Published: October 17, 2017
Review and Photos by Rick Russack
LUDLOW, VT. – The Vermont Pickers Market, October 1, was the last of the five shows comprising Antiques Week in Vermont. Returning to the Okemo ski area base lodge, it was a new addition to the roster of shows, and more than 130 buyers streamed in when the doors opened at 10 am, with active buying taking place within a few minutes. The show was the idea of Kris Johnson and Steve Sherhag, who also managed the two-day Okemo show in the same building. It was an idea that made sense. The well-lit facility was already prepared with walls and paper, making for an easy setup for dealers.
Many of the exhibitors were those who for several years had set up at the now-defunct show at Riley Rink in nearby Manchester, Vt. Managers of that show, Tim Stevenson and Phyllis Carlson, made their exhibitor list available to Johnson and Sherhag and many of those exhibitors signed up. Although the show was in the same building as the earlier show, all but two of the 31 exhibitors, who came from 12 states, had not taken part in the earlier show and several were exhibiting at their only show of the week. That meant that the merchandise was fresh. Johnson referred to the show as “a hybrid tabletop show” but the bright, white walls, which almost all utilized, gave it a noticeable appearance.
The emphasis of the show was country. Walking in the main entrance, one immediately noted the number of quality hooked rugs and quilts displayed on the back walls of the booths. There were a number of trade signs, several pieces of Bennington pottery, redware, stoneware, painted furniture and woodenware, folk art and more.
Of particular note was the number of early cloth dolls that were available. Leisa Kirtley, Western Reserve Antiques, Canfield, Ohio, had a child’s cradle filled with more than a dozen dolls that had come from a Ohio collection that had originally included more than 100 dolls. They were priced from $150 to $495. Jim and Paulette Cocoman, Glenmont, N.Y., also had several, all under $400, as did Sandy Elliott, Brentwood, N.H., who also had some cloth animals. The Cocomans displayed several pieces of Bennington, including a flint-enamel pitcher priced at $450.
Sandy Hart, Hart’s Country Antiques, Hanover, Penn., priced a large carved maple bowl in old red at $1,450. Deborah Smith, Blue Line Antiques, Port Leyden, N.Y., offered a 12-inch folky carved penguin priced at $575, along with a carving of a horse’s head and foreleg. Here, too, was an unusual well painted tree fungus with a scene of a shepherdess feeding sheep, possibly a depiction of Rachel, from the book of Genesis.
A few days after the show, John Bourne, Pittsford, Vt., said that he had done very well there. “Nearly everyone I spoke to said the same thing – everyone was pleased. All agreed that Kris and Steve had done a good job and promoted it well. Even though it was a new show, the attendance was good. I know that I’ll be back next year and I didn’t hear anyone say that they wouldn’t do it again.”
Kris Johnson concluded, “We thought the show really looked good. The dealers brought great stuff and they displayed it well. I wish I could thank each one of them individually. We had told everyone that they’d be able to use the back walls from the first show and that really helped the overall appearance. We tried hard to get it right for the first outing. I think we had pretty much the same-sized crowd as the Riley Rink show had. Nearly all of the dealers said they’d be back next year – that’s a good feeling. So we’re looking forward to next year.”
For information, 610-207-9505 (Kris) or 330-207-2196 (Steve).
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