Monday, October 31, 2011

All Signed Up at Second Hand Rose

I am set up for the November sale at Second Hand Rose in Buffalo, Minnesota. I have a new spot in the shop and it took a while to get the feel for the space. I do not have any pieces of furniture that I made or recycled in this month's sale. But I do have a bunch of signs. Somehow November has become Sign Month for me. I have big signs, small signs, red signs and blue signs. My favorites are a 1920's doctor's shingle and a huge Fireman's Ball sign.

The Cowboy Shop sign is 4' by 5' and double sided.

The large fish above the sign is a Monticello Minnow. Caught in the Mississippi River just below the Monticello nuclear power plant.

My mafia vignette. A hobby horse head in the chair.

ELE-VATOR? I wonder if Ele is Darth's sister.

I like the 4 gooseneck lamps atop the large wardrobe. Doctor Reuben DeWitt Zimbeck was the town doctor in Maynard, Minnesota. He practiced there from before 1900 until his death in 1927. The shingle was found in the attic of his old house 90 years after he died.

This watercolor is a painting of the Swedish Pavillion at the 1915 San Francisco Panama- Pacific Exposition.

Flying trike and cow signs.

Mr. Flannery

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Maybe Some Money is in South Dakota Too

After the Iowa fiasco I was sure that all the money was now in Iowa. Well I went to a farm auction in South Dakota and either Iowa is leaking or some of that money made it to SD too.

The auction was just north of Sioux Falls and just west of Pipestone, Minnesota. The farmers were out picking corn and combining beans on both sides of the route there. Lots of big equipment harvesting lots and lots of grain.

The house was a South Dakota farm "mansion". Built in 1901-2 by a very successful farmer for his family which consisted of 17 children. It had over 6000 square feet on 3 floors. The house has suffered over the years from neglect and disrepair. The house, to be moved or stripped, was one of the items on the auction bill.

The same family that built the house still owns it 110 years later and the auction bill promised that the 100 years of accumulated stuff would be available for sale. The stuff did not live up to the billing. It appears that the best stuff was sold off to pickers over the past 20 years or carried off by the family members in anticipation of the auction. (17 kids in 1900 can produce a great number of off spring in 100 years).

The house was interesting, but definitely not a mansion by Summit Avenue standards. The moving rights to the house were bid to $30K but did not sell. The stuff was interesting, but definitely not the untouched accumulation of more than 100 years in the same house. And the crowd was there to buy. Again, for the second time in a week, the prices were crazy buyer prices. I bought a few things, but nothing close to justifying the 380 mile trip.

My favorite item, I bid it to $2000 but did not buy it. Its a cast iron fountain with a crane center piece and a base that had frogs, turtles and other pond life cast into the edge.

This tufted leather fainting couch sold for $1950.

And the similar chair did $900.

The frames and pictures along the fence did way too much for me to even consider bidding.

The interior of the house had some nice woodwork, but nothing to swoon over. Looked like the Sears high end interior from 1900.

The metal cove moulding and original wall paper were nice.

And the fretwork between the parlors was very good.

The stick and ball decoration on the 6 gable ends was saleable.

The house was very long with dormitory like bedrooms lining the halls in the back half of the 2nd and 3rd floors.

I guess that I will add southeastern South Dakota to northern Iowa on my don't bother to drive that far for an auction list.

Mr. Flannery

Thursday, October 13, 2011

So All the Money is in Iowa

Mike and I went to an auction in Northern Iowa. It was 180 miles from my house to the auction, so this was a more than average hike to auction. The listing was for a good old junk auction. The guy was a longtime collector and auction goer who had lived alone for many years and had been in a nursing home for the past 3-4 years. The houses were leaky and the furniture was in pieces and parts while often covered with mold. It sounded just like our kind of sale.

The economy has been junk and sales have been spotty. The prices of antiques and shabbies has been largely deflated. Well I found out what happened, all the money has been sucked into Iowa. Maybe its the "Picker" effect. Maybe its burning corn in our cars rather than eating it. Whatever it is, we saw its full effect at this auction.

This 4 section lawyer's bookcase with on door missing and the feet melting off sold for $550.

The post offices boxes with no back and no combinations was over $300.

The completely tattered Chinese restaurant hanging lamp was $90 and the kerosene floor lamp $280.

2 plank harvest type table with 2x4 legs did $280, well over retail here.

The price for junk were unbelievable. The furniture, with only a hint of its former grandeur, sold for more than its perfect counterpart would do at the high end stores in Minneapolis. Needless to say we didn't bring home any of the furniture. I bought a couple of lamp pieces and some older books to be cut up for framing. Mike bought a great 5 tier rotating nail bin. (However he bought it from the scrapper who bought the entire contents of a building rather than directly at auction). We will not be traveling to Iowa for an auction anytime soon. Oh well, it was only a 2 tank-full lesson.

The little farm house was too neat. It was concrete with great pillars and a portico. Built in 1906 (according to the imprint on the lintel over the front door) the concrete is very grainy and weathered.

Mr. Flannery