Thursday, July 30, 2009

Weekly Wrap Up: Maine Road Trip

I'm wrapping up my Maine posts for the week. I have two more trips to Maine this summer so don't worry if I've missed your favorite spots. Look forward to a whole series of finds from Portland, Maine. I made a list of all my stops I've covered so far below (some are from prior trips). They're organized from North to South. I know a lot of your are planning trips so I thought it would be helpful for them to be all in one spot. Below the links are a few photos I took on my road trip that didn't seem to fit anywhere but here. Enjoy!

Acadia National Park: Bar Harbor, Maine

Swans Island Blankets Studio In Northport, Maine

Windsor Chairmakers in Lincolnville, Maine

The High Tide Inn: Camden, Maine

Maine State Prison Shop in Rockport, Maine

Andrew Wyeth & Olsen House in Cushing, Maine

Moody's Diner: Waldoboro, Maine

Red's Eats Wiscasset, Maine

Smitten in Wiscasset, Maine

Wiscasset Cottage Antiques

Wiscasset, Maine: Elliott Healy Books & Prints

Wiscasset, Maine: The Marston House & Treats

Portland, Maine: Folly 101 & Blanche and Mimi Home

Portland, Maine: Angela Adams, Ferdinand, Two Fat Cats Bakery

Avolli: Scandinavian Antique Furniture Scarbourgh, Maine (by appointment)

Snug Harbor Farm in Kennebunk, Maine

Old House Parts in Kennebunk, Maine

Discount Fabric at Marden's

York, Maine: Withington Antiques

Recipe: Real Maine Whoopie Pies

Decorative Butter Molds found in Wiscasset, Maine

Decorative butter molds spotted in Wiscasset, Maine.

Penobscot Bay Maine Lobster Poster

A lobster poster spotted at a shop in Camden, Maine.

Harbor in Camden, Maine

The lovely harbor in Camden, Maine.

Shaker Bench and Moose at Windsor Chairmakers

Shaker furniture gallery at Windsor Chairmakers.

Northwest Harbor, Maine

Adorable downtown of Northeast Harbor, Maine.

Acadia National Park, Maine

Acadia Park: Bar Harbor, Maine

As we drove further north on our road trip we heard predictions of heavy downpours and rain the following days. We decided to shorten the trip by a day and drive straight to Acadia in Bar Harbor. I was getting kinda burnt out on shopping and wanted to get outside anyway.

Acadia National Park is completely gorgeous. Pay $20 for the day and take your time driving around Mount Desert Island. Every overlook will take your breath away. I was anticipating the breathtaking views from Cadillac Mountain. The drive up the mountain (large hill) was a bit treacherous. My mom is afraid of heights (she was driving) and I've developed the fear of cars crashing into ravines somewhere between my 27-30th year of life. This is probably due to the fact I almost drove us off into a ravine in the middle of the winter on the Kangamangus highway in New Hampshire. So we crept our way up the large hill as I gasped at the overlooks while my mom kept her eyes concentrated on the middle of the road. It was a bit hysterical, laughing helped. At the very top the ocean surrounds you in every direction.

I would love to come back with Greg and do some hiking and spend a few days camping. If only it wasn't so far away. Acadia is 4 hours north of Portland, Maine. When we were driving out of Bar Harbor I counted 12 very large private jets at the small airport. If I only had a jet I would come every weekend! I took a ton of photos. Above and below are my favorites.

Acadia Park view from Cadillac Mountain in Maine
View from Cadillac Mountain Bar Harbor, Maine
Acadia park Maine
Acadia National ParkCadillac Mountain looking down to Bar Harbor, Maine

Recipe: Real Maine Whoopie Pies

rita and grammy making whoopie pies

While I was in Maine I spent one rainy afternoon making whoopie Pies with my Grammy Elliott and my cousin's grandmother, Rita. Watching them bicker and laugh while sipping some cold Pinot Grigio with Judge Judy blaring in the background was a hoot. Rita calls herself the, Whoopie Pie Queen and frankly after tasting her creations I can't deny that claim. Store bought whoopie pies are just too thick and have way too much filling. More is not necessarily better when it comes to whoopies.

Maybe I should back up and explain what a whoopie pie is. Two devil's food cakes with a creamy filling made of egg whites, confectionery sugar, fluff, and basically Crisco. Whoopie pies as far as I know are a Maine thing. The amish have their own version. You'll spot whoopies wrapped in cellophane at gas stations, sub shops, and gourmet stores all over Maine. Some claim to be the best but honestly nothing compares to homemade. Above and below photos from a fun afternoon.

Below the recipe both grandmother's having been making for years adapted from Marjorie Standish book, "Cooking Down East," (1968).

Ingredients for Cakes:

1/2 cup shortening

1 cup sugar

2 egg yolks

5 tablespoons of cocoa (rita uses 4)

2 cups sifted flour

1 teaspoon each: baking powder, baking soda, salt

1 cup milk

1 teaspoon vanilla

The sugar and shortening are creamed together, the beaten egg yolks added. The dry ingredients are sifted together, and added alternatively with the milk and vanilla. Drop the batter in equal spoonfulls onto a greased cookie sheet, leaving room for them to spread. Bake in a pre-heated 375 degrees oven for 7-10 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool. When completly cool, mix filling (recipe below), spreading half the cakes with this mixture. Put them together like a sandwich.

Filling: With an electric mixer, combine 1/2 cups shortening, 2 cups confectioners sugar, 2 egg whites, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 2 tablespoons fluff.

p.s. I've come across recipes that cook the egg whites. The grandmothers never have and nobody has ever gotten sick.

Making Whoopie Pies
Old Ladies of Waterville, Maine making Whoopie Pies
Rita Making Whoopie Pies

Checking the Whoopie Pie Recipegrammy elliott and rita making whoopie pies
Making Whoopie Pies

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Swans Island Blankets Studio In Maine

Swans Island Blankets
Sheep in the rain at Swans Island Blankets

Just up the road from Windsor Chairmakers is Swans Island Blankets in Northport. On a rainy Thursday morning we were warmly greeted to tour their new gallery space and studio. I've read about Swans Island blankets a hundred times. When I saw the price tag I would gasp. Truthfully, once you see the quality and care that goes into each and every piece you realize it's well worth every penny.

Each blanket is handmade by a talented weaver using only natural dyes. My mom and I found the indigo fascinating. "The dye, called Indican, is produced as the leaves of the plant are fermented, exuding a rich paste which turns blue when exposed to air." Fascinating. The wool is harvested from super soft sheep raised in Maine. A cute photo of a few cuddled up in the rain above.

Swan Island Blankets in Maine

Blankets displayed at Swans Island
Winter Weight Blankets at Swans Island
Natural Grey Throws at Swans Island

Blankets and throws are available in summer and winter weights. The check style available in a winter weight—a weave of two layers of wool for warmth—was my favorite. Natural grey throws are woven from the fleece of Corriedale sheep.

Loom Room at Swan Island
A blanket be woven at Swan Island

Wander back into the studio to see yarn being dyed in large buckets and blankets being woven by hand on large looms. When I first went away to college I studied textile design with a concentration in weaving. I can tell you from experience setting up a loom is a total bitch. I was horrible at it. All the yarns have to be hand pulled one at a time through each tiny needle. So painful and time consuming.

Check out Swans Island's website for more info on the weaving process and history. The lighting on a rainy day made shooting in the gallery a bit difficult. Take a hop over to their site for detailed photographs of their stunning blankets,

p.s. martha went to Swans Island Blankets just a few days before me and blogged about her visit today too!

Swans Island Blankets

Rt 1

Northport, Maine


Related Posts:

Windsor Chairmakers in Lincolnville, Maine

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The High Tide Inn: Camden, Maine

Cottage in Camden, Maine
Cottage in Camden, Maine

My mom a Midwest girl married my New England father in hopes that someday she could stay in a cottage by the sea. Small little cottages dot the rocky coastline all the way up Route One. My dad being a grumpy New Englander referred to them as, Tourist Traps. My dad's dead now but my mom finally did get her wish forty years later.

We stayed at a cute little place just outside Camden for about $100 a night (we negotiated the price). The cottage looked out to a rolling wildflower field that tumbled it's way down to the ocean. We took a stroll on the rocky beach before the black flies hit at sunset. Further north in Acadia National Park they have signs saying, "Don't Take Our Rocks!". They are pretty seducing rocks. I stuck a few in my pockets to remember our trip.

That night, we could hear the waves crashing on the beach. The sky was so clear you could see the streaks and stars of the Milky Way Galaxy. I woke up around 2 am thinking I could hearing someone having sex in a nearby cottage. Turns out it was only an owl. Not that I've ever known a hooter but it was an odd sound to hear.

The High Tide Inn

Rt 1

Camden, Maine

(207) 236-3724

Rocks on The Beach in Maine
Sunset at beach in Camden, Maine
Rocky Beach at Sunset in Camden, Maine
Rocky Beach at Sunset in camden, Maine
Rocky Beach at Sunset in Camden, Maine

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Windsor Chairmakers in Lincolnville, Maine

Table & Chairs at Windsor Chairmakers in Maine
Tiger Maple High Boy at Windsor Chairmakers

One of my favorite stops on our Maine road trip was Windsor Chairmakers located in Lincolnville, Maine. Beautiful handcrafted furniture made one at time. Tour an entire house filled with windsor chairs, tables, dressers, and highboys. The pictures just don't do them justice. Every piece is jaw dropping gorgeous representing stunning examples of wood. My favorite was anything with Tiger Maple. Above a photo of a dining table paired with windsor chairs and a highboy displaying an amazing example of Tiger Maple wood.

Shaker Style Bench at Windsor Chairmakers
Shaker Style Stools at Windsor Chairmakers

In the back part of the main house is a whole gallery dedicated to Shaker style furniture. Chairs, benches, and stools glowed on the gallery floor. I was dreaming of where I could fit such a gorgeous bench in my house. A shot of a group of stools perfect for a kitchen island or a desk.

Chairmaker at Windsor Chairmakers in MaineChair in workshop at Windsor Chairmakers in Maine
Workshop at Windsor Chairmakers

After you walk through the main house you're invited to the workshop on the back of the property. The workshop was huge and so clean! I could probably make some pretty cool things in there. (I made a small table once!) I meet with the chief chairmaker who happen to be the nicest guy in the world. He showed me some chairs he was working on for a customer. Could he make me something?

All the furniture made by Windsor Chairmakers can be customized. While I wandered through the galleries that morning I had thoughts of a tiger maple table with queen anne legs in my head. Similar to the photo at the very top of the post. How cool would it be to know the person who actually made my table?

Check out the site for full ordering info:

Windsor Chairmakers

Rt 1

Lincolnville, Maine (just north of Camden)

(800) 789-5188

Monday, July 27, 2009

Red's Eats Wiscasset, Maine

Red's Eats in Wiscasset, Maine

As you make your way through Wiscasset you can't miss Red's Eats. A fish shack made famous for it's lobster rolls and fried fish. New England is on a fried fish overload. I know I should love it because I grew up in New England but frankly I don't. Do we really need to fry everything??

If your not in the mood for fried fish (my boyfriend swears by the fried haddock) go for the lobster roll. Red's gets awards again and again for being the best. Great big chunks with butter or mayo on the side. I thought it was ok. The chunks were so big they were hard to chew. I like my roll with slightly smaller chunks mixed with a just little mayo. The mayo keeps the meat moist and totally yummy. Red's is a fun stop nonetheless and the staff is super nice and helpful. I hate to be negative but I hate posts that fluff the truth especially when it comes to food. Maybe mayo on the side is your thing?

Red's Eats

Rt 1 & Water Street

Wiscasset, Maine


Redd's Menu Board in Wiscasset, Maine
Red's Lobster Roll and Clam Cakes

Smitten in Wiscasset, Maine & Paulette Rollo Blankets

Smitten in Wiscasset, Maine

An adorable little store located in the center of Wiscasset on Rt 1. Modern accessories and textiles are grouped together according to color. As soon as I walked into the store I went straight for the gorgeous yellow plaid blanket on the bed. Some of you may know I have a plaid blanket obsession! The colors were totally interesting and different. When I checked out the tag I saw they were designed by Paulette Rollo. How did I not know of this deliciousness? Even better? Paulette's site has even more lovely patterns and blankets. I'm sensing I may need to have one.

Below a photo of the blanket that stole my heart alongside some cutie dot sheets from Plover Organic. A stack of Hable Construction pillows are nestled together with some Paulette Rollo favorites. When I was cruising the web for more info on the store I came across the blog Swallowfield featuring some lovely photos from inside Smitten. If your in town take a walk up the street to Rock, Paper, Scissors the owner's Paper store!


RT 1

Wiscasset, Maine

(207) 882-9991

Blankets & Pillows at Smitten
Paulette Rollo Blanket spotted at Smitten

Related Posts:

Wiscasset Cottage Antiques

Wiscasset, Maine: Elliott Healy Books & Prints

Wiscasset Cottage Antiques

Wiscasset Cottage Antiques

Wiscasset is a coastal village famous for it's antique stores. Stores are curated nicely representing folk art and early American style furniture. I checked out a few shops and took a few photos at Wiscasset Cottage Antiques. Sometimes looking and taking photos is a hard thing to juggle. Smaller pieces were affordable with a New England flair. The main cottage is decorated with folk art (I wanted them all!) and interesting objects like trunks and wood boxes. Walk back to a smaller cottage to find stacks of rugs, wooden model boats, and decoys. A few pictures from inside the shop above and below.

Wiscasset Cottage Antiques

16 Middle Street

Wiscasset, Maine

(207) 380-2605

Wicasset Antique Shop: Model SailboatsAntiques in Wiscasset, Maine
Antique Store in Wiscasset, Maine

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