When you walk into the foyer of Connecticut Country House, one of the first things you’ll notice is my beloved eighteenth-century corner cabinet. Within it (and now also around it) is an ever-changing, mini natural history exhibit of treasured finds. What started as a love and appreciation for the form and beauty of natural objects, and the purchase of just one antique conch shell, the collection has, let’s just say, evolved over the years.

This artful mix not only grabs the attention of all who enter, but always makes them smile. It’s full of bits and pieces, some of them odd, some of them not. The curation of this cupboard’s contents has become a family matter. Both Murph and Conor love to add to the eclectic variety, and it’s become a favorite corner catch-all for items found on family adventures: more shells, mushrooms, bugs, abandoned birds nests, and Conor’s most recent pièce de résistance, a thankfully vacated little wasp nest complete with its branch and a single leaf still intact. Very cool.

What makes it all work together? Very simply, a common thread or theme that keeps the look cohesive.

Home represents you and your family. I believe that what makes a house a home is decorating with, and surrounding yourself with things that you and your family love. Most importantly, the memory of what person, place, or time that object in your collection represents, or the feelings that it evokes, is what I believe to be the core of a great collection.

Happy collecting!

Love, Nora


  1. Donna Kish on February 18, 2016 at 10:11 am

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts and wonderful treasures with us Nora. It has always been my belief that home is where you can truly express yourself & enjoy what makes you happy. Home is where my heart is. ….. D

    • Nora on February 18, 2016 at 8:08 pm

      Hi Donna!

      Yes,it really is……and thanks for sharing! All the best! Love, Nora 🙂

  2. Gail on February 18, 2016 at 11:38 am

    I relive times gone by with the things I most treasure…photos, doilies, china pieces, candle smells, my journal writings, and my music.

    • Nora on February 18, 2016 at 8:07 pm

      How wonderful…..a woman after my own heart! Love, Nora

  3. Maria on February 18, 2016 at 6:50 pm

    What could be more beautiful than nature??

    • Nora on February 18, 2016 at 8:06 pm

      Hey Maria! Ain’t it the truth!! Love you. Nora 🙂

  4. nan, odessa, DE on February 18, 2016 at 7:21 pm

    What are the things hanging on the left door?
    Where do i look for them?
    Thanks for sharing!

    • Nora on February 18, 2016 at 8:06 pm

      Hi Nan! They’re wasp nests! I bought the largest one from one of my favorite antiques dealers – Covet Antiques @Staratford Antiques Center, Statford, CT.
      The middle one from The Elephant’s Trunk Flea Market, and the really small one, my son Conor found in the woods….love the one little leaf just hanging on!
      Keep your eyes open for them….and I’m sure you’ll find one!
      Happy hunting! Love, Nora

  5. Ms. Micheal Hodge on February 23, 2016 at 8:57 am

    I love your corner hutch! I would love to find out how you kept things in place, without them falling?! 🙂

    • Nora on February 23, 2016 at 4:52 pm

      Hi Micheal!

      Thank you! I build up each shelf by placing items in a way where they support each other. Where I don’t have that luxury – as for my sea fans, I may use clear thumb tacks to keep them securely in place.

      All the best! Love, Nora

      • Ms. Micheal Hodge on February 24, 2016 at 9:38 am

        Thank you Nora! This is going on my dream list! 🙂

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