The Nostalgic Appeal of Recipe Cards

I love to cook and particularly love to bake. I am always jotting down a new recipe idea on scraps of paper or printing them out from Epicurious but when I find that a recipe becomes a favorite I love going through the ritual of writing it out on a fresh new recipe card and filing it away into one of my vintage recipe boxes. There is something so satisfying about it, as if I am giving it my stamp of approval. I know how much I treasure my Mother's recipe cards written in her own hand that stood the test of time. Mostly they are worn at the edges and stained from use but that gives them their charm and meaning. How sad it would be for future generation to miss out on that piece of history. I know I am not alone in this as there are many adorable recipe cards to be found especially on Etsy. I have also found some fun ones that are free to download from The Graphics Fairy, one of my favorite sites for vintage ephemera.

free recipe cards from The Graphics Fairy

I have used many existing recipe templates that I have downloaded over the years and recently decided to design some of my own. I started out with 6 images per set (2 of each)  from my each of my anthropomorphic food prints which are vintage inspired. I am offering them for sale in my Etsy shop The Curious Kitchen as they go along with their matching kitchen towels and prints. I thought photographing them in my kitchen along with some of my vintage recipe boxes would be appropriate. The one below even features the salt shaker I used for the print!

Here is a cute vintage Halloween Recipe Card that I found on Amy Barickman's blog:

vintage halloween recipe card

Here is one of several adorable Halloween Recipe Card Templates (despite the misspelling of cauldron...) over at The Peach Martini blog:

vintage halloween cat recipe card

Here is a particularly pretty Christmas Recipe Card that is for sale on Zazzle

vintage christmas recipe card

There are even  vintage cards complete with recipes available, these are from Regina's Studio on Etsy:

vintage recipe cards


Italian Marinara Sauce When I was growing up in Philadelphia it just wasn't a proper Sunday if the smell of simmering tomato sauce wasn't wafting throughout the house. Fresh tomatoes, aromatic basil, tangy garlic and onion, mmmmm! I created this watercolor painting as an homage to my italian family, particularly my Grandmother. It is now available as a print in my shop The Curious Kitchen.

Anthropomorphic Cocktail Party

Dancing-Cocktails-Vintage-Kitchen Who can lure you away from temperance better than a juggling cocktail shaker, a strutting bottle of vermouth, a dancing martini glass and a jolly bottle of gin? My fascination with vintage anthropomorphic food continues with this homage to the most classic of all cocktails, the revered martini. Prints of this original watercolor painting are available now at The Curious Kitchen for 20% off if you type in the coupon code "Cocktails" at checkout!

Just Desserts! Do we really need friendly little anthropomorphic desserts to encourage us to go off our diets! Of course we do! Who can resist the allure of the Cannoli Girl or the Eclair Man? Certainly not Myself. Dancing macarons, tumbling petit fours and chocolate covered strawberries in love just make me smile. This is the newest addition to my Anthropomorphic Food series. Prints are available in my Etsy shop The Curious Kitchen along with mini print sets of the individual food people!

WIN a free 8" x 10" Print from The Curious Kitchen!

As a special promotion for my new Etsy shop The Curious Kitchen, I am offering a free 8" x 10" print of It's Breakfast Time to three lucky winners. To participate simply share the post on Facebook, re-pin on Pinterest or re-tweet on Twitter. Triple your chances by doing all three by midnight, Sunday March 10, 2013! I will choose one winner randomly from each category at noon on Monday, March 11. Thank-you to all my loyal followers and customers from  Curious Portraits and The Curious Kitchen! Breakfast-Time-Border

It's Breakfast Time!

Breakfast-Time-Border We can all use a little encouragement in the morning to begin our day on a cheery note. I'm hoping my newest anthropomorphic print will do the trick. This combines two of my favorite subjects: anthropomorphism and vintage kitchen! It  is now available in  The Curious Kitchen shop on Etsy and I'll soon be adding small prints of the individual characters . Next week I'll be running a contest to win an 8 x 10 print simply by sharing the link on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest so check back for details.

The Curious Kitchen

I am so excited to announce the opening of my new Etsy shop The Curious Kitchen!  I have  always had a soft spot for anything anthropomorphic and have been painting these retro illustrations inspired by my own collection of vintage collectibles for years. Since they are such a different style than the work in my Curious Portraits shop I decided to give them a spotlight all their own. The images here are from my archives but I am working on a new series of paintings to continue the tradition. Now I have so many more items in my collection to inspire me, I hardly know where to begin.

Upcoming Exhibition

I have been very busy preparing for an exhibition opening Saturday December 3 at the Wyatt Art Studios in Rochester New Hampshire. It is my first exhibition with them and I am very excited about it. It will be in their new back room which is small so I decided to show small works. I started with the 3 vintage-y still lives I already had which are nice and cheery and created 6 additional small paintings to accompany them which are all painted from my collection of vintage salt and pepper shakers and Christmas ornaments. Unfortunately I won't be able to go up there for the opening but I'll be there in spirit!

My obsession with salt & pepper shakers continues

Now I know full well that I do not NEED any new vintage salt and pepper shakers but when I saw these gorgeous lobster claws on Etsy I simply had to have them! In fact I have been looking for the perfect set of lobster claws for years but they are usually too large, too orange, to worn out or have words and advertising on them. These however are perfection right down to their deep ruby red color! I guess finding the perfect object after years of searching is the thrill of being a collector. I have to admit that my collection of shakers makes me very happy. I look forward to putting out my pumpkin heads and ghosts at Halloween and my varied Santas at Christmas. I even have a pair of turkeys...

Of course Mr. Peanut must make an appearance....

These 2 humble red and green fellows are my everyday shakers. I bought them this year and they bring me endless joy every time I use them. The color of their caps is just the right vintage shade and they look so pretty in front of the aqua lamp.

The Kitchen Tour

Part of my Apartment Therapy photo shoot was for their Kitchen Tour section which came out today. Since they hadn't planned to do a separate kitchen tour I wasn't prepared to cook anything so we pretended that I was mixing a batch of pistachio biscotti!  (My favorites) It was great fun. I am very fortunate to have an eat-in kitchen which is rare in Manhattan and have spent many happy hours in there laughing and eating with my friends. One of the best parts of living in the West Village is that it is so centrally located making it easy for friends to come by. I have a lot of my vintage collectibles in there including vintage tea tins and salt and pepper shakers, not to mention vintage appliances some of which were my Mom's. I also hang all my needlepoints in the kitchen because they have an old fashioned feel about them. I think I get my love of cross stitch from my Ukrainian ancestors and I thought I should mention that as the tour emphasizes the Italian side of the family. That is only because I grew up with them and they became much more of an influence. However I look so much like my Father and the Zadors that there is no mistaking where I come from!  Be sure to click on the Slide Show button to see the whole thing.

My Father always believed in having a well-stocked liquor cabinet; that way you are always ready to be hospitable when your friends stop by! He also passed on to me his love of vermouth which ironically is italian!

I bought this beautiful cupboard at a flea market down near Canal St over 15 years ago. It was in such great shape I didn't even have to paint it! The corner cabinet was being thrown out by an upstairs neighbor and even though it was mustard yellow and red at the time I could see it's potential. It is where the Franciscan china that my Parents bought for me over the years is proudly displayed.