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Mikey is driving past the state mental hospital recently when he got a flat tire. So he gets the jack from the trunk, lifts the car and proceeds to take the lug nuts off the wheel and place them in the hubcap. Just as he gets the last one off and places it in the hubcap another car comes by and runs over the hubcap, sending the lug nuts into a nearby storm drain. Exasperated, Mikey does not know what to do next and decides to call a cab.
Just as he pulls his cell phone from his pocket and starts to dial he hears a voice from behind the hospital fence. “Hey buddy,” the guy is yelling, “Take one of the lug nuts from each of the other three wheels. That will hold your tires until you can get to a garage.” Mikey brightens with the patients bright idea and does exactly as the man said. Before he leaves, he yells back at the patient, “That was pretty smart. Why do they have you in there?” The patient smiles and calls back, “I’m in here because I’m crazy, not dumb.”
In the last newsletter we explored whatnots and etageres, which were used to display tchotchkes and knick knacks in the 16th and 17th Centuries by the common folk. In about the same period, the rich and the well to do had curio cabinets, which referred to entire rooms where they stored and displayed what they called curios. Curios were thecollections of things that they may have had; not unlike tchotchkes and knick knacks, but you couldn’t tell them that. The rooms were usually designed and built with glass panels to protect the belongings from the curious and this is where we get our modern curio cabinets of today.
On Sunday, August 30, 2009, there will be Antiques in the Park at Veterans Park in Westwood, New Jersey. Located in North Bergen County near Paramus, this show features 80 quality antiques and collectibles dealers featuring period furniture, vintage art glass, ephemera, advertising collectibles and much more. The show offers plenty of free parking and is sponsored by the Westwood Heritage Society.
Today the modern curio cabinet is used not only by royalty but us common folk too, to display our collections of snow globes, porcelain dolls or antique head vases. Although they are not complete rooms, they do indeed have glass panels and doors to protect whatever collection is inside. Modern curio cabinets come in many different shapes, sizes and colors. They are also usually made of wood, are lighted and have adjustable shelves, making them ideal display cases. Another misconception is that curio cabinets are for old folks, because it stands to reason that they have more old stuff to put away. However, nothing could be further from the truth as more and more designers are using the curio cabinet to showcase small collections.
Curio Cabinets come in many different styles and are very versatile. Some are very elaborate with beveled glass and cabriole legs or carved wood. Some curio cabinets can be made of natural hard woods, they can be antique, vintage or than can be purchased as reproductions; some designers even paint their curio cabinets and then distress them to make them look old and shabby. A curio cabinet can be used in many rooms of a home to not only showcase a collection, but as safe storage. A curio cabinet can be used in a den to display an autographed baseball collection or in the family room to display a vintage amberina glass collection.
The first thing you should consider is size. If you are displaying a small collection of snow globes, you could probably make do with a smaller curio cabinet as opposed to displaying vintage dolls, where the cabinet may need to be a little larger and it may need to have adjustable shelves. Secondly, you should consider the space where the curio cabinet is to be placed. If it is corner with very little natural light, you may need to get a lighted cabinet. At which time you should also consider whether you need a corner curio cabinet or a regular square or rectangular unit. Once you have determined the basics regarding size, lighting and shape, the next things to consider are the decorative aspect of the curio cabinet and the price you are willing to spend.
One thing to consider as far as room design and aesthetics is whether you want the curio cabinet to match the furniture in the room. If the room is already contains antique or vintage furniture, a modern curio cabinet would probably not look good. On the other hand, if the room is decorated with painted furniture, a painted curio cabinet would probably fit better with the surroundings. This will also help you set a price point for a curio cabinet. Curio cabinets made of hardwoods will age beautifully over time, but the initial cost can be expensive. Inexpensive curio cabinets made of pressed board and veneer can be purchased at many places but usually will not hold up well over the long haul.
Buying a curio cabinet can be fun because of the huge selection available from such a huge variety of vendors and at so many different prices. Buying a curio cabinet can be a daunting task for the very same reasons. These are some things to consider when buying a curio cabinet.
An antique rifle sold recently for $20,700 at Dan Morphy’s Auction in Denver, Pennsylvania. The rifle that was part of a collection owned by the Late John Holman, was handmade by J.P. Beck between 1785 and 1790 in Pennsylvania. Mr. Holman’s collection included more than 220 antique rifles and powder horns. In addition to the guns, the auction also featured fine art, antique toys and dolls, jewelry and coins. All total Dan Morphy’s Auction brought in more than $2.5 million from August 13-15, 2009.
At Heritage Auctions, two superhero rare comic books sold for top dollar on August 14-15, 2009 in Dallas, Texas. A rare 1963 The Amazing Spider-Man comic book sold for $83,650 and the other comic book, Amazing Fantasy #15, also a Spider-Man comic book sold for $52,280. This auction which also included other vintage and rare superhero comic books as well as Charles Schulz artwork and illustrations, brought in more than $2.1 million.
If you or a loved one have ever owned a locket, you will agree when we say that it is probably one of the most personal pieces of jewelry that someone can wear. Lockets are very sentimental pieces that can bring happiness or sadness depending on what the locket means to the person wearing it. When most of us think of a locket, we think of a piece of jewelry, a pendant that hangs on a chain, and holds a picture or pictures of those we love. In most cases, that is true and before thephoto age, they actually held small paintings. However, lockets have been used in the past to hold pieces of hair, ashes or other small materials of love ones that have passed away and in ancient times it could have held poison used to kill a rival or someone that wasn’t trusted.
Lockets have been around for hundreds of years and in a lot of families they have been handed down from generation to generation. The people of the Victorian Era however, are the ones that made lockets really popular. The Victorians decorated their lockets, which were either heart shaped or oval, with rubies, emeralds, diamonds and other gemstones. They also were intricately carved or were decorated with other elaborate embellishments. Most lockets were made of either gold or sterling silver. The idea of monogramming them and engraving them did not become popular until much later. Today, the locket is not only still popular among romantic lovers and newlywed couples, but with vintage jewelry collectors who pay top dollar for antique and vintage lockets.
Gaithersburg Antique & Home Accessories Closing Sale
The Gaithersburg Antique & Home Accessories store is closing and Jane Heller Estate Sales has been asked to sell its entire inventory. The shop is located at 5 N Summit in Gaithersburg, Maryland, and has been around for about 15 years. All ticket prices have been reduced and everything including store fixtures must go. Thursday – Sunday, August 20-23, 2009.