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. ~Edyth O’Neill

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Three Great Grands!

Ten of us gathered at the home of a daughter and her husband  for Sunday morning brunch. Gary started our morning with a circle holding hands and I teared up a bit missing Jack's strong hand that held mine so many times in that circle for blessing.  Easter is about the renewal of life for  us both earthly and spiritually.  How adorable the littlest ones are with their baskets. Macy obviously thinks Eggs are serious business. Jackson, four, is more confident and relaxed about it.  Bailey Elizabeth at 14 is my heart's very treasure.  These three are my great grandchildren! How lovely to get to know them and have my life overlap theirs for a little space.    The thought of having a tea party with Macy soon  is so sweet that I have taken the little set of spode demi cups and saucers off my shop blog and decided to keep them.

The apple does not fall far from the tree. See my picture age 6 along with Jackson, I think he favors me strongly! Is this my imagination, do you see it?  Wishing each of you a blessed Day.  e

Staffordshire hens and more

These old hens are a favorite form of mine as they are for many older collectors.  When I met Jackie, I had a nice collection of 5 or 6 good early ones, but he did not like the English ceramics the way His mother and I did, and I gradually let all of the hens go but the one large one that I set out each Easter with a bit of grass around her and in some years a good many candy eggs and such.   The Holiday is quiet at my house this year, but still my old hen is on the breakfast table for my first Easter here in this house.  Gradually a few more have come to live with me, the one in the cupboard with good American redware is made of red English clay. She belonged to our friend Eula.   The dolls have a tiny one about  4 inches long in their blue cupboard.  The best one is the hen with peeps in lovely red and white coloring, bought at auction in Pennsylvania many years ago. 

Jack's parents were avid collectors of Staffordshire all of their lives.  This included a large variety of figural pieces.  John  gave me a tiny lamb for the doll's cupboard.   Lillian loved best of all the cows.  I have three of them in a blue cupboard now.  e

Thursday, March 28, 2013

That Rabbit!

I wish all of my friends a happy Easter. Here is a charming Easter Basket holding a great plush bunny. The bunny was purchased from my shop blog and the new owner shared these photos with me. Many thanks for letting me post them here.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

My Mother's doll house

Some of you who are doll people know that I write for another site called Maida Today.  To read about my mohter's doll house there, link to 


Sunday, March 17, 2013

Blue and White wooden sewing tools

These little sewing helpers held a pincusion on a sewing table. I think they are European but do not know the country. The hand painting surely reminds me of our Holland Delft in the corner cupboard. I have seen them in New England Antiques shows but rarely been able to purchase them as they are always quite dear. Click the photos to see detail. There were other little sewing items made in this genre.   If you have such, email me and share any information or pictures and I will post them here. joneill816@austin.rr.com     These have just been added to the shop blog, to reach  it click the banner for O'Neill's Antiques  in the right hand column. 
Post Script:  Dawn Cook-Ronningen tells us that these clamps are similar to one pictured in the book:
Needlework Tools & Accessories - A Dutch Tradition by Kay Sullivan.
The clamp is pictured on pg 97
Hindelopen, Friesland 19th Century

Collection of the Fries Museum Leeuwarden
   So sure enough they are Dutch like a lot of my 18th century Delft!   e 

Condition: Gorgeous clean little painted treasures in very good condition. One lacked it's pin cusion and I used a piece of natural linen to replace it. That same one has lost a small round mirror which would have been glued to the side.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Extended Family


Before there were real Walker dolls here in Edyth’s doll family , there was Mattie.  Mattie is short for Martha’s Dream.  When Martha Chase made dolls around 1900, she made them very close to how she remembered her own childhood doll, an Izannah Walker doll.  Edyth was so hungry to have an Izannah Walker doll, that she did a very naughty thing, she repainted a ragged and dirty little Chase child and named her Martha’s Dream.   The Doll’s Aunt Dixie made an awful fuss about it, but  still it happened, even if not a very nice thing to do.  And now Mattie plays with the Walker dolls and their other cousins and has tea with them sometimes.    

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Blessed Rain!

We received a lovely  inch and three quarters last night!  Indescribably welcome.  I have feared for the life of my great Natches white crepe myrtles at the Lightstone house I am selling.  Getting there to water much one day a week at the designated hours under rationing is hard in winter, after 6 pm here is dark and cold. Before 10 am is too chilly for me to stand out in also most of the time.   I do well to water the smaller yard where I live now.  This rain from Heaven gives all of the plants a new extension on life.  It is spring in Texas, these two sets of lambs are so homely they are cute!

I continue listing and selling some things on my shop blog, thank those of you who check in there. 

I have added photos of another early quilted bonnet to the post about these below. 

I am hoping to do some painting soon, a friend in Gloucester MA sent some lovely photos to work from since I cannot get there myself right now.  That area has been hit hard by the last two storms.
My heart is with those trying to recover there.   Edyth

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Quilter's clamps, sewing tools

This is a beautiful early hand forged set of quilter's clamps.   Ex Collection Felicia Sessums.  Felicia used them clamped on the edge of a mantel or a step back cupboard to hold a garland of bayleaves and little naturals.   These are beautiful clamped on a table edge or in a sewing basket.   Of course they held the four corners of a small quilting frame together.   Rare to find now!  Not to be confused with the later cast type. 
The "C" part is about 2 inches on each one. Fully open, turn screw and all they measure about 3 1/2 inches.  E

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