When in Nantucket, I love to wake up early, grab a freshly brewed cup of coffee, a bucket and head out the door for some beachcombing. This is a peaceful time for me, when I can clear my head, smell the briny air, feel the cool wet sand underfoot and the warming sun at my back. A simple stroll along the waters edge uncovers the most gorgeous variety of one of my very favorite decorating elements, seashells.

Before no time, my pail is brimming with an assortment of clam, oyster, mussel and scallop shells. My haul is brought up to the cottage, gets a good cleaning in the outdoor shower, is laid out on the decking to dry in the sun, and lined up for final inspection. The bounty from this Zen-like activity, multiplied over the course of a couple of blissful days, can spin slightly out of control, so I find that I do become a bit more picky towards the end of vacation, choosing to gather and keep only the best of what nature has to offer.

At home, displaying the shells amassed in large, clear glass containers to showcase their varying textures, forms, and shades of white is just so impactful. I love decorating with these simple treasures that are a daily reminder of carefree summer days and wonderful memories of family vacations.

Happy collecting!

Love, Nora






  1. Cindy on July 19, 2016 at 12:07 pm

    Nora, we are recent transplants from the west coast tempoarily situated in central VA and there are so many places I am eager to explore; Nantucket is at the top of the list! Seashell gathering is a favorite past time of mine as well. Your collection is amazing! The primary reason for weighing in here is to let you know I thought of you this past weekend when I stumbled across a copy of The Hay Day Cookbook in an antique store. Those were yummy blueberry muffins, btw! Enjoy your time at the seashore.

  2. PJ Bronson on July 19, 2016 at 4:34 pm

    I love my(your : ) ) shells!

  3. Stephanie Brame on July 26, 2016 at 4:20 am

    This sounds like my idea of heaven. I have recently visited Nantucket from England. It is a destination that I have always wanted to visit and it did’nt disappoint! As an American living in England (40yrs now) I miss the magic of this type of shore line not to mention the weather in which to enjoy it, so real envy has set in. Where I live ( Suffolk) our beaches are made up of large pebbles and very few shells, a different kind of beauty. Reading about your morning ritual has transported me back to that magic time I spent on this lovely island. Lucky you.
    Kind regards
    Stephanie Brame (across the pond)

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