Monday, November 29, 2010
The first thing that I want to share is this fabulous brass ship's wheel. It is real, not a decorator's reproduction. I bought it at Miller's auction on Friday evening. It is so cool. I will probably put it at our December sale at Gypsy Lea's, but I will not be sorry if it doesn't sell.
Sunday, November 21, 2010
5 swans a swimming
4 auctioneers a chanting
3 chandeliers a selling
2 days a working, and
Babe carrying a branch as big as any tree.
The tundra swans are migrating through central Minnesota. Dozens were on the lake near my house, joined by ducks, geese, loons, coots and all sorts of waterfowl. They will probably stay nearby until the lake freezes over. The five were swimming and feeding right outside my office. As they dipped over to feed one of my favorite events occurred. Swan butts.
I attended four auctions this week. I think that my head is still ringing with the chants. But I found some pretty interesting things ranging from fake deer to a black glass and crystal chandelier. Some items went directly into the shop, while others will need some processing before they are ready for resale.
Gypsy Lea's was open for our special Zonta Christmas House two day sale. I hauled some bigger pieces in one day and worked one day of the sale. It appeared to be Mr. Flannery's day at the sale. The two big pieces of furniture that I just had brought in, sold almost immediately. Three chandeliers, including one purchased at auction the day before, sold while I was working too. Kris and Gypsy worked hard getting the shop set for the sale and my sales show it. Pieces big and small where flying out the door.
And of course Babe was carrying a big stick. He is a very typical Labrador. He is most comfortable while carrying something. Usually it is a stick and the bigger the better. Babe is always so happy and energized. He makes me happy just watching his enthusiasm and optimism. He misses the squirrel 200 times and is still certain that he will get it the next time. He knows that he will succeed.
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Monday, November 15, 2010
Last weekend's regular four day sale was very active so there are a lot of holes and spaces in the set up that need to be filled. That is a good thing, but it puts a huge strain on Gypsy and Kris in getting things ready for Zonta House and filling and resetting the shop by next Friday.
I agreed to bring in a few items that I have that may help fill the spaces. I was pulling a cupboard out of storage this afternoon. I had it balanced on one end when a door swung open. The glass smashed onto the top of my head. The glass shattered into a number of large shards and rained onto my shoulders and hands. Now, being hopelessly Swedish, there are no vital parts exposed by a blow to the head, but I feel that just got a haircut feeling on my back. And I will have to get a pane of glass cut to fit the door.
I loaded an Arts and Crafts buffet, a wardrobe trunk and the cupboard into my pickup and will be heading to Sauk Rapids in a few minutes. Hopefully the rest of the trip will be uneventful.
Thursday, November 11, 2010
After a review of the Restoration Hardware catalog and a look at the Steampunk Home blog I am certain that my design style is Industrial Chic with a strong dash of Steampunk. I've been assembling the elements for this style for years. There is nothing better than finding a piece of Victorian industrial debris. I have always desired the "digital meets Jules Verne" inspiration of the Steampunk ethos.
I brought a wonderful industrial restaurant preparation table into Gypsy Lea's for the November sale. It is fantastic. And I have to admit that I will not be devastated if it doesn't sell. I have just the place for it the atrium facing the lake at my house.
I've been assembling the pieces to make some cool industrial lighting fixtures to match up with the table. And the Steampunk conversion of a Victorian pump organ into a computer console is still scheduled for this winter.
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
It was 64* today and the afternoon capped off with some rain. Both are quite unusual for the tundra in mid-November. So we are working in our shirt sleeves getting parts of the shop ready for Christmas.
Here is the hog of the month. I am so pleased with the way it looks. It is a 4' by 8' butcher block top prep table from a steak house in downtown Minneapolis. It is very industrial chic and looks like it just jumped out of the pages of the Restoration Hardware catalog.
Sunday, November 7, 2010
I brought pieces of a Singer sewing machine into our October sale at Gypsy Lea's. They sold quickly. I usually refuse to deal with old sewing machines because they are heavy and for the most part unsellable. Cutting the machine up into a few parts changed that. So I spent this month looking at every sewing machine that I encountered and none of the machines had usable parts. Anyway --- the reason that I had the machine was because it had been included in a lot with two items that I wanted. I wanted two wooden trunks that were hand made in Sweden.
The trunks were 1890-1910 immigrant trunks, not the fancy painted and addressed trunks of an earlier era, just easily stackable flat topped boxes that fit well into the holds of the late 19th century steerage carriers. But they have hand cut dove tails, nice straight grained fir boards and the remnants of old style red Scandinavian paint. I repaired the ravages of a century sitting in basements or barns and gave the trunk a nice coat of amber shellac. The best feature was the Cunard Lines Gothenburg to America shipping tag.
The trunks look great and they are now stacked at Gypsy Lea's for the November sale.
The 1938 globe, No. 64 locker basket and dental office multi-drawer cabinet are my hogs awaiting placement for the November sale. I'll have more pictures of the set up soon. The November sale starts on Thursday.