Mad Maximalism, Subliminal Trends and the Upcoming Antiques Fair

March 1, 2017 | Categories: Antiques & Collectibles Fair | Tags: , ,


The Old Town Clovis Antiques Street Fair is coming up soon, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, March 26. We hope you’ll join us for a great day of exploration!

Are you hankering for macramé, plants, more color, patterns upon patterns? So, here’s the deal: we seek things that we remember from another time.

My husband Jack and I lived in an apartment building on Arguello Boulevard and California in San Francisco while Jack was in dental school at UCSF. We lived in a downstairs unit that we called the “cave” which was an add-on extra unit under the stairs and looked out into the garage. The cheap rent helped our budget, but we couldn’t stand living subterranean, and when an apartment became available upstairs we grabbed it.

We didn’t have a lot of money to spend, but we were creative. We had this great window facing west. Jack built a tall trellis (a six-foot high sawhorse-style apparatus that had a lot of hooks on the underside) and he made macramé hangers to create this wonderful display of hanging plants. Remember piggy back and spider plants, Boston ferns and more? We also had a staghorn fern, which was magnificent!

I recently read a Wall Street Journal piece on “Mad Maximalism” and was intrigued. Remember back to days of many textures, elements, collections of odd objects, colors, fabrics, plants and an excessive amount of STUFF? Somehow that intrigues me, and I wonder if we will adapt to this old trend revived once again.

The pendulum always swings and the WSJ featured designers believe that “over the top” decorating is going to make a comeback. It’s always hard for the average person to see what is trending, but if you look on Pinterest you will see that this prediction might not be so far-fetched. And as with my desire for macramé and plants, it is subconscious. It sneaks up on you. I believe that the input from all sources starts subliminally to create the awareness and hence the desire for something, even when you don’t know that you want it! Now with the internet and social media platforms, it is obvious how the trends are coming faster than ever.

As to the over the top decorating from the excessive days of the ’60s-’70s, you may not be there yet, but hang on. You are going to see it in its new interpretation. Currently mid-century modern is really hot, as well as decorating with industrial, country French, Hawaiiana, kitschy, silver-plate items etc.

This bodes well for our antique stores in Old Town Clovis. Items that were recommended in the article include vintage furniture, rugs that can be used as wall tapestries or as rugs. As for collections — choose something that you love and go crazy collecting. There are so many things to collect.

Some recommendations by the WSJ article:

Choose bold colors. Embellish the walls with hand-painted decorations and stencils inspired by centuries-old Turkish and Russian structures, and embellish the floor using rugs. Hang vintage textiles on walls. Play with patterns — use a variety of patterns on sofas, pillows, chairs and curtains. Mix it up, but keep a theme. Start a collection and become obsessive about it. Vintage books, hand-painted ceramics, wicker objects, marquetries, tiles, drawings, paintings — really, whatever grabs you! There are wonderful ways to display items — they can be stacked, layered, piled on top of each other, etc.

“There is more than just contemporary art out there, and older pieces are often much cheaper. It is hard for a collection to look like hoarding because once you display the items together, they look good as a ‘family’ of objects,” reads the article.
And one thing I relate to: “Fill your rooms with ‘stuff.’ You don’t want your house to look immaculate. By stuff, I mean: books (tons, please), collections, flea market finds, curiosities from antique shops.”

And, as the WSJ stated, “be patient, Rome wasn’t built in a day.”

Part of the fun is collecting, and one thing I loved about the article was this statement: “See the gold in old … A family piece immediately gives a sense of a lived-in home, as opposed to a house where every piece of furniture has been made new.”
And per the article, be patient. It takes time to develop your theme and it can take years. As you incorporate your buys from flea markets, estate sales, finds from antique stores and inherited items and then layering them with items from your travels, you will find your oasis for peace and tranquility in your very own home.

And if you are on the other side of the equation and you have items you want to sell at a garage sale or an estate sale, be smart. Take the time and spend a bit of money on getting things appraised. A one-hour consultation for someone to look at what you have is well worth it.

I still remember having a garage sale in San Francisco near Golden Gate Park where we lived. It was one of many, but perhaps our first. I had my mother’s costume jewelry laid out on two tables and someone showed up an hour before we opened and bought the entire collection. I was sick. I was naïve at the time and I didn’t have anyone advising me as to the value of the items.

Be smart and get help assessing what you have. You can have an item appraised at the Old Town Clovis Antiques Street Fair on March 26 by Kathy Osterberg-Sobelman. She will appraise one item per person, but you can talk with her about appraising your items and explore having an estate sale.

I hope to see you at our March 26 Antiques Street Fair and I hope you find what your heart desires — even if you don’t know what that is yet.

This article appeared in the Clovis Independent on February 24, 2017

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