Yellow for Good Luck

comments: 71

Peony2_2Thank you to everyone who ordered things yesterday — thank you thank you! Warms my little heart, I tell you. I'm very grateful for your support. Every single order directly and absolutely allows me to continue to do what I love to do, so thank you, most sincerely. These flowers are for you.


I got some of my dishes out of the basement the other day, excited because it's eat-outside time again. I love dishes. I just do. I think they're so pretty and sweet. I almost never resist their charms when thrifting. These are from Goodwill and they are called Damsel by Royal China. There's tons of it on eBay. Last night my fortune cookie fortune actually said, "Focus in on the color yellow tomorrow for good luck!" Isn't that bizarre? I have never gotten a fortune that said anything about color, have you? Since today is the "tomorrow" of last night, I'll be on the lookout. Where should I go today, to focus in on yellow?


This dish is Jubilee, also by Royal China, also widely available. The tablecloth is several years old, from Anthropologie. The napkins are thrifted. The glass is one of the last two we own, I swear.

Dinner2 More Goodwill pottery, the big vase. To go with the little Mexican vases. It's quite shocking to me that those flowers came out of the fairly neglected rose bushes growing in the fairly neglected dirt of my front parkway. It's a true testament to Portland's remarkable ability to grow roses out of cracks in the sidewalk, I tell you. That pink one is Abraham Darby. It blooms first, among mine. Next will be Sharifa Asma, then Heritage (the first rose I ever grew, and I still love it best), and then the amazing amazing climbing Eden growing up the kitchen wall in back.

Dinner1 Can you tell I have a thing for big, pink, fluffy roses? I like peonies too, and I have ten of them. I got them when they were little shriveled up brown blobs, out of a box from Costco, and they all came up, and they all bloom regularly. No one is more shocked than I. Everything grows here. I don't have a clue what any of them are called, though. That hot pink one is always the first to come out. It all makes me want to host a dance, or something. If Bridget doesn't eat everything. She is about to try and take a huge bite out of this leaf. That's probably bad for her, right?

Dinner3I made Ina's Seafood Gratin from Barefoot Contessa at Home. I don't know why I made noodles with it instead of rice, but I just wasn't thinking. It was delicious.


Oh, dear me, it feels so good to get back outside. The weather has been gorgeous this week and I have been so happy. I've decided that this summer I am going to pull out my calendar and schedule lots of social events for myself, instead of just letting things happen, or not happen, as is often what happens. The summer passes me by, and I realize I didn't make an effort to wrangle the weekends into social shapes the way I really do so desire to do. This summer I will do better. You heard it here.


I had to do a double-take when I saw those amazing flowers to check whether they weren't some you'd made. Gorgeous. Let them thrive on neglect!

Oh My, what a heart-filling post, full of all kinds of beauties. I have a soft spot for the fuller flowers like cabbage roses, double peonies, heck: double anything. What can I say? I like abundance.

Enjoy your Halcyon days of outdoorsyness :)

Rennagayle says: May 18, 2007 at 09:22 AM

The layout on the table looks delectable, and the flowers are positively gorgeous!

My favorite dishes came from the Salvation Army thrift store. Don't you just love thrift stores? :-)

lovely! Your spread looks delicious, too.

Cindy Riebe says: May 18, 2007 at 09:33 AM

Oh, what a beautiful post! I, too, am a big fan of huge, pink, many-petalled, blowsy flowers. There is nothing like their languid softness.

It is my firmly held belief [and one I come by honestly as I inherited it from my mother and grandmother] that one can never have too many dishes. The occasions upon which one might need a certain pattern or type are limitless. My husband, however, is not as thrilled with my abundance of dishes as they are rapidly filling up every available space -- under the bed, in the garage, in every closet in the house. So many little space. He also doesn't seem to understand that, in fact, I actually do NEED 6 sets of flatware!!

Blessings on your weekend, Alicia!

Those flowers are lovely. My peonies are just about to burst into color. The tree peony is just about done flowering.
Your spread looks delicious. And ditto on the summer entertaining.

I wish you could come visit my yellow kitchen :o)
I never knew it yellow could be lucky, but I have cooked some delicious things in there, so it must be true!

Big fluffy roses and peonies are my favorites too. I have one little peony plant that struggles to come up each year, but never blooms. They just don't like Southern California, I guess, even though we are in the mountains and get frosty cold winters. I'm not giving up on it though, one year it will reward me!

I love your mis-matched perfectness! (I know not real words!)

Oooooh, Abraham Darby. He is a rose on my Want List. Normally I garden through the principle of Benign Neglect, but lately the Neglect has truly out weighed the Benign. I keep promising myself that if I get the garden in order I can take Abraham home. What a guy to have!

Ditto on Cindy's post about dishes. What a fabulous treat to be able to change dishes with the seasons. Personally, I like the Japanese belief that having different dishes for every course causes the diner to appreciate each part of the meal. It opens the eyes and the senses. I have a family friend who uses that theory on her living room furnishings. She changes her furniture with every season (couches, end tables, chairs, pillows, throws..) What I would give for that kind of storage! (She has an insulated barn to house her collected furnishings!)

courtney says: May 18, 2007 at 09:53 AM

I thought those flowers were fake! They are gorgeous. I have one rose bush that is just beautiful, but needs to be trimmed. I am really wanting to get a second to replace our ugly hibiscus.

And now I REALLY need to go thrifting. I have been wanting some new dishes, but just couldn't justify the price, and couldn't convince my husband that 4 nice matching dishes is not enough (we only got 1/2 of our nice dishes we registered for and they no longer make them. Boo).

Peonies are my favorite as well. My dear friend Elin from sweden is coming home for the summer and I am going to have a huge bouqet of them waiting for her when she arrives. Your back yard dinner looked so fresh and yummy!!! May everyday of summer be that delicious for you!

Alicia~I really appreciate your flare with color. Love the picture of the cute! Thanks for thanking me for an order. It was really my pleasure to do so and am excited to get my handmade treasures. I never got a fortune about color, but when Husband and I were engaged, we got the same fortune at the same meal. What a chef you are :) This is how far I go...I was reading my copy of Food & Wine while eating a corn dog!

looks so lovely out there! yum! Im glad to read you all are doing well.

It all looks delicious-the food, the flowers, the setting. I will have to try that recipe as I love ALL of her recipes.

i love your backyard.
i feel like mine is starting to come together, too, since the gravel was put down and beds are starting to be planted, and pots being perked up with begonias. :o) backyard heaven.

I have a neighbor with gigantic peonies in bloom. The size of your head, I kid you not! Amazing. (of course, I'm down there snapping photos right and left!). There is something about massive blooms that just makes me happy.

And the yellow, very lovely. And, lucky too! :D

Can I just come and live with you? At least in the summer.. then I can eat outside and enjoy it... we are having wonderful weather today and this weekend, and I plan to take advantage of it. But, it will not be long before it is too hot outside to heat. Hmm, we are going to see Shrek 3 tonight and then I believe I will haul out my Barefoot cookbooks to plan dinner for outside tomorrow evening : )

Thanks for sharing your wonderful table.

Dang, girl. You set a gorgeous table.

another lovely post from an especially lovely girl. hope you have a wonderful summer and a fun time with the lucky guests who get to come and sip and eat with you in your backyard.

after reading this, I think I shall go outside and dust off my table for dinner. I just bought about $24.00 worth of copper river salmon for dinner, so I should make an event out of it, right?

Oooh, these photos are so lovely. Love, love, love. Makes me wish I had outside space so I could grow things and set a table. Or even indoor space so I could set a table. Or, well, just a table. (sigh) Someday.

hi! i was looking for an "email me" link on your blog...maybe i'm missing it. anyways! i have a box of vintage sewing goodies that i was thinking you might be able to use! i'm having a yard sale tomorrow...but i'd MUCH rather just give the stuff to someone who would love it and use it! i have blanket binding...mill end trimmings...twill tape...some vintage buttons...and just some other random sewing stuff.

ok that was

i'd love it if you could email me!

thanks so much!

have a happy yellow day!:)


oh! i have some vintage 40's and 50's patterns too!:)

Another Portlander here!! You're right, everything grows like mad here!! I wonder if there's magic in the clay soil. Things that should only reach 12 inches tall easily reach 18 inches and then some!! Your garden flowers are delicious!! Your dinner looks scrumptious too!

Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Oh gosh, Abraham Darby, Heritage and dishes all in one post. All of my favorites. More dishes! More roses! I can never get enough.

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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at




Since August of 2011 I've been using a Canon EOS 60D with an EF 18-200mm kit lens and an EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro lens.