Welcome to Le Beau Paon Victorien! I'm so glad you stopped by!

Here you will find a variety of things that might interest you: food, books, house decor, crafty things, random thoughts, dishes, gardening and more!

Spend some time with us and happy reading!

Monday, January 31, 2011

I am the Queen of Cats........

This is how Olive spends the long cold winters of Wisconsin..........

She knows that if she lies here the colors of the decor set off her own colors to advantage. She's pretty smart that way. ;-)

Thanks for stopping by!

Sweetly Simple Centerpiece

What could make a better centerpiece than a double pedestal of cupcakes?


I had to make a treat to bring to my stamp club gathering this last weekend so I decided to make a favorite treat of mine; cupcakes!
A pedestal plate stacked on top of a vintage Fenton milk glass cake stand makes a lovely display....and an easy and sweet centerpiece!

Pink swirls of frosting, a chocolate heart and pretty brown cupcake wraps make them extra fancy!

The pedestal plate I made using a random milk glass plate and a white vase that I bought at Goodwill; some Gorilla glue holds them together.


Thanks for stopping by!
I'll be joining Marty at A Stroll Thru Life for Tabletop Tuesday!


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Great Gadgets: Storage Containers and Herb Keeper

Ok, so I realize that I have been sort of MIA this month.... let's just say that January really sucks in Wisconsin....there's nothing to do and the weather has been BAD....and I have had very little inspiration. Did I also mention that I have been battling a terrible, terrible cold? For the last two weeks I have been coming home from work, taking lots of cold medicine and basically going to bed at 7 pm.....I don't think I've gone to bed at 7pm since I was in the third grade.

Now that I am finally kicking this cold, I hope to also feel more inspired. We're still in the middle of our ugly winter...the temperatures have been in the single digits for the last week... but I managed to leave town for the weekend to go somewhere even colder....Chicago!

I planned to take my camera and take lots of pretty pictures of my weekend trip, but I forgot to pack it!!!. I used my sister's camera and hopefully soon she will send me the pictures I took so I can share them with you all.

In the meantime, I used a Crate & Barrel gift card that I received to buy these:

These are the POP storage containers made by OXO Good Grips. I bought two of the big ones for my pantry, to hold flour and sugar. I love these! A 2 lb. bag of flour or sugar fits perfectly in this size container. I used to have canisters for flour and sugar on my counter, just like my mom and Grandma did, but I have very little counter space and discovered that storing flour and sugar in the pantry with all the other dry goods (like pasta, cereals, rice etc.)  made more sense to me.

Wouldn't this be cool if this was your pantry??  I know I'd love mine to look this awesome....but alas....this is just a picture from the label. I do have a number of similar containers (most are Tupperware), for things like crackers and pasta and baking supplies. I really like these POP containers though!

And because I had a little extra $ on the card, I also bought this Herb Keeper. It opens from the top (as shown) and has a little tray and strainer inside that lifts up.

You pour water into the bottom and fresh herbs are placed upright into the tray, which is then lowered into the water, so your herbs stay hydrated and fresh longer. This Herb Keeper also fits perfectly in a refrigerator door space. Isn't it lovely?? I plan to grow fresh herbs this summer, and this will certainly help keep them fresher longer.

I love great kitchen gadgets!

Thanks for stopping by!


Friday, January 14, 2011

Craft Closet Organization Project. Part 2

Well, I'm still working on putting my craft closet back together. I've been taking my time because I want everything to be neat and the things I use frequently to be accessible and convenient, so I don't want to rush it. You can read about the first part of my closet organization and see the scary pictures of the mess on the floor of my office HERE.

I don't really know what to call this "thing", I normally just call it the "storage thingy my Dad made". Real original, yes? My Dad made one of these for himself for his woodworking shop to hold small items like hinges and nails and screws, and one of my sisters saw it and asked if he could make her one also. She then suggested that me and my other sister might like one too, so he obligingly made two more. My father is retired now, he owned and ran a successful tool and die business for more than 35 years. The company is still owned by him, but he has other people to run it now. One of his favorite hobbies as a young man had been woodworking, which he started doing again some years back. He has a big workshop at his home.

I have it sitting on top of the big shelves right now, but I'm going to have Erik mount it on the wall, slightly higher up, so there's room under it. It's perfect for storing many of my small stamping supplies; brads, eyelets,embossing powder, buttons. I also have glue sticks for my hot glue gun, ribbon, ink cartridges for my stamping wheels and other things that will go in the compartments. I'm slowly filling it up.

The wire bin on the bottom is perfect for skeins of extra yarn and for leftover fabric from some sewing projects that I have plans to use again.

The big deep drawer is for my punches. I also have a plastic bin that's not in the picture with my paper snips, extra-sharp shears and a variety of hole punches and decorative edge scissors that will go in this drawer.

The two skinny drawers work perfectly for paper; I have designer paper in one drawer and in the top drawer there is 12x12 size card stock, tags, sticker sheets and rub-ons.

The open cubby is where I have my stamp n' write markers, my paper cutter and my stamp scrub. I also have rolls of ribbon here. These rolls of ribbon I use for card making. I have quite a few rolls of wired craft ribbon also, but I keep them separate from my stamping ribbons.

On the shelves behind the panel doors I have most things somewhat organized. On the far left is several different kinds of craft glue and adhesives and glue dots I use for making cards, as well as rulers and extra blades for my paper cutter. On the far right is a small storage bin with 3 drawers. This used to be on my desk in the office. I have floral cutters, floral wire, floral tape and corsage pins in the drawers. Each drawer is labeled.(My label maker sits on top of it!). On the middle shelf I have just a couple of things right now; one of them is a heat embossing tool and a tray. The top shelf has cans of spray paints, Mod Podge and a plastic box holding a variety of acrylic paints and paint pens which I had used in several different projects.

I still have a few more things to put in here (my stamp sets and the file box that I keep my card stock in), but it's coming along nicely! 

Thanks for stopping by!


Sunday, January 9, 2011

Craft Closet Organization Project

Behind this unassuming door in my upstairs office/craft room was an embarassing secret..........

 Inside was a very disorganized mess of things that I use for my various crafty projects, including all my supplies for the stamping that I do, my crochet yarn, sewing machine, pattern books...... I also have a big box of rolls of ribbon that I buy whenever I see it on clearance anywhere, but that didn't even fit in this closet. A small computer desk that I've had for years sits in the corner of the room and on the desk sits the box of ribbon and numerous other things that should be in the closet, but in it's current state of disarray, I was reluctant to add even more to the disgrace of my craft closet. Most everything was in some kind of storage container, but nothing was organized well and I usually had to dig through and remove things to get at certain items.

Here is a small peek through a crack in the door....I couldn't even bear to take a picture of the closet as it was. I hate disorganization!  To explain this shocking spectacle, in my defense, other closets in the house were organized nicely long ago when we first moved into the house 4 years ago. Anyone who has ever lived in an old house ( like our 1886 Victorian) knows that old houses are notorious for having little to NO closet space. The basic floor plan of our house has never changed since 1886 except for the addition of a closet in the master bedroom by the previous owners. They used space that had been occupied by a back staircase to do this. As it happened, the office/craft room closet was the least important of the projects that we wanted to work on and it has languished the last 4 years, steadily becoming messier and messier. Nobody had ever bothered to add any shelves or anything to it; the closet basically had only a single clothes rod in it and (strangely) a towel bar had been affixed to the inside of the door.

It doesn't help that currently the hubby and I share the office, which is technically a bedroom. With five bedrooms in the house and just the two of us, we obviously don't need five bedrooms. This room was used as an office by the previous owners, so we also designated it as 'the office'. We hope that soon we will be able to start on the "Man Cave Project" as we call it.....one of the unused bedrooms that has been empty since we moved in is slated to become Erik's 'man cave', where he can take his computer and his desk and his stuff out of my hair and leave the room for just me!

Now prepare yourself...........a picture of the stuff that I yanked out of the closet....

EEEEeeekkkkk! This would be where the music from the shower scene in "Psycho" would play....(Note: the computer on the table did not come from the closet; that's my old PC which has been hanging around, refusing to leave, like a malevolent ghost. I have hopes it will be exorcised soon).

Aaaaahhh!!!  (Can you see Olive hiding behind the pile? Hint; she's the weird dark blob under the table. There's a heating vent in that corner and my big pile o' mess wasn't going to stop her from going there.)

It's hard to believe all that stuff fit in there!
The closet space that we had to work with is 45" wide by 35" deep, so basically a little less than 4 x 3 feet.  Kind of like an upright shower stall.....did I tell you that Victorian houses have small closets?

We had just enough room to put in this; these shelving units are from ClosetMaid.

In this photo Erik has yet to insall one of the drawers and there's another wire basket for the very bottom. I plan to use the wire baskets for my yarn and leftover sewing fabrics.

On the left there's a sectional corner piece with deep shelves that I plan to use for larger items, like my sewing machine, sewing box and storage bins for my stamps. There is room for a second corner sectional to go on top of it, but I decided not to purchase a second one just yet.  I have another storage kind of thing that my father made in his woodworking shop for me last year that I think will fit in there nicely instead. I can always buy another one if I decide I want more big deep shelves. When I took these pictures Erik was still working on the installation.

Behind the panel doors are some shelves. It actually came with 3 shelves, but we only put in two so that I can put taller items on the shelves or have room for storage baskets.

I also considered painting the closet first, since it's sort of an old parchment color right now and doesn't look like it's been painted since about 1930, but I decided it didn't matter that much to me.
The good thing about this closet is that, like the rest of the house, it has a very high ceiling. There is actually quite a bit of room up above and on the left hand wall, where we could theoretically put in a few more shelves that I could store things that I don't need to get at very often but could easily reach with a small step stool. I have lots of step stools in this house. With ten and half foot ceilings and closets with the same height (our linen closet, which is HUGE, has shelves all the way up to the ceiling), you need step stools!

I'll have more pictures to come as I get everything back INto the closet!
I'll be joining Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for Met Monday!


New Lamp for the Hall Table

I mentioned in my last post that I did a little post-holiday sale shopping during my vacation from work. In addition to buying ornaments for next year's theme tree ( and a couple of Christmas gifts for next year) I also spotted a sweet little lamp at the same place I bought all my Christmas ornaments. I also noticed that all lamps and lighting were advertised as being 20 % off, so the sweet little lamp came home with me.

With the recent addition of the spinet piano in our front hall, we needed to do some re-arranging and this hall table, formerly next to the front doors, is now occupying a space next to the staircase. I had wanted to put a small lamp on this table for a long time, but the lack of any nearby electrical outlets in it's former location had rendered the search and purchase of a lamp to be somewhat pointless. With a move to a new location, the   problem was solved; I could now have a lamp.

I liked the classical urn shaped base of the lamp, and the cream and pale gold colored damask pattern shade, with bead droplet trim; it seemed to match the colors of the hallway perfectly and it looked very pretty as well. And at 20% off, it was practically a steal!

Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Hello, 2011 and a Review of Fave Pictures from 2010.........

Well, here I am doing my first post for 2011 and it's already January 8th! 
Whooo....I am so behind the times here!

I confess that I did hardly anything between Christmas and New Year's....I was on vacation from work that week and I enjoyed myself and was a total slacker. The hubby and I had a wedding to go to on New Year's Eve, but other than that, I mostly relaxed.

 I did do some after-Christmas sales shopping, however, to pick up ornaments for next year's theme tree and I even managed to buy a couple of gifts for next year! Amazing!
I have heard of people who are smart like that, but I'm never one of them. I have never bought gifts a year ahead of time before!

I thought for my first New Year post I would do a tribute to 2010 by showing some of my favorite pictures from last year.

Breakfast in Bed Tablescape. January 12,2010  (HERE)

My sweet cat Tia, before her illness.  (R.I.P  February 1996---August 28, 2010)

A Very Frou-Frou Valentine's Day Tablescape. February 10, 2010 (HERE)

Tea in the Parlor Tablescape. February 17, 2010 (HERE)

Easter Tablescape. March 31, 2010. (HERE)

Outdoor Wednesday, A Wall of Lilacs. May 4, 2010 (HERE)

Blue Transferware Tablescape #2, May 12, 2010. (HERE)

Tea on the Sideboard: Queenly Tea. May 22, 2010 (HERE)

Reverence, September 11, 2010. (HERE)

Erik, setting up in the staging area for Sheboygan Brat Days with his band, Stoneship Eden. August 6, 2010.

Olive joins our family, August 16, 2010.

Halloween 2010

Christmas 2010

Christmas Dinner for Six Tablescape. December 29, 2010 (HERE)

I hope you enjoyed looking back at pictures from this last year! I know I sure did!
As always, thanks for visiting!