Published: February 7, 2018
Review and Photos by Tom O’Hara
CHANTILLY, VA. – Kicking off the 20th year at DC Expo, D’Amore Promotions had a full house with 750 booths filled with antiques and vintage collectibles from throughout the Eastern states on January 6-7. Many dealers had to cope with traveling in a winter storm that swept in from the South bringing miserably cold temperatures, snow and ice on the days prior to the show, and then during setup for two days when huge bay doors were open, making the building as cold as outdoors. But deal with it they all did, and on Saturday morning, the show opened a half hour early at 8:30 am so no shopper would have to wait in the cold. Immediately, hundreds of customers swarmed into the hall for the start, beginning a two-day buying spree.
At a time when many shows are disappearing or shrinking in size, DC Big Flea & Antiques Market was sold out; even with a few late cancellations due to travel conditions, Joan Sides of D’Amore Promotions and her crew were able to rebook other dealers to exhibit at the show, keeping the house full.
The customers seemed anxious for the break from thinking about the weather, too, for when the show opened Saturday morning the buildings quickly filled with shoppers who were chasing down great deals in furniture from the past, textiles and a great deal more.
Don Heller of Heller Washam, Portland, Maine, was having fun right from the start. He brought a large load of Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century furniture and by the time the show was over, he was virtually sold out.
Matthew Robinson is from Wiscasset, Maine, and was also having a good time. Furniture and period décor from the last 200 years sold well for him, too.
Sharon Green Antiques, Sharon, Conn., sold a set of seven Hitchcock chairs in excellent condition; also sold were an Eighteenth Century Connecticut candlestand, cherry, two drawers with minor refinishing; an American Hepplewhite chest of drawers, cherry, circa 1790, two over three drawers with French feet; and a great number of small antiques.
The Krogh’s Nest, Taneytown, Md., offers a very different style from the three New England dealers just mentioned as its collection features Midcentury Modern with names such as Eames and Lowey for the design influences. Krogh’s Nest’s weekend sales included a Danish Modern sofa, circa 1950, a set of chairs and a table, along with Twentieth Century accessories.
The Flower Field Farm, Bucks County, Penn., also offered Midcentury. Among its offerings was a set of eight chairs by Danish designer Erik Buck for $3,800.
Clwyd Antiques of Annapolis, Md., offers primarily 100- to 200-year-old English silver, both flatware and hollowware. The dealers travel back to their ancestral home, Wales, for some of their shopping in order to keep a fresh supply of the muffineers, compotes and other dining table serving pieces offered in their collection.
Carolyn Gallier brought her inventory of textiles and linens from home in Mechanicsville, Va. She especially likes to have quilts and coverlets for children, both with children’s themes and the smaller sizes.
Anne Charles Antiques, Marietta, Ga., creates an exhibit that resembles an English study with all the books, and paraphernalia related thereto.
Glass in ornamental and decorative pieces proved popular at the show and was selling well. Angela Greenburg, trading as Cottage Garden Antiques of Fairfax Station, Va., was showing cut crystal and various fine European styles; Ted Sheets, Fairfax, Va., was selling well from his stock, which included one table filled with Baccarat; and Bill Thomas, Abingdon, Md., sold from his assortment of carnival glass.
Fine art was selling well in several booths. New to the show, Jane and Scott Power of Southern Fine Arts, Greenville, N.C., were offering mostly oil on canvas works from the last 150 years or so, but did have some pieces in other mediums.
As is true across the United States, Stickley- and Mission-style furniture was also popular at this show. Two North Carolina exhibitors set up side by side: Emerson Manning from Statesville and Robert Hause from Wilmington. Both said they were pleased with their results after just the first day of the show.
There was more for the repurposing home decorator as well. Amy Goldberg is from Boring, Md., near Baltimore; she loves to say that her home town is just as the name implies, which always gets a chuckle. She is busy with repurposing of things – some of them are simply offered with fresh surfaces, but she also finds fresh uses for others – and that is what makes her business a success.
An extensive collection of vintage fashions could be found at Charlotte Bevers’ booth. From Mifflinburg, Penn., she spent the weekend modeling some of her extensive collection. Without a doubt, this greatly enhances her sales, for she has a great eye for style, putting together outfits from generations of the not too distant past that really look Cool! Tony! Swanky! or whatever the style word was of the period.
Joan Sides was especially pleased with this most recent show as it was the celebration of 20 years for her DC Big Flea & Antiques Show. She said, “The show is still just as strong as it has ever been and that’s really a great tribute to my staff and exhibitors, so many of whom have been here since the first.” The attendance at this January weekend was virtually the same as always, she said.
D’Amore Promotions produces this show six times a year at the Dulles Expo Center. The next edition is March 3-4.
For additional information, www.thebigfleamarket.com or 757-430-4735.
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