Month: November 2012

Formal/Informal Parties and Take Your Shoes Off!

Came across this cool graphic from MFAMB and thought it was really useful.

Though the “informal” place setting is as formal as I’ll ever get. If I even get that formal. No, parties at our household are strictly “get your own drink, and no I don’t have more crackers for the hummus” -type affairs.

I don’t throw parties where people come in dress shoes and stilettos. In fact, if you come over, I would like you to remove your shoes, so make sure you wear cute socks and get a pedicure. Unless you have a foot odor problem or fungus, of course. Then you’re allowed to keep them on.

Baby Brownie WILL lick the hardwood floors, no matter how many times I tell her no. She’s 8 months old, so she doesn’t understand why you shouldn’t do that.

Recently I came across an Apartment Therapy post where people who like to wear shoes in the house said things like “If you’re so obsessive/paranoid about having people take their shoes off at your house then maybe you shouldn’t have parties” and “You’re the host and you’re supposed to accommodate your guests so why would you force them to take their shoes off?”. To such people I say, “You would never come to my parties because I would never be friends with selfish people like you”.

I really don’t enforce the no-shoes rule at parties — it just gets too hard. But I like it when considerate friends ask if they should take their shoes off. That shows respect and I appreciate it greatly.

I grew up in an Asian household where wearing shoes in the house was a BIG no-no. In fact, if I ever wear shoes in a house (even in a shoe-on house) I automatically feel dirty and rude.

Please respect my culture. It’s a good excuse to keep my house clean.

So yes, we are an informal household, but taking your shoes off is one point of etiquette I really appreciate. That is all.

Refreshing a Gilded Mirror

For our anniversary a few weeks ago, Chris and I went antiquing.  Yes, antiquing.  What, that’s not your idea of a romantic anniversary date?  For us, doing anything without the baby is a romantic date.  Gracie was with her grandparents, so we were free!  We headed over to Temecula, hit up Old Town and a few antique stores, and then spent the late afternoon wine-tasting.

We found this awesome antique gilded mirror at The Antique Barn.  The Barn is a huge antique mall with gazillions of stalls filled with treasures.  It’s pretty overwhelming unless you know what you’re looking for.  I knew we were looking for a mirror for the foyer, but I was disappointed that there were few mirrors that were interesting, in good condition, and yet also the right size for our entry.  Finally, after about an hour of poking our noses into every dusty warren, we came across this beauty.

It’s lying on my lap in this photo…so never mind those disembodied jean-clad legs sticking out.

It was perfect — the perfect size, and interesting but not too ornate.  The gilded wooden frame was in good condition, and it was just $40!  Sold.

I knew that I wanted to touch up the gilding, so after we brought it home, I ordered a Krylon Gold Leafing Pen online.  This pen was so easy to use, and the bright gold color was perfect.  It really looks like gold leaf, not paint.  And one pen was enough for me to touch up the entire mirror!

I mostly just touched up the highlights, leaving the crevices a darker, duller gold. This really helped the relief of the design to stand out more.

And there she hangs in our foyer. Obviously we still have quite a bit of work to do here. The walls and wainscoting badly need to be repainted and we need to get a sleeker, narrower console table. The one we currently have was actually a vintage sewing table that we painted and refinished. I love it but it sticks out too far into the space, creating a tripping hazard if you want to go down the hall to the right of the front door.

So there you are! An easy peasy touch-up that brings a tired-looking antique mirror back to its former glory!

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