There's not much (i.e. NOTHING) in life that makes me happier than riffling through dirty piles of junk lying on the grass at dawn -- sometimes nothing turns up, sometimes I'm left with an embarrassment of riches. This week it was the latter:
Note the semi-absurd gilded mirror, which is luminous with first-surface gilding. The glass is replaced, but the frame is remarkably intact -- it's in a style and quality I don't usually find in dirty piles of junk on the grass at dawn, but beyond that, this is out of my wheelhouse. It elicited at least three gasps and a few exclamations as I was carrying it out. Is it late Federal? Early Victorian? The proportions are so bulbous, but the motifs look like those I've seen in frames from the 1820s/1830s -- what do we think, guys? (I'm asking you, Reggie.)
Let's move on to the oversize pewter lamps, which I adore -- I love that they function as a pair, but are asymmetrical above the bottom foot. Solid pewter until you hit the wiring, then they shift to patinated bronze. The finials are a sight to behold -- spikes at least 6 inches tall, and weighing about 5 pounds each.
And lastly a beautifully battered late 18th, early 19th century serving piece (technically, found a few weeks ago). I don't think it could be more worn. The glaze has been rubbed away from nearly the entire surface -- how long does it take to do that? Two centuries of continuous use? It's really quite beautiful, though of course it has zero value.
It's laying on a large piece of Japanese indigo dyed linen in a shade of blue so vibrant it's a little hard to look at. We also found an 18th century Sack-backed Windsor chair with remnants of the original green paint that will live in my office -- it's so comfortable. Perfect for use while on the computer.
Each of these was about a quarter of the price you'd pay for the same category of object at Ikea.
What about you: find anything interesting at the markets lately?