found one for $25!!) I paid over $400 for the one I own with my birthday money a few years ago. No regrets.
#3 – I grew up in Germany and that has heavily influenced my style. The fact that these are German is meaningful and I didn’t even know Germans made ironstone!
#4 – I had considered buying one of these since Maria first listed them, but I would always talk myself out of it. You already have one ironstone cake pedestal. You don’t need another one.
Well, need is irrelevant when it comes to gifts and Maria decided I could use two more.
When Jeff walked into the studio and saw the two cake stands on the floor he said, “Oh wow! Whoever sent those has you pegged. Tell her not to send things around your birthday next year, because it’s making me look bad.” I showed them off to him, pointing out they were German, noting their size and weight. These cake stands are big and heavy! My American cake stand dwarfs in comparison. They are so big, they don’t fit on the shelf in my butler’s pantry. The rim of the cake stand hangs off!
I spent some time to find the right place to keep each of them. I want them to be used, seen, and safe from curious cats and rambunctious boys. It’ll be a dark day in the Parsons house if someone breaks one of my ironstone cake stands.
I put one by the stove and filled it with some pretty things, like antique Civil War-era flatware, and some things I use when I’m cooking – the olive oil, toothpicks, and pewter salt & pepper shakers. I experimented with other things… crocheted dishcloths, a peppermill, my ironstone salt crock, and a few other things, but this arrangement seemed the best.
I like using pieces like platters and stands to corral small items. It keeps things in a group, looking tidier.
I put the other one on the open shelving between the laundry room door and butler’s pantry. I tried a glass cake dome over it and it was perfection. This stand will hold a lot of birthday cakes in the future.
Even looking at these pictures makes my heart flutter! Yes, it’s because they are beautiful antiques that I love, but I think it has more to do with the sentiment behind them…knowing a sweet friend picked them out and packed them to ship to me, asking for nothing in return. This wasn’t an exchange for a sponsored post or an item with strings attached. This was a gift.
And, if that wasn’t enough, she sent me a Belgian bulb crate as well…
I had it sitting in the studio while I figured out where to put it and the cats made it their bed. They’d sit in the box when it was in the evening sun and look out at the world.
It might be a cat bed one day, but for now, it’s on the kitchen counter, holding linens, crocheted dishcloths, and an antique blue onion jar.
Again, it corrals smaller items into a nice grouping that’s easy to move when I clean the counters.
The handy thing about getting a package from someone is that you then have their address and can send them some happy mail in return, so I did exactly that! I didn’t feel like I had anything to compare to what Maria sent me, but I gathered some things I’ve made, painted, and an antique French sampler that’s been in my stash for a while. When I thought of it, I went up to my sewing room to root it out. I didn’t even realize until I was packing it that the maker’s initials were MC…a perfect gift for Maria Carr.
Instead of just sharing about gifts, which can seem a little show-offy, I’d imagine, I would like to pass along some of the happiness I received. I am offering a $10o gift card to the Dreamy Whites online shop to one of my readers, so you can have the experience of getting a shipment from her…scented with dried lavender and packed in handsewn French linen bags.
AND, Maria is throwing in a Belgian bulb crate for the winner in addition to the gift card I’m offering. The pot is sweeter!
Just visit her online shop and leave a comment on this post letting me know what you would buy if you win! There are Dutch ironstone cake stands available (and hers are priced much better than the American ones I’ve seen on eBay and Etsy over the years) and she is having a special on her French Market Baskets. Use coupon code “french market basket” to get a discount.
The giveaway will close Sunday, May 10, 2020, at midnight PST.