Saturday, May 30, 2009

Significant Virtues

Happy Saturday! My trip out to Kansas was pleasant, and I returned with several delightful items for the Old Glory Antiques Show!
You'll have to wait to see them, though . . . .
here are a few hints . . . .
I have a habit of collecting onesies.
I tend to pick up odd jars, chairs, pillowcases, picture frames . . .
where most sensible people choose to have matching items, or sets of things.
I like the odd plate or cup, unmatched glasses and silverware . . . the survivors.
This rough woven country curtain intrigues me.
is lovely, but more than that,
for me, the essence of simple, unpretentious things has a decided charm.
I like to believe that this curtain was once used for some other purpose,
and now is in it's second
or third
There is an honesty and vulnerability of self which we hide from others, possibly fearing that we will be laughed at, or judged to be too naive and unsophisticated. The nature of my decor may reveal much more about me than I would ever like to think.
I am, truly, a simple, unsophisticated person, at heart.
While my forebears may have had to use mismatched dishes out of necessity, and recycle dresses into aprons and quilt scraps, I choose to do so.
I love these pillows and tote bags, from a French firm, using old flour/grain/coffee sacks!
They are the ultimate in recycling and repurposing what one has.
They are also the essence of the simple life and some

Tuesday, May 26, 2009


May 28th - 30th in Goodland Kansas 
off Highway 27.
Head 7 miles south of Goodland on Hwy 27.
Turn East on Rd 57  . . . . 4 miles to Rd 23.
Signs will be visible!
9am - 7pm
Rain or Shine, in big metal barn.
Not an auction - all antiques and other merch is priced to sell,
 and no reasonable offers will be refused!
Pottery, glassware, china, pictures, prints, oil lamps, teapots, cookie jars, primitives, kitchen collectibles, medical, ephemera, toys, dolls, games, cameras, clocks, lamps, chandeliers, display cases, silverplate, perfumes, diecast and Tonka trucks, jewelry, furniture, showcases  . . . .
boxes are still being unpacked!
This info through a friend of mine - and I've been assured that I won't be disappointed!
Come join me as I plow my way through the goodies and seek the very best, to haul back to Denver!
Please come and enjoy, and find some wonderful bargains!
Photo by Jeff March

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Taking Care of Our Things

Hello friends,
Happy Saturday and happy Memorial Day!
Did you make any New Year's resolutions? As I told you earlier mine was to be more organized.
This week I decided to rearrange some of my favorite things around the house. After throwing open the windows to air the place out, I dusted and vacuumed, and stacked things in the middle of the floor, and sorted through the contents of vintage suitcases and baskets. I unearthed some old favorite pieces, and packed up others. Several boxes of goodies went to a thrift shop, and a few to a friend's yard sale. Clothing was passed along to a young friend, and papers were shredded and disposed of. It's cathartic to eliminate the extraneous things in life.
(The things that clutter, confuse and hamper our lives.)
Probably a little late to begin spring cleaning, but better late than never!
I waxed a few tables, doors and blanket chests, and polished some silver, and am feeling quite industrious and satisfied! There is never enough time in my life to keep up with the cleaning and socializing and filing and blogging and socializing and shop tending and buying and reading and socializing. The cleaning and organizing usually suffers I'm afraid. Then I lit a Votivo candle, and sank into a chair to enjoy the fragrance and the overall beauty.
When I do organize and clean, I tend to get bogged down in the small details, such as making sure that every little item in one basket is minutely straight and orderly, thereby leaving much of the bigger picture totally untouched. I run out of time, and have to throw all the rest of the room back together in a hurry.
But, let me tell you that that one part of the project is perfect!
Time flies when I'm having fun. I love the finished effect of cleaning and organizing.
(It's too bad the bug only bites occasionally, and for a short time.)
To make myself stay on task, I allow myself treats at certain intervals.
"As soon as I finish this box of papers, I will have a glass of iced tea."
"At 6pm I will stop and have a nice bowl of home made soup."
"When I finish dusting this room, I will indulge in a chocolate truffle."
It works for me!
It's healthy to take care of ourselves,
the physical, the emotional, the spiritual and the environment in which we live. Do something wonderful for yourself today - sort through one little stack of papers or one closet, and rid yourself of everything you don't need.
You'll love it!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


I've been on a steady and determined pathway to becoming more organized in life. Those of you who buy for your antiques shops will laugh at this, because you all know the futility of trying to be neat and orderly when the very nature of our business is junque, junque-ing and accumulating more junque. There is a native wisdom that says, "never throw anything away, because you'll need it one of these days". We live by this adage! We collect old hardware, knobs, rusty nails, spigot handles, drawer pulls, buttons, pieces of wire and small chips of wood that we just KNOW came off of something we'll be repairing next week . . . Then there are the receipts . . . millions of tiny little receipts, and the notes to self about the things we purchased without receipts, at flea markets and yard sales, and traded from one another. (Or the things we scoffed from the junk pile, or out of the dumpster.) There are the maps and business cards and brochures and usually 4 or 5 napkins with undecipherable reminders about resources and estate sales and barn sales and seat caners and formulas for the best homemade wood restorers . I keep a great big envelope for paint colors I like, but I can never find it to add my latest 50 paint chips.
My motto has become:
We save phone numbers with no names and names with no phone numbers, and email addresses and blog spot addresses and info on antique mall dealers who have been out of business for 3 years.
Best of all,
(you know you do this . . . ),
we save magazines and magazine pages and photos clipped from magazine pages, for inspiration. We accumulate the nicest journals and photo albums in which to paste these magazine clippings. (If we could ever find the time, or the photo albums when we want them.) That's just the first layer. Then there are the sugar bowl lids missing sugar bowls, and the butter dishes for which we expect to locate lids, and the single pillowcases of which we're positive we bought a matched pair. There are glue guns without glue sticks, and the large cache of glue sticks which do not fit the glue gun we have in hand. (They no doubt fit the other glue gun - the one we thought was right in the tool drawer, but is missing at the moment . . . ) I DO attempt to organize in a cute way - just in case some antiques dealer friend might stop by and see my accumulation of important stuff. Tools of the trade, you know . . . There are antique show fliers that we keep, so we don't miss next year's show - and company names torn from product packaging so we can order from them, only we've no longer any idea why we wanted the product to begin with. There are books and how to manuals. Usually a hundred or so, mostly out of date and irrelevant at this point. There is a huge assortment of cute price tags and business cards we keep for inspiration. And trust me -they were a wonderful inspiration when we first saw them, and no doubt will be again, if we can put our hands on them. There is string and raffia and glue, (usually 5 different types of specialty glue), and felt pads and sliders to move big pieces of furniture. There are numerous types of gloves, each specific to some task. I save every piece of antique looking paper . . . . sheet music . . . . ledger paper . . . . etc.
I might need it some day - you know I might!
I'm into clock parts. Faces, gears, hands. They must be sorted and stored in antique blue Mason jars, according to size and type. I'm into buttons. They take hours to sort through. Especially when you buy in bulk. Brother Dearest once travelled with me on a buying trip, and helped me count out 5,000 white and cream and ivory antique buttons, from a whiskey barrel full of all different colored buttons. These were eventually washed, dried and sorted by age, packaged and labeled and priced. These things are important and take time. They also take up space for weeks, all over the little house, while they're being prepared for the shop. Honestly, no matter how hard I work at it, there will never be a truly organized system of running this type business from a small house. The important, (and easier thing), is to
only have friends who are also in the business,
so they will understand when they see your overabundance of important things and your particular style of disorganization, and not have you committed.
If you do choose to have friends who have never been addicted antiques dealers for 20 or 30 years, don't invite them over. Just take them
out to dinner,
and claim your house is being fumigated . . . or painted.
We know
that we're incredibly creative and busy people
who have more important things to do than fuss over
every little thing being in it's proper place.
We'd rather shop!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Really Important Things

Good Morning Gentle Readers, Just a short post today. The day is dawning cloudy and cooler. There is no rhyme or reason to Springtime in the Rockies. Just taking one day at a time, sunny and 87 degrees, or cloudy and 59 degrees. The greening and budding and blossoming is spectacular, thanks to cloudbursts like last nights. It's all good in my estimation. One really important thing we must remember in life : we are never really "in control", and weather reminds us of the fact.
I'm currently beginning to stage displays for my next antiques show . . . (all over my living room . . . ), getting a feel for what I wish to create at Old Glory. I LOVE THIS SHOW. There is such a camaraderie of dealers, some arriving from locations across the country, some from across town . . . it's old home week(end).
We truly compete to see who's queen of the world (OK, our world is small and a little strange, but we do . . . )
Some of our customers have attended for nearly all of the 33 or so years the show has been in existence. They've followed it from Evergreen to Lakewood to Boulder County Fairgrounds and
back down to
Clement Park
because it's worth it!
I'm excited about the
many new items,
I'm going to show you,

and am seeking the very best display creativity, to enchant and inspire you! I hope you will be there - you know we see the best of the best at this little show.

A tip for shoppers, arrange in advance to transport large items, because there are some highly desirable furniture pieces that you'll want to take home.

Be there early - and have cash when possible, although several of us take credit cards, and checks if we know you. Bring your shopping carts, or see Lisa H. first, and buy one of her ADORABLE
vintage carts, complete with liner made from antique fabrics. Bring some bubble wrap and small boxes for little items - not all dealers are prepared to wrap items the way you might wish.
Now the really important news . . .
My new little grandchildren are here!
My daughter and son in law are home from Ethiopia with our Macy, 5, and Felix, 1.5, two beautiful little souls! They are siblings, energetic, smart and adorable. They speak no English, but I'm sure they will begin to very quickly. Fletcher, my 3.5 year old grandson evidently thinks this is hilarious, and has taken to speaking a new, (made-up) language, in competition with them, so poor mom and dad now have 3 children they can't understand.
Oh to be a small child, and just be responsible for having fun in this world!
If any of you speak Amharic, now is the time to say so.
(In English, please!)
Kudos to my kids for coping with this difficult time of adjustment.
I'm off to the shop for the day, and
tomorrow after church I'm up the mountain to visit those precious grandchildren.
Have a blessed weekend!

Monday, May 11, 2009


There is something I love about ivy, and I've always said, "it isn't home until you have your ivy situated".
(Just ask my daughter - I've always said it.)
No matter where we've lived, we've placed our ivy plant in a sunny spot, and felt as if we were home! Saturday I purchased two lovely little ivy plants from The Plum Gallery Florist, and repotted them in an old ironstone pot. Ivy is one of the hardest working plants you can add to your home . . . drawing toxins out of the air and providing maximum oxygen for you to breathe. These are adjusting under my favorite reading lamp . . . and make me oh so happy!
is such a soothing and nourishing color that I've always needed to have some around me. I've come to consider it one of my neutrals - like black or white or cream, and added it to every room of the house. When there is a not so choice view out the window, just place a big fern or ivy plant, a lamp and a mirror, and you have recreated the view and established a new sense of life.
is another favorite of mine, although it wasn't always. I thought of it as dull and depressing. Some time ago I decided to give gray another chance. I painted the walls in my living room a fairly dark, saturated gray, and the ceiling a very soft dove gray. This lent the room a
romantic seaside aura
It has become a delightful backdrop for my scrubbed pine furniture and white seashell collections. Baskets also provide a perfect contrast of warm wood tones to the coolness of gray.
Silver, mercury glass and white accents glow in lamplight or candlelight. It became very important to allow lots of natural and incandescent
to warm the gray, and I added several strategically placed mirrors to double my lamplight.
is of the essence, with vintage textiles and the worn leather of antique books providing plenty of touch worthy display.
such as bird nests and twigs and feathers delight my springtime sensibility.
Have fun with your environment. It can become your most personal expression of who you are.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Ladie's Night

Happy Friday! I enjoyed a lovely evening with girlfriend Lisa H. last night, as we shopped our way through Old Town Littleton. It was a ladies night at the shops, with extended hours, refreshments, sales and all kinds of special enticements! We ran into dozens of friends and spent some time catching up with the latest news.
There are so many delightful antiques shops in the Littleton, (south Denver suburb), area, each run by innovative and creative women whom I'm proud to know. Truth be told, there are a myriad of Denver antiques shops that you shouldn't miss if you're in the area! With the
Old Glory Antiques Show
approaching, (always the Friday and Saturday before Father's Day), June is the perfect time to plan a visit. There is also the
Paris Street Market
the 1st Saturday of each month - May through October, which is a must. We are blessed to have so much going on in our community. Email me for information if you're planning a visit.
Thank you
to all of the exceptionally talented and ingenious women proprietors who make our little world so special! You dedicate yourselves to excellence, you keep us ahead of the curve and you make our world so much better through your creative excellence and exciting thought processes!
Please support your small businesses, and let them know how much you appreciate their continued dedication to their craft. Small businesses make up 40% of the American workforce, and bring you the most wonderful products and customer service in the world.

May 7

Good Morning! It's a lovely Colorado day, and I've been out for my early walk. There is something so satisfying about the pristine early hours, before the rest of the neighborhood awakes!
I've been steadily unloading my crates of fresh antiques, and scrubbing and admiring and polishing and ironing . . . and adoring the beauty of each object. There are so many display ideas tumbling around in my head that I almost can't sleep for the excitement.
Yesterday I enlisted the help of an old friend, and we drug in tables to replace the ones which sold while I was away. We built new displays and totally recreated several areas at Patina. I'm exhausted, but happy! There are a dozen things I want to keep for myself, but I'm being very virtuous, (VERY VERY!), and letting you see all of them. This is really hard for an addicted antiquer who loves everything she purchases. An awesome 3' long German bread peel, dated 1893, went away yesterday. It was piled in a big rusty wire basket on the front porch, with several other bread boards and old grain sifters . . . and a car stopped in front of the store and a man jumped out and grabbed it. His wife is a baker - very Irish - and she spotted it from 30 yards away. These things won't last long!
Some of my favorite finds are baskets. Being a longtime connoisseur of timeworn baskets, I gravitate to them with an unfailing radar. There are several 1800's gathering baskets that have been well used for about 125 years, and several early 1900's market and picnic baskets with heavenly patina! I also love the old pine table/desk with two drawers. This will disappear quickly.
Tuesday and Wednesday were busy, as you gentle readers scurried in to see what was being unpacked. Thanks for your support and assistance! You got to see it first - and you got some incredible treasures! There is more coming every day . . . especially old ironstone!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Home Again, Home Again . . .

Well, I'm home from a wonderful trip, and unloading so many terrific treasures that it seems like Christmas! I can't wait to get them all unpacked, washed, inventoried and placed in the shop! Many thanks to Alice and Lisa my travelling companions . . . what fun we had! We scooted across Nebraska to Iowa, and attended the 'What Cheer' Antiques Flea Market. I met so many dealers who do the really killer shows, like Heart of Country and Brimfield, and Walnut and Gold Rush. They were wonderfully informative and we reminisced about the 'good old days' when really old things were abundant and reasonable, blah, blah, blah . . . and they were so helpful in my buying these sweet things for you to enjoy!
Following the market, we visited Walnut - renown antiques town. There were so many options we could only choose a few places to stop and shop - but that means we'll be going back, to catch some more of the enticing little towns, shops and markets!
One of the best places we visited was a shop called Cross Creek, (blogspot is "Simply Iowa" - check it out!!), and what an inspiring afternoon that was!     It was STACKED with everything I dream of in the way of antiques . . . and the proprietor, Barb, was as sweet as can be! What a blast it would be to hang with her on her travels!
I found more than I could carry or afford, but I culled through and chose the best of the best for all of my Colorado aficionados. The shop will be taking on a fresh grouping every day for the next month - and some awesome pieces will be reserved for the Old Glory Antiques Show in June.
Some of my favorite pieces are antique English watch faces, beautiful ironstone, an ancient birdcage with stand, all crusty with patina . . . books from the early 1800's, (including one from 1828), a sweet French breadboard, mellow buttons, a big old chalkboard, great picture frames, and on and on . . .
There's more than I can even remember at this point . . . but each box is a delight! Ooh - here are the linens . . . and the vintage linen toweling with the blue stripes . . . and the silver spooner and the ink wells . . . tiny English clay flower pots and an incredible wooden carrier from the mid 1800's. There are old beach sand shovels to display with your seashells . . . and the list goes on .
You'll really want to come and see this. By Wednesday the 6th a bunch of it will be available for you. Don't wait too long!
P.S. Thanks to Anne for covering for me at Patina!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...