Collectible Munising Bowls were hand-carved in the Upper Peninsula.
Pleased to seat you
Make a statement. Take a seat. With this squat, squiggle-style chair standing in your foyer, you can do both. (And yes, it is as comfy as it is cool.) $300 individually; $540 a pair. Bali Living Imports, Boyne City, 231-582-2663, balilivingimports.com.
Serve the curve
Our sage of home style, Northern Michigan native Katie Brown, fuses functionality and fabulous design in ways that Ms. Martha can only dream of. Katie's latest? This curvy maple ply serving tray. Its inspired lack of corners and crevices means you can give spills and crumbs the clean sweep with extraordinary ease. And that, we think, is reason enough to serve up some celebratory cocktails. $20, Toad Hall, Petoskey, 231-347-5322.
Long after summer's herbs, fruits and flowers have faded, you can soak them up - whilst scrubbing down - with these ingenious and all-natural goat's milk soap-filled loofahs. Scents like lavender-oatmeal, rosemary-mint, lemongrass, orange-eucalyptus and spruce make every shower a summer vacation. $4.50 each. Soap dish, $10. The French Bulldog, Elk Rapids, 231-264-9200, thefrenchbulldog.net.
As if we needed another reason to covet dainty glassware. Now Kiss That Frog has embraced the bottoms of bowls, beakers and drinking glasses with straw baskets speckled with spots of red and certain to add style to a September dinner on the deck. Use the large or small beakers ($11 and $7) to showcase an oil infused with your herb garden's bounty. Pinch a sprinkle of sea salt from the Thumbelina-sized bowl ($5). Serving your late-summer salad will be just as scrumptious as eating it. Cali's Cottons, Traverse City. 231-947-0633.
From the maple trees of the Upper Peninsula, the 1911-established Munising Woodenware Company hand-carved thousands of pretty but practical wooden bowls for decades of domestic doyennes. The company, after many mergers and moves, folded amidst the popularity of plastics in the mid-50's, but you can find their bowls - many still stamped with the Good Housekeeping Institute's seal of approval - in Up North antique shops and on eBay. We picked up this three-legged beauty at the Traders' Point Antique Mall in Manistique. $30, 906-341-7500, tpantiques.com.
How you like them apples?
Why let your fresh-picked local produce languish as a centerpiece display? Eat up the sweet stuff and set out a pile of super-sized faux apples and gourds instead. Anybody but a fruit fly will fall in love with the juicy crimson color of this crop. Assorted sizes, $10.50 to $22 each. Stewart-Zacks, Traverse City, 231-947-2322, stewartzacks.com.
Lynda Twardowski is assistant editor at Traverse, Northern Michigan's Magazine.
Note: These items were available at time of publication. Please check current availability with businesses listed.