Monday, April 23, 2012

the Spring mantel



It's Spring, and I'm thinking green...  green with a hint of turquoise!



The living room mantel is the only one of our five that I change seasonally.  I thought these vintage and antique Chinese ginger jars (they were literally used to import ginger) just said "Hello Spring!"  This is only a few pieces in a larger collection, but they make me happy each time I go into or pass by the living room. 


 
Several of the ginger jars still have their original clay tops, and one even has its original wicker wrapping.



The ginger jars share the mantel with a vintage copper tray from India, my twenty-year-old ivy topiary, a pair of antique mercury glass candlesticks, an 1857 leather book, ...



an iron bird, a piece of dried root from the property, and an antique French gilt mirror.


 



With so much going on on the mantel I placed a simple black antique tole tray, leaving it unadorned, on the coffee table.



Today was a bit chilly, so I started a fire for you (margaritas, fires.... ohhh, the things I do for you.  
I must like you! :)



70 comments:

  1. It looks amazing. Love the copper tray, and your ivy topiary I can't believe. It seems I have buy new ones every season. Can't seem to keep them alive...

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  2. Everything looks beautiful! I love the splashes of green in your living room! The touches on the mantle brought Spring inside!

    Since I know you enjoy homes, when you have a moment please stop by and visit my latest post - I think you'll enjoy it!

    Have a wonderful week!

    Mary

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  3. You like us. You really like us! This mantel is gorgeous. I've been trying to think what I will do with mine to make it more spring like. Right now it has a forsythia wreath, a birdnest, a small plaque with a poem about spring and some pussy willows in a tomatoe jar (sort of a small olive jar). But it's time for some more colour.

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  4. Joan,
    That is so pretty. I love the ginger jars and never knew that that is what they were used for, literally. I also love the bird. Is it metal or clay, I can't tell from the image. It looks like it might be a chilly day in your area...it's turned cool and foggy here in Southern California.
    Great job, as always.
    Karen

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  5. Thanks for the Margarita and the Fire...
    I really do appreciate it!!

    The mantel looks lovely...why of course it does...as always!

    Cheers
    Linda :o)

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  6. Hello from chilly Burlington, Ontario

    Thank you for the warm fire - it looks so inviting that we turned on our gas fireplace in our living room before dinner. Last week, we were in sandals wishing for that margarita to be delivered....

    Your posts are always a top favourite! NB

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  7. Beautiful! Thank you for the fire. I enjoyed it here with my AC on in Houston:)

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  8. Every piece on your mantle is lovely; I'm especially fond of the gorgeous green ginger jars! Wishing I was sitting in that special antique chair, enjoying the fire and your company!

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  9. I absolutely love your home and each new thing you do to it!

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  10. The margaritas and fires are lovely, but what I really come for is the feast for my eyes each time I visit your wonderful home!
    -Revi

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  11. OMG!!! I feel soooo pampered! Really! Now I can face doing a sketch of the linen slip cover for the recamier for our show house....

    My favorite piece?
    The root...
    For it's gnarliness...

    Reminds me of the platter of dried leaves I have in our dining room. As we strive for order and symmetry in our lives, it serves as a constant reminder of Mother Nature's appreciation of the singular beauty of every little thing around us.

    Cheers,
    John

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  12. Love the greeny-turqouise color. Could use a warm fire tonight here in NC - very chilly. Went from air conditioning to heater in the car.

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  13. It looks beautiful. I am crazy about those ginger jars and the bird...I don't recall seeing the bird before. It is the perfect addition to your spring display.
    Best...Victoria

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  14. Looks delightful and cozy, Joan...the jars are magnificent! I could use an evening fireside. :)

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  15. Joan, your mantel is exquisite with those authentic ginger jars! I'm looking at my mantel right now, thinking that I need a change. Only have 1; not sure if I could decorate 5! You amaze me.

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  16. I like, I like! The ginger jars are awesome! Nice mix!
    A margarita and a cozy fire sound great at this point of the evening! These chilly nights still keep us wanting some extra heat!
    Happy Spring Joan!

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  17. Really beautiful Joan. I love those ginger jars, what a collection!!
    xoxo,
    A

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  18. Joan, that is soo gorgeous! I love the colors and the rich use of texture, and its such an interesting assortment of beautiful objects, beautifully done!!

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  19. Oh Joan, we like YOU!!! I am sipping a cosmo as I type, it has been a long, HARD day of work. We got the train room EMPTY, took a week. I adore your ginger jars,did you acquire them at antique stores? The copper tray is GORGEOUS!!!! Every time I see your root, I remeber that I have one out in the yard. I think I will take it with me to the new house. LOVE your Spring mantle. XO, Pinky

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  20. Hi Joan,
    Love the turqouise. Looks so good with most any decor.
    Today was a perfect day for a fire, so damp and chilly early on. Thanks for sharing yours with us!
    XO

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  21. So beautiful Joan - every little intricate detail! And margaritas are my most favorite drink in the world! Extra salt please. ; )
    xoTrina

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  22. Gorgeous Joan! I LOVE green, all your pieces are beautiful!

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  23. Joan...your home is absolutely beautiful. What a pleasure to have found your blog. I would like to ask you where you got the brick for your fireplace in the diing room. We live in Idaho and am building a new home and I have looked through every brick yard from here to Oregon for a brick I love...and wouldnt you know...I found it here in your home. Could you please tell me where you purchased it.? Is it used? Or just green tumbled?....thanks so much...Iam just thrilled to have found you. NE1113@aol.com

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  24. That green is my new fav color like tarragon is my new fav herb

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  25. Joan, I love your ginger jars collection, well....I love ALL your collections, hotel silver flatware, buckets...I've been following your blog for a long time but today is the first time I coment.
    I live in Buenos Aires, Argentina -yes, sorry for my poor English!- and I was very happy and surprised when speaking about your mud room you showed your iron gates that you bought here. Do you often come to visit my country?
    I love collecting vintage things, specially children's dishes, egg cups, salt shakers...
    Kisses! (Besos!) Silvina.

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  26. Karen- the bird is metal.

    Jann- The bricks from the fireplace in the kitchen (which I think is what you are asking;) are original to the house. They were the bricks removed from the damaged chimney, we repurposed them back into the space!

    Silvina- Thank you so much for leaving your first comment!! I'm sorry to say I have never been to your beautiful country- I bought the iron gates from an antiques dealer who purchased them there. I have a small collection of childrens dishes too:)

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  27. Like me??? You ADORE me.

    ;)

    Love your Ginger pots....Do they vaguely smell of ginger??

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  28. Again you have created a wonderful combination - A little bit of gold, a bit of sparkle, a touch of nature and the mystery of the story from the ginger jars. I love the idea that the patterns on the jars tell a tale.

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  29. Perfect! Gorgeous colors and details. Tail wag and kiss to Ella from KB!

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  30. Absolutely gorgeous Joan! Love your ginger jar collection and that glorious color! ~Delores

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  31. What a beautiful display!! I love those ginger jars!!
    Have a great day :)

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  32. I love everything you do, truly!!Your mantel is so gorgeous as is your entire house:)

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  33. Simply stunning - you have an amazing eye!!

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  34. Gorgeous. Such a wonderful collection of ginger jars, you have such an eye for beauty. Can I ask what colour paint you have on your walls?

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  35. PS Sorry I have just found your paint section! silly me.

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  36. All those slightly weathered surfaces blend so well together. I love the glaze on those jars. I have some plain round preserved vegetable jars with a very similar greenish glaze, but yours are so beautiful with their flowered panels and variety of sizes.
    --Road to Parnassus

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  37. your mantel is looking great!:)

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  38. Simply gorgeous, and I absolutely love your collection of Ginger jars! I do appreciate the fire, as it was a bit nippy, even down here in Virginia, but I'm still not going to complain about spring, hope you didn't get any of that snow! :) donna

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  39. Love the pottery. One of my favorite colors.

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  40. So beautiful!!! Perfect!! :)

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  41. Nice Joan..I just love how you always put little natural treasures you find outdoors into your decor..many would just walk past these things without seeing them, let alone taking them home to enjoy. Wonderful.))

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  42. What an amazing space. The ginger jars are an unexpected "look" on the mantel and everything in the room is pulled together perfectly.

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  43. Oooh, makes me want to collect those ginger jars too. Beautiful!

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  44. Looks absolutely spiffing as always Joni but you really must stop spoiling us first the margaritas .....and now the fire too no more sacrifices just for us we might get to like them!!

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  45. I admire your gift in creating such inviting, tasteful spaces. I enjoy each room in your home. I always notice your rugs, maybe because my living room floor has been bare for over 20 years. I haven't ever found "the one" . With a wedding in the next year, a family trip to Australia, a kitchen redo still to come, I may never find the $$$, but would love any tips on where to look someday. I live in a very small town in northeastern Kentucky, so probably includes traveling to find it.

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  46. Chilly down here in Virginia, too. I had a fire going yesterday as well. Love the tray against the large mirror.. just lovely.

    Sandy

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  47. Love your mirror - it's the same shape as the one in my dining room - great minds think alike!! :) I can't believe your topiary is 20 yrs old!! amazing - Love topiaries, trying rosemary and box out at the moment!!

    Sharon

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  48. Linda- I do adore you;) and not really, but sometimes they reek of potpourri as apparently people many people who owned them before me liked to stuff them with rank potpourri!! I had one I had to sit in coffee grinds for several months (my research showed that was a effective way to get rid of the nasty smell- are you getting the drift I wasn't a potpourri fan;)

    SusanT- I get that a lot, so thank you for looking for the colors!

    Marian- I'm not sure if you are you referring to the sisal rugs in this room or the antique rugs in other rooms of the house? I have purchased the antique rugs from many different antique shops. Since I like them with patina;) i.e. "wear" I can generally find good prices since they aren't perfect. Some of them are Kilim rugs and you might look for that name on ebay. There are many good/reasonable sources for the sisal/seagrass rugs: Lowes (my kichen dining rug- I love it:), Home Decorators Collection (on line) has a great variety and great prices. My huge rug in the barn room came from them. Pottery Barn and Crate and Barrel also carry rugs. Hope that helps!

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  49. Your mantel is absolutely beautiful. Wow....

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  50. Joan, Dan, and Ella: What a beautiful setting. I love that the ginger jars and tray seem to pick up the colors in the chair. Every picture of your home is so welcoming.
    Cindy

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  51. Thank you for your kindness and consideration in lighting the fire and re-arranging your mantle for us.

    I just found your blog and love it so far. I will look forward to your visit and comments
    Helen x

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  52. I love this post. I would love to hear more about how you store seasonal decorations and/or the process of swapping things out. I also LOVED your post on glassware. Would enjoy hearing more :)

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  53. Nothing to add to all the above -- just came back for a second look this morning. Your entries are the ones I enjoy most. Thank you for continuing your story. Ginger

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  54. This is so timely as I've been pondering how to decorate my mantles in our new home. I always love your ideas!! Love those ginger jars!!

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  55. Joan,
    Seriously, the things you do for us. As far as I am concerned, your mantel would look good bald.....you know with genes, good cheekbones....everything looks better.
    What a pretty collection.
    We made a fire last night too.
    pve

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  56. Okay, Joan - I want all of your antique ginger jars. And, I am so envious: 5 mantels? Really? I'd have so much fun at Christmas, etc. I am very impressed with your ivy topiary...20 years is truly impressive. Your mantel spring vignette is divine.
    Loi, Tone on Tone

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  57. Joan, this is so pretty. What a wonderful eye you have! -N.G.

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  58. You are indeed selfless ;). I love seeing how you style your mantles. I find it challenging to think about what to do with mine. You have a great eye and wonderful collections to feature.

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  59. Joan,
    How I wish you lived across the street!! Fires...ahhh. Margaritas...yum. And, if I haven't commented on your cowhide before...love it. Have one from my father-in-law's ranch in my living room on top of my sisal. So chic!

    xoxo Elizabeth

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  60. Joan a stunning & unique Ginger jar collection! I also love the large charger!

    ....I wanted you to know...I am featuring Anita Rivera, Friend, Designer and Paper Artist with Castles Crowns & Cottages, & her Giveaway on my site!

    xoxo
    Karena
    Art by Karena

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  61. HI Joan! I, too, love these ginger jars and have several. I LOVE your mantel arrangement with the tray, so pretty! Last week, I was on a trip with an artist friend and we were on a quest to find more of these pots. I've been told ginger and I've been told tea...anyway, my friend had just met another artist that had a collection of these green jars...a large collection...of...299! Yes!
    My jaw dropped! In two days, we found 3 of them so they are still out there! I only need 294 more!
    I love yours!
    xoxo, Chris

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  62. Beautiful! That's one of my favorite shades of green. I wish I were there in person to enjoy that fire and your lovely home. I imagine staying there would be like staying in the most cozy, welcoming B&B.
    Claudia

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  63. Such pretty things but I think it's a little too busy, sorry !!

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  64. Anon- then I guess it's a good thing it's not "your" mantel, yes?!! :) I'm sure your aesthetic is different from mine, and I have no problem with you taking the time to write and tell me that you don't like it (I see many things I don't like on blogs and in magazines; and I have no delusions that every one is going to like my design aesthetic), but why say you're "sorry"?? If that's your opinion, then own it. Own it, use your name and be authentic.

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  65. I've been searching for these jars for ages Joan. What do you think is a reasonable price for a small (4-5 inch) one? Can I ask that?
    Love your mantel, it is gorgeous.

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  66. Anon- I would say that $35 to $45 would be "reasonable" for the small ones. I have seen them for less and for a lot more!

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  67. I adore the green (as the pops of color in a pretty neutral room) with the hints of turq. Simply lovely.

    Bernadette
    www.b3hd.blogspot.com

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