Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Falling Treasures

In her post a few days ago, Joni told about her new French clock that she found at the Marburger Farm antique show last week. She loved it and was so happy with the way it looked above the window in her gorgeous kitchen. Then, quite unexpectedly, only a little while after the picture was taken, the clock just fell - yes, fell.... and broke into a million pieces. She was crushed. She was certain she had hung it securely and still doesn't know why it fell from the wall.

Joni's story brought back a memory for me. It was a number of years ago when we lived in Dallas. I was so excited about my new antique English pine plate rack and could hardly wait to hang it in my dining room. I was a vintage Mexican pottery collecting fool and couldn't wait to have such a great display piece!

I had two young children and time to myself was rare. I remember hanging the shelf one night by myself before everyone was in bed. I used long, big nails and felt sure they were sufficient.I planned to get up early the next morning to have time alone to arrange my pottery.

I had some very special, very old plates and it had taken me quite some time to amass a collection to hang together. I just loved them. I felt the shelf was securely hung on the wall.

The next morning I crept down the stairs quietly so that no little people knew I was up. I climbed up on a ladder in my nightgown and quietly began to arrange dinner plates, salad plates, a few little odd pieces tucked in here and there ..... arranging and rearranging to get everything just right - so balanced and pretty.

Finally I was satisfied and went into the kitchen to refill my coffee cup. I sat down at the kitchen table to enjoy my last few minutes of alone time, and then I heard it. I heard a slow, sliding sort of sound. Not quite sure at first.........kind of like slow motion........and when I realized it was the plate rack sliding down the wall, it was too late. The slow slide evolved quickly to a huge crash and I was horrified! I found my precious pottery collection smashed to pieces on the dining room floor. Surprisingly a few pieces survived with just a few chips, but most were lost.

I have collected more pottery now and still love it. I mix old with new as you can see above. I will never forget that morning, though. In my determination to get that plate rack hung and filled, all in such delicious, but too hurried, excitement, I lost it all.

Big lesson learned, big. My plate rack is now hung with super duper nails and butterfly something or others.....oh, and I did learn a thing or two about patience!


  1. OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Your story is so much worse than mine!!!!! wow~~I feel your pain. Poor thing. I just can't imagine. really - why are we SOOOOOOOo impatient when it comes to design? and I loved your next story too!! :) Even though we collect different things, I would def. trust you to pick out my clock. And i love your heron!


  2. Hi. Very informative story. Exactly what has happened to me few years ago. The only difference was that instead of pottery there were many small porcelain statues. Some of them survived this accident but most of them were absolutely destroyed. I had a horrible feeling then. And what I have learned? ...patience

    Good luck,

  3. Ouch!! That hurts!!! But I would do the same thing. I am always about hurrying up and getting it done!!

  4. Oh, your plate rack story is tragic too! I think the worst is to go from happiness and a feeling of accomplishment to the complete opposite.

  5. * Ohhhh, Sweetie, I sooo feel your pain, belieeeeve me~ and am SO SORRY!!!!!

    Similar thing here, only I hung a "new", antique print above a buffet in our DR in Germany, just in time for a large Christmas cocktail party the next day~~~~~ welll, YOU know what happened, of course...!!!

    Buuut, the much-loved print was actually fine except for the glass & frame......... My BIG, PAINFUL LOSS, tho, was the weeks-old, "splurge-purchase" of 10 magnificently hand-cut, tall crystal wine goblets, which I had hand-selected at the place where they were made...

    I was in the kitchen, HEARD the crash & tried to maintain my composure when I went to the DR... it was STRANGELY SILENT in the whole HOUSE... when I got there, alllll of our friends, AND my sweet husband, were standing there ASHEN, w/ their hands in the air as if to say "It wasn't ME!". I had two options... I chose the FIRST ONE & that was to remain calm (well, at least APPEAR to!) & casually say "Oh my! Well, easy come, easy go!"... It was all I could think of (didn't want to break into tears OR RUIN the evening), and I "smiled" and THEN everyone ELSE did (albeit sheepishly). The party continued~ nobody was hurt, thankfully (except for my heart) and the evening ended up a success anyway~~~

    Learned alot that nite, & was grateful (& rather shocked!) that I "handled" it all so calmly!

    Yep, someetimes BEAUTY D*O*E*S "hurt"!!!

    Linda in AZ *

  6. * P.S. Just went back & looked at your collection again~~~ you have some BEAUUUUTIFUL pieces NOW!!! (Guess it doesn't help take away the painful memory tho, does it???)~~~

  7. Oh! This story is so sad!! I know this must have been a good lesson for you!
    But we see that now you have a wonderful collection again of potteries! It is so beautiful to hear that you mix old and new!
    I love it!


  8. OMGsh, so you're the sister in law that I keep reading about on Joni's blog! Love it! Just wanted to say thanks for coming by my blog and your sweet comments,too. Ugh! I can't believe that happened to you, too! I am so glad I never lost any of my treasured pieces like that...I would just be heartbroken, but then again, they are just "things". Anyway, I look forward to being a regular reader now. Oh, and I hope I didn't make too many grammatical errors!

    Have a great weekend!

  9. Oh, that is terrible. I can imagine how you must have felt.

  10. Heartbreaking! It does look as though you have filled up the rack beautifully, though. Did it wake up the kids? The crash or your screams;-) It's like a car crash, you want to know what happened afterwards. Sorry, this kind of thing has happened to me so many times that at some point you just have to laugh (and then cry again).

  11. Hi! Just checking in with you - I've been quite the absent blogger lately, and you've been busy bee keeping everyone current on design and all that's lovely.

    So Sorry about your tragic plate rack mishap.... It hurt just to read about it!

    Loving your stories and photos!


  12. Oh no! Great story though! Is that your kitchen? Love it.

  13. One of the best things EVER is finding a new, wonderful blog and thanks to Joni I found yours. And I get to go back all the way to 2007 and start reading!! (Maria, click on "Joni", that's her beautiful kitchen.)

  14. One time we were in our trailer house and the wind was really blowin. That sucker started rockin and throwed all my ceramic collection on the floor. I come up out of that recliner and said
    OOOOOOOOOOOH.....SHIIIIIIIIT!!!! I'll kiss your ass if it did'nt bust ever last one of um.It had taken me years and years of going to Canton and them Country Peddler shows yall have in get all them. But you know I swept them up and got on with life.My husband says the the only fallen treasures I have now are my boobs. Let's do lunch sometime.

  15. Oh "new blogger" - what a tragedy! I would love to "do lunch" sometime but you must reveal your charming identity!

  16. Oops........sorry "new blogger" - I meant that for anonymous!!

  17. Thanks for your sweet comment on my blog... :)

    I have a similar plate rack in my dining room. I have filled it with vintage brown and white transferware I purchased off Ebay several years ago to host Thanksgiving. I almost lost it all when we were having granite installed in our kitchen. The installers were pushing the granite in place and it was hitting against the wall with my plate rack. I heard them slam it 3 times before I could get in there and yell "STOP!!!" Everytime it hit...I would hear each and every piece of china rattle. gulp. Phew...that was a scary day.

  18. Okay... this is so painful! 13 years ago I was a friend's house during the Christmas holidays. I was holding my 10 month old old baby in front of her BEAUTIFUL Christmas tree and we were admiring all of the lights and amazing collection of Radko ornaments... I had never seen a 9' tree decked out in only Radko beauties before. Well... my baby tugged (barely... I promise!) at a branch and in slow motion the entire thing fell completely to the ground!!! You can imagine my horror... I wanted to run but the "crash" of Radko ornaments to the hardwood floor was heard thought the house. I was mortified. Although I truly believe that tree was barely in it's tree stand and waiting for someone to sneeze on it... I was the most AWFUL thing ever!!! I KNOW your pain!

  19. Sounds like many others have had similar experiences. The Christmas tree story is certainly one of the worst I have heard! I hope that was a really good, understanding friend! Thanks for all of the comments!

  20. Hi, I just came across your blog.

    I love your pictures, so, so pretty.

    Your plate rack story is too sad. I think somewhere along the way, we are all guilty of being "impatient" perhaps trying to get things done while the kids are napping or before company walks in the front door. I think it must be in our DNA.

    I do the check, check double check routine whenever I hang a picture and such. I literally stand there and wait before I move away.

    Happy decorating ......




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