Guests often ask if I had experience before deciding to start a bed and breakfast. I jokingly respond, “Well, with six kids I made a lot of beds and cooked a lot of breakfasts!” As I look back on life experiences I can see the numerous ways I was prepared for this new chapter of life.
My first full-time job was at age sixteen working at a gifts and jewelry store in our small town. Women came in to shop for jewelry and home décor and brides-to-be established their gift registry for china, pottery, crystal, flatware, and table linens. I assisted many couples in their selections demonstrating options of which cloth napkins, place mats and table cloths looked best with their choice of dinnerware. It was a natural for me because my experience working with textiles began several years earlier when I learned how to sew. At sixteen I was already making most of my clothes.
Storefront windows were common and I had the artistic privilege to select from the wide variety of dishes and beautiful linens to create a stunning display complete with a centerpiece of candles and flowers.
Fast-forward forty-plus years and I am reminded by frequent flashbacks my days at Payne’s Gifts and Jewelry. I wish owners Joe and Patsye could see the fruit of their investment into my life.
On a sunny fall morning out on the screened porch I shuffled ten different dinner plate patterns out on our farmhouse table. It’s amazing how various patterns and colors can be mixed with the right napkins and placemats to make a lovely table setting from casual to elegant or vintage farmhouse.
I hope you enjoy the visual feast and gain inspiration to make your own table special. If you don’t have the energy for it, come and stay with us. Each morning at breakfast guests experience a different place setting though you’ll need to stay a couple of weeks to see them all!