My passion, after my family of course, is Treasure Hunting. The simple beauty of things from by-gone eras have always spoken to me. Whether these treasures are found at a flea market, fine antique store, estate sale, thrift shop, or in the family attic, surprises abound.
As an interior designer, I believe it is vital to balance your decor by including found and family treasures. Surrounding yourself with things you love should always be the goal, from there you will find your true style.
As I shop, I may have a client in mind or I may want to resell at our french flea market or in my shop. I am lucky to have several outlets for my treasures including my own home! I plan to share my searching, hunting, travels, and treasures with you and encourage you to enjoy adding your treasures to your home.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Prepping for Holiday Displays

Over the last couple of weeks we have wrapped up our holiday ordering for the shop. We now have the majority of our displays planned and vignettes are being built with our signature combination of new, vintage and antique wares from around the world. This puts a new focus on my flea marketing, estate sale searching and tag sale stops.
For the holidays, I found two Ralph Lauren Stewart tartan plaid plates and a great vintage tartan round suitcase that will be perfect for display. One of our signature holiday candle lines has packaged their line in tartan this year thus allowing us to layer that pattern. One of the great things about tartan is that mixing and matching the patterns make a display even that much richer and visually appealing.
 I even ordered some european tartan paper to wrap books for risers etc. within the vignette.
Of course I continue to pick up items that are not holiday related like this sweet 1940 children's book, Captain and Me. Also, two very large, pretty vintage French tablecloths that will work perfectly in my outdoor, summer dining room at home.
Silver and vintage glass ornaments are always festive items to use just about anywhere.
This was a most unexpected find... an original French automobile advertising poster. It is a bit rough around the edges but the colors are still vibrant and the subject is charming. "Her" driver sits completely annoyed that she is wanting to try this new invention on her own! I think I will frame this up and save it for our next Paris Flea Market.
Finally, a fun variety of smalls that has a little bit of everything, including a couple more French tablecloths. The tiny copper molds would make perfect stocking stuffers as would the napkin rings. The vintage Belgian owl candy mold may find its way into a halloween vignette and the brandy warmer is a classic fall and winter item, even if you don't use it- they look wonderful on the bar.
The search continues for unique items.
Next week... back to the Hollywood Flea. Wish me luck!
Happy Hunting!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Art From the Flea Market

It is one of my favorite parts of going to the flea market... you never, ever know what you will find and what treasures will come home with you.
I rarely, if ever, shop fleas looking for specific items, you have to be completely open to just about anything attracting your attention. The majority of my weekend flea market finds have a common theme, art.  The more I shopped the more I found. I came away with a wonderful variety of original art, etchings, advertising art and signed prints.
This nearly four foot tall vintage original oil painting on board is definitely unique. It is well done. 
I love how the light has been captured on the stone walls.
I found a wonderful 1940's point of sale French champagne advertising sign.
This portrait of an American racehorse is a signed and numbered etching. The chippy red painted frame is a great compliment to the image.
English artist Arthur Elsley was known for his art featuring children and animals. This print is entitled Spring Songs, dated 1902. It is in it's antique frame and is in fairly good shape considering its age.
It is a really charming print.
I picked up this very large poster to use in a display of the vintage French Absinthe barware I have been compiling. I will paint the frame- possibly black.
Although this hand colored print is signed and numbered I have not been able to identify the artist. It is a quintessential Parisian scene featuring a busy street with vintage autos, Norte Dame and Parisian cafe.
Last but not least, is this oversized French foie gras advertising poster will be a great addition to our pantry at Le Potager.
We had a great day hunting for these items plus a few other small silver and copper pieces.
Thank you so much for reading.
Happy Hunting!

Saturday, July 6, 2013

A Week of Estate Treasures

Before we head off bright and early to the flea market I wanted to post a few photos of some rather nice finds from the estate sales I attended over the last couple of days.
I found this very large, antique English transferware pitcher. It is a shape and pattern I am not familiar with but I will do a little research. The pot de creme set is lovely, prossibly dates from the 1960's. The Pratt polychrome plate is well over 100 years old, they were produced from 1840-1885. It is in wonderful condition, features a pastoral scene of the English countryside with a bridge and estate home in the distance. The curled copper piece was originally made to hold flower arrangements inside of a bowl but I had another idea for it...
It just looked like a crown to me!
The double handled wood tray is very unique. I am not certain of its original use but I can see it in the bar or even as a cheese server. A French glass Lillet ice bucket... so many uses. Several pieces of vintage glass stemware each etched with a wreath and swag design, perfect for the holiday bar.
This Arts and Crafts style box is one of my favorites. The enameled clock inset into the lid and copper strapping add such great character.
Last but not least, a charming little vintage English biscuit barrel. The top has silver hallmarks so I will have to clean it up a bit to bring it back to its true glory. 
Fun treasures for the week.
I hope to have good luck hunting tomorrow at the flea and will share my finds in my next post.
Happy Hunting and thank you for reading!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Summer Citrus-ade

We decided against going to the flea market this morning as we were expecting triple digit temperatures. Instead we hit the to-do list in preparation of the July 4th holiday.
(Not nearly as much fun as treasure hunting by the way!)
In between chores, I thought I would make a quick pitcher of lemonade as we were parched. I picked three types of lemons... meyer, eureka and pink lemonade. While I was picking I also brought in a few oranges and a hand full of calamondin.
I have a wonderful old Sunkist lemon juicer/squeezer that makes this juicing job a snap. It allows juice and pulp to fall through and retains the seeds.
My original thought was lemonade however I decided that a citrus-ade using all the fruits I picked would be a nice change.
I discovered that by adding the juice of a couple small oranges as well as the calamondin juice, I was able to significantly decrease the amount of sugar I added and still have a juice that highlights the tart, crisp lemons.
It was delicious and quenched our thirst perfectly. Homemade lemonade... it is truly summertime now!
I did discover that I really need some mint in the garden. I have looked at the nursery several times but there are so many mint choices... what is the best for drinks, cooking, baking? Any suggestions?

Thank you very much for reading and Happy Hunting!