Monday, September 1, 2014

The Dish Pantry

Returning from my summer in North Carolina, I realized that I have many tough tasks to accomplish here, before retiring and moving there!  This will not be an easy road for someone who has occasionally been called a dish hoarder and sometimes much worse !  Yes, I do have a dish fetish and it's time to confront it now.  My husband says it will take a semi  just to move my dishes!  So I decided to spend labor day weekend tackling the job of cleaning out my dish pantry. My goal was to get everything off the floor and to eliminate dishes that I could live without (not such an easy decision, as I have spent the past 40 years gathering my own little store house of dining finery!)

When we remodeled the kitchen, I decided to eliminate  upper cabinets and instead built a dish pantry. It's much easier to see what you have, rather than trying to climb up into upper cabinets. 

A heavy old door with beveled thick glass guards the storehouse of collected goodies.


I like peering through the glass to the colorful contents that wait
 for their chance to be used on a dining table.

As I grab the ornate handle and open the door-

Oh- the confessions of a dish hoarder!

Tearing up, I realize how many memories are stored in here. So with a case of the shakes and  sweating profusely, I began the daunting task.

I mean really- I even have oil paintings hanging of china!
Really, Susan???
Doesn't this just make your heart skip a beat? 

The oil and vinegar cruets that Mr.RTH gave to me for Christmas 8 years ago-
a must keep.

One of my first purchases on EBAY- old cream soup bowls.  Surely I can't get rid of those.

If there's anything that makes my heart skip a beat- it's gold gilding. 
To get rid of  these?    Simply not going to happen!

 The beautiful red champagne glasses that my staff at Marshall Field's gave me for Christmas one year!   Staying!!!
 My stash of horn salad dishes!  Perfect for our new cottage on the river for sure!
 A stack of old bread boards in silver trays!  Way to hard to find again!  Staying!

A stack of tin plated bowls from France!   Perfect for rustic dinners in our cottage.  Not going either!
 My mother's china!  Lovingly gathered from the gas stations in Henry County, Virginia. It was a give-away with a fill-up!   Plus, I love it's color- grey and gold.  . Surely, I can't be forced to  give up my mother's china!

My pink and turquoise stash, including the magnificent pink depression glass shrimp cocktail glasses that my Romancing the Home girls gave me!  A must keep!

These sweet little violet teacups.  Just can't- 
Natural shell bowls and salad plates- perfect for Carolina shrimp and crab.  
 My first collected piece of old Paris porcelain.  Pasta bowls from the personal chef to
 King George V.  Or so I was told by the dealer that sold them to me!
 Too good of a story to let them go. 
 Okay- another version of gold!  But I love them.
 My collection of old bakery cake plates.  It took me 30 years to find all those sizes.  I don't have another 30 years.
 My collected grouping of mis- matched Venetian green glasses, many of them gifts.
Green goes with everything and it's going with me.

A stack of gilded band white porcelain plates- so yummy and versatile in their use.
Gilding- shiny gold that makes me smile.   Mine to keep!

 A set of game and fish dishes-  everyone needs a set!  Staying in the Hawthorne arsenal  and moving to NC.

 A stack of Fitz and Floyd Cherubini pattern dessert plates- used for many Christmas dinners.
Lovingly gathered by my friend Lynda Sue and I during our time at Robinson's in California.  We both have a set, so I can't let them go.  Plus they are GOLD!  And just look at those sweet little faces- saying "keep me, keep me"!
A newer passion- Blackberry Farms orange and white dishes.  Some were given to my by friends and some were purchased during my delightful stays at the farm.  Going back to the part of the country from which they came!

 A grouping of old quadruple plate bread baskets, a very popular wedding gift in the 1930's. I love to use them as salad bowls or individual antipasto trays.  Just can't live without them.
Newly polished hotel silver ice cream bowls.  Surely Mr.RTH understands the need for these!

 My collection of French pottery, much bought while in Paris last summer.  Memories!

Leopard goes with everything! And it's going with me!

Tartan collection, perfect for a North Carolina cottage.
Well, Labor Day weekend is almost over, and  the  dish pantry is cleaned out, organized and everything is off the floor.  It took two days and a lot of painful decisions. There are simply too many memories in that closet!  My car is loaded with goodies for the shop and a couple of treasures  are still setting on the  kitchen counter for a final heartbreaking  decision. More Villerory and Boch from Marshall Fields, the pattern Medici.  Just looked it up on Replacements and the plates are selling for $49.99.  I sure do like it- so what's it going to be?  The dish hoarder needs to make another gut wrenching  decision.

 Looks like it's only half a semi needed for the dishes going to  North Carolina !  Next chore- the crystal stash! That's a semi on it's own!  



Oh my we need to go to rehab? Yes, my hubs always seem to call me a 'dish hoarder' and I have confronted my problem a few times in life. I love your pantry, at least your dishholic situation is under control, all in one place! My fetish is all over the house, without any discrimination.
Ok, I have given away many a dish to my DDs, but than I buy more and it keeps the pile high, lol!
Well, when I realized, like you, that I kinda looked more like a hoarder then I really was, it was when my Mil died...besides been a master HOARDER, she left us so much I can't get rid of as they're heirlooms! Mother has given me some and she's not dead yet!!!
I am envious of your adorable and gorgeous pantry, as dishes are fun and they make me happy, so who cares if I will be sick till I die!!
Have a sweet week, pal.

Sarah said...

Susan, there seems to be a large number of us out there with a dish fetish. Your pantry is envious! I've got my dish stash stored in various places. Not convenient, but I make do.
I say there are worse things to be. ;-)

LostRoses said...

Hoarding beautiful dishes must be the lesser of several other evils. Lovely stash!

Pinky at Designs by Pinky said...

I am a member of the dish hoarders anonymous (or rather not so anonymous:):) Alot of your pictures wouldn't load for me so I will come back but I hope you get to take everything you want to. You have BEAUTIFUL pieces!!!

Julie Andrea said...

Oh my Susan, laughed all the way through this. I totally understand.

Christy said...

Oh how this story made me laugh! I say keep what you love! The cottage in NC needs every little piece! And when you start on the crystal. Oh my! You have to keep all the crystal. Build a crystal and dish pantry! Don't forget the guest cottage needs filling up, too!

Alison @ The Polohouse said...

Be still my heart!
Kept gasping for air over here, Susan!
Then just as I tried to stand up and catch my breath again -- the crushing blows came ... in the form of leopard and PLAID!!!

Send paramedics qUiCk!!!

Katha said...

You completely surprised me! Thought for sure when I finished reading the script, you wouldn't have parted with a single item. I have to say I teared up through out because all pieces are so beautiful, so you, and selfishly the thought of you moving makes me teary. Really happy for you though!

Anonymous said...

I discovered your page today. I like it and will visit many times.

frenchbourne said...

Well that went well :-)

Anonymous said...

OMG, I just found your blog and I am so glad I did.
I too have a dish fetish, but not as much as you, lol.
My husband and I are having our retirement home built in KY and I am taking my matter what! Instead of the movers taking them, we purchased a enclosed trailer and we are taking them our self. That way I can pack them extra careful and we will be responsible (and buying the trailer made my husband happy)
Good luck to you on your move!