Saturday, December 21, 2013

A Dressed Window

When I speak of window-dressing, physically or metaphorically, most people do not even know what I mean. There was an era where windows of shops were dressed with displays and lights all year round, so that even when the shops were closed at night, people enjoyed walking in town and looking at the windows displays. It is rare to find a window display, but today I found one in the nearby town. It has been done in reds and whites and it looks oh-so-nice and gave me such a lift that when I got home I began making my own place more presentable. When I get time I will get pictures for a continuing house tour. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy looking at this shop window.

I like the way the milk glass is displayed in this shelf. I can remember when these pieces were so common, you could even find them in the cheap stores. Now, they are antique treasures. I like the sparkly snowflake sitting in the white footed dish.

The pretty bag comes in all colors and has a matching wallet. There were lots of them inside the shop.

Click for a closer view.

That is a lovely milk-glass pitcher on the top of the shelf,

and I like the painted hat boxes, in this picture. These are things that I cannot actually use and would not be very practical in my small house, so I enjoying seeing them on display. I do think I could use the hat boxes though.

Now I would like to talk about something that I have had several requests for: How do you enjoy life at home if you do not feel you can do anything, like sewing or have tea with grandchildren, until you have the housework done? I will not have time to write a long explanation, so I will tell you what I do. Everyone has to adjust to their own circumstances.

Whenever I wake up very early and can't get back to sleep, I get up and get the house in order. Housework seems to pass more easily and quickly early in the morning than late at night. Having the work done early means I have more time to go out on errands and essential shopping before the day ends. It also leaves plenty of time for a more leisurely afternoon to do other things besides keeping house.

I read in Grandma's diary that she "did up the work" and then went into town, however, I found that I could not follow that because it took the better part of the day for me to get my work done, which included meals, dishes, laundry, straightening things up, making the bed, getting mail ready to send, and sweeping the floor. Just getting myself ready to go out took some time. So now days I do what I like first, and leave the housework for later.

My housekeeping takes such a huge part of the day that it would be 4 pm before I could play with a child or have a sewing project or take someone to tea, so on days that I want to do these enriching things, I do them first, and tackle my housework last. It often happens that the leisure reading I do or the visits with a friend can inspire me at home and I can get my housework done quite efficiently afterwards.

There have been a few times when I left my housework to visit someone, and her home was so well kept that I could hardly wait to get home and get my house as polished and homey as the home of my hostess.

My recent trip to see the store window dressing made me realize I need to clean out my china cabinet and see what I have, discard what is cracked or chipped, and display it differently, and also impressed upon me the necessity of repainting the cabinet. If I had cleaned it out before I went out to get my shopping done, it would have taken too long. This way, I got a fresh idea and was more interested in doing it.

There are those homemakers who like to have the house cleaned up before sitting down to sew or have tea with someone or to write a letter. It is hard to relax when there is chaos around you and when things are tumbling out of the coat closet.

I would suggest you list three of the most important housekeeping items you absolutely must so, and then add a fourth thing on the list for motivation: a project that interest you such as painting or baking or rearranging or sewing. Just plan on one small leisure thing each day and include it in yiur schedule. It might inspire you to get up a little earlier to indulge in a favorite thing, or to get yiur housework out of the way so you can have more hours for extra things.

If these ideas do not work with you, just clear a space adequate enough to do what you want, and then clean house when it is most convenient for you.











Miss Betsy said...

I love the beautiful white handbag with the matching wallet; it's so feminine-looking. And the lovely window-dressing shows it off to its best advantage.

Christine said...

Dear Lady Lydia,
You are correct that so much of what we see in the decorating magazines and television program is not practical for real daily life.
Like you and I am sure, many other ladies here, it is lovely to see pictures of real homes, where real families live, work, and play. I find it more encouraging than "staged" settings.
For me personally, I enjoy a lovely window dressing too; as not only does it not overwhelm me with detail, it sparks my imagination as to what might be possible in my own home, as well as affordable.

anita crane said...

Lovely! What a pretty sight for a damp, chilly morning!

amulbunny's random thoughts said...

When I was a little girl living in Wisconsin all the downtown stores had beautiful front windows. One store had an added attraction called Bruce the Spruce. They had a camera and a hidden mic and speaker and he would talk to the shoppers. It became a tradition when you went downtown (funny we never went uptown we always went downtown) to stop and see Bruce. Those days are long gone. As are the days of the popcorn man whose stand stood on a corner from spring through fall for over 50 years.

living from glory to glory said...

Dear Lydia, When I was younger I thought the windows were just magical! I think any homemaker can make her home cozy and inviting. It is a real ministry to everyone who lives within this sanctuary.
I have also learned that once in awhile I just have to get done the few major chores and just go and meet someone for tea or to help a friend who is experiencing a heavy heart. But I have always tried really hard to have things in order by the time my Hubby got home from work.
But sometimes we just have to sew and create. Housework always needs attention :)
So sometimes, I must ignore it, to keep a healthy and happy attitude.
Blessings, Roxy


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