A couple weeks ago we hinted about a new container that was about to arrive. It did - but after the fastest crossing in the history of containers and a quick wave through by Customs, our poor container ended up sitting at the Port of Charleston while we frantically made dozens of calls trying to find a driver to bring it to us. (Who knew that trucks and truckers are such a hot commodity right now?) We finally found a company to help us and the nice driver arrived right on time with our container.
Marlon unloading a stripped commode. This one has the prettiest lines.
We can forecast the weather whenever a container is arriving. It's either pouring down rain, snowing, blisteringly hot or freezing cold. This time, it was cold and raining, natch, but we were so excited to see our goodies, we didn't even care.
Thanks to shutdowns, lockdowns and quarantines, this was the container that was purchased completely online, via Instagram, texts, emails, What's App and phone calls. We are delighted beyond delighted to welcome these pieces to the store and they all met and/or exceeded all our expectations in the very best way.
The good news is that we are headed back to France in June to buy like crazy (if this sounds fun to you, we're getting our trips organized for the fall and we do have a couple spaces left for our Paris buying trip, September 29 to October 5th. Drop us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org if you'd like more details.)
So back to the container. Most of the treasures have made it onto the floor, so take a peek:
A crunchy, crusty old, old, old workbench. We see it as a console or sofa table.
Here's the etabli, all styled at Huff Harrington Home
(Antiques 101: an établi -French for work bench - was primarily used as a carpenter's bench and often has tool holes or vises attached to it as well as plenty of marks and dings on its surface. The établi was very common in country homes - since farmers couldn't work in their fields during the cold months, they would often make furniture for their own homes or families. We snap these up whenever we see them and love all the more for their imperfections and patina.)
Stripped Dutch Commode
(Antiques 101: this is a great example of typical Dutch design dating from the 18th century with its curves, voluptuous lines and simple hardware. Talk about sassy! This piece is circa late 1800's/early 1900s.)
We couldn't resist this weathered and rustic pine wine tasting table with its folding trestle base. We love how versatile they are.
(Antiques 101: not only are wine-tasting tables lovely to look at, but they're hard-working too. Back in the 1800's, their tilting tops meant they could be stored in a corner or up against a wall, making rooms for barrels and baskets of grapes. When wine needed to be sampled, the top was flipped down, bottles poured and glasses raised. We love them pretty much for the same reason in today's world: they're easy to store, so practical and pretty too. Hint: they're great for games and puzzles.)
Stripped Trumeau Mirror
(Antiques 101: rectangular trumeau mirrors are set into a tall wooden frame with a painted or carved motif or decoration at the top. When they originated in the early 18th century, they were actually not mirrored, but rather decorative panels usually placed over a fireplace. As glass became more commonplace, mirrors were added to the wooden design. They're still as gorgeous as ever and look as wonderful in today's interiors as they did 300 years ago.)
(Antiques 101: although the ones we buy date back a few decades to the '40s through '70s, the starburst mirror is not new to the design scene. They're said to have originated during the reign of Louis XIV (the Sun King, get it?!) or even perhaps as a religious symbol doing to the Middles Ages. We find them enchanting and a perfect complement to any wall.)
Louis Philippe Commode
This classic Louis Philippe is also a new arrival. We're loving the Carylon Killebrew painting above it, too.
(Antiques 101: Louis Philippe commodes are simple, practical and functional with clean lines and little embellishment. We love them in any wood but we're especially partial to burled walnut, like this one.)
There's lots more on the floor at Huff Harrington Home and we hope you'll stop by to see. We think knowing the history and the provenance of any piece is always a bonus, so we're happy to share Antiques 101 with you anytime we can.