a dose of spring

This little lady has brought a breath of fresh air on an otherwise gloomy day.  Most of our friends to the north and even the south are buried in a foot of snow or more so I just had to share this unlikely February sight.

blooming geranium in February

I think unanimously everyone is looking forward to spring.  Actually, I am sure of that.  In the meantime, I’ll bring spring to your computer.

blooming geranium in February

Did you know that you can successfully overwinter geraniums?  And if conditions are optimum, your geranium might just put out a rare winter bloom.

Here’s how…

  • Before the first frost (usually in October ’round these parts), bring potted geraniums indoors.  You can transplant geraniums from your garden beds into pots if you’re up for it.
  • Dead head any spent blooms and wilting leaves.
  • Keep geraniums in a cool (50-60 degrees), sunny area over the winter.  This potted geranium lives in my office which is typically about 60 degrees believe it or not.  Optimum geranium-overwintering conditions!
  • Don’t over water it!  That is the most common mistake made with all potted plants really.  Generally speaking, water when the soil is dry to the touch.

over wintering a geranium

And of course my favorite vintage McCoy planter is home to this geranium.  A cute planter is a must.  I have a collection of yellow McCoy planters.

blooming geranium in February

Ahh,  we’re in the home stretch now friends.   Soon we’ll all be looking at gardens lined with hot pink geraniums.  Soon.

blooming geranium in February

Don’t worry, I’ll remind you in October how you were feeling on this particularly stormy winter day so you remember to dig up your geraniums and nurse them  through the cold months so they’ll bloom indoors for you next winter.  Or you can just pin this as a reminder…

overwintering geraniums

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home for the holidays

I’ve never thought of myself as a very transient person being that I always lived within minutes from family and close friends.  Always in the Philadelphia area.  And let’s face it, this last move to Cape May is still pretty much within the Philadelphia metro area…only a mere two hours away.  Still practically a Philadelphia suburb if you ask me.  People here are Phillies fans.  And Eagles fans.  It is definitely still like home in that regard.

Eclectic Christmas Beach House

However, this is the first time in my life I’ve ever moved out of Pennsylvania.  I’m faced with learning New Jersey laws and regulations.  Most of which are much lighter and easier than Pennsylvania’s.

Eclectic Christmas Beach House

It has occurred to me that I have lived in five homes in the last 10 years.  Five!  I must be more transient than I thought with that many addresses under my belt.  This is my first official New Jersey home.

Eclectic Christmas Beach House

With each move, comes decorating and redecorating.  Especially around the holidays.

Eclectic Christmas Beach House

Questions arise like where will the Christmas tree go?

Eclectic Christmas Beach House

Where will the stockings be hung?

Eclectic Christmas Beach House

Will Santa know where to find us?

Eclectic Christmas Beach House

And with each move, comes new traditions.

Eclectic Christmas Beach House

A new sense of “home”.

Eclectic Christmas Beach House

New beginnings…

Eclectic Christmas Beach House

Happy holidays, friends!

Eclectic Christmas Beach House


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lumberjack holiday

As everyone is preparing for Thanksgiving today, I find myself thinking about Christmas. I opened some of the bins over the weekend that house my decorations. Some vintage, some family heirlooms, some handmade. I simply wasn’t inspired by them this year. I want something different. Less fragile. More organic and comfortable. This led me to my favorite shirt. It is a vintage wool plaid shirt that I wear around the house. It is cozy, comfortable and colorful.

favorite vintage wool shirt

That is exactly how I want to decorate this year!  Cozy, comfortable and colorful.

Lumberjack Holiday

I am pulling out every single one of my cozy wool throws.

wool throws

The plan is to layer on the patterns and bring nature in – pine cones, moss, twigs.  I’ve got plenty of extras to go around like these pretty vintage wool scarves.

Lumberjack Holiday

This theme will be prevalent in my retail spaces as well.  Ryan has made timber napkin rings and coasters from fallen trees.

Plus, we’ve crafted wine gift bags from old flannels.  By “we”, I mean Ryan since he sews!  My idea of course but the execution was all him.  Turns out these little upcycled gift bags are the perfect size for milk paint as well.

Lumberjack Holiday

And I put together a few rag ball ornaments with the scraps.  I am loving all things flannel, wool and plaid this season!  Can’t wait to see how the rest of our Lumberjack Holiday decor comes together.

How are you decorating this holiday season?

Lumberjack Holiday

If you’re craving your own cozy vintage wool button down, I’ll have a few for sale in my shop at West End Garage along with the flannel wine bags, some flannel bunting (not pictured), the scarves and timber pieces.

wool throws

P.S. Did you catch a glimpse of that flag?  I recently scored two huge 48 star casket flags circa WWII.  I will be selling one as well.  American history at its finest.

Lumberjack Holiday

clover and a jacket

Oh the Clover Market hangover has arrived…

We had a fantastic time yesterday at the fall opener with splendid September weather. It is so fun to see all of the familiar faces after the long summer break. It is kind of like back-to-school for adults.

My brother, Jake and I, worked the booth from 10-5 and sold nearly all of the vintage treasures that we brought. You guys are awesome! Thank you!

We’ll be back for both October markets. The 13th in Ardmore and the 27th in Chestnut Hill. I am very excited about the new location!  Put those dates on your calendar now.

If you went to Clover, what treasures did you find?

So in other news, I’m obsessed with vintage military right now. I guess I have been for a while actually. Specifically personal military items like soldier’s bags, trunks, army blankets and jackets. I suppose I missed this trend in high school.

vintage army jacket

Earlier this summer, I had the opportunity to buy an entire lot of one soldier’s army jackets from the 50′s or 60′s. I just pulled them out since the weather is getting cooler and snapped photos of this lightweight jacket.

vintage army jacket

What I found so interesting were these yellowed tags still in the pocket. I find myself wondering where they were stationed and what, in history, they were doing.

vintage army jacket

Can you read that?  It is his quarter’s assignment and bedding receipt all typed up.  Each soldier was responsible for their iconic army blanket, sheets and pillows.

vintage army jacket

The other jackets are all wool.  I haven’t photographed them since coming back from the dry cleaner but there is a long overcoat, a button up jacket and a very cool cropped bomber that I think I have to keep…at least for now.

happy labor day

Here in the states, we are celebrating Labor Day today.  We’ve taken some time off for R&R.  How are you spending your long weekend?

I have a new treasure to share this Labor Day.  Authentic US Marine Corps recruiting posters.

Gorgeous colors.

USMC vintage recruiting posters (1 of 2)

And vintage graphics.

USMC vintage recruiting posters (2 of 2)

I have a thing for WWII memorabilia.  It is not glamorous but certainly a significant part of history.  A lot of the pieces I collect are soldiers’ personal items like trunks & bags.  I’m not so much into the weapons and such.

At any rate these posters are very cool and believed to be from that era.  What do you think?  They’re for sale at The West End Garage.

my fleet

After my last post about my new to me vintage ship captain lamp, I got to thinking…

milk paint table makeover & ship captain lamp

Exactly how many of these guys are living in our home?

Well I’m here today to inventory them and introduce you to all of the ship captains/fishermen and their kin!  Without further adieu, my latest collection…

Adjacent to the wall with the lamp is the art deco mantel which is currently home to twin ship captains.

vintage ship captain bookends

They’re pretty cute and functional bookends.

vintage ship captain bookends (2 of 2)

You may remember Old Man Ryan, the vintage needlepoint on the left.  I introduced him a few months ago.

vintage ship captain collection

He has since found a wife and I must say she’s a real looker.  Another vintage needlepoint to his right.

vintage ship captain collection

The little sailor paint by number boy finally found a home.  He seemed to round out the family nicely.  Let’s call him Wilson.

vintage ship captain collection

I told you I have a thing for the peg leg captains.  I like them better than the Gorton’s Fishermen types.

vintage ship captain collection (6 of 7)

We picked up this little figurine in Brimfield.  He’s now perched on a shelf in our bedroom.

vintage ship captain collection

With that said, I do have a Gorton’s Fishermen captain.  He is a painting that is now hanging above our bar area.  I will have to take an updated picture of that soon.  This photo is from when we first got him last summer.  I love the colors of that ocean.

Gorton's Fisherman

The peg leg lamp is definitely my current favorite though.  While all of the captains/fishermen have their own style, I think his is the best.  I love how the yellow mock turtle neck slim his figure down!  Ha!

milk paint table makeover & ship captain lamp

In your opinion, how many is too many in this sort of collection?  I think I’m at capacity.

So tell me, what (or who) are you collecting these days?