Treasure Hunting


Learning new skills seems to be the theme in 2015. Of a more lighthearted nature but by no means easy, is learning to play the ancient and noble game of Mah Jong. I really enjoy it, even more so because the group that is teaching me/I am playing with are not of a competitive nature. Talks and Teas are equally important..such bliss!

And the game it self is so beautiful, the tiles little works of art. And then one the ladies announced, she had a vintage set made of bakelite for sale. I was of in a thundering gallop.
I love bakelite..the colors, the soft glow, the touch. I am so happy!


And than I realized, I have not shown you any of the treasures I found over the last few months. I enjoyed your listening ear so much the last time!! Forgive me for neglecting you in this way and let me correct this fault right away;0)


Such a lovely feminine breakfast set. Too flowery for the Walker Men but since I often breakfast by makes me very happy.


And oh, I am such a sucker for star and snowflakes patterns. So this little plate makes me also very happy.


The illustration on this pretty little container is by Marjolein Bastin. She is Dutch and used to come to a flower shop owned by one of my sisters…that makes she and I cousins, right?


There are four more of these lovely liqueur delightful to find a whole set ( paid $4.- for them, sigh) That pitcher might not be keeper: too big for syrup and too small for iced teas. But I fell for the hip uranium orange;0)


This pitcher is much better and I already had the glasses.  A perfect $2.- spend , I’d say!


And the best for last: these two Harrison Begay prints looked so sad and forlorn in a thrift store. I almost felt guilty when I paid the four dollars for it. Now they hang in full glory in my studio and are greeted and enjoyed every day!

Be still my heart…Garage Sale Season is only around the corner! Tally Ho!


Even wat opscheppen over de gezellige aankoopjes in kringloop en antiekwinkeltjes van de afgelopen maanden. En ik krijg les in t eeuwenoude en tamelijk ingewikkelde Mah Jong spel en deze prachtige vintage Bakelieten set, heb ik gekocht van een medespeelster. Ik hou erg van Bakeliet;0)

Love and Liefs, Johanna

Ready for Winter!


In the past weeks, I worked quite a lot in the garden getting it ready for winter. Not too soon because this is how it looked like this morning! Can you spot the bird of prey? He has a different notion of my idea of the bird feeding area in our garden he is eyeing…


It is a kind of hawk, but I find it hard to determine what kind.


So I trimmed back shrubbery and perennials, pruned trees, closed of the fountain. These hens and chickens plants should be OK in this sheltered corner. How I love that star shape pot.. another excellent and satisfying find at the local thrift for 3 dollars.


Planted lots of snowdrops, my favorite bulb and told the squirrels to stay away from them! It is going to look so pretty come Spring!


Like this illustration by Helen Jacobs in one of my favorite children books from my youth: the Dutch version of ‘Pow Pow Stories’ by Freda Collins…as you can see I read it over and over again.

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The Garden shed looks kinda cozy with the pots of Geraniums and the like overwintering.


Ha, and my gloves with extra long cuffs for my extra long arms…just finished yesterday! My apologies for the blurry photo…apparently I was too excited to stand still;0)

Nou zeg, tuin en warme handschoenen net op tijd klaar want zo zag onze tuin er uit vanmorgen…

Love and Liefs, Johanna


About that Paisley Fabric


A few of you good people commented on the fabric shown in the last post .

It is a footstool I re-upholstered this summer. I wondered to do a post about it, but then I thought the better of it. Might as well show you after all;0)


I had this little footstool but I thought the fabric a bit gloomy and it started to fray around the edges.


And I found this skirt at a thrift store for 2 dollars. Sally, my dress doll shows it here. She wears also a gorgeous tartan dress that needs a little altering and we know it looks horrible together. But the skirt is not my style anyways and I bought it for the fabric, chitter chatter, yadi yadi yada, bla bla, to make a long story short….


I cut the fabric, got out the staple gun, did some neat folding and firm staple gunning ( Is that a verb? It should be…) And…Tadaaa!

Een paar lieve lezers vroegen naar de stof die op de laatste post te zien was. Het is van een oude rok die ik heb gebruikt om een somber voetenbankje op te vrolijken.

Love and Liefs, Johanna

A Gentlemen’s Apartment, Part Two: the Details.

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Well, after my thrilled, happy yodeling yesterday, you guessed right:I really like the new dwelling of the Young Misters Walker.

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Here some details, that make me very happy. These candles are made out of wax but work on batteries…so clever!


And how about this original Underwood typewriter from about 1927, next to a very modern printer?


And smart 1960 traveling case for a whiskey decanter with some Star Wars collecties.


And the Lads sure like their espressos


This Fox protected the Youngest Mr. Walker from drafts in his former apartment. Read all about it on my previous blog, if you are interested that is ;0)


Oh look, real Johanna’s on the wall..the college funding is secured ;0)

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That pumpkin pie was Thanksgiving dinner’s dessert and soo good!


This chair is a design by Karim Rashid for Umbra. Not very expensive to buy new but I paid only 3 dollars for it in a thrift store some years ago. And it is remarkably comfortable. Leo the Cat agrees and more about him tomorrow!


Och hemel, t is wel duidelijk na mijn vrolijk gejodel van gisteren dat ik erg blij met t nieuwe appartement van de Walker Boys. Hier nog wat meer kiekjes..en meer over de kat morgen!

Love and Liefs,


Proud Mom and Simple Project


The Oldest Walker Boy graduated last year from university! Since he started working right away, he thought he did not have to time for a Graduation Ceremony. But of course, something this important needs to be celebrated! And with a little nudge and push, Young Mr. Walker finally signed up for a Graduation Ceremony earlier this summer.

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So I bought a new dress ( Sally, my devoted dress doll from the sixties, shows it here.) And I decided this was important enough to also buy those red shoes, I was eyeing already for almost a year. ( Yes, I can think about red shoes for almost a year, clothes are very important;0))


And so Mr. Walker and I drove to Toronto, Canada and it was indeed so wonderful!! The speeches were truly interesting and delightfully short and to the point. And those old rituals and the outfits…


And than all those enthusiastic and proud students, working so hard and really deserving a firm pat on the shoulders. All that nonsense, about the ‘Youth Nowadays’…even the Old Romans were whining about that. Just look at these kids, all promises for a Good Future!


And than of course our own boy. I was already in awe when he showed his first smile, said his first word and took his first step. Look at him now!


And to my surprise, he asked before hand, if I would help him put on the toga and escort him to the Procession of the Graduands. And despite some fluttering with a handkerchief…I was so happy.


Each of the Graduates was handed a yellow Gerbera. I dried his one in this nifty flower press, I thrifted once in The Netherlands.


And than I made this simple little artwork with it. The color scheme is inspired by an article I read about Finnish Rug Designs from the seventies…I would love to share it with you but I cannot find it again. Young Mr. Walker loved it so much, he wanted it for his new apartment. So that was another fluttering handkerchief moment…

Eerder deze zomer, schreef onze oudste zoon zich dan eindelijk in voor een afstudeer ceremonie nadat hij een jaar ervoor al was afgestudeerd. Wat een prachtig feest!! En hij vroeg, tot mijn verrassing, of ik hem begeleidde naar de zgn Processie van de Afgestudeerden.Iedere student kreeg ook nog eens een gele Gerbera uitgereikt. Ik droogde de zijne en maakte er een simpel kunstwerkje van. Jonge Meneer Walker vond dat zo mooi dat hij het graag wilde hebben voor zijn nieuwe appartement.Onnodig te melden dat ik hier en daar een traantje wegpinkte…

Love and Liefs,


Happy Times


It was a lovely week! The youngest Walker boy, college student in Toronto, came home for 10 days, for a well earned mollycoddling by his parents. It was a sweet reunion for Charley and her best friend. Pure Bliss!


I found a sweet vase whilst treasure hunting, filled it with crabapple branches, it has a nice fall feeling. Since fall is my favorite season, this vase make me very happy.


No fall outside yet, it is still very hot…oh well, that gives nice images too.


These gorgeous teacups were softly singing to me in the Anthropology store. This pattern will be discontinued and since these were the last three, they were half price. Of course, I took them home. Tea tastes some much better in a good cup.


Re-read this wonderful Victorian novel, borrowed this nice old copy from the oldest Walker boy.


The story seems even better, read from these yellowed pages.


Ploughing onwards with Calligraphy…the teacher said, there was ‘some improvement’…I suspect this is not my hidden talent but it is nice to learn the techniques anyway ;0)


I did discover more use of the translucent qualities of calligraphy paper…


Aaaaand the Youngest Walker boy agreed to watch the magnificent movie Dean Spanley with me. I have seen this movie so many times and each time I discover something new to the story. Young Mr. Walker agreed: this is a magnificent movie. Coming form a boy who is very, very much into Science Fiction…you understand: you have to watch this movie too.

Wat een heerlijke week, met onze jongste zoon thuis! T weer was heet maar de koopjes goed. Kalligraferen blijkt geen onvermoed talent van mij, maar t is leuk om de techniek te leren. En met t doorschijnende papier kan je meer leuke dingen doen;0) En we zagen de prachtige film Dean Spanley: een aanrader! Heb een prettig weekend!

Have a Great Weekend,





Definition of DIORAMA according to

  • a scenic representation in which a partly translucent painting is seen from a distance through an opening
  •  a scenic representation in which sculptured figures and lifelike details are displayed usually in miniature so as to blend indistinguishably with a realistic painted background
  • a life-size exhibit (as of a wildlife specimen or scene) with realistic natural surroundings and a painted background


I have a passion for dioramas. To me, they have that eerie Victorian feel of beauty and somewhat gruesomeness: these scenes locked in a jar. ..yes, try to analyze that ;0)


I love making them from found objects and things I find in thrift stores for next to nothing. Odds and ends from drawers with no real purpose (anymore). I am totally in love with this wedding cake ornament..poor things waited for me in a box with other treasures for 0.25 cents.


I never think out/ design a diorama ahead of time. I just lay out a group of things and look at my collection of glass containers of any kind and I let it happen.


In my opinion…one should not think too much ;0) But they do make lovely objects to photograph, not?


One day I will go to New York and look at the most beautiful dioramas in the world in this museum.

Ik heb een passie voor dioramas en vind t heerlijk ze ook zelf te maken van allerlei overgebleven dingetjes die ik overal en nergens vandaan haal. Op een dag, ga ik naar New York, naar dit museum om de mooiste diorama’s in de wereld te bekijken.

Love and Liefs, Johanna


How Was Your Weekend?



How was your weekend? Here at the Walker House all was peaceful and quiet.


It rained a lot, quite cozy. So we slept in a little and some of us more..


So no eating at the patio but breakfast was very good.


And this egg cup makes me very happy.


I had my fist Calligraphy Lesson and believe it or not…this sheet is the result of two and half hours of hard work. I know now about pen angle, height an direction, nibs and marker paper and  a whole lot more. I loved it and look forward to the next one.


Lots of reading.


Some crocheting.


Got rather excited about this pumpkin growing in my ‘urban veggie patch’!


And I baked a cake ( you might have spotted it already on the breakfast table) This is a gluten free cake, very good but GF cakes never look so pretty. The cake stand makes up for that;0) For gorgeous cakes look at these beautiful blogs by Kerry and Karen.

So what did you do?

Ha, we hadden heerlijk weekend met regen, lekker ontbijt en cake, lezen, haken en mijn eerste kalligrafie les. Wat heb jij zoal gedaan?

Love and Liefs, Johanna.


Hunting Season So Far…


Thrifting for treasures to beautify and decorate our home is one of my favorite activities. Items I consider beautiful and that have a past from another loving home, just thrill me to the core. How wonderful can going green be? And than as a true Dutch girl of course…it has to be for the right price!

We moved last year from a rustic country bungalow in Canada to a cool modern house in a lovely suburb in Cincinnati, Ohio. Mr. Walker and I decided that a change in decor was necessary and we both like Mid-Century Modern from the fifties to the seventies. Mix and match as we think is gorgeous ;0)


The good people of Cincinnati do not care for the sleek lines of Mid-Century modern. Very good, I say, more for me! And I have snapped up so many ‘too-good-to-be-true’ items for ‘too-good-to-be-true’prices already. Every thrift store, garage sale or flea market makes my heart throb!!

Mr.Walker and the Walker boys love the way the house turns out but do not like treasure hunting, let alone me going on and on and on about all these excellent finds. Since they are really lovely fellows and the centre of my universe, I forgive them and so you, dear reader, are the next victim….

These gorgeous Drexel hutch and side board were last year’s best scores.

Here this year’s loot so far…


Two lovely pieces of Kobe enamel ware ( $5.- for the two) , a 1950 Mellita coffeepot (love that color, $2.-) and how about that gorgeous Hornsea spice rack…good as new!  ( can you believe it, only $8.-!!)


Lovely 1950 wine glasses (6 for $3.-) The two milk glass beakers look so lovely on the dining table with tea light candles ( $0.50 each) And how about that ice bucket with silver plate rim…for only $5.-! Be still my heart!


And the BEST so far, finally after 2 years of hunting, the dining rooms chairs I was looking for and wanted so badly. Where did I find them? Just down the road, at a garage sale! The young lady that was selling them, told me her parents-in-law bought the set years ago ‘at some Scandinavian Design store’ and gave it to them when they just moved and were a little short for cash at that time. She was shaking her head all the time in disbelief and clearly considered her parents-in-law reckless hippies. She moved the set to the basement as soon as she could afford it. She wondered if 40 dollars, for the whole set was too much? Ha, before she finished her sentence the money was in her hand and the dining room set in my car ;o)


The chairs came with a table, but I like my own table better. And I needed a bigger table in my studio anyway, so…tadaaa!

Mijn buit zover van t jagen op koopjes dit jaar, op garage sales, antiekmarkten en kringloopwinkels om ons nieuwe moderne huis te verfraaien. Ik ben zo blij dat retro home decor niet in de smaak valt bij t publiek in Cincinnati ;0)

Thank you for listening.

Love and Liefs, Johanna.