Blue Willows by the Blue Danube

January in South Jersey has been a mix of spring and winter – putting one in a quandary as to which coat to wear and to boot or not to boot.

However, today the chill is crisp and we enjoyed a nighttime snow that glistened in the glow of the lampstand in the middle of the yard, dusting the deck and tundra with lovely whites under the blue of night.  Perfect inspiration for the January re-do of my tea cabinet display!

Out comes all my blue and white wear – not much to boast of, but mine own.

The classic Blue Willow by Churchill lines up for teatime!  A creamer and sugar boasting the pattern . . .

And, teacup and saucer . . .

Adding to the mix is a delightful children’s book by Allan Drummond, The Willow Pattern Story, on the popular legend with whimsical watercolors expanding the world of Blue Willow and the story of the star-crossed Asian lovers it purports to tell.

“Fly with me, over China, and down into the landscape of the willow pattern.  Come, smell the exotic scent of peonies and camellias below the windows of the Great Pagoda. Hear the sweet song of the birds in the paradise garden, and the faint sound of waves lapping against a little boat carried downriver by the tide.  See, under the weeping willow, three figures hurrying across a bridge.  And high above, two mysterious love birds forever kissing . . .”
Allan Drummond
“The Willow Pattern Story”

Taking tea in the midst is another Asian beauty from Japan . . .

A lovely Japanese tea lady meditates on the tale enjoying the scent of a red rose mingled with a fragrant tea, cradled in a golden cup, just poured from the spout of her elegant teapot.  All tranquility beside yet another blue and white Asian teapot depicting a Japanese landscape – with a lively splash of red . . .

A peaceful scene, this – nestled serenely as a willow by a river – by the Blue Danube centerpiece.

Displayed here is my plate with the winner of a teacup and saucer that was my prize Christmas gift this past Christmas from hubby, Ed!

Framed between two Delft Blue candlesticks (a long ago find for $5 at a yard sale), the teacup is unique in its large size – but not nearly moreso than for its graceful and unusual handle . . .

I wonder . . . perhaps some Vintage Rose Raspberry Herbal Tea today – with a vibrant red hue to warm up the chill of January blue and white!

Perfect choice!  A splendid tea!  Raspberry tea and red grapes, too – rice crackers and goat cheddar – with a chocolate truffle for a little something simply sweet!

And, the raspberry red with white and blue foreshadows my Patriotic blue and white transfer-ware to come for May, June, and July, when I break out my blue and white Liberty ware with American Colonial images and Founding Father heroes such as Betsy Ross and Paul Revere!

But, for now, I shall repose with my raspberry tea, in Blue Danube, and the healthful choice of fruit and cheese as a mid-morning snack.

Yes . . . and a touch of pleasure reading after devotions – perhaps The Willow Pattern Story.  Passing the time in such grace warms the heart and takes the winter chill away for a cozy, replenishing joy.

Be ye warmed by the “willow” on the “river” . . .

Sharing this Blue Willows by the Blue Danube with:

Sandi on Tea Time Tuesday at Rose Chintz Cottage
Trisha’s Tea Party Tuesday at Sweetology
Kathy’s A Return to Loveliness Tuesday at Delightsome Life
Terri’s Teacup Tuesday at Artful Affirmations
Thursday Teacups and Tea Things at Antiques and Teacups
Bernideen’s Tea Time
Trish’s Simply Sweet at Lily-Rose Cottage

About Miss Kathy

"I teach families how to restore their God-given authority as the primary educator in their child’s life through the experience of reading together as a family. Learn how to use literature to create teachable moments, build strong minds, and bind loving hearts."

Kathryn Ross, writer, speaker, and dramatist, ignites a love of literature and learning to equip young and old towards developing a Family Literacy Lifestyle—reading together, learning together, loving together. Her works challenge families to deepen their literacy skills and grow into the greater things God has purposed for them. She’s taught in Christian and homeschool circles, trained in the Principle Approach® through the Foundation for American Christian Education. Miss Kathy owns Pageant Wagon Publishing, producing homeschool enrichment materials, devotional works, study guides, and theatrical dramas for church, school, and community production. She podcasts at and blogs at


  1. I LOVE your china cabinet…but then I love anything blue and white! Such a lovely, warming post. Think I’ll go get a cuppa….

  2. Hello Kathryn
    Delightful china and yummy treats to have with the raspberry tea.

  3. Hello Kathy,
    Your blue and white theme is beautiful. I think blue and white lends itself to elegance and homey looks equally well. One of my sisters collects blue and white pieces.
    The handle on your cup is so unusual, I can see why you like it. I’ve never seen a handle like this before.
    Love the ‘Willow Pattern’ story.
    Have a lovely week.
    God Bless
    Barb from Australia

  4. Hello my dear Kathy,
    As always, you have presented us with a very enjoyable post. I love your blue and whites!
    You know when I first started to collect china, I was hard pressed as to whether to collect the blue and white or the red and white. I opted for the red and white because everyone I knew had the blue and I wanted to be different.
    I still swoon over the blue and wonder if I made the right choice. But then I look in my cabinet and I know that I did. I still do however love the blue and white. Pity I can’t collect both. *Sigh*
    Thank you for joining me today for tea and thank you for your prayers. Have a delightful week.


  5. Hi Kathy .. A lovely post and I love the Story of Blue Willow Pattern … Raspberry tea looks wonderful in your teacup … Good choice !!!! Blue china always makes my heart skip a beat…. Sweet collection … Hugs

  6. Oh how I would love to see your snow glistening in the evening lamplight..
    Kathy, your blue and whites are beautiful!!
    I love to collect it myself 🙂
    The tea cabinet looks wonderful with all your lovely pieces setting it off so nicely.
    I think your lady is very graceful and compliments the pretty setting so well!
    Thanks so much for sharing this lovliness for Simply Sweet!

  7. You don’t just do tea. You make a memory with the way you serve tea.

  8. Hello Kathryn, the Blue Willow looks gorgeous! I love this pattern! I was watching a little bit of Wind In The Willows today – too funny! I always think – if it is going to be cold – it might as well snow!
    We have rain tonight
    Hope you have a great week,

  9. I love blue and white…always looks so crisp and pretty. The teapot is lovely, Miss Kathy. What a nice little refreshment you put together,too~ Have a blessed week.

  10. Kathy, I love blue and white so much,and your collection is so lovely. It’s such fun changing and arranging our treasures. My blue and white dresser is ready for a good turn over too. You have just maybe given me the inspiration.
    xx jeanetteann

  11. Beautiful blue and white tea cups to decorate your shelf with ! How fun to change things up after the holidays.
    Your tea treats looks delicious as well!
    We do not usually get snow here in Raleigh, but we have had a couple days of wet and dreary weather.

  12. Your blue and white collection is lovely! I’ve always been drawn to blue and white dishes. Have a nice weekend! Twyla

  13. Of course, I simply loved it. I’m a huge fan of the Blue Willow pattern and any pattern in that particular hue of blue and white. It doesn’t get any prettier without being pink.

  14. Hi Kathryn,

    This is a lovely post. My maternal grandmother used to have a set of Blue Willow dishes, but my mother never liked the pattern. I’m not sure what ever happened to those dishes. I had never heard the story behind the Blue Willow pattern.

    Your Blue Danube is so pretty! My husband’s grandmother had a huge set of those dishes, and when she went into an assisted living home last year, she designated those to go to her great-grandson (our nephew). She had already given our son a large set of beautiful Bavarian china. (There’s only one girl amongst the grands and great-grands; she got china, too).

    I definitely look forward to seeing your blue and white Liberty Ware dishes this summer. My MIL has those in red and white. They’re so wonderfully patriotic!

    Thanks for sharing, Kathryn.



  15. Kathy…you sure do have a delightful collection of blues. I love the story of the blue willow. I have a set of this gifted to me by my great aunt (it was my great grandmothers by origin) how lucky am I! It has a special place in my hutch but ya know I do get it out and use it – my motto is that I will use all my china and not worry about chips, breaks or cracks! Such is life! The Japanese lady has an approving look over your nice tea! Hugs.

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