Diana Bulls

The Sweet Art of Conversation Hearts

by Diana Bulls

February is the month of romance, and February 14 is considered by almost everyone, to be the most romantic day of the year. In modern times (around the end of the 18th century) Victorian lovers exchanged notes or cards, but pretty soon those cards were being accompanied by a gift like candy or flowers. And in 1847, a clever young man invented a lozenge cutter that turned out to be America’s first candy machine, and in so doing started the commercial candy industry in the United States.

Vintage Kitchen Gadgets & Gizmos

by Diana Bulls

Christmas is over. The wrapping paper and ribbons have been cleaned up and the presents have been put into use. Maybe you were the recipient of one of the newest juicers or coffee makers–hopefully not the one that was recalled–or some other kind of clever kitchen device that has been advertised on late night television. My husband, who loves French fries, received a potato cutter from the cats. (Yes, in our family the cats shop for Christmas.)

Kitchen Collectible: Cookie Cutters

by Diana Bulls

Christmas is just around the corner and I bet most of you will be baking at least one batch of cookies. It doesn’t matter if they are sugar cookies, gingerbread men, or snicker doodles. It doesn’t even matter if they are made from scratch or out of a refrigerated package or a box mix. When Christmas arrives, there had better be cookies. (I mean, you do want a visit from Santa. Right?) Yes, Christmas is definitely cookie season.

Kitchen Collectibles: Cast Iron Skillets

by Diana Bulls

Just about everyone I know has at least one cast iron skillet in their kitchen (or maybe in their camping equipment). Most of these pans were family hand-me-downs, but the more astute cook has actually searched them out at yard sales or thrift stores. Besides skillets–in all sizes–there are griddles, Dutch ovens, pots, waffle irons and muffin pans. In fact, cast iron was the world's first "non-stick" cookware.

Kitchen Collectibles: Ice Cream Freezers

by Diana Bulls

One of my fondest childhood memories of summer is homemade ice cream. For no particular reason, other than it was hot, Mom would mix up a batch of ice cream and Daddy would get the old White Mountain, hand-cranked freezer out of the tank house. The filled freezer container would go in the wooden bucket, and Daddy would layer in the ice and salt, and finally the cranking mechanism.

Going To Pot: Collecting Stoneware

by Diana Bulls

Last month, I confessed my obsession with buttons. This month I have to confess that I am equally obsessed with stoneware crockery. It doesn't matter to me if it is a bottle, jug or jar, I love them for their various shapes, colors and decorations. Before refrigeration, crocks were used in American kitchens to hold foodstuffs such as butter, salted meats and pickled vegetables. They were America's major house ware from 1780-1890. I use them to hold kitchen utensils, flowers, magazines or kindling. I don't care if they aren’t in perfect condition.

A Tisket, A Tasket: Check Out Grandma’s Sewing Basket

by Diana Bulls

Ever since Eve ate the apple in the Garden of Eden, humans have been trying to fashion coverings for their bodies. Fig leaves progressed to animal skins (much softer and less itchy), and eventually to woven cloth. And along the way, a plethora of sewing accessories have come into being, opening another opportunity for collectors: the fascinating history of fashion and the evolution of how garments were created.

Deviled Egg Plates: Collectible and Oh, So Usable

by Diana Bulls

Here we are, Easter almost upon us, with spring just around the corner–well whatever we call spring in central California. When I think of spring and Easter (the secular holiday, not the real one), it's not long before I am thinking about eggs, specifically deviled eggs. Honestly, can you have an Easter picnic or get together and not have deviled eggs? Not in my family. In fact, Thanksgiving is the only time the family gets together when deviled eggs aren't there too.



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