{traditional Bohemian pottery}

As I reflect this week on my grandmother's passing I came to the realization that she has been an influence of my love of home design and decor. Despite being born during World War I, living through the Great Depression, World War II, a communist takeover of her beloved Czechoslovakia, having both her children leave and emigrate to Canada, the death of my grandfather 24 years ago and her immigrating to Canada in her late 70's, she always surrounded herself with pretty things. I remember when she visited Canada while I was growing up, she was a force to be reckoned with but despite her tough demeanor she was a gentle and giving soul. I looked forward to her bringing a pretty dish, candy or jewelry from the Czech Republic. On our birthdays we would get a beautiful box of the most ornately wrapped chocolates. She also NEVER threw anything out and collected so many things from airplane straws to traditional Czech corn husk dolls. 

{Czech Easter eggs in a Bohemian crystal trifle bowl and my china}

Over the years I have been given many of her things from jewelry, crystal and pottery to antique lace that her aunt had made. Between her and my other grandma they scraped together what they had in order to slowly create a collection of beautiful blue and white china, not only for me but for my sister and cousin as well. You can read about my china here.

{my blue and white blue onion china}

As I look around my house I realize how that small, demure woman has influenced the way I like to surround myself with pretty things. It is my tie to my heritage and to the wonderful grandmas that I so dearly loved and admired.

{my garnet jewelry}

{more Bohemian crystal and a traditional Czech corn husk doll}

When you look around your house and think about how you love to decorate your home, who do you think has influenced you?


  1. What a beautiful post! Yes, I'm definitely influenced by dad who loved to collect odd and old things and my mom who was a DIY queen!

  2. You are so fortunate to have these visual reminders of your grandmother. One of my regrets is that I didn't jump on the offer my grandmother made for all of her grandchildren to pick some of her things before she passed.

  3. I agree...beautiful post! Sorry to hear about the passing of your Grandmother. This post really resonates with me because I was very close to my paternal Grandmother and her influence on me is EVERYWHERE in my house...my dishes, my love of white & blue, jellery choices, the way I run my kitchen...so many other countless little things. We lived with my grandparents until I was 5 years old and I loved them dearly. Your dishes are lovely and speak to my in their loveliness too! Angie xo

  4. Wow, what a lovely post Barbara! I love all the special items that you have shown here and it is clear that your Grandma has had such a wonderful impact on your life. I love that corn husk doll, I've never seen anything like it! My Grandma and my mom have been big influences in my life, in my love for decor and even for fashion.

    It was so wonderful to see you last weekend Barbara! Say happy b-day to your daughter for me. Hope to see you again soon :)

  5. Oh Barbara, what a sweet post. It's so nice that you have so many things that once belonged to your Grandmother. What great reminders! I get my love of sewing and creating form my maternal grandmother. I spent every Friday with her before I started school and my most favorite memories are of her sewing me doll clothes.

  6. it's so fun when certain people influence you so much that in your home uniqueness abounds! I LOVE the eggs! and so sorry about your grandmother...
    was great seeing you at school the other day! hope you had fun with the "little darlings" ;)

  7. Hello Barbara, this is a lovely post. I have an old 'blue onion' platter that was my father's. He was the biggest influence on my life, and, like your grandmother, a great collector of objects that I now treasure. Take a peek at the blue onion posting on my blog.


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