Wednesday, September 10, 2014

It's Almost My First Blogaversary!

Last September 12, 2013, I began my adventure into the world of blogging.  It was the start of a hobby that has given me so much pleasure.  A good friend, more like a family member, came over and set up my blog for me.  He used Blogger, showed me how to fill in the blanks of the template, and I began.  My first blog post can be seen here.  Since then, I have changed my layout somewhat and learned much more about photography ( got an attachment for my flash unit for better lighting; decided I liked the "x-large" size of photos; and, tried some creative shots of dishes and accent pieces).  It's gotten so much easier to put a post together.  When I started, it took many hours to set up the table; then it took a long time to take pictures that weren't too dark or didn't highlight the tablescape very well; then it took forever to actually compose the post (figuring how to download photos from iPhoto; figuring how to to link up to parties----I didn't even know what a "thumbnail" was!)  It really was at least a two day project.  Things have improved dramatically.  And I credit the sweet fellow bloggers I have met in the course of starting this hobby, for making that improvement.  Thank you, Susan, from  and Dawn from for your encouragement and willingness to answer my questions.  In those beginning days of confusion,  you both really kept me going, and I'm so very grateful.

It's been wonderful over this past year sharing my love for dishes, linens, flatware, crystal and accent pieces with other tablescapers who share this same fascination.

For this blogaversary tablescape I decided to challenge myself.  I'm still trying to use things I haven't used before.  I did that for my last post, so by the time this post came, it was really difficult to find new components.  But, I was determined.  So, everything on this table has not been used this entire year.

Here's The Result:

Here's How It Was Created:

I started with a placemat I had purchased at Pier One just as I began blogging:

The first layer of the dish stack is the only dinner plate I haven't yet used.  I got it at the Shinoda Design Center, and it was my determination to enter the world of more contemporary table design that convinced me to get a square-shaped plate. I decided to go with white so I could pair it up with any other plate design or color.

The next plate is a salad plate I found at World Market. It is just marked on the back, Made In Portugal.  I loved the pattern and colors, and would have preferred pairing it with an orange dinner plate, but I realized I had already used my orange plates for last Halloween, and so I couldn't use them for my challenge!  I know it was a stretch to pair this plate with this particular placemat, but I felt the orange in the placemat "sort of" went with the orange in the plate's border design.

The first hiccup in my plans for this table were the napkins!   I had nothing I hadn't already used or any napkins that would really complement the salad plate or placemats.  I found these napkins in my napkin storage and thought, "Umm...they've got blue and gold...maybe they'll work."  The second hiccup was that I had found these napkins at World Market on the clearance table and there were only three left.  So, my table became a table for three. The gold napkin rings are from Bed, Bath and Beyond.

To complete the table setting, I used my mother-in-law's flatware.  It is only labeled "V.U. Stainless Nickel Bronze". Since I did not have any glasses that I hadn't already used, I decided to use these Netas: Made in Italy mugs I purchased from HomeGoods a few Thanksgivings ago.  Their color blended well, even if I rarely serve dinner beverages in mugs!

The centerpiece was very hard to produce.  I searched all around the house for something I had yet to use in a tablescape, and couldn't find anything at first.  A placemat that I use on my sideboard seemed to coordinate with the colors on the table.  Then I found a blown glass vase that I had bought at a street fair in Ventura, whose color also blended with the table components.  I looked outside, and the last of my dahlias was blooming so I grabbed it and flanked it with two LED candles my hubby got me for Christmas.  I wanted a little height, so I turned a tray upside down and "voila!"

I added a gold tray (a Christmas gift from a dear friend) and the serving pieces from my mother-in-law's flatware set to fill the empty spot where the fourth tablesetting would have been, if I had bought four napkins instead of three!!

So, I was able to complete the challenge I had set for my first blogaversary.  There is nothing on the table that has been used during the entire year.  Thank you for stopping by and helping me celebrate.  Know that all of you who have become followers hold a special place in my heart.  Your support means more than I can say.  And to those of you who take the time to comment, thank you.  You truly do make my day.  I've so enjoyed getting to know all of you over the year, and appreciate every comment you make.  I never realized how important this hobby would become to me.  It's made me push myself to learn new things, organize myself and get the cobwebs out of the creative side of my brain which had gotten pretty congested since I retired!

I'll be linking up to Susan's Tablescape Thursday at
and Christine's Table It! Link Party at
Thank you, ladies, for hosting these parties and giving us a chance to share our ideas.

If you would like to become a follower of The Magic Hutch, just go to the top of my blog, fill in your email address by "Follow by Email" and hit "Submit"! Many thanks.


  1. Congrats for completing a year in blog land.Your write up is so beautiful.I understand your emotions about blogging.Indeed blogging is a beautiful feeling for those who blog.Love your pretty table along with the beautiful flower.Take care.Love and hugs sujatha..:):)

  2. Very pretty colors! At first I did a double take; at first glance, the WM plates resemble a Wedgwood pattern. And fresh flowers are a nice touch. Well done.

  3. Congratulations Rosie! Well done! I am just about 2 1/2 months behind you. Hasn't it been a wonderful journey? I think you did a great job on your table with your challenge. Everything really does go well together.

  4. Happy Blogaversary!!! I had mine the end of March and it's been so fun to learn something new!! I really enjoy reading your posts! We have a lot in common so I can relate to lots that you share. I can't believe we bought the same plates!! Weren't they pretty? I just love them!! Your napkins go perfectly!! They make the setting look more exotic! I may have to give myself a challenge. I seem to be more 'tablescape inspired' in the fall. Hopefully I'll get my posting routine back soon. I seem to have overextended myself a little this Fall. Thanks for visiting! Great job with YOUR plates and have a great weekend!!

  5. Mixing patterns is second nature to me, so I like what you've done with yours. That is a simple way to make tables interesting.

  6. Congrats on your first blog birthday, Rosie! And thank you so much for mentioning me, you are so sweet always, and do you know you were one of my very first subscribers? 3rd or 4th I think! You've done a remarkable job and yes, we do learn so much that first year, don't we?! Beautiful tablescape once again, but with you, that's a given :) -Dawn @ We Call It

  7. I think it looks great, and I love the color scheme. The napkins are lovely...they are wonderful with the plates.

  8. Congrats on your blog anniversary.I am still trying to figure out what a permalink is and how to use it. maybe if someone could help me I could move beyond the 21 followers I have had for 11 months. no matter what I do I can't get it to work.Susie

  9. Happy 1st Blogaversary, Rosie! Great plates and napkins.
    Have a wonderful week.

  10. Hi, Rosie! I'm late getting around since I've been down and out with this crazy back of mine. Ugh! It's such a pain...literally AND figuratively!!!

    Happy First Year Blogaversary!!!! What a coup! It gets easier, yes. And with all the friends you make across the globe, it just gets to be more and more fun as time goes on! It has been a real joy to get to know you through your posts and comments!

    They say necessity is the Mother of invention, but I think sheer will may be a kissin' cousin! You've shown that it is indeed possible to create an inviting table setting with things you already have at home. I've been doing a LOT of that lately since my husband has me on spending lock down! You even took it a step further by using items you'd not used in other tablescapes throughout the year. That REALLY takes some doing!!!!

    I wish you a fabulous 2nd year out here in Blogland! Have a great week!

  11. Rosie, Your anniversary tablescape is lovely! The placemats and napkins are wonderful complements to the Portuguese salad plates.

    I can't believe I missed your anniversary, I feel so bad. I have been trying to catch up on visiting but it has been a slow go. A most sincere congratulations on your first year of blogging. You can be very proud of what you have accomplished in one short year.