Review and Photos by Tom O’Hara
WEST PALM BEACH, FLA.-Kay and Bill Puchstein returned to the South Florida Fairgrounds with about 200 of their friends, exhibitors for their West Palm Beach Antiques Festival November 6-8. Dealers were jumping back onto on the bandwagon after an eight-month hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic. There were about 200 exhibiting vendors in the main hall offering antiques, fine art, vintage collectibles and home décor for the several thousand visitors.
At the entrance of the show, Andrew Ford, Sarasota, Fla., was exhibiting with Sharon Green Antiques from Connecticut, showing a collection of fine art and more. More than 20 paintings from listed artists were available for viewing and purchase. There was also a novelty vitrine, the legs fashioned from horns of longhorn steers. It sold on the first day of the show to a family that was going to take it home near Fort Worth, Texas. Working together, these two dealers also sold some silver whimseys and hundred-year-old hand-stitched quilts.
The show is a good source for jewelry and costume jewelry. Lyn’s Estate Jewelry, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., filled several showcases with her collections, featuring valuable gold rings with diamonds, rubies and other precious jewels.
The Brunnell family is involved in estate and antique jewelry. Fred, Karen and their son Sean specialize in pieces such as a necklace made by Roberto Coin in gold with diamonds.
Antique and vintage silver is available from several exhibitors. Arthur Shea, Fort Lauderdale, had a large exhibit area for his collection. It included multiple collections of sterling flatware, with many boxed sets. The backdrop of his space comprised tiered shelves filled with hollowware, silver tea and coffee sets, an assortment of bowls, candlesticks, dishes and more. Sales included numerous pieces from the back shelves and flatware.
Little silver whimseys, the small tools of everyday life, as well as some unusual objects were selling well by several exhibitors. Sharon Green Antiques sold some sterling sewing tools and tea balls. Valarie Griffith, a West Palm Beach dealer, sold well from her silver collection, which included a water pitcher and ten matching sterling goblets. Turquoise and silver jewelry from the American West and Mexico were the leading part of Vikki Henderson’s collection, offering several cases filled to overflowing with bracelets, necklaces and more.
Barometer Fair from Sarasota and the United Kingdom was offering a collection of barometers and other antique devices. Owner John Forster reported sales of a small aneroid barometer in its original boxed case, an antique pocket globe in fish skin case and an antique stereo viewer.
Home décor was featured by many of the exhibitors. Roger Steinhauser, Tequesta, Fla., had a large assortment of early Tiffany-style lamps and Art Deco-style lighting.
Garmantiques, from Lancaster, Penn., and Davenport, Fla., brought early American country furniture. The collection included two tall hutches, one in early red milk paint, the other with a mahogany veneer. Sold at the show was a green counter high cupboard and several architectural elements, including a pair of cast stone pilasters.
HP Fine Art and Antiques, Panama City, Panama, trades in midcentury furniture and Audubon prints. While this weekend was not the dealer’s best in sales, the plan is to be back again each month this fall and winter.
Although many of the dealers this month did sell rather well, there was a reduction in the typical number of visitors to the show, which, according to Kay Puchstein, was due to the weather and perhaps the Covid-19 situation. The remnants of a hurricane came through Saturday afternoon and Sunday, causing shoppers to leave early or just not come. In spite of the weather reducing the results, Puchstein said dealer bookings for the December 4-6 show have been confirmed, and they will be into the second building with exhibits and merchandise. The show is every month, always the first weekend at South Florida Fairgrounds. For more information, www.wpbaf.com or 941-697-7475.