Easter Comes to Town
By Karen Parr-Moody
Easter soon arrives with its spring-tone pastels, its pom-pom chicks, and a bevy of bunnies. It’s a high holiday for hostesses who love cheerful charm. Setting a table in candy-colored melamine would be perfectly fitting on Easter Sunday, as would filling vintage eggcups with flowers.
“Easter is a wonderful time of year,” says GasLamp antique dealer Jason Parker Counce, whose booth is currently filled with the handmade creations he makes each season. “It gets everyone into crafting, whether it be dying eggs, or making cupcakes with little coconut nests filled with jelly beans. This season brings a smile to everyone, including a big chocolate rabbit in your Easter basket and, let’s not forget, a golden egg, too!”
For the bountiful occasion, Counce has made the darling Easter-themed sachet seen in the photo, above right ($5.95, Booth B-309). These are reprinted from vintage post cards, using old fabrics, and then filled with dried lavender flowers. The egg is a German papier-mâché egg that has been hand-painted and antiqued, then trimmed in vintage ribbons and millinery flowers. Each egg is signed and dated by Counce, and is one of a kind ($24, Booth B-309).
It was a sad day when the trend of figural planters, like these at left, fell to the wayside. Who would choose plain terra cotta pots over cart-pulling bunnies and hatching ducks? By covering a table with a vintage table linen and adding these diminutive planters, mid-century appeal shows up for Easter dinner. They can even be used to serve snacks, dips, or candies (duck, made in occupied Japan, $15; bunny with white cart, $12, bunny with blue cart, $18; all at Booth B-2028).
This cast metal vintage candy mold in the photo at right would be a lovely addition to one’s Easter décor ($110; Booth B-2028). Each rabbit totes a basket on his back. This mold could be used as a centerpiece to remind guests of the old-fashioned fun once had making molded candies. Or it would be perfect on a mantle, surrounded by other Easter flourishes.
What a whimsical presentation for an Easter brunch, this bunny-shaped serving tray (photo, left; $25, Booth B-2025). It would make a great statement piece for either a fun party or for more formal dining. The lustrous glow of the cast metal is given character by the folksy style of etching. This tray showcases exquisite detail and brings the beauty of nature indoors.
What use does a vintage egg cup not have this time of year? These Wedgewood and Lenox eggcups, in the photo at right, can be used as place card holders for your Easter dinners. They can be filled with little nests of moss, and then topped with mini Cadbury eggs. They can be filled with lilies of the valley and violas and given out as party favors. Colored eggs can be tucked inside them, and then they can be arranged on stacked cake pedestals for a gorgeous centerpiece. The uses are vast (larger Wedgewood egg cups, $38; smaller Lenox egg cups, $29.95; Booth B-113).
The Victorians loved to experiment with new materials, and one of their favorites was papier-mâché. By the time Queen Victoria came to the throne, there were department stores filled with illustrated magazines, and women would use this bounty for creating papier-mâché goods. Today, papier-mâché Easter eggs are still made in Victorian style in countries such as the Czech Republic and Germany, which is where the egg, left, was made ($28; Booth B-2028). Such a nostalgic box is big enough to be easily filled with a pound of treats.
GasLamp has all of these Easter items, and more, so that when the big day arrives, a brunch or dinner will be handily decorated. After equipping herself with some fabulous vintage finds, all that a hostess will need to do is add petit fours, macarons and fresh flowers, and a certain rabbit will no doubt come hopping down the bunny trail.