Friday, November 27, 2009

The Art of Making Calls, Calling Cards, "Emma"...and a Snowy Card

Good evening, all! Have you woken up from your after-Thanksgiving stupors? I'm not quite out of mine, yet...but life moves on!

My girls talked me into a bit of Black Friday shopping--lured me into Kohl's, of all places! We didn't even get there till afternoon, and the lines still went to the back of the store! Oh, well...we got some great deals! (Some of them were sneaky Mom purchases for Christmas...shhhh! don't tell the girls!)

Here's a couple of pictures that I promised of our Banana Salad from yesterday--turned out pretty, and was oh, so delicious!


The other day, as I went from blog to blog, visiting my lovely new friends in Blogland, it struck me how much like the old art of making calls this really is! If you read much Jane Austen, Charles Dickens, or so many of the other great classic authors, much time in the characters' lives is spent in properly making calls to others...if done incorrectly, it was a real social mistake!

I'm glad we don't have rules and regulations for our visits to each other, but it certainly is a pleasant social past time, just like long ago...and important to visit, make kind comments along the way, encourage others beautiful work, and just enjoy making new friendships! It really is a new kind of social interaction that we have here--very interesting, isn't it?

I did a little looking around about this beautiful old custom, and found some interesting things to share with you. I'd also like to, as we visit about this, share some lovely examples of old calling cards that I found online.

Did you know that there were actually rules that dictated how visits were made, and the proper ways to leave your card? Such as:

"...when you came to town, you drove around with your footman to the houses of those you wished to notify of your presence." The footman would then bring your card up to the house, give it to the butler, who would put your card on a salver in the front hall, which held all the cards which other visitors had left--you could see if anyone "important" had called there, also!
"It was understood that the lady of the house was then socially obliged to return a card to you, or, if she wished, she could make a call and actually visit you. A call, of course, counted for more than the mere leaving of a card."

If you personally "called" on someone, however, you risked rejection--the lady of the house could peer downstairs and tell her butler that she was "not at home"--meaning, in reality, that she had no wish to visit with you...ouch!

(Quotes taken from one of my favorite books, "What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew" by Daniel Pool--great book!)

This all reminds me of another favorite movie, of course! "Emma" by Jane Austen...can't get enough of this one! There are two versions I own and are images of both:

So much of the story line of "Emma" involves making and receiving calls....some of them less welcome and polite than others! I think Miss Austen had a lot of fun exposing that part of her society!

I really love both versions...both bring out different parts of the novel in beautiful ways. If you haven't seen one or the other, please do! There's a new one coming in January to PBS--Mobil Masterpiece Theatre strikes again--so excited! My British friends have already seen it, haven't you? I've heard it's absolutely wonderful--and much longer than the other two--what joy!

Lastly, a little Christmas card I made today--haven't had glitter sprinkled around the house for two whole days! That's just not right!

Love the Kraft cardstock glittered up--prettier than I thought it might be! This sweet snowy image is from Crafty Secrets' "Christmas" Images & Journal Notes booklet. I FINALLY got Martha Stewart's new loopy edge & corner punches--love them (see, Julie?!)

I'm really enjoying masking off a portion of the area and just using spray glue--so quick and easy--the glitter sticks so well, and it dries so much faster than regular glue.

Well, that's all for to throw my Thanksgiving casserole together and stick it in the oven--the natives are getting restless! Hard to believe anyone could be hungry today after yesterday's feast! I'll show you my casserole tomorrow--my family would actually prefer it to the original meal!

Hope your evening is wonderful, warm, and full of family and friends! Good night!


  1. I have been a long time fan of victoriana and have always loved the era of the calling card and all that went with it. Love that you shared all that fabulous info!

    Happy day after Thanksgiving to you! Your new blog background looks great... ; )

    Hope to chat with you tomorrow....

  2. Julie,
    I too, love the new Holiday blog background. Vintage St. Nick and those lovely cute. Calling cards were such a formal and traditional way of communicating. I agree, we sort of have our own digital way of calling on eachother. Wouldn't it be nice to incorporate the two entities. Have little images of our calling cards appear on the bottom of our comments. I would love that! I'll have to see what my computer part of my brain can come up with. Looking forward to the new Masterpiece Theatre version of well as your casserole recipe for my leftover turkey ;)

  3. Hi Julie! Love the new look here! Also..that Teal color and glitter is AWESOME! Happy Turkey day..and wishing u the best this season! :)

  4. Love, LOVE the Merry Christmas look here Julie!!! Just fabulous!!! I also love the look of that tasty salad!! It looks to die for! I am a real fan of Victoriana and of anything Jane Austin. I have looked and looked to find that Crafty Secrets Christmas Images and Journal notebook to no avail. I just can't find it anywhere. I just love all of their things. I made a few cards myself yesterday afternoon, (not near as pretty as yours!) and I thought of you whilst I was making them. It was a happy thought! I hope you have recovered from all your Thanksgiving work and that you have a wonderful weekend! xxoo

  5. I love collecting calling cards. Thank you for sharing these. They are so pretty! I also enjoyed the information about them. Your banana salad just looks so good! I really need to try it. Your card is so beautiful. I love blue and brown together. Hope you have a great weekend! Twyla

  6. Good Monring Julie

    A very stimulating post as always, think I need to make a folker entitle Julie Recipies because they all look so good.

    Only a quick pot afraid, off for wedding dress fitting today - not me - the financee of one our sons, she is French which is where they are getting married next year

    B x

  7. Your blog is such a fun place to hang out!

    Love the card. I really need more glitter! And I missed out on the loopy punch when it first came out and my stores have never restocked it. Sigh.

    Hey, have you ever seen the movie Miss Potter? Its a wonderful period piece about the life of Beatrix Potter starring Renee Zelwiger. You'll love it!

  8. Your new YOU and so pretty and festive!!
    I loved the lesson about calling funny about some of the rules.
    And that card that you vintage and fabulous!!! Love glitter myself...and now I have to go and get that loopy punch!!! It is divine!!!

  9. I've never seen this banana dessert, before. Looks yummy. I love your cards. They are always so pretty and full of wonderful embellishments. Each one is like a cozy hug.
    Enjoy your weekend,

  10. what a yummy looking dessert! the card is beautiful :) i just love jane austen movies. glad you had a nice thanksgiving.

  11. What a beautiful card and I love the look of that dessert! lol That book is one of my favorites too, I'm obsessed with Austen and that era! lol

  12. Julie, Thank you for all the great info on the calling cards. Loved the one with the bird on it. Since you web hopped for it may I borrow it? Or is that a private use one? OK BIG QUESTION for the proffessional your are... spray glue... do you think it would work to spray onto a pair of childrens ice skates & then sprinkle with glitter? I found them & am just dying to glitter them up & was wondering what glue to use. And then read this post & you raved about the spray glue. What brand do you suggest? And the glitter can be put on pretty thick? Can't wait to get your input. THANKS in advance for helping me with this little project. Also, for your sweet comments on loving my new dol. I have her up in the new Christmas vingette & can't wait to share. Hugs~Charlene

  13. Hi Julie,
    Love that loopy punch! I have never seen that one. So neat and the glitter just makes it perfect.

    Love the history of the calling cards. I didn't know that either. lol I have several vintage calling cards and now that makes them even more special.

  14. I have always adored the idea of calling cards, so amicable, elegant and (I would imagine, in their day and time) so much fun to collect.

    Fantastic post, dear soul - that dessert looks too scrumptious for words! :)

    Tons of hugs,
    ♥ Jessica

  15. Very pretty card! The loopy lace trim looks beautiful!

  16. Good morning. Just found you from another link. I hadn't thought of it that way. But it is like "making calls" of old. I like that idea. I'm a lover of gardening and herbs, and herbs have so many Victorian meanings attached to them. Like rosemary for remembrance. Love your blog and your sidebar. Very cute and festive!

  17. The blog comment doesn't have quite the finesse of a calling card does it? But I guess we have what we have! My DH refused to watch more than the first five minutes of either of those Emmas and refused to even look at the most recent one - he has a very clear idea of what Emma should be like and none of them fit with how he thinks she should be! Love your glittery Christmas card - great use of the image!

  18. WONDERFUL POST!!!! I too am a great Jane Fan... I read everything and watch all that I can written by or about her books. I can't get enough. Thanks for stopping by and entering my Blogoversary Giveaway! Good luck.

  19. What a great bit of info you've given us there, really interesting Julie. I love reading Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey is my favourite, I don't know why, it just always has been!!
    I love the term 'let's take a turn about the room' :) Pity we can't do that together, but as you say, we can call and leave our 'cards' as it were through comments.
    Don't know if you'll be able to pick up this youtube link, sometimes the BBC ones are blocked out of the UK, but yes, we've seen the latest Emma, and I'd happily see it again. It's fab :)

  20. what an enjoyable read! i see images of these cards and now understand the meaning behind them.

    your blog looks lovely decorated for the holidays!

    happy casserole!


  21. Ah yes! Calling cards - I remember reading about them in the Little House books. Like you I'm glad we have more relaxed rules about visiting...but then I guess screening calls has the same effect of the butler. ;)

    You're a braver woman than me to go shopping on Black Friday! Yeah for you and your deals! :D