Published: November 2, 2010
Marburger Farm Antique Show was big †as only Texas can be big †nearly 400 dealers, according to Ashley Ferguson, a member of the family owners and managers of the show, in Titanic -sized tents with great summer weather and thousands of customers looking for that something special. The show, a major part of Round Top Texas Antiques Week, opened to perfect late summer weather September 28.
Co-owner Rick McConn said, “We had new record numbers of visitors anxious to see all the exhibitors who came from throughout the United States, Mexico, Asia and Europe. This was our third straight show in a row with record attendance and beautiful weather. Kids, families and strollers were everywhere. The new reality at Marburger Farm is that our show is maturing into a national destination, while our audience is growing younger.”
The third member of the family management team, Margaret Mebus, mother-in-law to both Rick and Ashley, was instrumental in having a portion of the attendance proceeds go to the Houston affiliate of Susan G. Koman For the Cure.
Exhibiting dealers at Marburger Farm were ready on Tuesday morning for the first burst of shoppers †hundreds of people from Texas shopping for their homes and collections and hundreds more from across the country as decorators, designers and dealers come to replenish their inventories for future sales. Several well-known California dealers and buyers from the East were collecting designer-styled home furnishings and, in some cases, store fixtures for future displays.
Exhibiting dealers were selling, as Lake Placid, N.Y., dealer David Zabriskie said, “well enough to make the time, expense and effort worth the trip.” His sales included an Empire breakfront, some rugs and art.
“We did okay, selling a variety of the antiques we had, something in all categories,” according to Shannon Poppino, who has a shop in Dallas in addition to exhibiting at Marburger Farm. Collecting her inventory in England, Europe and near home in Texas, she was selling Imari, transfer ware, earthenware and stoneware, as well as early Continental and English furniture.
Laura Coggins, Carrizo Springs, Texas, was offering a fresh collection of Nineteenth Century furniture and accessories. She was showing an unusual pair of tin lights that were made to resemble some earlier torches, now electrified and sitting on an early mantel.
With many young couples at the show looking to furnish their homes, Susan Curran Wright of Snow Leopard Antiques, Raleigh, N.C., sold Italian wedding pillows embroidered with “Amore” and Victorian christening bonnets.
Painted furniture was popular here, with many pieces for sale. Erie Canal Antiques was showing an early chest of drawers in an old royal blue paint, a vibrant color for any room. The dealers, Richard and Valarie Pannier, have homes in Sherburne N.Y., and Arlington, Texas, which allows interesting shopping and inventories.
Nancy’s Antiques is from Brenham, Texas, just down the road a short drive, and the collection included several pieces of furniture in old paint or at least with traces of it. An early bucket bench and farm table had traces of old blue, and a blanket box was in a full cover of the early milk paint.
Early lighting was a major portion of Georgia Morel’s exhibit. Her husband, Buddy, restores early electric fixtures to good working condition as part of their inventory, which also includes late Nineteenth and early Twentieth Century furniture. Their home and business in New Roads, La., includes antiques and a country inn.
The show attracts exhibiting dealers from all across the country. Nancy Wells came from Bedford, N.H., with early furniture and accessories. Barry and Company is an antique silver dealer from San Jose, Calif. John Aragona Antiques, from Brisbane, Calif., was offering a pair of portraits originally from Boston, circa 1840. Virginia Rogers from Bellevue, Wash., had a collection that included a set of Punch and Judy marionettes made in Germany, circa 1890, and priced at $4,600.
Julie Harris, Kansas City, Mo., was offering fresh additions to her sporting goods collection. Early transfer ware was the dominant collection offered by Suzanne Fox from Santa Monica. Calif.
Alan and Teri Unger, together with their son, Ian, were showing their collection of early metal kitchen paraphernalia from France. The Leander, Texas, dealers shop in Europe as often as possible to keep the stock, which was selling well in Texas.
Exhibitors in many cases prefer the buildings on site. Heather Brown, a Houston dealer, was in the Old Saloon, with a great collection of early English antiques. The Gillespie Brothers, Winchester, Va., were showing their silver and furnishings in the Dance Hall.
The founder of the show, John Sauls, Tyler, Texas, is still exhibiting in a building filled with his outstanding collection of early quilts.
As with all the Texas Antiques Week shows, Marburger Farm is held twice each year; the spring dates will be March 29 through April 2. For more information, www.roundtop-marburger.com or 800-999-2148.
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