Published: August 9, 2011
This small New England village center hosted 40 antiques dealers brought together by Linda Turner July 16. Conducted only on odd numbered years as a benefit for the Dorset Library, the Dorset Antiques Show had great weather and an audience that appreciated good American antiques, as most of the exhibitors reported sales that sent them home financially ahead for the day. The one-day affair, including setup in the morning and pack-out in the evening, encourages exhibiting dealers to focus on many smalls for ease of handling.
Karen and Paul Wendhiser, Ellington, Conn., were showing several display cases with early silver jewelry from the West and Mexico. There was also a charming small tramp art box, only about 6 by 6 inches, and 2 inches tall, hand carved with heart decoration and original paint.
Falmouth, Mass., exhibitor Hilary Nolan, on the other hand, made his load simple with a limited selection of fine early painted furniture. His favorite piece that day was a bench he described as from Philadelphia, in original, untouched surface of cream over white paint, circa 1810.
Anita and Ed Holden, Holden Antiques, Sherman, Conn., were showing a large collection of smalls. Among their favorites were the copper fish from a weathervane, an early iron boot scraper, carved birds and a collection of treen ware. The standard for another weathervane and a large collection of kitchen tools and boxes, all from the Eighteenth and early Nineteenth Centuries, were also available.
Both furniture and smalls were offered by Mad River Antiques of North Granby, Conn. Steve German, co-owner with his wife Lorraine, reported their sales were good, including a butter churn of unusual design in faux grain paint, a small vertical gun cabinet, stoneware and even some early New England coin silver flatware.
Charles Gardiner was there with his van loaded with treasures, large and small. The Ashburnham, Mass., dealer’s exhibiting tent was filled to overflowing with early American furniture and small antiques. The best piece he offered was a Canadian-made chest of drawers, which had design elements of both Hepplewhite and Chippendale in a mix of North American woods, including cherry, walnut and tiger maple. It was in original finish and in great condition. Gardiner said the chest did not sell that weekend, but his sales of smalls made the trip worthwhile.
Driving up for the day from Millerton, N.Y., Tom Wesdorp was offering an eclectic mixture of antiques and early collectibles. His sales included an oil on canvas painting, an early toy fire truck and some smalls.
Otto & Susan Hart Antiques, Arlington, Vt., was showing its unusual collection of folk art. Brian Cullity came in from Sagamore, Mass., with an early collections of small household accessories and several very significant pieces of furniture. Mark and Marjorie Allen, New Hampton, N.H., had a truckload of furniture and reported that sales were good.
Joan Korda, Bridport, Vt., was showing a very large farm table in good original surface with period thumb back Windsor chairs. Karen and Rick Matteo, Ballston Lake, N.Y., were selling early painted boxes and furniture. Stephen-Douglas Antiques, Rockingham, Vt., was reported to have had good furniture sales from an inventory that filled the dealer’s oversize van.
Linda Turner, serving as show manager for the Dorset Library Association, reported the attendance figures given to her by the volunteers at 2 pm that day were equal to the total for two years ago. She has been involved in the show since 1961, while the show was managed by her aunt, Betty Forbes. Turner said she was into discussions with the library trustees about the 2013 show and some changes they were considering to further enhance the show’s reputation as a good selling and buying venue. Watch for the advertisements or check Turner’s website at www.forbesandturner.com .
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