Winterberry Farm Primitives

This blog is now devoted to gardening with native plants with a focus on those species native to the east coast of the United States. With an MS in Agricultural Science from the University of Delaware and my love of native plants, I hope to help folks see the beauty and necessity of using native plants in your garden instead of exotic plants. Did you know that our native song birds and native insects are disappearing as our local environments continue to change?
For those who come to this page to see my 'Winterberry Farm Primitives' blog can now be found at where I will post new additions to my online antiques shop at and discuss various subjects about primitive antiques.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Primitive Country Decorating.

Hi everyone!
I have had so many wonderful emails and texts and phone calls about the Country Sampler article that I wanted to say Thank you so much! for all of the wonderful comments about my home! A couple of questions that kept popping up were 'How do you know what to put together?" and "Why don't you open your own decorating business?"
With everything else that I am involved in right now, I think that trying to start a new venture right now would definitely make me crazy! Instead, I think I will, for now, just blog about it! SO...I will be intermingling my postings on native gardening with some of my ideas on primitive country decorating! Here is my newest piece that we bought from a friend at a recent show! I hadn't planned on buying an open cupboard in salmon paint but it just 'hit' me!
First, I would like to say that a lot of what I do is directed by what I want to buy instead of what I should buy to go into a particular area or room of the house. To me, it's just like landscaping your yard. Did you know that most landscapers are taught to place plants in a landscape dependent on what shape and size needs to go in a particular place? So, they will plant what is needed to make an area of your yard look 'right', not what will do well in that area or light exposure. I think the same thing goes for decorating your home. When I go antiquing or to a show, I am looking for something that just 'hits' me - it says something to me - it is that special something that I know I just have to bring home with me. I have been looking for a farm table for a long time now and that is always at the top of my list when we are out and about, but I have yet to find one that 'hits' me. I can remember a few years back when we went to the Renningers Mid-Winter Classic Antique Show in King of Prussia, PA. We were looking for smalls and a farm table. Well, this is what I came home with instead!A wonderful all original corner cupboard that just knocked my socks off! I saw it and knew I had to have it, but I wouldn't commit immediately. I was looking for a table not a corner cupboard! I did go up to the dealer and ask to have it measured because I was sure it would be too tall for our ceilings, so we wouldn't be able to buy it and I could concentrate on my table. We measured it and left! Yes, I left the booth and continued to walk around the show. I called my son, who was at home, and asked him to measure the ceiling in the livingroom. Of course, he thought I was crazy, but he called back with the measurements and I still didn't go back! We continued to walk around as I figured out how to pay for it (that is a lot of cash to come up with!) and then, after walking the entire show - we went back to the booth and bought it! We then had to figure out how to get it home as we had not brought our truck since I wasn't intending to buy an 8 foot tall corner cabinet. In the end, we put half down and arranged to pick it up from the dealer's son within a couple of weeks. We got it home and it fits as if it was built just for that corner! So, no table but a fantastic corner cupboard. It's so funny! We had never been to the Mid-Winter Classic before and as we were waiting in line to pay to get in, a very nice stranger - still don't know who he was - came over and offered us two passes! He had paid for his friends who, at the last moment, couldn't come and he offered them to us. I think it was fate! Of course, the reproduction that was residing in that corner needed a new home and I had a friend who had always admired it - I called her and the rest, as they say, is history!
Another thing that I do is to rearrange as I bring in 'new' things. These two pictures are of the same corner in my greatroom. The first picture is of the room the way is was when Country Sampler was here. The second picture, from a slightly different angle, is the same room just with 'new' furniture! I have sold some of what was there before or have moved some things to different parts of the house. The chest over drawers is now in the livingroom!
I always try to buy furniture first. What I mean by that is that if I have the money, I will buy one piece of furniture instead of several small pieces. I have found over the years that the value of good furniture, like the corner cupboard, will never go down. I try to buy good pieces from people that I know and trust. I buy pieces that have the least amount of additions or changes to them. I read and ask questions all the time and I continue to learn about what I am buying. So, hopefully, I can continue to blog about native plants AND about primitive decorating where your treasures, the things that 'hit' you, help you decide on how to design and decorate your home!
Next time, our newest little addition - a 19th century canning bench!


  1. Thanks for sharing your wonderful blog! I've just found it recently and I enjoy it very much.

    BTW...I LOVE the music, too :)

  2. Hi, I found your blog by googling "Primitive Country Decorating blogs. What issue of Country Sampler (my fave magazine!) was your home in???