Wednesday, November 29, 2017


I realize that is not a very pretty photo...but it is significant. I just pass the 100,000 mark for visitors to my blog. I am honored that even one person has cared to read my ramblings. Thank you so much for visiting. And here's to the next 100,000 visits.

Yes, tomorrow is auction day. Last week was Thanksgiving; so no auction--and today the floor was jammed with items. Not all that much that is calling to me, but there is always something that I missed.
Since I have no extra room at shop, I think that I can only buy things to hang on the ceiling or on the walls (it's pretty tight there, too).
And wouldn't you know, I spied a chandelier that just might be for me

My friend Coleen (Coleen & Co. creates the stunning pagoda style lanterns and other chic light fixtures that are seen in all of the shelter magazines) knew who made the chandelier (which is still in production)--it just so happens to be bronze (and why would they powder coat it?) and super heavy. I love the coral form! I wonder how much it would cost to strip off the white, leaving it bronze?.....hmmm??
I spied an early 19th c. (perhaps late 18th c.?) landscape painting--just the type that would group well with other genre landscapes. The frame is original gold leafed with just the right amount of patina.......

This painting is a good possibility--at least I like it.....

I have always wanted an antique horse--but not so much today (probably have finally outgrown that desire) and this poor guy doesn't look very healthy.

I have never wanted a crocodile.............this guy is to die for: African, very long, folk art, tons of character and fun

I'm not even going to considering the croc, but I do love him. He's at least 5 feet long and I do not have a spare inch.

Last up are these three birds prints--they are quite large and super decorative. The gold leaf frames are great and the matting is amazing. There is only one problem--I think they are 20th c. renditions of the late 18th c. bird engravings by Catesby/Edwards. I have sold several of the real Catesby/Edwards and they are infinitely small. These guys show pixels; so they are simply good prints married to an exceptional frame. 

Well, it's time Jones & Cole to get to bed--we will be getting super early tomorrow and need to be on our toes.

Blessings for the week--thanks for all of the visits.

Mary & Jones & Cole 

Saturday, November 25, 2017

NEW STUFF--I think I'm on a Neoclassical Roll.........

It's been super hot here in Southern California--record-breaking hot and I'm tried of it!! On Wednesday and Thanksgiving Day it was in the higher 90s in Pasadena and today it was down to 88* and a wonderfully cool 68* down here at the beach. That's our crazy micro-climates in full force. Monday we're scheduled for rain and coolness. (Thank you)
Lalo brought back the English Regency Dining Chairs today--the upholstery is gorgeous but see if you can spot his error. I'm not sure exactly how we miscommunicated so perfectly. Oh well, they can be redone. Not sure if I have enough of the silk faille??

These beauties are rosewood and faux rosewood and beautifully detailed in marquetry--the klismos  form is one of my favorite chair forms, dating back thousands of years to the Egyptians and Romans and still referenced in modern design. For example, this set of "Anziano" chairs designed by the famous American designer, John Hutton, for Donghia in the 1980s.

**The Regency chairs were a reward/gift for my showing up and paying attention. I am grateful.
I'm not sure if you can see well enough, but the chairs are sitting on a mid-19th c. mahogany campaign desk that Roberto and I are just starting to restore--this is a big desk with faux partners drawers on the opposing side.
Next up: Last week Lalo brought back the newly upholstered 19th c. Louis XV fauteuils. Although this form isn't truly neoclassical, it is transitional from Rococo to Neoclassical. It's always an adventure when I pick out fabrics: I need to appeal to a broad spectrum of tastes--but my choice can't be too frou-frou, too boring, too common, etc. The fabric that I had chosen arrived and it was not what I wanted; so with Lalo standing there and waiting for me to give him the fabric, I pulled out a French blue-gray linen from my stash and said go for it. And here is the result--

It's perfect: traditional but unexpected and not boring. Lalo did a fantastic job--just look at the care with which he applied the single welt. (A single welt is much more difficult, time-consuming and more costly to apply than a double welt) (note: the tone is more similar to the upper photo--a lot more blue) 
Some people will probably think that I am crazy, but here goes......I bought this pair of Period Deco console bases for a song......and they do need a heap of work. My creative juices were flowing and I couldn't resist. The consoles were super dusty; so I couldn't determine their wood. With "nothing ventured:nothing gained" running through my head and betting the the wood was macassar ebony, I brought them home. And guess what? They are macassar and definitely worth the new tops and restoration needed. I think the new tops will have inset black glass or black marble inserted in macassar-veneered framing tops. Sound good?

Of course, we know that I'm a chair addict; and I've succumbed once again. I just couldn't pass on this sweet Anglo-Indian Raj period side chair. It is beautifully carved in a foliate design and I suspect that it's rosewood as it is really heavy.

I had Lalo upholster the chair in a pale gold Italian silk velvet. The carving is gorgeous, but it is the carved toe and intricate skirt that draws my attention. I think think that this petite chair could easily take the place of a sculpture in just about any setting--as a counterpoint to minimalism it would shimmer.
And finally, "Siddhartha Departing" is almost fully restored. It's been a bit of a journey for this guy. I had all of the original pieces, but positioning them just right was not easy--Roberto still has a couple of hours of work remaining to complete him. The figure is extremely heavy; if it were a softer wood, it would have dried out over the years. Not this guy--I cannot lift it at all; so I think that it is most probably rosewood, making the piece more valuable. I think that it most probably dates to the 18th century, although I have it tagged as 19th. The figure is tall, measuring about 43" high... he's a happy guy (but I do believe that he left his beautiful wife and child(?) to seek enlightenment.........MEN!

He's definitely on the  move--look at the horse's raised right foot denoting forward movement.
---I can't pass up posting this 19th c. Sheffield Gallery Tray--it just got spiffed up

The tray is in overall very good condition with the exception of the silver plate having been polished off on the tray section. The quality is first rate and I love the hand chasing pattern. And it's big--about 29" long.

Thursday, November 23, 2017


It's really here; I can't believe it--and I'm feeling grateful and getting warmed up to the Christmas Spirit. Pamela of House of Edward blog has said what I am experiencing this year (I don't know how to work the link thing; so just Google the blog and the post will come up). I am thinking about generosity of spirit (how easy it is to think we are generous until we make a true assessment)-a growth path for me next year, I think. I'm thinking about the importance of truth (in these times of small-t trump). I'm thinking about the importance of humility in our connections with others. I'm thinking about acceptance--except where it relates to the qualities of morality and integrity. I am grateful that God/Universe seeks balance and beauty and justness. And I am convinced that we will not be governed by a megalomaniac narcissist this time next year. In order for that change to happen we need to continue to raise our voices to resist the call of blind tribalism in favor of reasoned majority governance by both Republicans and Democrats. Next year we will raise our voices in triumph over darkness. This year we raise our voices in positive resistance.

Blessings for the day!

Mary & Jones & Cole

Thursday, November 16, 2017


Here's one of the items that I was bidding on today. I love the emotion expressed by these putti lovers. I tried to bring them home, but it was not to be. A few years ago French Terracotta putti were highly salable, but not at the moment; so I have to bid very conservatively. But I love this example which is "After Clodion" and gorgeous. The gilt plinth/stand dates to the 19th century and was also in very good condition.
Although the bidding was rough and very competitive (I spent all day focused on the block), I did find and buy another Swedish early 19th c. trestle table--this one is pretty special (although the black painted top has been refreshed). Look at the unique boot form feet and the double board top......

This table will very comfortably seat six and maybe squeeze in eight. I don't think it will last very long--maybe a new home by Christmas. I love unique period antiques like this one--practical, unique, lots of original patina and very old. I sold two Swedish tables this summer--hopefully just the right person walks in the door.
We bought an antique cast bronze or iron figure of Bacchus on a marble plinth (please excuse this awful photo)

You can tell that it is Bacchus as the figure is pouring from a wine skin into a (now missing) cup. The patination is great (must have been a garden element) and there doesn't appear to be any significant damage. The honed marble appears to be original, too.
And of course, there had to be a sleeper....For about 5 weeks a good set of 4 English Regency Klismos side chairs in mahogany and brass banding had not received any bids--I had really liked them the first week, but wanted to spend money elsewhere at that point. This was the week that the auctioneer let them go---and I bought 4 Regency Klismos chairs for $40.00!! They need new seat cushion frames, but that's a minor detail.
Hopefully, the table will fit into the trusty Explorer tomorrow--it will be a stretch. We'll see: pleased keep your fingers crossed.
Blessings for the week--RESIST.

Mary & Jones & Cole

The boys patiently waiting for breakfast.

Thursday, November 9, 2017


           THIS IS IT...

I previewed, I hunted, I saw and I conquered only this nice bentwood nest of 4 tables (Quartetto Tables) in the style/attributed to Thonet.
**Quartetto Tables date to the late 18th--through the 19th and 20th centuries. Many examples exhibit detailed inlay and stringing; the Chinese Export examples are often detailed in coromandel lacquer.
Prices at auction were ridiculously high. Many lots went for more than double that which I was willing to pay.
So I ended the day happy and grateful for past Thursdays when I was in the flow. 
Today just wasn't my day. And that's OK.
Here are some of the items that I was bidding on......

This is a stupendous set of about 30 19th c. French pate-sur-pate dishes. The raised classical figures with extensive gold decoration were show stoppers.

This pair of Danish(?)/Italian(?) lounge chairs was super comfortable and the leather showed just the right amount of patination.....I thought we could get them at $800/$900----but it was not to be: the hammer came down at $1700 plus a lot fee of $300!! Yikes.

This Japanese charger went for double what the last one I purchased sold for (and besides they do not sell very well).
But I loved the intricate pattern.........

And finally, this large early 20th c. Chinese garden seat sold for $500 plus the lot fee. That's more than what I paid for the last PAIR that I bought.

I can't believe that Thanksgiving is almost here. That we have survived (but not happily) the 366 days since mr. trump was elected. I am overjoyed with the Virginia and New Jersey election results of last Tuesday. Yes, citizens campaigning, canvassing and contributing both money and time can influence our government. The Virginia elections show that we all have a voice that is heard.

Blessing for the coming week-end.

Mary & Jones & Cole

Leaving you with a photo of Jones & Cole and Maggie taken this afternoon. That's quite a glare.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017


As promised here are the photos missing from last post.....
First up are the Pith Paintings--now that I've had a chance to really study the little paintings, they truly are gorgeous. So finely painted with both flora and fauna. Some even have caterpillars and other bugs, making them even more desirable. Roberto was really busy today picking up at auction and then working on stuff. We reorganized rooms and laid down a carpet (which meant removing everything from one entire section) and also hanging the paintings on the wall. Roberto is so fast--it would have taken me over an hour to hang the twelve paintings and he was done in about 15 mins.

The lilies are gorgeous and just look at the caterpillar climbing up the rose stem. Almost 200 years later, the colors are still brilliant and the paint looks fresh.

I believe this is an Indo-Chinese 18th or early 19thc. mounted Buddha. I'll have to do more research--as yet I haven't found anything quite like it. But it is

very old and extremely heavy, which makes me think it is constructed of rosewood??? The figure needs a bit of work as the arm has an old break and one leg needs to be doweled back on. I have no idea exactly how old he is, but he will look fantastic beside my camels

And finally another shot of the Baker Knole sofa

The discrepany in the coloration of the sofa is due to the different lighting conditions---but doesn't the sofa look fantastic adorned with the Fortuny pillows in a great complementary color. I love the way the sofa goes absolutely flat. (Definitely would not want teenage boys sleeping on that sofa)
Tomorrow it's off to auction preview again----I do not have an extra square foot to spare; so I can't buy any furniture.
Wish me luck.
Congratulations to the new Democratice governors of New Jersey and Virginia!!! mr. trump (small t) do you hear the hooves approaching?

Blessings for the day and prayers for all of those who have lost loved ones in the past days of violence and destruction.

Mary & Jones & Cole