High Point Furniture Market: Day 1- Pre-Opening Shopping

We arrived in High Point on Thursday evening after 9 hours of traveling. Its a cross country trip that is exhausting because of the number of connections it takes to get her from Santa Barbara.
We arrived a day early to do some “pre-shopping”, that is, to shop before the market is officially opened, and to hit the one of a kind venues and vendors before they get picked over by the masses.

The huge building that houses the Antique & Design vendors is open only twice a year where antique dealers from around the country come to display their latest “finds”. We shopped antiques, from a collector of all things Asian primitive to a vendor hawking antique garden ornaments, and a European importer who sources antiques and knocks them off for the likes of Restoration…. Restoration… uh…whatever their name is, and then he sells the originals after he’s finished with them. The sale, held on two floors, is a sale that we had to hit first because it’s always a total sellout within two hours. See our finds, below!

ca.1880 Balinese Bench, made of a single plank; Fruitwood

ca. 1920, Antq. Window Ornament, Hebei Province, China. We will make this into a coffee table, with this window ornament as the table top, on an steel frame.
Antq. Asian vessels that we will make into table lamps.
Pair of antq. ceramic, lidded and footed vases. The raised pattern are detailed paisleys.

Antq. Flemish mirror with burnished gold carving and original antique looking glass.
A collection of seven objects retrieved from sunken ship wrecks (the blue tin under the top urn is not a part of the collection).
Next we were of to another importer of Italian furniture made in centuries old techniques hand down through their families. These pieces are made by different ateliers, each family specializes in a particular type of furniture, such as tables, or another who makes cabinets, or chests.
Italian drop-leaf table with plank top. The elongated table opens to a width of 42 inches, and is 18inches wide when closed. Grey over painted on red. waxed finish. 
Italian drop-leaf table with leafs down.

Italian cabinet with six door sand two secret compartments.

Over sized Italian cocktail table with stretcher’s on base.

Italian chest with inlay detail on top, sides and drawer fronts.
Lastly we head off on foot to a tent sale of garden antiquities, only to find nothing set up or unpacked. Boo on them for making us walk to the other end of town for naught!
Then we walked a little further to a warehouse where we worked with a collector, a gentleman who lives in Western China next to Tibet. This man goes from village to village buying antiques and interesting objects, restores them if required, then ships them to the USA. This was yet another place to get there and get it while it lasts!  

Antq. Chinese  window screen which we will also make into another table. Note that the pattern is quatrefoil, found in Gothic and Renaissance architecture.

Casual pine table made from reclaimed elm, restyled into this contemporary dining table, above.
The top is inlaid with a classical star pattern, below.

An unusually large antq. Chinese six-door side board or buffet; Alder wood.
Reclaimed antq. Elm is refashioned into a naturally rustic dining table top, on a blacked steel base.

We left our new Tibet based friend and headed back in the Antique & Design Center to peruse for anything we may have missed earlier now that some of the pressure is off to “get there first”.
 We like the juxtaposition of the antq. marble top, above, sitting on a reclaimed wood base that has been naturally bleached by the sun. Below: Detail of marble top.
18th century antq. French bottle filler, corker and labeler, below.
Lighting fixture, below, from Splurge Lighting by Robert Nicholas are truly one of a kind because they are made with found or re purposed objects. 

Fortuny girl! Also in the Antiques & Design section… a maker of Fortuny pillows has found a use for all of the scraps that would otherwise end up in the garbage pail: Fortuny dog and cat collars for the well dressed pooch or feline. Retail $85.00.
Yes, Fortuny Dog Collars, above.

And at the opposite end of the spectrum, Fortuny girl creates the “Beer-De-Lier”. Made with flattened beer bottle caps. The fixtures contain between 800-2400 bottle caps depending on its size. The designer Rebecca Vizard saw the design as a project that would engage local youth as artists to work on the fixtures, and saw it as an opportunity to “clean up the local area, create jobs, encourage creativity and to have fun in the process”. Each fixture keeps approx. 2 cubic feet out of the local landfill. Good work Rebecca!

Italian marble top sits on a precision made stainless steel base. The flat steel bar, both vertically and on the floor, are uniquely wide and create balance with the marble table top.


What a great dining table this is for outside living and entertaining. At first glance it is an 84 inch long teak table…but pull in the end and the table base extends revealing a “butterfly” table leaf which extends the table an additional 40 inches. Another surprise…the top isn’t teak, its a resin made to look and feel like teak, but it will not age or turn grey like teak.

We came across this handsome indoor Dining chair in a transitional style sitting on contemporary tapered legs. Its an oh so tailored look. Upholstered in grey linen and piped with white cord, on Grey painted legs.

Many fashion designers have crossed over from designing clothing to putting their names on home furnishings. Two of the most notable designers who have put their names on rug lines are Calvin Klein and Joseph Aboud, both of which have lines that include rugs that are made from patchwork cowhides. We saw some similar rugs and at first glance they were the namesakes rugs above, but in fact they are rugs made by a much smaller and lesser well known factory in India, with very reasonable prices and beautiful quality. See for yourself, below.

Above: The patchwork rug in random, almost mosaic in style.
Below: Close up of patchwork rug showing the mosaic like patterning.

Another cowhide rug from the same manufacturer was made of square cowhide “tiles”, with an individual pattern cut into each piece creating a rug that looks like ethnic ceramic or clay tiles.  
Above: The cowhide tile rug
Below: Close up of the “tile” patterns 
Next we happened on a vendor of south American sheep skins. Curious, we stopped for a moment to look at some beautifully woven throws (lap blankets to some of you Easterners!). These throws are made out of Baby Alpaca and wool, and had such beautiful woven patterns and finishing details. 
Above: Woven stripe throw of Baby Alpaca, with unique hand woven trim edge detail
Below: The sophisticated finish of this weave includes spheres woven as a pattern.

We ended the day at one of our up and coming manufacturers, and shared with them the excitement they had at launching a new collection. Of course we loved it so bought a few pieces which will ship to us mid-next Spring.

Red lacquered ladies chest, above, Also available in white lacquer.

White lacquered table with Chinese Chippendale fretwork stretchers, above. Also available in red lacquer. 
This same company makes beautiful children furniture, and one of their settings was featured in such a stunning way, I wanted to share that with you, below.

The parents of the lucky baby that would occupy the room above will have a tough act to follow when its time for a teenage room! White painted furniture is in contrast to the pale green walls and accented by two walls covered in hundreds of three-dimensional origami birds in bright colors.

I almost hate to end with Worst in Show after the beautiful kids room, above…but I will!
As we walked home from a very long day, an evening cocktail party, and a very late dinner, we came across an advertisement plastered on several glass doors on a building for the new Duck Dynasty Furniture Line. That’s right, Duck Dynasty’s members are now hawking (or should I say ducking!) a furniture line! Well as you might imagine, the line features a signature recliner upholstered in camo!
The sign above announces the “Collection”. Would have been funnier if they had spelled ‘collection’ with a ‘K’ instead of a ‘C’.
Did they even need to say it was redneck approved?
The recliner!  See, I wasn’t kidding.
Goodnight moon.

Source: A Design Guy

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