Thursday, December 27, 2012

The Queen of Every Party

As someone who loves to throw a party and always wanting to be the "hostess with the mostess", I wanted to devote this next blog post to planning the perfect party, especially for all those having New Year's Eve 2013 parties! I have found so many items at the Queen of Hearts that can be used all year long to make your party the one everyone will remember. Whether you are hosting a holiday party, an engagement party, bridal or baby shower, or just a get together with friends or families, you can always make sure your gathering is special and unique. Besides having the perfect outfit and menu, here are five ways to make your soiree perfect, from the Queen of Hearts.

1. Beautify your Bar.
Elevate your bar beyond liquor and wine bottles by serving up spirits in high class. A gorgeous punch bowl is a staple, and solo cups should be put away until the next big college game. Check out these amazing ways to serve your guests:

Pour your bar into these bottles! Adorable and available at TIQUE in Marietta

Mercury glass and a fancy tray – perfect to put glasses of champagne for a fancy New Years toast! (Marietta) 

Adorable bucket to chill your Champagne for the New Year toasts! (MYL at Marietta)

2. Create your own Cocktail.
It’s your party, create a couple of signature drinks! Use a chalkboard to write out the drink specials and what is in them. Your guests will love to "order up their drinks" at your drink table. Serve them in cute glasses, rather than solo cups, to make your cocktail classy.

Menu 'Headboard' from Romancing the Home (RHT1) in Buford - so cute to write out your party menu or signature drink!

Use these cute shelves from A Vintage Flea (DILLY) at Marietta Queen of Hearts - the top is a chalkboard to write the name of the drink, the middle a corkboard to pin up the ingredients and the bottom can hold cute rings to go on your wine glass so your guests can tell which drink is theirs!

3. Theme Your Scene.
While it's good to have a mix of snacks and appetizers for your party, you'll want a good theme for each area to make it pop. Create a gorgeous table that compliments your food, use burlap and serve cheese and wine, hang paper lanterns over a champagne station, or use a good color combination for your overall party.

Paper Lanterns to hang over your champagne station to create 'bubbles' - great theme! (AHS Alpharetta) Also love the gray/light orange/white color combo

Cute table idea in the DKL booth, Alpharetta - mix of red and black, with toile

4. Be the 'Light' of the Party.
Of course you are the center of the party (or the guest of honor is) but set the mood and dim the lights on your chandelier or change out your lamps to soft lighting. Everyone, and especially you, will look great in soft lights. Don't forget the powder room -- turn off the overhead lighting and turn on a small lamp . . . even this room can be included in the party.

This Nickel Lamp with Saffron shade from Southern Exposure (SOEXPO) at Alpharetta Queen of Hearts goes great with the wicker tray, glasses and woven pitcher - great for a brunch or shower

Place candles in this beaded chandelier and hang over your bar to create soft lighting - PDG at Alpharetta Queen of Hearts

5. A Party Favorite with Party Favors.
Everyone likes to leave with a little something from the party - you can even play a game to have a 'winner' and offer a prize! Treat your guests to inexpensive cute gifts, or even something homemade, and wrap them up in cute packaging so they remember the party long after it's over.

Wrap your gifts up in these cute gift bags from Vanilla Lace (VL) at Alpharetta

Cute giveaway gifts at Marietta! (IAS)

We love to see how our customers have taken items from the Queen and used them in their home or for a party - feel free to share any of your ideas on our Facebook page! As we close in on the end of 2012, let's raise our glasses to a good year, and many more memories to make in the next! 

See you in 2013...


Friday, December 14, 2012

Christmas Ornaments

Merry Christmas!  It's Sarah from {Home-ology} modern vintage here again for another fun & informative blog post.

Are you ready for what the remaining month of December has in store?  Is your Christmas a crazy whirlwind of family, food, & gift giving or is it a simple day of family togetherness and quiet celebration?

No matter how you celebrate, there's no denying that the holiday season is in full swing, and homes all over the world are filled with the spirit of Christmas.  Halls are decked and evergreens are dripping with the collections of precious family ornaments - some purchased, some made by little hands - but each with a special memory attached.

There are a plethora traditions & rituals that go along with the celebration of Christmas; but one I find most intriguing is the tradition of decorating the Christmas tree.  Why do we use certain figures as ornaments?  My inquisitive mind had to know.

Many of these stories are well known, other not so much.  I thought I would share with you what I found.
A Christmas star.  Most Christians know that a star on the top of the tree represents the Star of Bethlehem whose bright light led the Wise Men to Jesus and that an angel on the top of the tree represents the angels who spread the news of Jesus' birth.
vintage christmas spider ornament via
But one of my favorites is the Christmas spider.  Originally I loved these ornaments just because I found the little insects an intriguing addition to my tree.  But as I began to collect them, I eventually learned their history.

The story of the Christmas spiders {and the silver tinsel that is used to represent them} is a sweet little tale of a family of spiders who couldn't resist climbing through the Christmas tree to view the beautiful decorations that had been placed upon it.  When they had finished admiring all the ornaments, they had unknowingly spun webs all around the tree.  The end is a sweet tale.  You can find the most widely known version of the story here.
Another popular ornament we often see is the Christmas pickle.  It's tradition is very much up for controversy as to its origination {either Germany or an American-made tale created to commercialize it's popularity as an ornament}.  Either way, it's a fun tradition to hide a pickle in deep inside the tree.  The child who finds it gets a special gift & good luck throughout the following year.  A little more info on its controversial story can be found here.
Last is the the gilded walnut.  The walnut symbolizes an old ritual that began with the Europeans where, after a treat of walnuts on Christmas, the children would take the empty shells and place a burning candle inside.  These "boats" were placed in a bowl of water.  The one whose boat made it to the end was blessed with long life & good luck.  A shell that sinks brings bad luck.

There are so many more ornament traditions, one could spend an entire day engrossed in the subject.  I did, however, find two articles listing many of them here and here, each giving a brief history.  It's an entertaining family discussion for this time of year and would be a fun read to share with little ones.  Learning the history behind the ornaments is a great way to give them an understanding of what Christmas is truly about.

Christmas ornaments as we know them today in America only became widespread in the late 1800's, during the Victorian era, when the popular F.W. Woolworth's five & dime began offering German glass ornaments to its customers.  Prior to then, trees were mainly decorated with nuts, fruits, and strings of popcorn & cranberries.

These Victorian era ornaments aren't so readily available in today's market.  However, one can easily create a beautiful vintage Christmas tree by filling it with the glass ornaments from the 1940's and beyond.  Ornaments dating from these time periods are plentiful and very, very affordable.  I found some wonderful examples during a recent trip to the Queen of Hearts' Alpharetta location.  But they are plentiful in any of her three locations this time of year.
 This is a lovely example of the appeal of a vintage decorated tree - so charming.  These are located in BELLA's booth.
And here's a simple collection of gold Shiny Brites.  These make a nice vintage statement when placed as a collection within a vessel.
Just for interest, I'm showing this rare hand blown, hand painted ornament dating to WWII.  I don't normally feature my own inventory, but it's such a nice example of a rare find that I felt it appropriate to include.  Metal was not available for commercial use during war time, so paper hangers were used in place of the metal caps.  This is an easy way to date ornaments from this time period. 
What would a vintage Christmas be without a blow mold?  This one is a table top model from the 1960's.  I love his worn patina. You will find this one in booth CDVA.
This is a very nice collection from dealer KAY.
And two 1950's beauties from dealer JBC.

There's something universally appealing about vintage Christmas ornaments - their patina, their history, the fact that they've been lovingly preserved and were a very special part of one family's traditions - it just evokes the holiday spirit in a way like no other.

I hope you and your family have the merriest of Christmases this year and blessings throughout the new year.



This is a guest post from Sarah Krouse at {Home-ology) modern vintage.  As well as being a dealer in our Alpharetta location, Sarah blogs over at  If you enjoyed reading her post and would love to see more, we encourage you to stop by her blog.  There you'll see many of her vintage finds in their raw stage, get a story of where they came from, and see transformations of the pieces she revives & repurposes prior to their display at the Queen.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Deck the Halls Y'all: The Windy City Girl Moves South

To introduce myself as a new blogger for the Queen, I LOVE home decorating and have probably spent hours on Pinterest pinning things that I NEED to have in my futuristic home (along with wedding ideas without a ring on my finger) and have recently had the honor to help do the social media and marketing for the Queen of Hearts. This is a dream. I get to spend days looking at furniture, decorations, and get ideas for my soon to be Southern apartment.

I've returned home to Atlanta a month ago after four years in the fabulous city of Chicago. When Christmas comes there, along with the snow, it is magical. It makes you forget it is even cold. Lights twinkle everywhere and you can sometimes not even decipher what is snow and what is sparkle. Coming to Atlanta and escaping the cold made me wonder what my Christmas experience would be like this year, without the heavy winter coat and Hunter boots. I wonder how it would compare.

While I typically come home to visit my parents in the town I grew up in, I looked forward to family and friends, but didn't take notice of the Southern charm that comes to Christmas as I just left this winter wonderland of the Midwest. As the Queen of Hearts wrapped up their three amazing nights of Holiday Open Houses last month, I was taken aback by all of the adorable trends that you find in the South, and wanted to share my 5 favorite takeaways to incorporate into your home (and in mine!) as we venture into December.

Shut the Front Door and Put a Wreath on it!
As an apartment dweller for four years, we didn't have a front door, other than the one leading into our apartment. We put up the traditional fake pine needle wreath, with it's starched bow, and that was that. Never have I wanted a front door more than when I saw the wreaths at the Queen. From burlap to sweater wreaths, and also one made from coffee filters?! How many doors can I put them on…

Coffee Filter Wreath from KIRT (Marietta)

Sweater Wreaths! (LAG Alpharetta)

Make it Snow Make it Snow Make it Snow
As a native Atlantan, I never really had deal with the snow, and more or less prayed for it so school would be cancelled. I learned quickly in Chicago that gloves aren't an accessory but a necessity, and you will definitely fall if you choose to wear your 4 inch heels out in the snow. How excited I was to see these tutu snow balls and snowball-esque paper lights that make you feel like there is a touch of sparkle and snow in your own home. I would love to hang these from my ceiling for a party, or even over the mantle on some gorgeous ribbon to make it feel like I live in a snow globe in the South.

Lighted snowballs! (AHS at Alpharetta)

Tutu Snowballs! (LAG at Alpharetta) 

I have never seen so much burlap in my life and never have thought about how cute it would be on anything from pillows to stockings, covering candleholders and jars. I even have learned that pumpkins were burlap wrapped this fall, y'all. How adorable and Southern chic. I'm currently finding items that I need to put burlap bows on…

Bows, pillows and stockings at Under the Garden Gate (TFP at Alpharetta)

Burlap pillows with holiday sayings (SP at Alpharetta)

L-E-T-T-E-R-S to Santa
I'm being serious when I say I may buy an entire alphabet of oversized letters to hoard in a closet for when I want to spell things out. I do have my very own 'J' hung in a frame in my room, but these giant letters are so much fun. It's like a giant scrabble game to decorate with and almost brings a sort of vintage touch to your home if you get different sizes, colors and patterns. P-A-R-T-Y time at my house as these will be placed behind the punchbowl to remind everyone what we are here for.

Vintage metal letters (GWINN at Marietta)

Scrabble letters (LABS at Marietta)

Love the patterns and colors (TPPA at Alpharetta) 

A Different Scene Than Red and Green
It is the year of the color block, I know as I've paired bright yellow dresses with dark green shoes, mismatched my purse to my belt, and even painted my nails a totally different color all together (I have the Crayola of OPI polishes in my possession). This Christmas, try something different. Put magenta and turquoise decorations on your tree with gold balls, use red and grey for a classic combo that still screams Christmas, and make everything sparkle. Just because it's tradition doesn't mean you can't mix it up. If you love the red and green scheme, keep it classy by incorporating awesome patterns like a red chevron throw pillow.

Love the teal reindeer throw pillow! (CAT at Alpharetta)

Gray and Red Classic Combo (VL at Marietta)

Blue, Purple, Green and Pink adorn this wreath at JUNK at Buford 

Have you decorated for the holidays? Hope these gave you some cute ideas for your home, or even your next holiday party! I look forward to sharing my weekly blog posts with the Queen of Hearts fans and followers, to talk about trends I’m seeing in home decorating, ideas I’ve found to help spruce up your home, and what you can find at the fabulous Queen of Hearts!

Happy Holidays!


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Monthly Feature at the Queen

Happy Thanksgiving to all the Queen's court {that's you, my friends}!  Are you gearing up for the holiday season that is upon us?  I'm in a big holiday spirit and have already added a few wintery vignettes around the house.  In our home, the family will all be together this year, so I'm truly looking forward to some gathering & celebrating.

Anyhoo,  this month's feature post will not be focused on one particular find or dealer.  Nope, this post is devoted entirely to the Queen's latest addition, their new store in Marietta.  It was official on the 5th - the new store is open at 2745 Sandy Plains Road, Marietta, Ga.  Woot!

Of course I hit the scene as soon as I could get my happy feet down there, and trust me when I say I wasn't disappointed.  There was so much goodness happening that I immediately knew I couldn't limit this post to one particular find.  Rather, I feel obliged to share with my vintage lovin' peeps all that is good at the new Marietta Queen of Hearts.  Care to take a tour?  Follow me!

As you first enter the doors, look over to your right onto Broad Street.  Your eyes will immediately be drawn into the fantastic era of the 1970s as you float in a happy sea of yellow & gray.  I have to say, dealer "Richie" has an amazing eye and has brought back 1970 in a very modern way.  {And that's exactly the way we like to roll.}

This is some serious eye candy, people.

And feast your eyes on the yellow crushed velvet sofa and orange pillows.  Oh yeah, I'm crushin'!
This booth defines vintage modern, so it's no surprise that I would be all over it.  I love the touch of Bohemian that's injected.  It's perfection!  I just want to float around in this space for a while.  Excuse me while I indulge for a moment...

Okay, okay, we'll move on - there's lots more to see!  This next stop is at dealer GAP's booth on East Bay Street.  As much as I adore vintage modern, I also adore French country.  Our current home is done in French country, and this would fit in perfectly.  This piece has Francophile written all over it!
Do you swoon over it's intricately hand carved beauty?  Such an exceptional piece - love the details and the warmth of the walnut wood construction.  And look what I found sitting atop.
So handsome!  Next we move on to dealer SLB's booth on Queen Street where I met the nicest little French bistro table.
Very Deco in style, I can't resist the beautiful cast iron base.  I think the top is porcelain (?).
 I love to look underneath a piece - that's where you will most often see the history and true age.  Never be too ladylike to hunker down & look underneath - it can be quite revealing!
Ooh la, la more French!  This time in a very ornate bed in dealer V923's booth on Ashley Street.  Excuse the roping - the booth was still a work in progress, as many others were.  But couldn't you imagine some seriously sweet dreams in this exquisite beauty?  To.die.for.

And lastly is this impressive country piece in dealer BLR's & LHA's booth on Bull Street.  I love the old blue painted surface.  Man, if I were doing some serious kitchen remodeling, this puppy would immediately become a part of the plan.  Or how about as a piece in your uber awesome craft room?  Oh yeah!
So that's the tour!  Awesome, no?  There are so many great dealers offering up a seriously fabulous selection of inventory.  This was only a tease.  And what's even better is that there are more dealers in the works.  The store is still in its early stages of opening and not all the dealers were finished staging their booths.  I can't wait to go back to see the progress.

Especially through the holidays, I love to incorporate vintage finds into my styling.  Antiques somehow speak to family traditions and create an appreciation for the past.  It's the small details that become forever woven into the memory of your family's holiday celebrations - just like a fire burning in the fireplace on Thanksgiving Day and the smell of the freshly cut Christmas tree when it's first brought into the house.  Adding little vintage touches as a part of your holiday is the perfect way to create memories that will last a lifetime.

This November, be forever thankful for the blessings.

Til next month!


This is a guest post from Sarah Krouse at {Home-ology) modern vintage.  As well as being a dealer in our Alpharetta location, Sarah blogs over at  If you enjoyed reading her post and would love to see more, we encourage you to stop by her blog.  There you'll see many of her vintage finds in their raw stage, get a story of where they came from, and see transformations of the pieces she revives & repurposes prior to their display at the Queen.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Remember making aprons in Home Ec.....

Remember making aprons in Home Ec?  It is not called Home Ec anymore and I don't think our kids know what an apron is, but a friend sent this to us and we thought you would enjoy it......

The principal use of Grandma's apron was to protect the dress underneath because she only had a few. It was also because it was easier to wash aprons than dresses and aprons used less material. But along with that, it served as a potholder for removing hot pans from the oven.  

It was wonderful for drying children's tears, and on occasion was even used for cleaning out dirty ears.

From the chicken coop, the apron was used for carrying eggs, fussy chicks, and sometimes half-hatched eggs to be finished in the warming oven.

When company came, those aprons were ideal hiding places for shy kids..

And when the weather was cold, Grandma wrapped it around her arms.

Those big old aprons wiped many a perspiring brow, bent over the hot wood stove.

Chips and kindling wood were brought into the kitchen in that apron.

From the garden, it carried all sorts of vegetables. After the peas had been shelled, it carried out the hulls.

In the fall, the apron was used to bring in apples that had fallen from the trees.

When unexpected company drove up the road, it was surprising how much furniture that old apron could dust in a matter of seconds.

When dinner was ready, Grandma walked out onto the porch, waved her apron, and the men folk knew it was time to come in from the fields to dinner.

It will be a long time before someone invents something that will replace that 'old-time apron' that served so many purposes.  
Grandma used to set her hot baked apple pies on the window sill to cool. Her granddaughters set theirs on the window sill to thaw. They would go crazy now trying to figure out how many germs were on that apron.

Personally, I don't think I ever caught anything from an apron - but love...