White Ironstone, Valentines, and a Magazine Shoot

Yesterday my daughter and I went shopping in Dekalb, home to Northern Illinois University and the birthplace of barbed wire. Since it’s a university town, it has its share of little boutiques and an eclectic coffee house complete with stage for local performing artists. Bridget was looking for Boho style curtains and I was on the hunt for ironstone and mirrors. After returning home, I realized the ironstone makes a perfect backdrop for vintage Valentines.

White Ironstone Pitcher

The pitcher on the right has crazing and discoloration so I got it for a song.
Honestly, I like the flaws on this piece – it’s a reminder to embrace life’s imperfections.


Speaking of life’s imperfections, I was nervous about our recent photo shoot for Country Sampler.
Worried that all the flaws of our 1875 home would stick out like a sore thumb.
Worried that the photographer would think he’d made a big mistake when he walked through the door.


But he and his stylist (his charming wife) were ever so gracious and complimentary.
The photo shoot took the entire day and it was a pleasure to watch a pro in action.
They didn’t move things around as much as I thought they would.
And luckily, our live Christmas tree was still looking healthy after the holidays.


Although I wanted to ask a bazillion questions, I tried to stay out of the way.
Or help with props as needed … like ironing flour sacks so wrinkles didn’t show.


The magazine photo shoot pretty much took all day and once it started I relaxed.
This was due in large part to the laid back personalities of the photographer and his wife.
They didn’t even seem to mind too much when Kitty Albie tried climbing the tripod.
Little Albie was then banished to the bedroom where he took a long nap.


But back to our shopping trip in Dekalb … the pitcher on the left was the first acquisition of the day.
It’s a more modern piece but I like its shape despite that it’s not ironstone.


I’m sorry to say Bridget didn’t find her Boho style curtains, but she found some other pretties.
I noticed a trend with Bridget as we continued shopping.
She was repeatedly attracted to country pieces, not Bohemian style finds.


We decided that rustic country is her preference, with just a hint of Bohemia tossed in.


I found this little pitcher for $9 at another store down the street.
I’m trying to build my collection quickly so I’ll have something to put on the new kitchen shelves.
I did find a mirror, too … and a couple of pillows.


As far as the magazine photos, they’ll probably appear in the 2013 Christmas issue of Country Sampler.
Although, that’s subject to change but the magazine will contact me several months prior to publication.
So stay tuned and I’ll let you know when my imperfect but much-loved home is making its print debut.

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  1. Love your ironstone and the valentine’s vignette is lovely. Can’t wait to see the magazine, so fun. Hugs, Marty

  2. Love what you’ve done for Valentines Day, and it was exciting to hear about your photo shoot. Hope you will have more on the subject.

  3. Congrats on the shoot. I had gotten emailed by them, too, but the editor decided mine was a bit too traditional which is what I thought in the first place. Can’t wait to see it next Christmas.

  4. Awesome Congrats on the mag photo shoot ! Picture perfect that’s just it ! Wonderful work ! Have a good day !

  5. Look forward to seeing the magazine. Lovely photos again today.


  6. I love all of your ironstone and the way you have staged it for February. I have some vintage valentines’s so I might be taking this idea from you.

    We recently had our house photographed for a local magazine. I was really nervous, but the photographer was so nice. I wanted to be a fly on his shoulder to watch him, but felt like I needed to give him the privacy.

    I know you will post when the magazine comes out. Can’t wait!

  7. Your Valentine vignette is so pretty! Love it. Your shopping day sounds so fun!

  8. Oh so pretty Valentine vignette! Ironstone is always a great backdrop for whatever the season!

  9. That is so special to be featured in a magazine! Everything looks lovely.

  10. I love your white ironstone collection and the pops of red and colour from the vintage Valentine’s. It looks so sweet together. Congratulations on the photo shoot for Country Sampler magazine. You’ll have to let us know when the issue comes out.

  11. It’s all so pretty and I love the white ironstone. Deb

  12. Congratulations on the photo shoot!!! I’ll be sure to watch for the magazine next Christmas. We haven’t even had our family Christmas for 2012 yet!

    Your photos are lovely. 🙂

  13. Congratulations on the magazine photo shoot! That is so exciting! I can’t wait to see it next Christmas! Your Valentine’s vignette is so beautiful!!

  14. It sounds like you weren’t too stressed out by the photo shoot, Jennifer. Which is a good thing! : ) You found some lovely pieces. I always keep an eye out for white pieces. I just got a tea pot the other day at Goodwill. I figure you can always make room for them somewhere since white goes with everything.

  15. Jennifer,
    Congrats on the photo shoot…how exciting!!! Sweet vignette you have…love all the vintage cards.


  16. You have some wonderful ironstone pieces. Looking forward to seeing your lovely home in Country Sampler – how exciting!

  17. I definitely think you belong in print. What a fun experience!! I hope they use it!! Congrats on being selected.

    The new pieces are pretty. I like them well loved too 😉

  18. Jennifer I love your valentine table scape!You know how much I love ironstone! Congratulations on your magazine feature! You deserve it! I can’t wait to see it!

  19. How very exciting for you. I always knew your home was magazine worthy! Can’t wait to buy an edition. Hugs, Diane

  20. I love ironstone pitchers too, but only have a couple of the small ones as I have nowhere to put the big ones! My small house doth runneth over, lol.

    Where did you get those gorgeous little hearts that are hanging from the ironstone?

    My son is (hopefully) going to NIU this August to finish up his bachelor’s degree.

  21. Can’t wait to see the spread. I am sure it will be fabulous. Congrats on all your finds. Liz

  22. Congratulations on the the magazine feature! You are too modest – your home is so lovely 🙂 . The flaws in your home are what give it character and personality.

  23. All of your white pitchers are so pretty especially with the valentines. Congrats on the photo shoot – so exciting – and I think imperfect houses are the best ones!!

  24. Hi Jennifer! Congratulations on that magazine feature, girlie!! How exciting for you!!! I always wondered when some magazine would snap up your beautiful old home for a story! I’m so happy for you!

    xoxo laurie

  25. Jennifer, just love your ironstone and your display is beautiful. Congratulations on the magazine feature. Will look forward to seeing it.
    Audrey Z.
    Timeless Treasures

  26. Awesomeness all the way around. Did you at least sneak in a couple photos of them doing their thing, or were you to shy?


  27. Thank you for the inspirational pictures. I live in the suburbs, right on the edge of town. Our property is super small but just right for me and my husband, and I would like to start incorporating some more “country-ish” things into our life . . . starting with a bird feeder. (Baby steps.)

  28. love the pic’s of your pretty White ironstone
    Happy New year

  29. Congratulations Jennifer!! How exciting for you to have your beautiful home featured in Country Sampler.

  30. Your valentine vignette looks beautiful!! Congrats on the magazine shoot.I love country sampler magazine.


  31. Your ironstone and cute pitchers are so pretty. Great mix of sizes and shapes that make an interesting collection.
    Mary Alice

  32. Love your gorgeous vignettes for Valentine’s Day. They look perfect against the ironstone. I’ll be on the look out for your gorgeous home in print.

  33. I love white ironstone so I really appreciate all the vignettes you’ve created. Your photographs are beautiful…can’t imagine Country Sampler can come up with anything better. Great Job & I’ll be looking forward to the 2013 issue of CS.

  34. Ironstone makes a perfect backdrop for anything – LOVE!!

  35. Love the ironstone and I am SO EXCITED for you that your home was photographed and will be in a magazine! WooHOO

  36. Beautiful display with lovely white wears.great collection.

  37. Really cute tabletop vignette, Jennifer. Congratulations on the Country Sampler shoot.

  38. I love your valentine table Jennifer!!! So pretty!
    I can’t wait to see your magazine feature too! Congratulations!!!!!!!

  39. I love your Ironstone collection. And the photographs are just stunning. The vignette is such a sweet inspiration. Congrats on your magazine feature.


  40. Is this a re-post? I have read it from my side bar a couple of times – it is cute.

  41. Congrats, my friend. Can’t wait to see the magazine. Love the ironstone. It makes a great backdrop for just about anything.

  42. Jennifer
    I love the ironstone with the valentine vignette . Congrats on the magazine photo shoot how exciting.

  43. Congrats on the magazine shoot. Beautiful images. That is fantastic. I look forward to seeing you at My Dream Canvas. I am visiting you via Tuesday Treasures. Thanks Anu!

  44. Congratulations on your magazine shoot!

    You created a really pretty Valentine vignette. I love old Valentine cards and am lucky to have inherited bunches of early 1900’s post cards. Decorating with them around Valentine’s Day gives me great pleasure.

  45. How wonderful that you are going to be featured. I like all the stoneware and little hearts.

  46. Oh my gosh! That is so exciting and your home definitely deserves to be in a magazine. I just love your take on Valentines Day too! Very fresh and original!


  47. Those pictures are beautiful and I’be loved your house since the first time I tumbled upon your blog. I’m not surprised a professional chose it!

  48. I know it wasn’t hard for the magazine photographer/stylist to be charming and complementary during their photo shoot because your home is SPECTACULAR! Isn’t that the nicest complement ever that they didn’t need to hardly move anything around because your home is SPECTACULAR. And holy cow, congratulations on having your home published because it’s SPECTACULAR!

  49. Nice
    Mari from Italy

  50. It’s so nice!! And I love the grain sack…wow! thank you for your participation in to my linky party!!!

  51. Congrats on the magazine shoot. I will look for it next Christmas. Love your ironstone. Something I don’t have much of, but would love to start building. Your Valentines vignettes are so sweet. I would love it if you would link to Share Your Cup Thursday sometime!

  52. Your ironstone pieces are great finds! Love the Valentines styling too. Congratulations of the Country Sampler photo shoot and I will be sure to pick up that copy, even if I have to wait until next Christmas.

  53. How exciting for you! Looking forward to seeing that. I love your little valentine tree – so sweet

  54. I love a pitcher collection. There is something about them that draws me in. Your valentines with their pretty colors make a sweet addition to the table. Congrats on the photo shoot success. The suspense of waiting for the issue to come out would kill me. It’ll be worth the wait though, I’m sure.

  55. That’s so cute! The branches with little hearts are an awesome touch!
    These are some great news! 🙂

  56. I have a “thing” for white pitchers, too. Your vintage valentines with all that creamy white is totally charming! Congratulations on the photo shoot!

    Jeanette @ Creating A Life

  57. Congrats on the shoot. I was emailed by them too but wasn’t what they were looking for. I’m excited to see you in the next holiday issue! xo, Kimberly

  58. We’re traveling to NIU soon for a college looksie but I’d love to do a bit of shopping while there. Any recommendations for fun stores?

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