A Room With A Past

How could I forget my camera!  Ugh.  100 miles from home on a Treasure Hunt and no camera to share pictures of the goodies.  Oh well, I shot a bit on my phone and took some pix of my finds after....

Picture pulled from
A Room With a Past Blog

Lucky me, a visit to my Sis in PH was on the same weekend that A Room With A Past in Walnut Creek was having not only one of their once monthly open weekends but also their annual sidewalk sale.  Gold mine for a Treasure Broker.  One of the nice things about being in the Bay Area is the proximity of the family (thanks AB and Mom), I got two chances to shop (be still my beating heart).  I was there in line for the Thursday evening opening and then went back for the weekend sidewalk sale.

A Room With A Past has a very interesting and successful business model.  The location is in a warehouse type building on a side street in Walnut Creek.  Marketing is key to getting customers there and they sure do a great job!  They only open one weekend a month, so it's not just a shopping trip, it's an experience.  Customers mark their calendars well in advance and plan to be there.  Each month they redo the interior of the space and bring in lots of fabulous treasures (shabby chic, cottage, antiques, whimsy), so it's a new experience each time you go.  They open the doors to a line of waiting customers Thursday  evening and are open through Sunday and then they close and redo for the next month.  There are a handful of different vendors with spaces and they are all really lovely, creative, helpful ladies (aka "Roomies"). 

When the clock strikes 6pm on Thursday, the "Roomies" come out in their aprons and fun hats to greet the customers as we all pile in to scout for fabulous finds.  The "Roomies" work very hard to help, answering questions and taking items up to the front so your hands are free to keep shopping. 

Their unconventional business model fosters a sense of loyalty, attendance planning, urgency to be there and to pick and purchase quickly or the line of people behind you will grab it before you decide.  They sell through fast and then reload and restock for the next day.  Where most shops take months to sell through most of their goods, they sell through in one weekend.  Customers are rewarded with a fun experience, camaraderie, fabulous finds and fair prices! 

Since I pick and resell, I have to buy items that are priced low enough that I can add a little margin - especially since our prices at the shop are also low.  Obviously the best way to do this is to buy antiques and then restore them but it's hard to keep up with the projects all the time and when I can find great prices on items that need little to no work that I can sell for a fair price, I'm on it!  I bought a few things the first night of the sale but I came back for the sidewalk sale on Sat and bought lots more! 

I LOVE this Parisian chair

Here's a sampling of the bootie I brought back from my treasure hunt in Walnut Creek....

This sweet porcelain lamp had a plain white lamp shade. 
I added some burlap strap and it warmed it up just right.
I admit, I have a bit of a chair fetish.  Some ladies collect shoes or purses, I collect chairs.  I could not resist this beautiful one (now in our front window).  The Bergere style chair is a favorite at the shop and they go out as fast as they come in.  
Old clocks, barometers, and metal globes are finding their ways back to the mantelpieces and shelf tops of modern homes.  Mixing modern and contemporary with  a few key antique statements is a very rich look.  It's also nice to own things that have a story and a past.
Thanks "Roomies" for a great weekend!  Next time, I'll visit their sister store, Paris Flea Market in Livermore.


Perfectly Imperfect Papas

Dads are perfect, right?  Strong, dependable, sweet, loving, caring, giving, nurturing, providing guidance, education, money, a home, security and are always there for you when you need them. 

Did I see your eyebrows rise a bit as you considered and questioned this statement?  Maybe totally true as a child, but, perceptions change with age.  He's still the same person but now you see holes in the facade of his perfection.  He's more real now.  Life and it's challenges show more in his decisions and on his face.  Behind the super powered hero is just a man who is not always strong, sometimes shows anger, may not make the best decisions, and may not always be there when you need him. 

I read this quote on a blog, "Shabby Chic is defined as 'where one is comfortable, not having to worry about imperfection. Yet, elegant and charming.'"   Well, looky there ladies - our Dads and the fathers of our children are "Shabby Chic" by definition!  They aren't always perfect but they make us feel comfortable and even as we all age, to us, they are still elegant and charming.  And, perfect in all their imperfections.

Three of my best friends lost their Dads this year.  Yes, THREE!  One, died too young.  The other  died too quickly, and the last died tragically.  My Dad is far away and I miss him.  So, be sure to grab those shabby-dads and hubbys and give them lots of love this Father's Day!

The Perfectly Imperfect saying was coined by my friend Karryann at Gracefully Vintage.  As a fan of tattered and shabby, I just love the saying.  Below are some ideas for vintage Dads out there...

Karryann brought this funky, green plaid golf bag into the shop and I just had to have it to use as a prop for my husband's Father's Day Gift.  I'll resell it again after Father's Day.  There are a lot of Vintage Golf Collectors out there who would love to have this in their collection.

A man of his word, and a man of THE word, Dad might like a bible from the 1800s or some great early century books. 

He might already have one of these in his attic.  If not, old typewriters are making for great statement pieces in decor.  Dad might think these new fangled computers are hard to get used to but try writing your blog on a typewriter.

Tap..tap..tap..return..tap...tpa..backspace...white out...backspace...scroll...repeat...cut picture...paste..wait to dry...fold in envelope...type address...place stamp...go to post office...repeat a hundred or so times.  omg! 

Or, if he's anything like my Dad; a book, a nice comfy chair, and a Skype from the grand kids would make his day. 
Happy Father's Day to all the Perfect (-ly imperfect) Dad's out there (and a special shout out to those in heaven!)


What does Stella and Dot have to do with Vintage?

The blog and our shop are about vintage items.  So, where does Stella & Dot fit in to that?  We chose Stella & Dot for our line of jewelry because of it's vintage and classic look.  The two founders named the company after their grandparents, Stella and Dot.  They rummaged through their grandmothers' attics and adored their old jewelry pieces so, they decided to design jewelry inspired by these pieces and their grandmothers.

The quality is very nice (sterling silver, gold vermiel, CZ, glass beads, fresh water pearls, etc.) but I especially love the style.  I really love the bold statement pieces.  However, since I am a fan of the bigger pieces, I was surprised how much I have started to really like the small simple chains and charms.

It doesn't hurt that the style is huge with the movie stars and I keep seeing Stella & Dot on TV shows like on The Apprentice, Gossip Girl and The Bachelor.
There are gorgeous pieces for weddings, from classic pearls, to heirloom deco styles sure to be passed on for generations.  Also, cute sets for bridesmaids and flower girls.

So, if you see posts of tattered furniture intertwined with posts of Stella & Dot jewelry, now you know the connection. They both boast vintage beauty and beautiful style.

The business model of Stella & Dot is home trunk shows.  We have a twist on this and offer private trunk shows at the shop.  Just email if you want more information about hosting a private trunk show for you and your friends.

Click here to read more about Stella & Dot in an article on Clout & About


What's So Great About Tattered?

1800s Bible

I don't know if it's an age thing, or a trendy thing, or just because it's what I see around me because my community of friends and work relationships are into it, but I love things that are tattered and chippy and old.  I didn't used to like this kind of thing.  That's why I'm wondering if it's an age thing.  Maybe since I'm getting tattered, chippy, and well, older - I find beauty in those traits.

I bring this up because I finally got myself out to The Tattered House in Old Roseville.  I've been wanting to go for a long time.  I've heard great things and they host an Antique Fair twice a year.  I always miss it because it's the same dates as the two big Folsom Antique Fairs and I am always there from crack of dawn until late.  The catalyst to finally get me over to Roseville was the fact that after 4 years, The Tattered House is closing it's doors.  I had to see their treasures before they closed.
Ice cream parlor chairs from
Tattered House
The shop (inside a sweet little blue house on a quaint street in old Roseville) was pretty empty by the time I made my way there, but, my heart still skipped a beat at the merchandise that was left.  The more tattered - the better.  Old bottles, chippy doors and windows, vintage chairs.  As I mentioned in my last blog, I see things that I know could be great and I see the art behind them, but don't always know how to turn them into something functional.  I love to see how people use this type of tattered art in real life.  Like old doors.  Someone will come in to the shop and comment about why do we have old doors - or they just pulled similar ones off an old house and dumped them, etc.  Where someone else will come in and see the same doors as a backdrop for their photography, a divider for their room, a place to add old knobs and hooks to display their hats and jewels, or to use as a headboard. 

At Tattered House, they had used two really old chippy doors with different colors and lots of character and had installed them to divide their office space from their register space.  Very pretty.  On another blog I visited recently, someone had taken a very ornate door, painted it white, and voila, a gorgeous coffee table (pictured here). 

The boys found this great piece of driftwood in Santa Cruz (maybe a boogie board lost at sea and returned beat up and tattered).  We saved it and will add some wonderful vintage knobs to make it a hat or coat rack with beachy charm.

Farmer's Market Season

If you find beauty in tattered treasures, you might enjoy some of the great finds that made their way from Santa Cruz (or other places) to Folsom and will be in the shop this weekend...

Very Old Metal Basket for firewood
or magazines

I could give this chair another coat of paint
and make it perfectly all white... or not. 
I'm thinking not. 
Imperfection adds character.

I LOVE this chair! Thx HG


If You're Lucky Enough To Be At The Beach... You're Lucky Enough!

First of all, I have my first follower... yeah Heather! 
Isn't the blog title great?  That was a sign on the deck of our adorable little beach house we spent last week at. (The Arbor House in Santa Cruz).   
The beach is SO therapeutic and rejuvenating.  At home, I can't settle down and do one thing at a time or think one thought at a time.  I have to be moving, doing, thinking, strategizing, reading, painting, watching the kids, working and doing it all at the same time.  I wouldn't know what to do with a free minute, and if I had one, I'd fill it up as soon as possible!  But, at the beach, I can stand in one spot for hours.  And. that's what I did!  I stood on a rock and listened to the waves crash and watched my boys play in the surf while pelicans flew in formation inches over the water as the tide came in and the sun went down.  FABULOUS.

We spent the mornings combing the sand for nature's treasures.  I found some great seashells.  Big ones and gorgeous silver oyster shells.  I see things that I know are wonderful but don't always know what to do with them myself.  There are so many creative people out there that I collect these little treasures and know that the right artist will find them and turn them into something magnificent. 

Picture From the blog Cherish Home Everyday

Being at the beach, I couldn't help but think of  Annette (from Melange).  She is someone who takes little treasures from the beach and turns them into artistic masterpieces.  When I got home, Susan (also from Melange)  had posted an artist blog featuring Annette and I highly recommend having a look as she posted pictures of some of Annette's beautiful pieces.  Cherish Home Everyday 

Be sure to visit us at Gracefully Vintage to see some of the great little treasures I've brought into the shop from this weeks beach trip.  One of the many nice things about the beach is how it weathers things like these great old bottles.  Bottles have been a hot item at the shop lately.  They make interesting pieces for decoration and are great for organizing things like beads, buttons, pins, toiletries, and other baubles.
I love the one with the old newspaper plastered to it.

Here are a few more treasures I found this weekend that I will bring to the shop today...

Interesting antique mirror.  A bit on the goth side - it's quite beautiful.

Metal trivets for hot irons.  One is marked 1884.

 We have loose shells, beads, buttons and other items at the shop for the artists out there ready to create their own masterpieces from the things we find from nature and the past. 

Last week was serene and beautiful.  Off to work today and then painting, restoring, grocery shopping, swim lessons, birthday party planning, checking my 100+ emails, downloading the Wolf Marketing catalog on flash drives and sending out to customers, placing a Stella & Dot order, signing the boys up for camps and play dates, laundry from last week,
so on and so on... 
Love the beach but I'm happy to be home too!