Sunday, October 6, 2019


I think it is quite obnoxious of me to gloat and make THE MELAGRANA cover the entire width of the blog----but I am so excited that, even 5 hours after the fact, I am still jumping up and down.
I owe the win to auction STRATEGY and my sticking to my budget and game plan: The Melagrana was estimated to sell for between $3000 and $4000.....there was no possible scenario in which I could pay that much. But there are some auction tricks and collecting secrets that I have gleaned and that I'll share:

Secret No. 1. True Collectors value total authenticity. If the dress/tunic had been created in the 1920's by Mariano Fortuny, himself, then the estimate would have perhaps been on the low side. But the tunic was most probably fabricated in the 1960's (remember the zipper detail?) and it is not very well made. It is super attractive, but not for collectors of designer clothing. So that knocked out two (Couture and Fortuny Garments) types of collectors. Which, of course, left textile collectors (me). But the tunic was not listed as a textile, but rather as a designer garment (so maybe the textile collectors didn't know about this item??).............
....I thought that I just might have a chance.

SECRET No. 2. Sometimes, when an Auction Lot does not sell, it's possible to submit an offer that is below the reserve (or minimum bid). The auction house will then contact the consignor to obtain approval to sell the lot.

SECRET No. 3. Be a long-time loyal and consistent client of the auction house. In other words, we are on a first-name basis and the house will sometimes do little favors for their good clients. (Me)

My game plan: 1. Do not go to Auction. 2. Do not tell anyone (except Gerry) that you want the Fortuny. 3. Be prepared to put money down. 4. Pray that The Melagrana doesn't get a bid. 5. Check to see if it sold within a short period of time 6. Submit an offer that is reasonable. Although I may have wanted to offer a much lower amount; it is offensive to both the auction house and to the consignor.

I followed My Plan to the letter---and sure enough, The Melagrana didn't get a high enough bid (and was "passed"). I made my offer; it was accepted and ........everyone is happy (I hope). IT'S MINE NOW!!!!
I am so grateful.

I've already started searching EBay for the perfect backing fabric for the pillows--the cotton on which the pattern is block printed in called "museum" cloth, which is much heavier (and more desirable) than the more fragile Egyptian cotton usually used by Fortuny--so the backing must be a heavy silk. The perfect fabric will show up with just a little bit of focus and patience.

Well, I've got more work to do before bed--Thanks for staying with for this wordy post.

Blessings for the week!!

Mary & Cole

Here is a shot of Sabi and Kingston--Brotherly Love.

They are usually found like this or side-by-side.

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