Welcome to My Red Cape. Long ago in another time my husband Jack and I lived in a little old red house. It was the stuff of dreams to us for the few years that we were there. I live there still a number of hours every day in imagination, with old dolls and paintings and fabrics and feather trees. I draw inspiration and happiness from the memories of that space in time and share some of it here with friends who remember how to step with Alice through the looking glass and take delight in whimsies and antiquities.

For more than sixty years I have studied, collected, repaired, and bought and sold antique dolls. They have been back ground music in my life at every stage, sometimes louder, sometimes subdued, but always there with me. To see only the posts about dolls on this blog, click the banner on the right titled Dolls for My Red Cape. Keep clicking “Older Posts” to see more. Some of the posts featuring rug hooking are gathered under the banner For Cathy. From time to time items are offered for sale under the banner “O’Neill’s Antiques” which was our shop name for many years. ~Edyth O’Neill

Friday, May 6, 2011

What is so fair as a day in May...

May 8th marks six years since our farm home burned and our lives were changed so abruptly. So much I could say about that, but really I do not replay it again and again in my mind the way I did for the first few years. Over five years in our present house and yard have given me roots again. My favorite plants grow in this yard now and pleasant living grows nice memories in this house as we enjoy our family and our pass times. We think of the thousands of other victims of fires and floods and storms and know we are so lucky!

Jack has spent an unbelievable amount of time in his garage/work area, restoring so many things which firemen saved for us. Among the very last to be worked on is a rare and dear little table which stood in his bedroom at the farm house, and had the finish completely charred. This small 18th century New England piece was one of his pets, a graceful and unusual form with cabriole legs and a nice overhang and a small drawer. The blackened little table has been in his bedroom here these 5 1/2 years, waiting while we thought about what on earth to do to help it. Now the black surface has been painstakingly scraped away. Putting a coat of paint on something like this takes huge courage. Nothing can restore the old finish, it is gone forever, but the little table deserves to have another 250 years of existence.

We have chosen a strong turquoise blue, the blue green we remember on a spectacular small table once in the possession of our collector friends Austin and Virginia Smith of Kentucky. That one was a fabulous example of great original paint, in a day and time when so much furniture was being stripped by ignorant collectors. Virginia recounted how she asked a friend if she should strip off the paint and he replied with emphatic horror "my Gawd, I wouldn't even DUST it!" E


  1. OH, I can't wait to see this. I love a blue color. :-) Isn't this a kind of metaphor for life, this table. We don't come through life without being marked by it, sometimes in irrevocable ways. But it doesn't means we can't still be something wonderful. :-)

  2. Hello Dear Friend~ I have been thinking of you & Jack alot lately~ this little table is so precious, the lines of it so beautiful, so simple...yet so complex! I hope you have a wonderful Mother's Day tomorrow, and are spoiled rotten :) XOXOXO rachael

  3. Edyth,
    Tell Jack I admire that table immensely and so glad he is so talented! I enjoyed hearing about Virginia's table. I believe I can remember a few folks who might have told her that. My breath was always taken away by Austin's & Virginia's collection and I enjoy seeing your treasures, too. Would love to see them in person.

  4. The little table is amazing! Your husband did a fantastic job with it. I love the color and it really has that period look to it. I'm so glad he was able to fix it so it can grace your home once again. I love the little setting you made with it, the chair & doll. So very pretty.


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