Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Deerfield...a Review.

We've said it before--the ADA Deerfield Antiques Show is probably our favorite show. That it always falls near our anniversary and that it takes place in the fall in New England certainly both contribute to that. Deerfield generally has about 50 dealers, which means that it's small-ish, manageable, and even intimate. And those 50 or so dealers are some of the best in the nation so you are sure to see some great stuff. But (there is always a but, but this time it's a good but)...but it's not New York. It's not Philadelphia. It's not what you could call "the big dance." That means that the prices are not like those in NY or Philly. We saw great things well into six figures, but we also saw things for less than $100. How cool is that?

This year, we added a number of stops (mostly consignment pickups for Garth's), so the trip was long....Wednesday through early Monday. Pickups in western PA, coastal Mass, and central CT, stops in VT (that included a stop at the Bennington Museum, one of the best little museums around - more on that soon...), and, of course, a couple of nights at our favorite inn in Amherst (The Purple Gables, though we've already booked it for next year, so don't even try!). We logged something like 2000 miles, and we finally arrived at home Monday morning at 4:00 am. Did we mention that we were driving a big honking van AND dragging a big trailer the whole way?

We also tried, for the first time, the Deerfield Tavern Night. Fortunately, they had some great chocolate treats, otherwise dinner would have been a bit of a disappointment...but not necessarily their fault...being vegetarians, buffets are always hard for us, especially with just one side dish. Great rum punch, though. And a wonderful time getting to know Arvin, Fran, and Christopher, a young family from Long Island who were newbies to the show.

But back to the show. We only had time for a precious few hours there, but it was enough to offer the following summation: things were selling! As we've noted for the past 12 months, those dealers that are trying to be economy-friendly by bringing interesting stuff that is priced reasonably are making sales. Heck, Gary Ludlow and Ted Fuehr were even selling brown furniture!

But those dealers who are still setting up the same booths with the same prices from 2004 tend to sit alone and grump about it.

A few of our favorite things were a great VT painted tall clock offered by Jewett and Berdan, some great boxes from David Good and Sam Forsythe, and Steve Powers had a wonderful series of drawings by a 19th century West Virginian who had relocated to southern Ohio (since H. is from WV and A. from OH, it was, of course, a fav from the show). Our good friend, Sumpter Priddy, as always, had some neat stuff, including a wonderful MD carved piecrust tea table (okay, it was one of the top prices was slightly more than we spent on our house, but it was gorgeous).

Folks, the market is alive, and, we think, has turned a corner, or at least is peeking around a corner. Auctions have been good lately, and the Deerfield Show saw many happy collectors leaving with bags and loaded vehicles.

We'll be at the Delaware Show in November, and if you're in the Midwest, the Ohio Country Show is this Saturday...great show with something for everyone.

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