Monday, August 5, 2013

A New Look for Old China

The inspiration for this table came from the March-April issue of Southern Lady magazine.  I had never bought that magazine before, but after browsing through it in the store, I discovered that it included a lot of things that interest me.  Who knew I was a Southern lady?  I mean, I AM Southern -- an Arkansas native who has lived in four other southern states  -- and most of the time I TRY to act like a lady, but my image of myself doesn't exactly match the real Southern ladies I know.

ANYWAY.  The magazine had a feature titled, "A New Look for Old China."  As I read further, I realized that MY wedding china -- selected in 1972 --  is considered old.  All of the featured tablesettings paired patterns from the 60s, 70s, and even 80s (weren't they just a couple of years ago?) with modern elements to update them.  Here's the photo that caught my eye, as it most closely resembles my Lenox pattern.
I really liked the combination of geometric-patterned linens with the "old" china, so I set out to look for some to go with my china.  After failing to find any ready-made placemats in the right colors, I went to Joann's and found some fabric that I liked.  I cut it to size and hemmed the edges of two table runners and four napkins. Here is the table I set with the new linens.
Here's the placesetting with my Lenox Windsong china and Lunt Belvedere silver.
Here's a close-up of the pattern.  The turquoise blues in the fabric are a good match for the center of the flower in the plate borders.
Peach roses in julep cups made a nice contrast for the turquoise blue.  My crystal is "old," too -- Lenox Moonspun, a pattern I share with several of my favorite bloggers who married around the same time.
 I like the reflected pattern in the julep cup!
Another view of the table.
The wonderful candelabra was a surprise gift from my husband, who spotted it in a catalog and thought I needed it.  It adds another modern touch to a table set with old china! 
Thanks, Southern Lady magazine for the inspiration!  I'm over being insulted by learning my china -- and I -- are old.  Mostly.

I will be linking to Cuisine Kathleen's Let's Dish and Between Naps on the Porch, so be sure to stop by to see many pretty tablescapes!


  1. I love that magazine! I also love your table and what you said about both you and your china being old. I grinned in agreement!

  2. Oh, what a lovely interpretation of the Southern Lady article! The fabric in the runners does make a wonderful modern touch next to your *old* (but not antique!) dishes. The two runners crosswise make a very nice effect, especially with a julep cup of roses on each, and there could hardly be anything more modern than the new candlelabra. Another wonderfully inviting table, Tricia!

  3. Awesome - you did a great job and I think the person who thought up this idea is brilliant! I adore "Southern Lady" magazine. It is really one of the only magazines that spends a lot of time on table settings. I chose "Solitaire", when I married (you are correct - seems like yesterday!), but have a lot of friends with "Moonspun". Your Windsong looks fabulous with the new linens and sterling. Love the contrasting flowers - beautiful!

  4. I need to look and see if I have that issue. I sometimes buy it at the grocery store. We were married in the 70s too. Doubt that our china is featured though. I think what you did is fantastic. Love the fabric you selected to play against your "old" china. '-) Every detail of your table is delightful. I like the way you used two runners cross wise on the table. Thanks for sharing this beauty!

  5. Thanks for visiting me at We Call It Junkin, yes, I want to visit that Mercer house too! I LOVE Southern Lady magazine, but I have to say, I like YOUR rendition of the "old" china even better than theirs, really! You did a beautiful job. I have a mint julep cup like that somewhere, I need to dig it out and I'm sure it needs a good polishing. Take care - Dawn

  6. Thanks for visiting me at We Call It Junkin, yes, I want to visit that Mercer house too! I LOVE Southern Lady magazine, but I have to say, I like YOUR rendition of the "old" china even better than theirs, really! You did a beautiful job. I have a mint julep cup like that somewhere, I need to dig it out and I'm sure it needs a good polishing. Take care - Dawn

  7. You have given your table a fresh young look! But yes, it must have been just a few years ago, surely. I pre-date you by a decade and that seems like yesterday. We were so hip then. Really.

    Now I'm going to go look at my wedding china, Spode's Blue Bird. Not sure if I can pull off a big winner like you did with that busy pattern.

    Lovely candelabra too. Your husband did a good job!

  8. oooh, you actually did something after you saw the table setting in that magazine. I've been a reader for years and when I saw the pieces in the magazine, I thought of your windsong and my snow lily. Same era and I, too, looked for some pieces to go with mine and didn't have time to make anything. Yours turned out to be such a winner, I doubt that I can even come close. Wouldn't it be fun to see everyone's wedding china? Maybe Kathleen could do that as a challenge, hint hint.. lol. I love how the china was instantly updated with the gorgeous fabric you found. It is really a perfect match to the china!!! Awesome! xo marlis ps.. can you tell I just loved your table???

  9. I love your use of your runners! Your modern fabric marries beautifully with your 'old' china! I'm a fan of Southern Lady magazine but I think it's a terrible name. According to Etsy, anything older than 20 years is considered vintage, I've been vintage more than half my life :)

  10. This is so pretty! The linens compliment that beautiful china perfectly.

  11. You deserve a prize. This is just too cool for words. Great inspiration. Thanks for inviting us for a peak. Cherry Kay

  12. Wow, that really brings those "old" dishes into the 21st century...beautiful table, Tricia. That article must have been written by a 20 year old! It is amazing what fabric can do to change the looks of a table.
    Have a wonderful week...

  13. Oh Tricia, you are not old, maybe your china is, but not you! I think they mean by old a china that was made long before you "actually got married!" I love it, as I adore things with history and time, not much for the new stuff and your table is gorgeous, specially with your hubs great candelabra gift! The runners are awesome, beautiful wonder I don't like minimalism! Have a nice weekend.

  14. I do not qualify for that mag! I am a NYer , life long. :)
    I love how that looks, I am going to think about that.
    Marlis suggested we do a wedding china challenge. That will be coming up. And I will be on the look out for something modern to pair mine with. Mine is very similar to yours, Noritake, Heather circa 1972 or so.
    You did a great job!

  15. Tricia, this is so pretty. Love that patterned fabric, and it really picks up the colors in your china beautifully. And you know how much I love your crystal! I have bought that magazine several times. It always has some pretties to see. The problem with the term "Southern Lady" is that, to me, it sounds like an old lady, and I have yet to admit that's what I am - even though my wedding china and crystal certainly qualify for this article! laurie

  16. Gorgeous tablescape! I love the way you used the runners - awesome!

  17. Tricia,
    What a pretty table setting. I have only recently become enamored of table runners. I am late to the party, apparently. But they are so versatile. I had to laugh at your comment about your China pattern being considered "old". It looks great and that's what counts, right?
    Your bio could be a description of me, except we only have one grandchild, so far. :D

  18. I do love this idea of mixing the old with the new, and it totally works. Your new runners and napkins look fab with your "old" China. Would it be better if they called it vintage? Somehow sounds classier than just old.

  19. You did a really nice job of updating your "old china". LOVE that turquoise of my favorite colors.
    No wonder your DD wanted a similar set, which btw, turned out great, too! I'm impressed!!!