About Me

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Here I would love to share with you our travels and adventures as international consultants. About living in Italy, the Veneto area near Venice; in Indonesia, central Java. Why we love the southeast of the United States and moved back from Italy. Our love for gardening, the botanical way. Sharing with you our manifold treasures from exotic places and even offering several in my Mariette's Back to Basics LLC Boutique, for others to enjoy. As well as high end silver items from Giovanni Raspini, Italy |  google.com/+MariettesBacktoBasics 
I also do classes and consulting... too much to list here! Check out my google.com/+MarietteVandenMunckhofVedder ABOUT page, where you see my other LINKS and email address; you just scroll down.Thanks!
Love to bring back some romance and quality to the daily life of others... 

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Sunday, March 31, 2013

{HAPPY EASTER to all my readers in 190 countries!}


  • Wishing ALL my readers a very HAPPY EASTER! 
  • Thanks for visiting my blog and let's hope that SPRING will start with this Easter Weekend! Literally a day of New Life.
  • Showing you my cute Easter lambs that will hold a place card or menu. Together with my porcelain Villeroy & Boch egg vases. 


  • Vintage egg platter that hold some of my porcelain Villeroy & Boch egg vases + real eggs.
  • Easter lambs and chicken salt & pepper that goes with the egg platter.
  • Don't you love these Victorian hybrid 'Rosebud' Pelargonium inside those egg vases?


  • The linen and hand crocheted tablecloth is from friend Marianne. Her Mom made it for her and she gave it to me.
  • Those Victorian hybrid Pelargonium 'Red Rosebud' look just like real rosebuds!


  • Wish we could have those Victorian hybrid 'Rosebud' Pelargonium year round!

  • 'Appleblossom Rosebud' Pelargonium + real egg...


  • Nowhere is the egg; symbol of New Life, better incorporated than here at the Kruisherenhotel in Maasricht, The Netherlands. 
  • Just click here to see how they actually did integrate an EGG into their reception.
  • May Easter be the true symbol of New Life and also the symbol of Spring for all that live in the Northern Hemisphere that is.
  • Wishing you and your loved ones a very Happy and Meaningful Easter!


Related links:
{HAPPY EASTER to all my readers in 163 countries!} | previous post by me with more info about the Chateauhotels/Kruisherenhotel
{Happy Easter with Our Pelargonium 'Rosebud'} | previous post by me with more Pelargonium info
12½ jaar L1 - Amerikaanse president in Limburg | Château Hotel St. Gerlach where President George W. Bush stayed during his visit to Margraten in my Province of birth (part in English!)
Dutch Queen and Bush lead VE Day memorial | YouTube video

Saturday, March 30, 2013

{Easter Table Setting}


  • For Easter I have done a special Table Setting for you to see...


  • Using photos from previous years, because we don't have any daffodils or narcissus blooming and only very few for 2013...
  • Picture frame vase with daffodil and rosemary.
  • Easter lamb holding the place cards.
  • Easter Bunny Dad with Bunny Infant...
  • Baccarat Piccadilly Crystal stemware and Villeroy & Boch porcelain egg vases...

My sister Diny did find them for me in The Netherlands after I'd seen them in a Dutch magazine!
Do you ever get something you find in a magazine? 



  • Heavenly fragrant Obdam  Narcissus in Wedgwood pitcher...
  • Porcelain egg vases inside large Wedgwood Gardenia Bowl.


  • Closeup of the porcelain Villeroy & Boch egg vases inside the Wedgwood Gardenia Bowl.
  • Don't you LOVE these orchid narcissus?


  • Cute porcelain egg vases with Thalia orchid narcissus!

Related link:
{Easter Season} | previous post by me

Friday, March 29, 2013

{CIRCLE Vase with Candles for Easter}

  • As promised previously in my February 24 post: JUST enough Daffodils to fill our CIRCLE Vase, here is another display. The Speedy bunnies you already saw on March 22...


  • On top of the glass plate I now placed candles...


  • The yellow pillar candles are Müller Kerzen from Germany that I received from my German friend Marlene.
  • Those pillars are called Flower Garden and burn for 32 hours.
  • You can click on the above hyperlink for their info.


  • Tablecloth is from Le Jacquard Français and the cups and saucers are Royal Albert Friendship series in the daffodil pattern.
  • Salt & Pepper shakers belong with the egg platter that I showed two days ago.
  • Spoons are ceramic from Avon with daffodil.
  • Round candles are Bolsius from The Netherlands. 
  • Are you a candle favorite as well?


  • That's what I LOVE about our IKEA chairs, their backs are low and never obstructing the view as they barely come above the table!


  • Those candles are a perfect match with the daffodils!


  • Too bad that those daffodils were blooming on February 25... 
  • Way too early for Easter and we didn't get any others; this was the entire crop for 2013.
  • At least I have the photos for showing.


  • So what do you think about the different uses for this CIRCLE Vase with glass plate to display whatever on top?

Related links:
{Daffodils in CIRCLE Vase & Leonardo Figurine Bunny SPEEDY} | previous post by me
{JUST enough Daffodils to fill our CIRCLE Vase} | previous post by me

Thursday, March 28, 2013

{Hand Made Easter Egg Gift by Friend Ellie}


  • Since it is Holy Week, we are getting into the mood for Easter. 
  • Out come these three lovely Easter Eggs, hand made by dear, almost life-long Friend Ellie from my hometown, Horst in The Netherlands.
  • This very talented friend did a great job on some artfully created Easter Eggs. Have a look...


  • Had to display them on our silk brocade table cloth that husband Pieter did bring back from his trip to China with the People to People Citizen Ambassador Program

  • Don't you think this pale blue will bring SPRING to our area soon?

Related links:
{Elvira my 1st and only Goddaughter} | previous post by me
{Wedding Elvira & Bob - Michelin Star Top Restaurant Brienen aan de Maas} | previous post by me
{Silk Embroidered Birds from China Trip} | previous post by me
{Our Mouth Blown Glass Nativity} | previous post by me

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

{Hand Knitted Easter Gift from Sister-In-Law}

The sweetest gifts are often those that are hand made. We call it here in the USA; Labor of Love. My sister-in-law, Elly Van den Munckhof did knit for me six cute egg warmers. A set of Easter Chickens for placing over a boiled egg. For years already, both of us don't eat eggs but I do use them over some special egg shaped Easter candles. Have a look...
Here they are; that is four out of six. 
The Chickens to the right had a bad hair-day...
I've only given them a new felt crest and silk organdy graduating ribbons around their neck.
They held up really well.
Elly did make the eyes from a glass bead.
Nice Easter grouping... except that the weather was actually too dark to make decent photos...
A tiny bud vase with blooming Pelargonium from our Green House. 
Because we will have frost on Tuesday night, our potting plants are still inside!
Dark days with a mean and cold wind...
The lazy Chick on the yellow plate we got one year in the mail from our 'German son' and family.
The lacquered and hand polished laser cut brass Egg window decorations are fom Germany, Jech Kunstgewerbe.
FAKE Egg... it is a candle in a mini-terracotta pot with gold sparkle.
The top plate is from Blokker in The Netherlands where we bough them with my niece Maartje Van den Munckhof... Three out of four survived so far!
The tablecloth is all cotton Le Jacquard Français.
So what do you say about my Easter Chickens?

Related links:
{RARE ANTIQUE ROSE: JEANNE D'ARC (1818 FRANCE)} | previous post by me showing hand crocheted doily by Elly
{Our Garden's Winter Blooms for Christmas} | previous post by me showing hand crocheted doily by Elly
{Easter Season} | previous post by me showing the brass window decorations with link
{Our Organdy Beribboned, Porcelain and Brass Easter Eggs} | previous post by me showing the brass window decorations with link

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

{My Hand Made Filet Lace Embroidered Angels}

  • Yesterday you could see a shadow of an angel, reflected in our high gloss bathroom cabinet vanity. 
  • Today I want to show you more of our window treatment, that I made by hand.

  • Getting a good photo of these angels is about as hard as making the curtain...
  • You can see the balcony's balustrade to the right and the white vinyl fence below.

  • Such a window treatment is very hard to capture on camera but at least I tried!
  • Here I've hand made two angels facing each other in filet lace embroidery.

  • This is the machine made net on which I did the Filet Lace Embroidery.
  • There is a crocheted edging all around for being able to fasten it on the tiny brass nails, that are painted white.
  • Very easy for laundering and putting it straight out from the washing machine back onto those brass nails. 
  • Never do they get rust stains because of the brass.

  • Even from the outside it is very hard to capture as it is way up high and behind a vinyl fence.
  • So I had to zoom in, standing below on the ground.
  • There is a screen in front of the window, that makes the filet lace embroidery look less clear.
  • Our home will get a pressure wash and a new painting coat in May; that will also take care of the screen as they have to come off.


  • hemels handwerkbook
  • heavenly handworkbook

  • This book is in Dutch but language doesn't really matter for following the patterns.

Is anyone of you also working with Filet Lace Embroidery?

Related links: 
{Our New Shower with Dreamline Frameless Sliding Shower Door} | yesterday's post by me with reflection of this angel Filet Lace Embroidery with Angels
{Crochet Edging on Antique French Knotted Filet Lace} | previous post by me showing you such hand crochet edging that I did
{Acrylic Frame with Transparent Acrylic BOLTS & NUTS} | previous post by me showing you a French antique filet lace angel frame for hanging - ONLY ONE left in my boutique...

Monday, March 25, 2013

{Our New Shower with Dreamline Frameless Sliding Shower Door}


  • As promised, here I will show you our finished Bathroom Renovation with Our New Shower with Dreamline Frameless Sliding Shower Door. 
  • As you may already know from different rooms in our home, we both appreciate simple lines. 
  • For kitchen and bathroom that means LOTS of WHITE. Since we have a combination of an Italian bathroom cabinet vanity in high gloss lacquered white and Danish Damixa faucets it is a unique mix.

  • Our New Shower with Dreamline Frameless Sliding Shower Door with 3/8" or 10mm thick glass.
  • We managed to have it all DONE before Christmas of 2012.
  • The tiles we chose were from Home Depot in Bright Snow White for the walls, ledge and front.
  • Clean and simple lines.


  • Showing the bottom part of the Dreamline Frameless Sliding Shower Door.

  • Above to the right is a Hotel Cabinet with Cubbies in White.
  • Do you like our Night Stand Pet House? One of our felines sleeps frequently inside, on top of her pillows... Click the hyperlink to see a picture of cat stepping out of it!

  • Our Conair magnifying mirror above the towel rack.

  • In yesterday's post about the renovation from tub to shower, I did show you one picture with a 'gap' between the shower pan and our white tile floor from Italy. 
  • Husband Pieter did solve it by adding one layer of backer board in front of the pan and we had it than tiled the way it is in this picture. No more gap!
  • All our wooden base boards we replaced by tiles, so much easier to clean!

  • A better view of our Hotel Cabinet with Cubbies in White.
  • Our wall paper just remained the way it was; no damage at all.

  • Our exceptional Vossen International Terry Towels and wash hands (not wash cloth...) that I have for 35 years.
  • Read below a previous post that I did about them.

  • Our bathroom cabinet vanity in high gloss white from Italy. We did bring  that back home  to the USA with us, after not building our home in Italy. In our guest bathroom we do have an identical cabinet vanity, we shipped 2 back from Italy. There I have added IKEA GODMORGON high gloss white cabinets as well. They did match perfectly and I was so happy finding them in Atlanta.
  • Danish Damixa faucet.
  • In the cabinet door you can see the shadow of an angel... That is in the window but I will post separately about it. 
  • All our windows, except in the veranda and kitchen, do have solid oak indoor shutters that are lacquered in white.

  • The other side of the window with the indoor shutter in the Charleston style, just like our doors.
  • Brass with white porcelain knob on the door for hanging robes.
  • Here you see our Restoration Hardware Cartwright Medicine Cabinet with mirror, above the toilet.
  • Toilet is by Toto with softclose lid.

  • Ending full circle...

And 'H', do you like our bathroom renovation?


Related links:
{Our Bathroom Renovation from Tub to Shower while Caring for the Environment} | previous post by me
{Our Rose Suite Bedroom} | previous post by me showing our other, integrated bathroom, with shower
{French Country Style at Mariette's Back to Basics} | previous post by me showing the IKEA GODMORGON high gloss white cabinets
{OUR EXCEPTIONAL VOSSEN INTERNATIONAL TERRY TOWELS} | previous post by me about our 30+ year old towels
{2 Ideas picked up at the Grand Hyatt, Atlanta} | previous post by me

Sunday, March 24, 2013

{Our Bathroom Renovation from Tub to Shower while Caring for the Environment}


  • Planning our Master Bathroom Renovation from Tub to Shower started out with ordering our Danish, Damixa Plus Shower Set and Damixa Space Shower Mixer. 
  • Our entire home is equiped with Danish Damixa faucets, except lately in our laundry room. We both agree with the Damixa company philosophy; Caring for the Environment and reducing water consumption by 25% or 30%. Going Green!
  • Just click the above hyperlink to read their statement. 
  • So we did contact our long time business relation Kömhoff Sanitair in Meijel, The Netherlands. 
  • They previously did ship some items to us, in case we did not go to The Netherlands for hand carrying it back home to the USA, inside our suitcases. 
  • This was mid August... the first step was laid. 
  • The reason we wanted to proceed with this renovation was because of the great difficulty I had in January of 2010 when I had become paralyzed. For husband Pieter, having to lift me over that tub's edge for taking a shower was nearly impossible. Not because I'm heavy but a motionless person doesn't give... 

  • Not a great photo but you still can see the tub with mirrored tub doors...
  • Our vanity is from Italy. We did bring it with us after living there but not building our home in Italy.


  • Danish Damixa Space Shower Mixer that we ordered.
  • We also had a new water filter and conditioner installed, before proceeding with the renovation because we have very hard water in our area.
  • We moved into our Rose Suite while doing the renovations... 
  • Out came the fiber glass tub and also our all white Damixa Tub Mixer...
  • Dusty job!

  • The drain goes into our garage's ceiling...

  • This was on November 8, 2012 and Pieter wanted to make sure that our Tile Redi Bathtub Replacement Shower Pan would actually FIT.
  • It will; so I went ahead and ordered it on line, from Coral Springs, Florida...


  • We did go ahead and selected their Redi Drain in Polished Chrome. Easy for the tile men to work around.

  • A  special aluminum guard is included in their Bathtub Replacement as well.

  • The day after Thanksgiving, November 23 of 2012, Pieter did cement this Redi Tile Shower Pan in place!
  • You can see the shelves in our Master Bedroom closet through those holes...

  • ALL Made in the USA...

  • A nice ledge in the front for the shower door...

  • A sample tile in Snow White on the ledge. 
  • All our bathroom tiles came in a container across the ocean from Italy, so we had to find some matching ones for this shower!

  • The entire pan...
  • That will make quite a difference for getting in and out of; whenever health conditions would change for either one of us.

  • Husband Pieter working out something for covering up the space in front of the pan...
  • You will see it later!

  • Next search was for a fitting shower door.
  • We found that Lowe's had by far the best selection.
  • We wanted something in a simple Scandinavian look so we found it: 
  • DreamLine 60-in W x 72-in H Frameless Sliding Shower Door
  • Our Cute Ute; Ravy our RAV4 did haul it back home from the Lowe's store.

  • Frankly speaking, I was very happy to reach our destiny just before dark; driving this load home.

  • Of course our cats must inspect whatever we bring home...

Till next time where you will see it all built in!

Related links:

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