Thursday, November 3, 2022

Thistle Tablescape

I remember the first time I saw a wild thistle growing along the roadside in the mountains.  I did a double-take -- surely I was mistaken.  I thought they only grew in the Scottish Highlands.  I was wrong; they do grow around here at the higher elevations, but we haven't been able to spot any the last year or two, so I wonder if the farmers or the state park rangers are trying to kill them off.  I've heard they can be invasive, and I know from experience they sport some seriously wicked thorns.   
I meant to set up this table some time ago, but I was waiting to find the right dishes (at the right price) for it.  A few years ago, my sweet husband gave me a beautiful table runner with embroidered thistles, along with some coordinating doilies.  He ordered them from the Gretna Green website, where we both like to shop for gifts.  I already had the napkins, thinking I would set a Mardi Gras table, and they were perfect with the other linens.  Then a few months ago, I finally found the dishes on e-Bay.  I would have loved to buy the teacups and saucers, too, but I didn't want to spend the extra money.  

I'm glad I waited because these are the dishes I wanted.  I got a group of seven bread and butter/dessert plates for $54 before tax (with free shipping).  They look like brand new, and I'm very happy with them.  I have discovered that purple/plum transferware is hard to find and thus very pricey.  I have seen pieces on other sites that I thought were pretty, but I couldn't justify the price they were asking.  E-Bay has come through for us many times, and I sure am glad they're around.

The seller also had dinner plates on offer, but this was the most economical choice for me.  With white dinner and salad plates, the purple bread and butter plates add just enough color to set a pretty table.  We don't have unlimited storage here either, so that's always a consideration. 

This pattern is Royal Stafforshire "Tonquin," by Clarice Cliff.  You can click on the picture to enlarge for a better look at the image.

I thought about using some copper pieces on the table; they would have looked pretty with the purple, but I decided to save those for the Thanksgiving table.  Instead, I used the pewter napkin rings and two mint julep cups. 
I used dried limelight hydrangeas for the centerpiece.  These are the ones I dried last fall.  It was my first attempt at drying hydrangeas, and I had beginner's luck, for sure.  I've kept them in a dark closet since last year, and they've held up beautifully.  

Here you can see closeups of the thistle pattern and the coordinating white doily.  I love these linens!  

There is also a small green doily,

and a dainty purple one as well.  

For the rest of the table, I used the Rochere bee glasses, 

and our Oneida stainless (Tennyson).  I'm pretty sure the purple napkins came from World Market, and the green placemats and green napkins came from Bed, Bath & Beyond several years ago.  The twisted barley candlesticks and the mint julep cups were earlier e-Bay finds.  

These tablescapes are always a bit of work to put together, but I love the way this turned out, and I'll enjoy looking at it for the next few weeks.  Thanks so much for stopping by, friends, and I so appreciate your time!  
Wild thistle flower on the Blue Ridge Parkway -- 2015.  
I'm joining the other lades for "Tablescape Thursday," hosted by Susan at Between Naps on the Porch.  Have a wonderful weekend all!!


  1. Hello Denise,
    What a beautiful tablescape you created. Thistles are pretty, but invasive here and very prickly to deal with. I love the linens, and will be looking at the Gretna Green website. Your plates are a beautiful colour, and one I've never seen.

  2. This is absolutely lovely Denise! I adore the colors and those dishes....what a treasure! You created a lovely tablescape...thank you for the inspiration and for sharing your home with us! I hope you enjoy a lovely Thanksgiving Day!



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