Published: July 19, 2022
Review and Photos by Z.G. Burnett
SANDWICH, MASS. – Yes, you read that correctly! On July 7, the Cape Cod Antique Dealers Association (CCADA) had its first annual summer antiques show in Sandwich, Mass., hosted by the Sagamore Inn and Restaurant. With their 52nd annual antiques show in Orleans, Mass., coming up, the CCADA decided to try something new. Past CCADA events have been steadily successful, but the association had never conducted its own July show and wanted to see how weekday traffic would fare following the holiday weekend. Partnering with the Sagamore Inn, the CCADA set up under the venue’s gracious Canalside Pavilion, named for its proximity to the Cape Cod Canal just beyond the inn’s grounds.
“We have high hopes,” said Charlene Dixon of Eastham, Mass., officer of the CCADA and member for more than 20 years. “We’ve been longing to do a show on the upper Cape, and by this time of the week, maybe people will be sick of the beach.”
The CCADA is a Northeastern regional and nonprofit organization with more than 100 professional members from as far away as New Jersey. Ticket proceeds from these shows contribute to the CCADA’s Cultural Enrichment Grant and the Cape Cod Community College Educational Foundation. These programs were created with the purpose of adding to the public’s appreciation of antiques and their importance to Cape Cod’s regional heritage. Since 2011, the grants and scholarships have provided more than $25,000 to nonprofit cultural institutions, projects and students around Cape Cod.
Early in the morning there was already a good deal of traffic on Route 6A, along which “Antiques Show” signs dotted the curb. This boded well, as did a long line outside of the entrance nearly an hour before opening. The final gate was just under 500 attendees, a great starting figure. “We are confident that next year we will have more dealers setting up to expand the size of the show [to] attract even more shoppers,” wrote Marie Forjan, who anticipated that the CCADA would make it a yearly event. One dealer credited Forjan as “the real power” of the production, having coordinated the signage and promotion, among other tasks. Mark Jacobson, CCADA vice president, was also busy with helping dealers throughout the setup and hours of the show.
Beginning with a long line that stretched through the pavilion’s parking lot, the show was immediately crowded. For any other show this might have been a problem, but for the veteran dealers of the CCADA, the crush was welcome for a new show. Electric mounted fans kept the main pavilion cool while a healthy breeze from the canal ventilated the smaller tents, and unexpectedly beautiful weather prolonged buyer traffic throughout the day. “It was a very busy morning,” wrote Forjan, “slowed a bit around lunchtime and picked up around 1:30 [pm].”
Carl Goveia, president of the CCADA and owner of Nauset Antiques (Eastham, Mass.), was set up just to the right of the entrance. Goveia has been with the association for ten years and was excited to move the show outside instead of indoors, as other CCADA events have been. He explained that the booth space filled up quickly with members excited to sell. As many small businesses are still recovering from the ups and downs of the pandemic, dealers were eager to showcase their wares in person. They were all thrilled to see their friends, colleagues and clients, many of whom were vacationing on the Cape and some who came specifically for the occasion.
“We even expanded last minute,” Goveia said. “Dealers called days before the show, asking if they could join the association and set up their own tents.”
Dealers selected their stock specifically for the location, which was just before (or after, depending on one’s direction) the Sagamore Bridge, one of three bridges that cross the Cape Cod canal and provide access to the mainland. Edythe Davinis of Edythe & Co. (Cotuit, Mass.) celebrated all things nautical with shell craft folk art, vintage lures, hand painted dÃ©cor and a giant whale vertebra, among other treasures. “I enjoy the quirky and eclectic,” Davinis said with a smile. Her booth was populated throughout the sale.
Granted, not one of the booths stayed empty for long. The quality of wares offered at this show was truly top notch, but not overly expensive enough to deter new or younger buyers away that already braved the modest fee of the show’s admission. Every object was priced appropriately, and the variation of goods presented could have decorated many summer and permanent homes with more to spare. It’s an uncommon sense of balance to find throughout an entire show and a testament to the strong bond and expertise of the CCADA dealers, some of whom had been showing for more than 40 years with the association.
Charles and Barbara Adams of Yarmouth, Mass., are just such dealers. Theirs was a universal booth, meaning no category went without representation. From maps to antique advertising, transferware to writing desks and mounted birds to cranberry pickers, each object was carefully selected. This kind of connoisseurship only comes through decades of experience. Barbara also serves as the CCADA’s recording secretary, and Charles is an association officer.
Alan Herman’s booth, Whaling Days Antiques up from New Bedford, Mass., was similarly filled with treasures. Among sea chests and handwoven baskets, Herman also offered weathervanes, ship models, antique signage and scrimshaw. Those in the know are probably already aware, but for those who are just beginning to collect, shows of this kind are the best place to find scrimshaw as it can only be purchased in-state. Catching the sun on the edge of Herman’s booth were two directional weathervanes, one in a sailboat form and the other a whale. Herman was keen to point out that the whale was the original size for weathervanes of this kind, while newer examples have become smaller over years. The whale was selling for $795, and the sailboat was priced at $695.
Next to Whaling Days was the Cat’s Meow Antiques, helmed by owner Paula Deane. Formerly in a brick and mortar shop in nearby Mashpee, Mass., this was Deane’s first time with a booth at an antiques show, but one wouldn’t know it. Surrounded by home furnishings and fine art, an early Nineteenth Century inlaid chest caught our attention. “That’s been in my living room for years,” Deane said. “It just appeals to me.” Chests such as these are perfect for decorative storage, especially for smaller homes and apartments. Like many, Deane was moving things along, and the chest was offered for $145.
Nearby was Sheila Gediman’s Stone Bridge Antiques of Tiverton, R.I., which presented a grand collection of tableware and glassware, along with a handsome collection of vintage handmade baskets. Our favorite was an antique roadster basket; the top lifted and the front of the basket dropped down to reveal original metal fixtures and compartments for food and drink. An impressive addition to anyone’s tailgate, the roadster basket was selling “as found” for $65.
Christine Young offered three tables of antique and vintage jewelry, some fine and some costume. In keeping with the theme of the day, our preferred piece was an Art Deco brass French cuff bracelet with a Bakelite mount, side scrolls and applied brass seahorses. The bracelet was designed by photographer and filmmaker Jean Painleve (1902-1989), who launched his jewelry line in 1936. Two of the original four Bakelite scrolls were absent, which did not diminish the cuff bracelet’s charm. It was priced at $150.
Another specialty booth was Vintage Lady Linens of Milford, Conn., which may have been the farthest vendor to travel for the show. Accented with glassware and postcards, buyers could have spent half the show looking at the goods on Nancy and Gene Mayer’s tables. Customers were immediately unfolding their coverlets and textiles, sifting through colorful table linens and admiring the shop’s needlepoints. This included a sweet, framed embroidery with all the romance of the open sea for $55. Much of the nautical or Cape-themed merchandise sold within minutes, including a tea towel and a basket liner both embroidered with lobsters.
The next booth was still in the Independence Day holiday spirit with a rare, long red-white-and-blue banner, 12 feet long with a single star. It was being sold by David and Jane Turano Thompson of David Thompson Antiques & Art (South Dennis, Mass.), who also displayed a great collection of books relevant to the material culture of the area, and a number of impressive antique maps. With only one star and a stamp of its length on the top edge, the banner was unusual. Made around 1900, it was in excellent condition despite an old, stitched repair. Found on a Maine estate, Jane flagged us down later in the show to share that the banner had sold for $225 to a Maine collector who was visiting for the holiday. Some things are meant to be.
Outside of the main big top tent were five other dealers, a few with tents and two catching up on their tans. David Lamson of Hyannis, Mass., has been doing shows with the CCADA for six years, and offered a lovely collection of rugs, books and smalls beneath an umbrella. At the forefront on his center table between two duck decoys was a vintage rabbit baking mold for $45. The mold was striking because, unlike most of this kind, the rabbit was facing its baker and not sitting or dashing off in profile. The mold hopped away to its new home early in the show.
William Nickerson of Orleans, Mass., had the largest stock of early furniture, arranged in a shady spot as well as under a tent. No bleaching of top surfaces would occur that day. Nickerson has been with the CCADA for more years than he wanted to admit and was happy to see that the show was doing so well. One of his smaller items was an antique New England spongeware pitcher in blue and white, which stood out among the dark and painted woods of his booth. In excellent condition for being made circa 1860, with no chips or cracks, the pitcher sold for $135 shortly after we were able to snap a photo of it.
According to Forjan, both the dealers and the organizers were “very, very happy” by the end of the day, herself included! Congratulations to the CCADA, we look forward to many more July shows.
The 52nd Annual CCADA Summer Antique Show in Orleans, Mass., is August 6. For more information, 508-760-3290 or www.ccada.com.
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