Thursday, June 28, 2012

Hip Hip Hurrah for Mr. Beane !!!!!

We are so excited to announce that our good friend Maurice Beane has joined ourselves and Comer& C0. on the website 1stdibs.  We wish him all the best in this endeavor.  Now there are three shops in Virginia on 1stdibs.  They are all represented on Main Street in Kilmarnock, VA.  Kilmarnock has grown the reputation for being a Manhattan in Mayberry.  Our little town houses some wonderful shopping opportunities.

Side Table designed and executed by Maurice Beane

Maurice Beane's main Shop is in Richmond VA.  He has shared our space now for several years.  So in essence there are now three 1stdibs shops in Kilmarnock, VA.  Not many small towns can say that.

 Maurice relaxing at our shop

Monday, June 25, 2012

A Most Extraordinary Shop/ Squash Penny

Lewis took my Mother and myself to a family gathering.  He must have gotten some very good Karma.  Because after the family gathering we went Antiquing in the area.  We had no luck at all in Richmond, but decided to search out a Shop outside of the city.  Route 95 going toward D.C. was crowded so we hopped on to old route 1.  there was nothing of interest in Ashland, but we pushed on out to find "Squash Penny Antiques" at Squash Penny junction in Doswell VA.  Suzanne Fleet and Richard Wheeler had visited our shop many times.  It was time for us to return their visit.

They had mentioned that they had their business in an old country store.  They had always bought interesting things from us.  Knowing this we were still not prepared for the shop.  As soon as we rounded the corner to their shops, our visual senses were assaulted by a wide variety of very interesting and fun things. There were whimsical things all over the area.  Because there were steps and I run in an electric wheel chair, I could not go inside.  So many times I just have to sit out side and wait to see what Lewis finds.  Suzanne and Richard greeted us like long lost friends.  Suzanne knowing that I could not make it inside, said to look around the side of the building.  I can only say Wow.  I rolled right into an enchanted garden.  It was inhabited by frogs, sand cast  African ones and old cement toads.  An amusement park lion roared from a clump of ivy under trees. At the old water pump there was an array of baby doll parts and pieces laying on a bed of moss.   A young nude girl throws her arms up in undisturbed joy among the Angel's bugles.  Just on the other side of a fenced area a Scrap metal horse raises up to whinny. Then there was the wall created out of parts and gears from old farm equipment.  Far to the back was the very large bottom half of a face mask.

Out front a wooden carved bear rears up near a post.  A very large sculpture of a hand waves at the trains as they rumble by. and a cart pulled by a red chicken with black spots driven by a small child in a lady bug costume waits to pick up passengers.  While we were there an Am track train barreled by, I can only imagine how surprised those passengers were to see these sights.  Best of all was the tin man from the Wizard of Oz riding a bicycle.  This was only the out side of their shop.

The old country store was filled to the brim with all sorts of antique signs and advertizing memorabilia.

They have more jammed into their Country store than we have in our 8,400 square feet of space.  For the most part their items are much smaller than ours.

Suzann bought the Squash Penny Building 16 years ago.  She has been doing antiques for 30 years now.  She had always rented old country stores in the past.  When she found that Squash Penny country store was for sale, she just had to buy it.  Now moving to another location would be impossible.  They just have too much good stuff.

So much so that when the old bank building across the road from the store came up for sale they knew that this was the answer,  Now they have two buildings plus a shed in the back of the country store.

The country store houses all sorts of  wondrous stuff and the new bank building houses some of their higher end items.  I can not imagine that we actually beat the American Pickers to this picker paradise.

Thanks to Lewis' photos, I can see  some of the amazing collection that they have acquired inside their shops..

In a way they are just like us.  They are always getting more and more great pieces.  It has got to be an addiction.

 Isn't it great that one can have a job doing what you love to do.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Tommi Parzinger

Tommi Parzinger was born in Munich in 1903, He studied in Germany and started designing there.  He   designed, wallpaper, fabric, interiors, books, posters as well as porcelain for the German manufacturer, KPM.  He entered a poster contest for a German cruise ship company in 1935 and won.  Part of the prize was a trip to the U.S.  This was the beginning of his interest in the U.S.  After he returned to Germany he entered another poster contest sponsored by the state.  He won but was told that he would have to join the military the next day in order to collect his prize.  He immediately went to the American Embassy to get a visitor's visa and left the country leaving everything that he owned behind.

Custom man's wardrobe 1950by Parzinger

 Once in the states he started working designing pieces of furniture, crystal and china for for Rena Rosenthal for her shop on Madison Avenue. In 1939 he started his own business.  He located his showroom on East 57th Street, and was there for most of his career.  Tommi and his partner Donald Cameron's client list included  the Fords, Rockefellers, DuPonts, Mellons and Israeli ambassador, Abba Eban.

two drawer black lacquered bedside tables by Parzinger 1950

Tommi Parzinger designed furniture for Charak Modern, Willow & Reed, Hofstatter, and Salterini. He also designed wallpaper, perfume bottles, and even packaging. His pieces have maintained their popularity today, and they are highly sort after,

X back chairs by Parzinger

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Auction Results and Antique Shop Pricing

Samuel Marx Coffee Table

In the State of Virginia, most Antique Shops go to auctions to buy a lot of their merchandise and then mark the pieces up to two to three times.  This is a easy way to find items to display in your shop.  The customer is not always getting anything more than the value they pay, but what are you actually offering the customer?.  Virginians, the older generation, are tied into the 18th century and the more traditional type of furniture and accessories for their homes.  Fortunately the young married and upward mobile young professionals are interested in the" new antiques."

Paola Buffa Console

We rarely find our merchandise at auctions, preferring to hunt up and down the east coast.  Venturing westward and even going overseas.  Lewis studies and checks auction records for our pieces and then prices our things either at or below auction records.  Usually items purchased in our shop not only hold their value but often will increase in value.

Gio Ponti Chairs

  Just recently we discovered at a Wright's auction this month that a pair of our chairs were by Gio Ponti and sold for $27,000.  Our price in the shop is well below the auction results.  We never know when an item that is by one of the furniture designers represented in our shop will bring top prices at auction.  Architect designed pieces of the early modernist period are an excellent investment.  They have continued to gain in value. Not too long ago, dealers came in and purchased about 18 chairs from us.  These were mostly by the Architect designer Paolo Buffa ( early modernist Italian architect).  They paid around $10,000 for the pieces.  They sent the chairs to Wright's auction, after reupholstering and refinishing them.  They sold all of them in several lots for around $64,000.  This was better profit than investing in a some what shaky stock market. Blue chip antiques often can sky rocket.  Interesting note is that the most expensive price that a  chair ever brought in  an auction was an early modernist, by Eileen Gray, not a Chippendale original signed piece. 

Set of four Dining Chairs by Buffa

Friday, June 8, 2012

Another Venue

Rethink, rethink, rethink that is what it takes to be smart in business.  Lewis Trimble has been a participant on an international website for about 2 1/2 years.  This has earned us recognition by designers all over the world.  We have sold items that have gone to such diverse places as London,  Paris, to South Korea, Hong Kong, and Switzerland. These have been large pieces of furniture, huge Murano chandeliers, brutalist lamps, and an Italian table that was air freighted to Todd's shoes in Hong Kong. 

We found that many delightful pieces were lost in our cases, among the larger pieces of furniture and art.  People who come into our shop were focusing on the larger more expensive items.  So after some rethinking we decided to join One Kings Lane, and give these hidden jewels a proper showcase. So look for us soon on One Kings Lanes sales.  These will be marked down from the original price. 


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...