Favorite finds from my house – and yours

COLLECTOR’S CORNER


I covered my dresser with things I enjoy waking up to — Parian figure and vase, a green opaline lamp and Murano glass eggs. SCOTT SIMMONS / FLORIDA WEEKLY

I covered my dresser with things I enjoy waking up to — Parian figure and vase, a green opaline lamp and Murano glass eggs. SCOTT SIMMONS / FLORIDA WEEKLY

I live and breathe collecting.

I sleep it, too, apparently, because my bedroom also bears witness to my passion for curiosities and beautiful things.

It’s full, but I try not to let things get too cluttered.

Here’s the top of my dresser. These are the first things I see, unless you count the hungry eyes of a cat.

1. This Parian figure of a woman with a dog dates from the mid-19th century. Parian was a costly medium in its day — the porcelain had to be absolutely blemish-free, because that’s what gave the figures their marble quality. I think this one, which is unmarked, is German.

2. The green opaline glass lamp was a real find — something like $5 at the Delray Beach Goodwill. Yes, you still can find treasure at thrift shops.

3. Tanya Pierce, who owned a Palm Beach boutique crammed with curiosities, begged me to let her sell this crystal jewelry casket, which I found for a few dollars at the Belle Glade Goodwill. It’s a 19th-century piece.

My friend Mary Beth Mudrick of West Palm Beach shared this Empire-style chest, which dates from the first half of the 19th century. It looks like it’s made of cherry wood. “The dresser is probably my very favorite possession. It figured largely in my childhood as the place to hang stockings in a Florida home sans a fireplace! Underneath was a favorite napping place and beside it was the only place in my home that a misbehaving child could stand in a corner. It was decorated in every holiday. But it has a story that started long before I came along. It came from Memphis with my mother from her mother’s house to help the new bride decorate.” COURTESY PHOTO

My friend Mary Beth Mudrick of West Palm Beach shared this Empire-style chest, which dates from the first half of the 19th century. It looks like it’s made of cherry wood. “The dresser is probably my very favorite possession. It figured largely in my childhood as the place to hang stockings in a Florida home sans a fireplace! Underneath was a favorite napping place and beside it was the only place in my home that a misbehaving child could stand in a corner. It was decorated in every holiday. But it has a story that started long before I came along. It came from Memphis with my mother from her mother’s house to help the new bride decorate.” COURTESY PHOTO

4. I bought the Murano glass eggs a few years ago in Atlanta. Love the colors of the glass. Yes, airport security asked me to explain what they were after seeing them in the X-ray.

5. These brilliant cut-glass jars and boxes date from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. They’re perfect for stashing watches and extra keys.

6. This 19th-century Parian vase stands a whopping 18 inches high. I’m not sure of its origins. It may be from one of the potteries in Bennington, Vermont, but it has no markings. Regardless, it’s encrusted with delicate porcelain flowers that have survived more than 150 years of dusting and cleaning. To me, that’s a miracle.

Share your treasures!

 

 

Please email a clear photo to ssimmons@floridaweekly.com and tell me the story of how you acquired the piece and what makes it interesting or special to you. I will share these with other readers — think of it as show and tell in the time of social distancing.

Maybe this will remind us that we’re not so far apart after all. ¦

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