Published: October 18, 2016
Review and Photos by Andrea Valluzzo
WESTON, VT. — For 58 years, the Weston Antiques Show has been a fall tradition here. And as the opening event for Vermont Antiques Week, the show is focused on traditional, with many of the same dealers coming year after year. Buyers too are loyal, and while most shows today are a mixed bag for dealers, this show, which ran September 29-October 1, usually attracts a good-sized crowd, appreciative of the mostly American offerings for sale here.
“We had a fantastic Weston Antiques Show. The best ever. The customers that came were interested in buying something to take home,” said Karen Wendhiser, Ellington, Conn. “We sold furniture, country smalls, folk art, paintings and jewelry. There were many faithful repeat customers and some new collectors just wanting something special. Antiques Week in Vermont is special since it brings customers in from all areas of the country.”
Charles and Barbara Adams, South Yarmouth, Mass., marked their 38th year as exhibitors here, and while they noticed attendance this week was not as busy as usual, for whatever reason, be it a late foliage season or a rainy weekend forecast, Weston remains one of their favorite shows. The dealers noted some buyers showed interest in furniture, but they mostly wrote up smalls, such as Bennington Pottery, a very early quilt, a paper covered wallpaper box, two early baskets, decoys, an unusual blue spice tin and a large, beautiful turtle shell.
A relative newcomer by comparison, Lori Frandino of Frandino Antique Oriental Rugs, Walpole, N.H., had similar praise for the show. “I have only been exhibiting at the Weston Show for three years, but it has always been fabulous for me, and this one was absolutely the best show I have ever had! Room-size rugs attracted the most interest and seemed to be among the best sellers; almost every one that I brought sold (and I brought a lot). I also sold a large number of scatter rugs of all sizes and a few runners. The show itself was beautiful, every booth looked great!”
Longtime dealers Hanes and Ruskin Antiques, Old Lyme, Conn., look forward to this show. “We love this show. The show is run by a wonderful committee — there is no professional manager. They are just like committees in the old days — welcoming and friendly, and they can’t do enough to make the dealers happy,” said Joy Hanes. “The crowd was good, and sales were good but not fabulous. We sold a good tavern table, a ship painting and a variety of smalls.”
Donna Kmetz, Douglas, Mass., said her most interesting sale was of an Edward Gay tonal landscape in a very fine period frame that went to a descendant of the artist. “I completely enjoy being at Weston, and the unusual layout makes it more interesting than many shows.”
Among the highlights seen at the show were “Autumn Stroll,” an oil on canvas by James K. Bonnar (1883–1961), who is known to have painted in Vermont, shown in the booth of Martin J. Ferrick, Lincolnville, Maine; and a large drum decorated with decoration of a scantily class redhead holding a parasol in the booth of Pioneer Folk Antiques LLC, Ellsworth, Maine. Witt’s End Antiques, Walkill, N.Y., displayed a fine Eighteenth Century New Hampshire Queen Anne tiger maple flat top highboy described as a “well-suited marriage.”
New to the show this year, Stiles House Antiques, Woodbury, Conn., was impressed with the quality and selection of merchandise. “We thought the layout was great and made for a unique and interesting show,” said dealers Ryan and J.R. The dealers also wrote up stoneware, treen, painted furniture, primitive lighting and Staffordshire and noted much interest in their primitive lighting and treenware. “We enjoyed it and look forward to the opportunity to participate again next year.”
For additional information, www.westonantiquesshow.org.
Review and Photos by Andrea Valluzzo
LUDLOW, VT. — Like many other shows today, furniture was a hard sell at the Okemo Antiques Show, while buyers were quicker to pull the trigger on smalls during the show’s run in Okemo’s base lodge September 30–October 1. That’s not to say, though, that furniture was not plentiful here, a veritable rainbow of exuberantly decorated painted furniture was on offer here, in keeping with the show’s focus on Americana.
The show aimed to please with a wealth of antiques across the board, as dealers cherry-picked their collections and brought their best items here, guaranteeing the show would appeal to a wide range of buyers and tastes. Having white paper for every booth gave the show a bright look and sense of continuity.
Under new management this year with dealers Kris Johnson, who was getting his feet wet with show management, and Steve Sherhag, the latter an experienced show promoter, the show stayed the course of what’s worked in the past. “I thought the show was a great success for us being new promoters. We had great cooperation with the dealers, and everybody seemed very happy,” said Johnson, who said their strategy in this debut year was, “We kind of left it alone and ran with it. We have more room for dealers next year, and we are pretty excited to spring forward to 2017 and make it better if we can.”
Dealers seemed to concur.
“I thought the show had some excellent offerings this year with a good group of dealers. We had an excellent show and sold a wide variety of smalls in the Americana line as well as a pair of Windsor chairs. Like other shows, the items that sell are good quality smalls, as furniture continues to be a struggle,” said Nancy and Gene Pratt, Victor, N.Y.
Bill Kelly, Limington, Maine, did not sell any furniture here but was pleased to write up a couple of fairly expensive smaller things. “High-quality accessories seemed to be the biggest seller,” he said, noting he bought a couple of good things, too, at the show.
“We thought the show looked beautiful this year and enjoyed working with the new show promoters, Steve and Kris…They did a wonderful job. We enjoy this week in Vermont and have been going and doing a show during this time for many years,” said Tom Jewett of Jewett-Berdan Antiques, Newcastle, Maine. The dealer’s sales were mostly country smalls, including an 1830s wallpaper box, a folk portrait, a theorem, a Windsor chair and many other country smalls in paint.
While Bev Longacre showcased Christmas trees and ornaments, Tom Longacre focused on traditional antiques. The Marlborough, N.H., dealers shared a booth, playing to each other’s strengths and found sales were about what they expected, if down a bit from last year. The dealers sold steadily: Christmas items, hooked rugs, a sloop vane and smalls.
Praising the managers, Tom said, “Kris and Steven did a great job,” adding that attendance at the preview party was really good, with a fair amount of business conducted that night. “Attendance was softer the second day than in years past but in general most people were pleased with the show. There were a lot of good-looking booths.”
Missouri dealers were well represented at this decidedly New England show with a rare copper and zinc schooner weathervane in old gold leaf surface with a rare American flag on top center mast in the booth of at Arborfield Americana Antiques LLC, St Louis, and a scrub top, saw buck table with a blue base at Missouri Plain Folk, Sikeston.
Signs are a staple of this show and among the standouts seen here were “Meals Lodging By Day Week Month / Free Garage” at Jane F. Wargo, Wallingford, Conn., “Dance Every Sat. Nite” at Garthoeffner Antiques, Lititz, Penn.; “Dressed Turkeys” at Baker & Co., Delmar, N.Y.; and “Defense De Jeter des Deschets” seen at MG Art & Antiques, Merrimac, Mass.
For information, call Kris Johnson at 610-207-9505 or Steve Sherhag at 330-207-2196.
Review and Photos by Andrea Valluzzo
LUDLOW, VT. — With more than an hour to go until the preview opening of the Ludlow Antiques Show on Friday evening, September 30, the line of buyers waiting outside to get in was already substantial and still growing. It was a good omen, especially considering that the show was left out of the Vermont Antiques Week brochure and advertising. Attendance was a bit down Saturday, but veteran showgoers found their way here, and the 53rd edition of this show went off without a hitch.
The show is equally known for its fine cooking by the church ladies — Friday’s preview dinner always gets rave reviews — and its pleasing and simple presentation of antiques. Booths are low key and not fancy, keeping the focus on the fine primitives, country goods and antiques showcased here. If any criticism is to be lobbed, it is only that perhaps a few more signs for the show could be placed along the main road leading into town.
Good attendance, buoyed by the strong contingent of trade buying Friday, translated into good sales during the show’s two-day run at the Ludlow Community Center.
“Friday evening — good attendance by dealers who did some strong buying, There was a good variety of quality merchandise on offer throughout the show, with a few treasures to be found. The primary emphasis (although not exclusively so) was country furnishings and accessories. While this is not the strongest market these days, many Vermont buyers remain appreciative of old paint and primitives,” said Kate Phelan and Tom Pirozzoli, Goshen, N.H. “Our better sales included an excellent primitive rocking horse in worn paint, a stunning painted washstand — the best I’ve ever seen — and a lovely, classic country table with a two-board top.” The dealers noted business was better Friday than Saturday with more dealers than the general public. “Attendees seemed to be looking for either the extraordinary or for bargains. The show is always well run. Great cookies and pies from the church’s women group!”
John Bourne, Pittsford, Vt., felt the show was better than the previous year. “I don’t know the number of people that attended the show, however, there appeared to be more buying. The items that I sold would be categorized as folk art or primitive paintings. It was a good show as always.”
Linda Brown of Cargill Antiques, White River Junction, Vt., also kicked off a strong showing here. “I did fine, thanks to an end of the day sale. Both of my booth neighbors with primitives did well. Dealers on Friday night do not buy much from me, but the Saturday crowd — although fairly small — is full of serious buyers. Ludlow continues to be a great show with variety and more reasonable prices than some of the other shows that happen the same weekend.”
Making her second appearance here was Kathy Brown, Old Bethpage, N.Y., who mainly sold smalls out of her showcases. “The people were very knowledgeable. If they saw it and wanted it, they bought it. People walked out of my booth with a smile on their faces. Most complimented me that I have great things.”
Linda Perkins and Joseph Kozloski, Reflections Antiques, Williamson, N.Y., had their best Ludlow show this year in the three years the dealers have exhibited here. “We sold a cherry Hepplewhite dresser, a grain-painted primitive cupboard, a smaller wall cupboard in blue paint and a primitive “Milking” bench… among other smaller, mostly primitive items. The set-up went smoothly, help was in abundance and the homemade food each day was wonderful. The show is run very well!”
Review and Photos by Andrea Valluzzo
STRATTON MOUNTAIN, VT. — The inaugural edition of Antiques at Stratton Mountain October 1–2, which under the continued management of Greg Hamilton, formerly held editions at Magic Mountain and Bromley, kept the momentum of Vermont Antiques Week going in fine form. The show opened for a breakfast preview Saturday morning that was well attended by dealers, squeezing in some shopping before their shows opened later that day, as well as private collectors.
Overall, dealers we talked to seemed to like the new venue. Mary Gronning, Shaftsbury, Vt., found that dealers had a bit more space to work with. “We like the show venue at Stratton Mountain much better than before. The building was brighter, and it was much easier setting up and loading in and out. Sales were about the same as they had been in previous years. Smaller furniture sold along with lots of smalls. Many people like the show because everyone does not offer the same type of merchandise, there is an eclectic mix of offerings for customers to choose from which they seem to like.”
Echoing her sentiments was John Rogers, Elkins, N.H., who said, “The show was great for me! Stratton was clean, load in/out was convenient. Greg Hamilton was a terrific manager. All plus, plus!!”
Prospect Hill Antiques, Essex Junction, Vt., found the rooms were more conducive to an antique show, and by being on the same floor, “foot traffic was able to move freely between each room. The preview buying by other dealers who attended the show as early buyers was very good,” the dealers said, noting that regular buying was a bit less than expected though. “Sales were brisk Saturday morning between 8 and 10 am. We sold a very nice small red dough box in original paint. It had a heart cutout that added to its charm. We also sold a 12-drawer apothecary in a striking folk art design.”
Other sales for the dealers included a wooden hobby horse body in a dapple grey pattern, a rare pair of red baby shoes, a wooden Shaker glove stretcher with moveable thumb piece, a Cut Plug tobacco sign, a set of primitive wooden cigar stacking units and an apple basket in excellent condition, while a rare 24-hole wooden candle mold with redware tubes and a scarce tin pastry board with tin rolling pin attracted much interest.
Making his debut appearance here was Gary Briggs, Twin Oak Antiques, Lunenburg, Vt., who felt the facility, set-up and dealers were very well received. “I think most dealers had an average show, with a few selling substantially. The new venue is a bit hard to find…Certainly the quality of merchandise was as high as any of the shows for Vermont Antiques Weekend,” he said, suggesting show promoters might consider offering a shuttle where there is overlap or a group ticket rate.
Briggs did well with signs, selling two outright and giving measures, multiple times, on all the other signs in his booth. “Furniture continues to be soft, although I did sell a wonderful country work table. Interesting, folky, funky and unique seems to continue to dominate the market with my customers. I sold a great pair of metal horse heads that came off of those springy playground animals that kids ride. The same customer bought a great set of five wooden pool floats, each in vivid colors: blue, red, yellow, orange and green.”
Among the highlights seen were a brightly colored wooden, functional Ferris wheel, that was delighting audiences Saturday morning in the booth of The Village Braider, Plymouth, Mass., while across the aisle, several case pieces of painted furniture were showcased at Steven Cirillo, Hatfield, Mass. Chocolate molds drew so much interest early on in the booth of Partridge Hollow Antiques, Milton, Vt. Greg Hamilton’s booth, Stone Block Antiques, Vergennes, Vt., juxtaposed a stone urn with a fine cupboard in red paint with a choice painting of a wintry landscape displayed on an easel and other fine items.
For information or next year’s dates, contact Greg Hamilton at email@example.com or 802-989-1158.
Review and Photos by Tom O’Hara
MANCHESTER CENTER, VT. — Phyllis Carlson Stevenson and Tim Stevenson again this year gathered about 70 of their antiques dealer friends to exhibit with them at Riley Rink on Sunday, October 2, for Antiques in Vermont the largest of the five shows in what is known as Vermont Antiques Week.
The show has become the standard for small antiques, with dealers offering the finest little things. There were fine Eighteenth Century frames and art from New York dealer John Gould, Yorktown Heights, N.Y. Dennis and Dad, Fitzwilliam, N.H., offered hundreds of examples of earthenware from England made in the 1700s and 1800s.
Colleen Boland Alpers brought her collection of early American primitives from her home in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Her collection this weekend focused on accessories for the home, from circa 1800, including several wooden trenchers in original paint; a flat iron weathervane of a running horse, probably a likeness of Ethan Allan; Eighteenth Century glass; and stoneware for the kitchen.
Mary de Buhr, Downers Grove, Ill., came offering early primitives, some dating as far back as colonial
times. Massachusetts exhibitor Mary Ellen Stevens of Quelle Surprise shops in England and France for fine silver and small household items to bring to the show. Her collection included a large assortment of silver tea strainers and sugar servers; enough to fill one showcase. From France there was Quimper and Limoges, along with fine small wood objects such as tea caddies and other boxes.
Easter Hill Antiques, Sharon, Conn., offered Victorian personal silver objects, including perfumes chatelaines, sterling inkwells and more.
From Wiscasset, Maine, Patricia Stauble offered a sampling of Maine painted furniture. Her sales of several pieces of furniture included a small work table she found in Maine, a painted candlestand and an Eighteenth Century continuous arm Windsor chair.
Held as the Vermont fall foliage season gets underway and owing to its Sunday timing and location, the show has become a destination for many shoppers to begin their shopping for the home décor and holiday presents. Knowing this, dealers all stocked up on both great American antique furniture and the smaller pieces with gift-giving in mind.
Denise Scott, East Greenwich, R.I., was showing her freshly reupholstered Eighteenth Century wing chair. The fabric was a crewel on white linen, which had been expertly centered on the antique chair, creating a wonderful American Colonial piece ready for the living room. More furniture in her exhibit included a double bench with a woven seat in original painted surface and several hanging cupboards.
Dave and Bonnie Ferriss, Lake Luzerne, N.Y., did the show with a good deal of furniture. Their offerings included a very large painted bench, in bright yellow, thought to be Pennsylvania, which sold early; an unusual crescent-shaped table, more than 6 feet long at the opening, with traces of red stain or paint and, of course, a great assortment of wall hangings.
Speaking of wall hangings, Alna, Maine, exhibitor Bill Quinn featured a different sort of wall hanging with his signs. He could send showgoers on detours in opposite directions to two tourist houses while out for produce, with ski tips up at Kilroy’s near the stables.
Another dealer who travels far for this show, Suzanne Baker, Westville, Ind., was offering her collection of miniature paintings and silhouettes. There was also a good supply of Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century stoneware available.
As the largest of all the Vermont Antiques week shows, the short and sweet show (8 am for early birds and ending at 4 pm) attracts exhibitors from faraway places who arrive early in the week to shop in New England and enjoy the foliage themselves before getting to work at the show.
For more information, contact Phyllis at 802-236-2342.
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