why not visit dishfunctional in their new malvern location this weekend?

Dishfunctional isn’t in West Chester anymore. I open with that, because they were there for so many wonderful years. BUT Dishfunctional does have a terrific new location in the Lincoln Court Shopping Center in East Whiteland.

The store is long and wide inside and well lit. And full of so much fun stuff! Not just the china and crystal they are known for but so much else! They have some wonderful art right now too! My personal favorite? This amaze balls piece of Mick Jagger by Denny Dent. It’s huge, but very cool.

I found four extra dishes of the Johnson Brothers’ “Friendly Village” vintage ydishes I like to use in the fall and winter sometimes. They are hard to find, and were only $5 each which is an amazing deal!

I spent a lot of time looking through the store. It’s all very clean. Other things they have right in the front of the store I love is some fabulous antique cast iron lawn furniture. Also very reasonable in price and good shape.

Dishfunctional is located in the Lincoln Court Shopping Center. 225 Lancaster Avenue, Frazer, PA.

Tuesday through Saturday
10:00 am until 6:00 pm
Sunday
11:00 am until 3:00 pm

Check it out!

back to visit brandywine view antiques in chadds ford

Brandywine View Antiques is one of my favorite places, so I thought I would give them a little shout out today. I have been a customer for years, I am not compensated for mentioning them on this blog, I’m just a happy customer.

They are three floors of fun and outside for great garden accents. They are one of my favorite resources for vintage garden finds. They are also one of the best places to find vintage and antique mirrors and I think they are a wonderful accent for any home and everyone should have at least one.

And I adore the owner she’s good people. If you don’t find them here in their store you can often find them places like Clover Market. They are definitely worth the drive!

Location:
1244 Baltimore Pike. Chadds Ford, PA 19317
Hours:
Wednesday – Sunday: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. (610) 388-6060|lisa@brandywineview.com

file under “catalyst” for change: my goodness east whiteland, it looks like penndot spanked the billboard baron?

In July, I wrote about the clear cutting of a billboard site that essentially wasn’t supposed to happen that way. See:

So….residents weren’t happy, and neither was the township. PennDOT was contacted. Also before all that there was this letter East Whiteland send out this letter:

Now before I get to today’s lovely news, I spied a familiar name to Radnor Township residents on that letter above. Jack/John Larkin Esquire. Is he not the Vice President of the Radnor Township Board of Commissioners??? Anyway, just politically interesting.

So here we are at the end of August and guess what? PennDOT actually acted. Catalyst or East Whiteland Outdoor LLC seems to have gotten spanked?

Hmmmm this is getting interesting again. “Notice of Intent to Revoke Permit”? My my my.

Oh and Willistown residents? No storming of the Bastille or inciting a riot was necessary.

beat the heat with farm boy bbq

I’ve written several times about Chef Paul Marshall‘s Farm Boy Barbecue. We think it’s the best around and have since we first discovered it.

They were formerly in the spot at 29 and 30 in Malvern where the Three Crazy Ladies used to be at the gas station there. That was a good location I think for Paul initially as he was seeing how people would take to his barbecue and it took off and well, that was never supposed to be a permanent home, and he’s been looking for a while and where he’s ended up is he has taken over the old Friendly’s next to Public Storage at 43 Lancaster Avenue in Malvern, which is one block west of 29.

They are in the process of a building makeover, but they are still serving up the barbecue, weather permitting outside usually Thursday and Fridays, sometimes an occasional Saturday. They weren’t out yesterday because the heat was so brutal, but they were there today. The best thing to do, as they are rehabbing their space, is to check their Facebook page to find out if they’re going to be there. They are usually there like 11 AM to 2 PM on those days.

I was delighted to see that Paul and Julie were still out when I was coming by after being at my oncology appointment. I had not ordered ahead, which you can do on Toast Tab, so they were out of chicken and pork ribs but I got brisket (which is like a religious experience), pulled pork, and short ribs for everyone for the weekend. And when I was there I ran into our mutual friend Bob!

The building rehab is coming along and I took a peek at the plans and I think it’s going be really cool! It’s going to be a good size sit down restaurant and they are looking for a fall opening in this new location. But in the interim check for pop-ups at that location a couple of days a week, weather dependent. They also do catering if any of you are interested.

Anyway, #shopsmall #eatlocal

I am a very happy customer of this business I have not been compensated in any way shape or form for writing another post. It’s just the perfect solution for really stinking hot summer weather. Let Paul Marshall do your cooking because no one BBQs like him!

Stay cool and do a rain dance!

Thanks for stopping by!

wow! those old tricks sometimes work, the furniture edition.

Once upon a time my mother had these mahogany nesting tables. Then one day on a whim, years ago, she got rid of them. She’s been lamenting their loss ever since. So imagine my delight, when a set just like the ones she sold showed up at a local estate sale.

Yes, these are literally the same tables. Not hers, but the same design and same mid century North Carolina manufacturer. So I bought them. At $48 for three in really great condition, it was a steal.

The tables were probably somewhere in this home “nested”, only taken apart when needed. That’s what my mother used to do. So the top table in this set had some condition issues, mainly from plant saucers or wet things leaving rings or marks. At this point today, a lot of people see “brown wood” and think “oh we’ll just paint the tables.”

But seriously, you shouldn’t destroy beautiful tables like this with chalk paint and other kinds of wood paint. This wood is spectacular and meant to be enjoyed. So what did I do? I dragged out my father’s old home remedy: a paste made of mayonnaise and wood ash or cigar ash or cigarette ash left on the tables overnight.

It really works. We have no smokers in the house so I had to use wood ash from the bottom of the wood stove. The crucial thing is it’s just ASH you use, you don’t want any charred bits or you will scratch whatever furniture you’re trying to renew.

So I did the first coat and left it on overnight. The next morning I removed what was left and took a look at the tables. There were still some pieces of rings left. What I did next was try furniture oil to see if that would just absorb the mark. I like orange oil. It helped renew the tables in general, as I did all three with orange oil, but it did not take up what was left of the rings on the largest table. So I did another layer of the mayonnaise and wood ash overnight.

This morning when I took the mixture off that top table once again, it was like magic and pretty much everything was gone. Next I moisturized and polished them with this stuff I discovered that I love. It’s from a company called Therapy Clean. It’s wood and cabinet cleaner and polish. I found it on Amazon.

The tables look fabulous I think now. And they didn’t require refinishing. Just a little elbow grease and patience. People always used to look at my father like he was nuts when he said that mayonnaise and ash took out rings and a lot of stains. But it’s an old-fashioned remedy that really does work. And again if you’re using wood ash, make sure there are no charred bits or it will scratch.

I hope my mother loves her tables and I just wanted to share this little tip with you. Because while painted furniture can be pretty, it’s not for everyone. I really am not a painted furniture person. I am a natural beauty of real hardwoods kind of person.

Thanks for stopping by.

the beauty of historic preservation: back to odessa, delaware.

As I said in the post prior to this, Odessa, Delaware is one of my favorite places. It is literally a jewel of a historic town, almost frozen in time.

I have written about Odessa, Delaware before. I really hadn’t been down there much since Covid, and I realized today how much I missed visiting this gem of a small town.

Located in New Castle County, Delaware, Odessa was founded in the 18th century as Cantwell’s Bridge, her name was changed in the 19th century after the Ukrainian port city of the same name.

Odessa is a National Registry District, home to a National Historic Landmark as well as two National Parks Service Network to Freedom sites.

Odessa like Lewes was settled initially by the Dutch in the 1600s. (Lewes is another favorite place of mine, and it’s a bit larger and busier than Odessa.)

When Odessa was a first settled by the Dutch in the 1660’s (to be more precise), they adopted the Indian name for the area, “Apequinemy”. The Dutch settled here in Odessa because it’s proximity to the Appoquinimink River which flows to Delaware Bay, making it ideal to them for trading. I have been told this was once the shortest route from the Atlantic Ocean to the Chesapeake Bay before the construction of the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal.

This was an area inhabited by Lenni Lenape Native Americans before European settlement. The Dutch weren’t actually in this area for very long before the English assumed control of the area. Then land was granted to a Captain Edmund Cantwell, the first Sheriff of New Castle County, under the government of a person we are familiar with, William Penn. By the 1730s there was a town and Edmund’s son, Sir Richard Cantwell, built a toll bridge and toll house and the town of “Cantwell’s Bridge” was born.

For the next century plus, this was a thriving little port town shipping grain and other things (like peaches.) It was a bustling small town…until 1855 and the arrival of the railroad around Middletown, and bypassed Odessa. Like many other towns that thrived on rivers and canals (think Frick’s Lock in East Coventry Township, Chester County), the railroad did a number on the economy of “Cantwell’s Bridge.”

Cantwell’s Bridge was name changed to Odessa around 1855. It had something to do with hoping that the name change would remind people of the flourishing port of Odessa in the Ukraine and the same thing would happen in Odessa, Delaware.

Now the Odessa area was also known historically for the nearby peach orchards. Odessa remained historically a very active port until the late 19th century when a peach blight ruined crops, one of their larger exports. My research indicates that between the peach virus blight and the railroads Odessa almost died as a town.

However, where a lot of similar little towns have died, Odessa has lived on. It is a great collection of houses and architecture spending 200 years, truthfully. Colonial, mid-Georgian, Federal and Victorian architecture. Another fun fact about Odessa, is there used to be a steamboat that operated out of it from the latter part of the 19th century, up until the early parts of the 20th century, ending I think somewhere around World War I.

A lot of people wouldn’t like Odessa because it’s literally a sleepy historic town. That’s why I personally think it’s so wonderful.

There are different things that go on in Odessa throughout the year. A historic Odessa Brewfest in September (this year September 10th) , lovely Christmas holiday events, tours for all seasons. July 15 – 17th features an event I am interested in called Christmas in July. It’s a special holiday sale in the Christmas Resale Shop in the Collins-Sharp House.

We belong to the Historic Odessa Foundation , and anyone can belong. It’s a remarkable little town and makes a fun little day trip. There are also little bed-and-breakfasts in the area so it also makes a nice we can get away. But if you’re looking for lots of bells and whistles, this isn’t it. Unless of course historic preservation is one of your favorite bells and whistles. This isn’t Disney or Six Flags (thank goodness.)

Enjoy the photos from my ramble and thanks for stopping by.

just another dying farmhouse along 202

When you are headed on 202 south, just before the light at 926, there is a farmhouse or two. The one right on the corner of 926, still looks inhabited but the one before the corner ? It’s falling apart literally.

I thought maybe this old farmhouse was a Crebilly house. My sources however tell me that it is not part of Crebilly but at one time Crebilly did try to acquire it.

I would love to know the history if anyone knows. It’s in really bad shape.

Here is it’s barn or similar kind of structure:

Here are some closeups and other photos I was able to get of bits of the house as a passenger going by:

al stewart at the colonial

Things we forgot we missed, yet didn’t forget we missed during COVID19 was live music. Last night made up for that. We went to Phoenixville to The Colonial to see Al Stewart courtesy of Point Entertainment.

The last time I saw Al Stewart, it was at The Point in Bryn Mawr. The early 2000s. He actually played there a bunch, and it was a wonderful small venue to experience his music. Fun fact is he played at the original Main Point around 1970.

So much time has passed, and I might be in my late 50s, but if the venue isn’t too large I like live music, and I have always loved listening to Al Stewart.

One of the most fun things about listening to him live is he is a student of history. You would think, in a former life he was a history professor and as my husband points out, history has influenced his music. Truthfully he’d probably be great fun to have as a dinner guest.

Also a word about the opening act, which is also Al’s band for his shows: The Empty Pockets. They are really good, and they invited Phoenixville/Philadelphia favorite Cliff Hillis up on stage for a song! Many will know him from Smash Palace and as part of David Uosikkinen’s In The Pocket.

Last night was a terrific night of music. And The Colonial Theatre is such a gem. I always wonder when it’s fully restored, if it gets fully restored, will the silk damask on the walls be restored or replaced? It is one of the relics of the past of this theater that is one of my favorite things.

Before the concert we had dinner at The Black Lab Bistro. It was amazing! Sadly what isn’t amazing is the parking or lack there of in Phoenixville. It’s worse than Ardmore, and almost as bad as Manayunk.

Support venues like The Colonial Theatre!

the devil is in the details

You never know when you’re going to see that unexpected thing that you want to photograph. I found one of those things today when I photographed that segment of wall you see above.

I was in downtown West Chester for the moving sale for the store Dishfunctional on S. Franklin Street. They have been in this old warehouse for a number of years and they are moving soon to Lincoln Court in Frazer because West Chester borough approved Eli Kahn to build like two more apartment buildings.

Now I feel building apartments right there is just stupid because everyone knows it floods. And the other thing is every time you hear of some new ugly apartment building going up you wonder why nobody does adaptive reuse? Do you still see it in the city of Philadelphia in spots (my recent favorite example is The Gotham – look it up.)

So you have here this perfect section of old brick wall. What was it from? Where does it go because doesn’t it look like something is bricked up?

I have no idea what the latest behemoth apartment building will sprawl across but I don’t think that wall will survive somehow. So I decided to take its picture because I think it’s just so cool.

The new construction we see today is without depth, human scale, design, imagination, and sometimes you wonder about the quality of the whole project. They certainly don’t do brickwork like this anymore.

Thanks for stopping by. Off to watch A Discovery of Witches.

discover more in ardmore

I do have to give a shout out once in a while to one of my favorite stores, Past*Present*Future in Ardmore, PA. They are in the heart of the historic business district at 15 W. Lancaster Avenue. They are next-door to Merion Art and Repro.

You can shop in person at the store, you can shop online, and you can shop and do curbside pickup. Masks are a requirement in the store, but I don’t mind businesses that take every precaution for their staff and customers.

The owner Sherry is a long time and very dear and close friend. My favorite present from her ever was shortly after I received my breast cancer diagnosis and she gave me this funky cool sculpture that was an F bomb literally.

I have a pillow in my living room that everyone loves of foxes. All hand embroidered it. It came from Sherry and her store. The store when you go in is a feast for your senses because there are so many cool things to look at. If you go to visit her I suggest you take a couple laps around and then focus on areas that you like. She has amazing fair trade crafts from around the world, and she also reps independent jewelry designers who have some of the most fabulous stuff out there. And things you can wear every day not things you have to lock away for safety.

Mostly I shop from online and off her Instagram page these days because I just don’t get to Ardmore very often. But her shipping is always reasonable, and like I said you can do curbside pick up. I encourage in person visits because she has a tremendous and unique card section that you won’t find any place else – there are lots of cards out there for every occasion but it’s hard to find ones that are quality or when you want one that’s funny, to find one that’s actually funny.

And yes this is a place that when I mount and frame some of my photographs I sell them here. Take for example this one you see in this photo below👇

But I am not posting this because I have a photo for sale there. I am posting this because she has so much fun stuff and I love her store. This is a great store to find something really unique and special for Valentine’s Day and any other special occasion you might have. It is also a store used for corporate gifts and in the back there is a section of old fashion children’s toys that are among my personal favorites.

And I will state for the record that I am not being compensated for this post, I was not asked to write this post, I am writing this post because I want to and it’s my friend’s business and I have been a happy customer for a couple of decades. And the fact that this store started originally in Center City Philadelphia many years ago and has been open for so many years tells you about the quality of the items being sold.

Thanks for stopping by!