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Feather your nest: birdcages are not just for birds.


Ida Yerger, a friend of mine from Jackson, shares the story of a small Victorian birdcage that her grandparents brought back from the Panama Canal years ago. Her grandmother gave it to her when she was a new bride, and it has a special place in her china cabinet and in her heart. She remembers her grandmother winding the music box and letting all the children enjoy the sweet tune seemingly coming from the tiny yellow bird inside. It is an heirloom that evokes many fond memories.

Birdcages come in all sizes and shapes, vintage and new, and can be used in so many ways, from decorating tables for parties to organizing desk supplies to housing soaps and linen hand towels in the bathroom. Keep your eyes open at antiques shops and garden shops for a birdcage treasure that is the perfect shape and size for that perfect place, and use in your home or office. Change the colors or distress them with a little sanding and umber paint dry-brushed on the surface sparingly. Add small architectural pieces, ribbons, trims, and tassels for interest. Display small garden plants or small nosegays of flowers for a spring arrangement. Birdcages filled with surprises make lovely gift packages. The possibilities are endless for creating your own heirloom with memories. Oh, and you might just use one as the home for a bird.


Organize your desk with a small vintage birdcage (found at the Butterchurn in Clinton). Put birdseed feeders on the outside of the cage to hold pens, scissors, and stamps. Store stationery and note cards inside. Add small architectural embellishments, ribbons, trims, and tassels and collect beautiful, vintage desk supplies to use and display.

This vintage bamboo birdcage serves as the centerpiece for a table with two china doves holding roses and berries inside. It is surrounded by peach and terracotta roses, ferns, a bird's nest with eggs, greenery, and an orchid garland.


This metal birdcage on a stand (found at the Depot in Oxford) welcomes guests at the door with small fresh plants, maiden-hair ferns, asparagus ferns, roses, hydrangeas, smilax vines, a small nest holding blown-out green eggs (from Dan Parry, 4727 Highway 22, Flora, 601.879.8148) and is draped with silk ribbons (from Smith's Variety Store, Mountain Brook Village, Birmingham, Alabama).


A small hand-painted, vintage china birdcage keeps soaps and hand towels ready for use in a powder room.

Use this small beaded birdcage dome (from Interior's Market in Jackson) to give special attention to the dessert at a special luncheon. Attach ribbons and china butterflies (from High Street Antiques Mall in Jackson) for accents.


photography by greg campbell
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Title Annotation:home matters: easy does it
Author:Roper, Patty
Publication:Mississippi Magazine
Date:Mar 1, 2008
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Next Article:Period treasures: Aberdeen beckons lovers of antiques and architecture.

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