Monday, May 27, 2019


Well........I started writing this post almost three months ago, the day I lost my best boy. And I couldn't continue. My heart still hurts, but I do need to get back to joyful things like blogging.
Jones' breeder has puppies coming whose father is Jones' half-brother, but don't think I'm ready just yet. And Cole is very old and would not do well with a puppy. But if anyone hears of an adult standard w/o problems, I would love to adopt.
Here are some of Jones' character-filled moments

                                       BEST BOY


Although I've been missing Jones, I haven't been abstaining from buying--of course, I know that this business is addictive, but you just have to buy (or else, you can't sell).
I used to sell mainly period 18th and early 19th century European and American antique furniture-- and then I slipped into mid-century and 20th century. Lately, I'm discovering more of my first loves. Of course, I always have my eye out for "sleepers" and I've been finding a few........
Two weeks ago I spotted about 1/3 of the back of what I thought might be a period tilt-top tea table. It was in the middle of the "junk pile" at my auction--so there wasn't any way for me to get to it to really check it out. So I was up bright and early as I knew the table would go to the block at the beginning of the auction.  When I arrived, I couldn't find the table--and I thought that i had lost it......But 20 minutes later, the table magically appeared. My heart started beating a bit faster. Yep, the front looked good and the pedestal feet were Claw & Ball. (I didn't want to draw attention to the table; so I didn't run up to closely check it out).
My little table goes to the block.....there was only 1 other bidder who (lost his nerve) and dropped out. The table was mine for a steal. (A post on tilt-top tea tables is in the works.) But for now: the table appears to date to around 1760; it's solid mahogany; 37.25" two board flamed mahogany top; turned pedestal ending in three beautifully carved Ball & Claw feet and floral carved knees. I think that it is most probably from Salem. We'll see when I get the appraiser in

The last thing I need is another period mahogany table, but this one just found me and it was free (how could I resist)---c.1820 Regency drop leaf table with amazing sexy ringed legs. The table's only problem (and it's a big one) is that it's been refinished with an open-grain surface. But it's still a true find.

Next up: 

This little sleeper is a late 17th c. Oak and Elm single drop side/gate leg provincial breakfast table (the side that was pushed against the wall does not have a drop leaf; the side facing outward has a single gate leg drop which was brought up for breakfasts or meals. Gerry was not impressed until I showed him this little table

This is a much higher level of table, but of the same period, woods and overall style. My little guy is exactly what I love to always have--great rustic appeal that can be incorporated into many settings. I don't think that much has been done to this table over it's 300+ years of life and it just might last another 300 with TLC.
And finally (for now). This pair of mid-century opaline lamps. I know that they look a little boring on those bases and with those awful shades.....but just a minute. Those old-school bases are exactly the type that William (Billy) Haines (decorator to many major movies icons of that era) commissioned for his iconic lamps of the 1940s, 50s and 60s. Billy Haines also painted the electrical fittings (like these) to match the tone of the lacquered bases; he would also choose top notch (and unusual) elements for his bases.

(Just look at the pretty graining on top of my 17th c. table) I'm sure that the lamps were made by Billy Haines--they'll need to be rewired and the paint touched up a bit on the electrical fittings--but they are good.
Ooooooops. I forgot, just one more thing. This bucket was not a sleeper, and I paid $$$ for it. But it's big and beefy and in good shape (not refinished) and has a liner (not the original one). It's almost 20" high.

OK--So I've showed you my winners. Now (for balance and truth) I'll show you some also needs clouds and gray days......

(By the way--it snowed in the mountains on Friday and Saturday--yes skiing and snowboarding in May and June in Southern California. And the high in Pasadena yesterday was a chilly 53*)

I was jumping up and down when I won the bid for this huge (7.5 ft x 5 ft) 19th c. carved and gold leafed mirror at $200.00.

But when I received my bill from the auction, the mirror was not included. I questioned the mistake.
It took a couple of days for the office to get back to me (always a bad sign). The mirror had been sold the week before and wasn't marked as sold; so my purchase was cancelled (very sad face inserted)😣😬.
I very badly wanted this PAIR of gorgeous large Japanese Meiji Period Screens--but the bidding zoomed past my limit in seconds.......

And then there is the question of my lamp fabricator not following instructions.... When I gave the jars to Ken I was very explicit that the bases be crafted of very thick lucite/acrylic (this would be pricey, but aesthetically correct) and that the tops be carved wood. Well, as you can see the bases are very pedestrian wood and the tops although they look like wood, I think are actually composite.

Fortunately, I have an ace up my sleeve: I know a great gold leaf artisan. So the bases are out being gold leafed (leaving a raised band of black at the top) and applying a fine line of antiqued gold leaf to the edges of the caps. This additional fix-it is going to be pricey, but it's so important to get the details just right.
And here's what the front of shop is looking like right now....

 Yep, The Italian c.1920s marble top console is new--that Deco black marble is to die for. I do not think that I could replace it today.
Thank you for staying with me while I grieved my boy. I'm back to my old self--maybe better.

Blessing for the coming summer.

Mary & Cole