Robin Flies South...

A blog about decorating and tablescaping with an emphasis on creativity and smart shopping over cash!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

A Sweet Story of Silverware

I hope you don't mind me repeating a post from October, but this is my favorite post and will be new to most of you!  I hope you enjoy.

He asked her to marry him in 1937 despite being in the middle of the Great Depression. It was a sad year.  On March 17 there was the worst school disaster in American history in terms of lives lost.  The New London School in New London, Texas experienced a natural gas explosion, killing more than 295 students and teachers.  May 6th brought the Hindenburg Disaster. As of May 7th, there were more than 7 million people unemployed in this country.  On July 2, Amelia Earhart disappeared.

There were some happier events that year.  The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien was published and on December 21, Walt Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the first feature length animated cartoon with sound, opened and became a smash hit. 

Despite it all, they were very much in love and wanted to be together as husband and wife.  Like most Americans at the time, money was tight.  They were  able to pick out only some modest items to set up their household.  Solid, sterling silverware was out of the question for them.  That year, Holmes and Edwards produced silver plated flatware at an affordable price.  She wanted to share everything with him and asked his opinion on which pattern to pick.  She showed him several choices and hoped he would like the one that she desired.  After pretending more interest than he actually had, he asked her the name of the pattern of her favorite.  She answered "Lovely Lady".  He said "Then that's the one because you are my Lovely Lady and always will be."

They married that year and lived a long, happy life, raising four children.  They always used their silverware, even though it required occasional polishing.  She secretly enjoyed the process, remembering the love she felt being his Lovely Lady.  Eventually, they retired and moved to Florida and lived well into their 80's.  They died within days of each other.

It was an overcast day in Southwest Florida.  A perfect day to visit a few thrift stores to hunt for treasures.  She stopped at the Goodwill that was on the way to the beach.  She walked through the store slowly and studied the dishes and glassware with future tablescapes in mind.  As she was often known to do, she did a second walk through and that's when she spotted the plastic bag with tarnished silverware in it.  The bag was sealed but she could tell there were quite a few pieces in there and the bag was heavy.  The price tag read $5.99.  Almost sight unseen she took a chance and brought it home.  Even with her limited knowledge, she knew it was silver plate, not sterling silver,  but there was a full set of 8 dinner forks, 8 salad forks, 8 knives, 8 soup spoons, 16 teaspoons and 3 other pieces.  She grabbed the most tarnished knife, rubbed a little silver polish on it and it came up gleaming.  This set was obviously, lovingly used and the pattern was so pretty, with the piercings and the little flowers.  She read the mark on the back of each piece and researched it online.She found that it was made by Holmes and Edwards in 1937 and the pattern was called  "Lovely Lady".

I hope you enjoyed my story of the "Lovely Lady" silverware by Holmes and Edwards.  Of course, I am the woman who finds this treasure in the Goodwill store.  The couple who first owned this set?  A product of my imagination although the events of 1937 are true.  Do you ever imagine the life your vintage finds had before you found them?  Obviously, I do!  Please view my tablescape this week when my silverware makes a rather unusual debut at a Halloween Dinner Table!

I am joining the party at Wow Us Wednesday/
and also Rustic Restorations Weedend Party at Homespun Happenings


pumkinhd1 said...

Ok, now I am really, really jealous! Not only are you artistically gifted with your tablescapes, you can also write interesting stories that make the reader want to keep on reading because the story is sooo engaging!

You go, girl! Such a cool idea :)

Elaine said...

Haha! You really had me going! I think it's a lovely story and it certainly could have happened that way. Thanks for the sneak peek of the silverware. Can't wait for it's official debut!

Diane said...

Wonderful on both accounts! You are a great story teller and you made a great score on the silverware. So, what happened in 1938? lol Diane

Marigene said...

What a wonderful had me believing every word!

Lynn@ The Vintage Nest said...

I loved this story! And I love the pierced cutlery. Very very pretty! And your Halloween table scape is just right....not too scary and not too sweet. I like the spiderweb above too. Thanks so much for visiting The Vintage Nest so I could find your charming blog. ~ Lynn
P.S. Going to a Goodwill store on the way to the that's a dream for me! :)

Tanya@takesix said...

LOVE your story, and your "Lovely Lady" silverware. I always imagine what my "finds" have done in their "previous life". What stories they could tell us!

Alycia Nichols said...

I can totally imagine all of that happening. I haven't found much of anything at a thrift store until recently, and I DID wonder what the back story on the china I found might be. Cool, Robin.

Shabby chic Sandy said...

Great story and the silverware is beautiful!

carolinajewel said...

A beautiful story to go with some beautiful silver! Love it!

Kathy said...

Great story!!! You have inspired me to keep thinking up stories myself!!! I always have, but sometimes we get busy and off the path, so to speak! Thanks!

Tammy said...

I enjoyed your story! Very creative, and what a great find! Thank you for sharing this at Rustic Restorations Weekend! :)

jmsprincess said...

Let me add a real story about someone that did marry in 1937 and yes, purchased the Lovely Lady flatware. She was already 31 at that time, he was a bit older. They never were blessed with children, but loved her second cousin's six children very much. She was Aunt Gert, he was Uncle Herbie and I was the child that loved to polish the silverware for the holidays. Uncle Herbie passed away and Aunt Gert eventually moved to Pompano Beach in South Florida.
I was the fortunate one to receive the silverware and to this day love the pattern just as much asI did when I was a child over 50 years ago. When I moved to Hollywood, FL a few years after Aunt Gert had moved, I was able to use her silverware when she joined us for holidays and birthdays. I could tell how much it pleased her to see it again.
Just last month I used the Lovely Lady to set a special table for my dear friend's birthday and the other ladies that joined the celebration. It looks great in my 1925 house and transported me back to a time when things were more gentile and we took the time make things truly special.
I also found a set for sale and thought I might need extra pieces for larger gatherings, but discovered they were not as lovingly used as my set, so I've done the unthinkable, I have started making them into jewelry for all my "lovely lady" friends. It is still a beautiful pattern that I'm sure my friends will cherish their pieces.
Keep writing ... it's all very special.