Category Archives: Events

Antiquing in Brimfield

BrimfieldThree times a year – in May, July, and September – the small Massachusetts town of Brimfield transforms into a massive antique fair. Running from Tuesday through Sunday, “Brimfield”  is actually an agglomeration of twenty shows that take place in multiple fields and buildings throughout the week.  The shows stretch along about a mile of Route 20, a two-lane road that runs through the center of town.

I’ve been to Brimfield many times over the past dozen years.  Here is my advice on what to expect and how to have the best shopping experience. read more

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Secret Shopping Days at the Oakland Museum White Elephant Sale

White elephant sale
A Small Portion of the Art Department

The Oakland Museum White Elephant Sale is the mother of all rummage sales in the Bay Area. Now in its 56th year, the sale is a major fundraiser for the Oakland Museum of California and a major vintage shopping destination.  While I first attended the White Elephant Sale about 20 years ago, I only learned about the secret donor shopping days several years ago.  Admittedly it’s not that big a secret since, if you read their website carefully the information is there, but it’s buried several pages in and not broadcast on the home page.  Once you know about donor shopping days you’ll always want to shop during them.  I save items all year to donate to the White Elephant Sale just so that I can shop during donor shopping days. read more

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Weekly Antique Markets in London

London is one of the great cities in the world in which to go shopping for antiques and almost every day of the week there is an antique market in which to find them.  Here is a list of the weekly markets and my tips for shopping at them:

antique markets in london

Monday:  The Jubilee Market Hall in Covent Garden has markets every day of the week, but Monday is antique day. The market opens early (5am) but on my latest trip I arrived at about 9:00 am and many dealers were just starting to set up; from talking to several dealers I gather that during the early morning hours they are busy selling amongst themselves.  The items available are smalls:  silver, china, decorative objets, jewelry, clothing. read more

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The Best Antique Market in London: Kempton Park

best antique market in london
Exterior pitches

The best antique market in London isn’t actually in London and,  as a result, often isn’t listed in guidebooks or internet searches. But if you love antiques and are visiting London, you should make a point of attending the antique market held twice a month at the Kempton Park racetrack. It’s an easy train ride from central London so, do as the locals do, and head to Kempton in search of antiques.

The Kempton Park Market

Formally known as the Sunbury Antiques Market, but referred to by locals as “Kempton”, it is held on the second and last Tuesdays of each month, rain or shine.  TIP: be sure to check the calendar because the LAST Tuesday can be the fourth of or fifth week of the month.  About 600-700 dealers are located in a series of three indoor spaces plus outdoor spaces. read more

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Antiquing in England: Newark Antiques Fair

The Newark Antiques and Collectors Fair

The Newark International Antiques and Collectors Fair is the largest in Europe (according to its promoters), with up to 2500 dealers. Held at the Newark and Nottinghamshire Showground, about an hour-and-a-half train ride from London, the fair has a mix of indoor and outdoor spaces, so it goes on rain or shine.

Newark
Newark Antique Fair Site Plan
Newark
View inside one of the buildings

The Newark antiques market is vast (84 acres) and, depending on your collecting interests, can take a full day or two to traverse.  On my first visit two years ago I  arrived the night before so that I’d be ready to go early in the morning. What I discovered during this visit is that the majority of jewelry dealers (my primary interest) were located inside a series of large buildings which are shown in black on the site plan. read more

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Antiquing in the Bay Area: the Alameda Point Antiques Faire

Updated June 2015 to reflect new information 

Alameda Point Antique Fair

Alameda PointIMG_2557While this is no secret to anyone living in the Bay Area, the Alameda Point Antique Faire should be on the must-do list of anyone visiting the Bay Area who has an interest in vintage and antique goods.  Not only is it great for shopping, but this is also a market with a view:  the market takes place on an air strip at the former Alameda Naval Air Station and has a view of San Francisco, the Bay, and the giant cranes of the Port of Oakland as a backdrop. read more

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Maker and Muse, part 2: the ASJRA Conference

Conference
ASJRA
Necklace by Sybil Dunlop

I recently attended the annual conference of the Association for the Study of Jewelry and Related Arts (ASJRA).  This year the conference was held in Chicago in conjunction with the exhibit Maker and Muse, Women and Early 20th Century Art Jewelry at the Driehaus Museum.  Elyse Zorn Karlin, curator of the exhibit, is one of the founders and co-directors of ASJRA.

Day 1
ASJRA
Mosaic fireplace surround at Driehaus Museum

The first day of the conference began with a tour of the Driehaus Museum and a curator’s tour of the exhibit.  Click here to see my post about the exhibit. read more

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Maker and Muse, part 1: Exhibit and Book

Maker and Muse Exhibit
maker and muse
Child and Child tiara
maker and muse
Stained glass dome in the Driehaus Museum

I recently visited the exhibit Maker and Muse, Women and Early Twentieth Century Art Jewelry at the Driehaus Museum in Chicago.  Curated by Elyse Zorn Karlin, author of Jewelry and Metalwork in the Arts and Crafts Tradition, the exhibit explores the multiple roles women played in the creation of early 20th century art jewelry as makers, patrons, and subjects.  About half of the 250 pieces in the exhibit are drawn from the collection of Richard H. Driehaus – founder of the museum – and half are on loan from other museums and private collections.  I was in Chicago to attend the annual conference of the Association for the Study of Jewelry and Related Arts (ASJRA) which was focused this year on the subjects covered in the museum exhibition.  For my post on the conference click here. read more

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Antiquing in Texas: Round Top

Round topI’ve wanted to attend the big antiques fair in Round Top, Texas for many years and finally did so this year. Known as “Antiques Weekend” or “Texas Antiques Week”, both are really misnomers as the shows take place over more than a two week span (March 21-April 5 in 2015, the year I attended).

During this time period over 60 separate shows take place in several towns about midway between Austin and Houston, with the greatest concentration in the towns of Round Top and Warrenton.  I stayed in Austin and it was about an hour and a half drive.  The shows are mostly strung along a 10 mile stretch of highway 37. read more

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The Women’s Travel Fest

I’ve always loved seeking out antique markets while traveling but when I started going on buying trips for my antique jewelry business a few years ago this became the focus of my travels, and finding great markets became critically important. Unfortunately, I found much of the information online and in guidebooks to be poor.  So I decided to fill that vacuum and share my discoveries on this blog and make it a resource for antique dealers, collectors, and travelers with a love of antiques. read more

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