Windsor Antique Center – England

to 10px; WIDTH: 311px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SkY79t3_QxI/AAAAAAAADNs/UAun3oQtlxQ/s400/windsorhouseantiques.jpg” border=”0″ />Dear Diva Readers,

top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>Like many of you, I get a lot of junk email, spam, and unsolicited random requests. I’ve signed up on a million mailing lists and that just adds to the problem, so once a week I click quickly through my spam folder to see if anything of interest got tucked away accidentally before empting them into the trash bin. Typically, it’s all deletable, but recently an advertising email from an antique shop caught my attention.

I’m not sure how I got on their list but I suspect in researching potential antique shopping tours for clients visiting the UK I might have subscribed at some point. Rather than deleting this one advertising email as I usually do, I found myself intrigued by Windsor House Antique Centre in the beautiful Cotswold’s, about 2 hours from London in Moreton in Marsh. This beautiful country market town contains about 30 other antique dealers and a plethora of unlimited free parking, with the Windsor House Antique Center sitting amongst honey-colored stone buildings and astride the ancient Roman Fosse Way. Just thinking about it makes me want to strap on my wellies and go striding through the nearby lush river valleys and rolling green hills!

Within a few clicks I found myself enjoying good quality mahogany Georgian chest of drawers and tea caddies, beautiful Wedgewood plates and pitchers, Edwardian silver dishes and Victorian Toleware. Going back to the e-advert, the newsletter closes with an invitation – Jane Finnegan says “Contact me any Tuesday or Sunday – and when you choose to visit us, let us know and we will be well prepared with tea, coffee and biscuits or for an evening visit we can supply wine should you wish!” Needless to say, the mere mention of wine caught my attention!

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George 3rd Mahogany chest

Mahogany chest on stand of rare smaller proportions. Wonderful condition.
Circa 1780 with original handles
40″ wide x 21″ deep x 69″ high.
£2750.00
(email vendor for delivery costs and options)

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Wedgewood Jug, circa 1830

Pretty ewer with relief molding. Chinoiserie print. Small chip.
9″ high x 8″ high
£180.00
(+ postage of £8.00)

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Wonderful Toleware Tray

Beautiful Toleware tray with wonderful flowered decoration. Victorian.
31 3/4″ x 26 1/4″
£695.00
(+ postage of £12.00)

Normally, if I haven’t visited an antique shop or know someone who has, I don’t like to recommend it – however, I have suspicion that this shop has serious potential and just because I don’t have time at the present to check them out in person, I didn’t want my dear Diva Readers to miss out on an opportunity!!! Plus, as an added benefit for those arm-chair travelling Diva Readers, Windsor House has in interesting online inventory and ships internationally!

I’ll most certainly set aside time to visit Windsor House Antiques Centre on my next trip to the UK. In the meantime, if you make it there before I do, please tell Jane & the gang at Windsor House Antiques that The Antiques Diva™ sent you – and even more importantly, please report back to me with your findings! I’d love to live vicariously through your shopping experience!

Cheerio Mate!

The Antiques Diva™
(seen at right with La Reine and The English Rose)

What are the Cotswolds?

Wiki explains, “The Cotswolds is a range of hills in west-central England, sometimes called the ‘Heart of England’, an area 25 miles (40 km) across and 90 miles (145 km) long. The name Cotswold means either ‘sheep enclosure in rolling hillsides’ or it comes from the term “wold” meaning hills.”

Here are a few photos from my last trip to the Cotswold’s several years ago!

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om/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SkY79HtcYDI/AAAAAAAADNU/7JkWGrS6Ggc/s400/cotswolds6.jpg” border=”0″ />to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SkY7z9wLChI/AAAAAAAADNM/ilfPehEXCiM/s400/cotswolds5.jpg” border=”0″ />to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SkY7zq58nzI/AAAAAAAADNE/UBytql7gk-M/s400/cotswolds4.jpg” border=”0″ />to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SkY7zmP3KEI/AAAAAAAADM8/JviLjUiS48A/s400/cotswolds3.jpg” border=”0″ />to 10px; WIDTH: 300px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SkY7zS_hcZI/AAAAAAAADM0/1sJcrKqgjYA/s400/cotswolds2.jpg” border=”0″ />to 10px; WIDTH: 300px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SkY7zVGblwI/AAAAAAAADMs/9gE-Nx_y-Eg/s400/cotswolds.jpg” border=”0″ /> to 10px; WIDTH: 300px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SkY8GPt3quI/AAAAAAAADN8/rLYEmsjyrmM/s400/cotswolds8.jpg” border=”0″ />My Friend The English Rose showing all our shopping success in The Cotswold’s!

USA Edition Guest Blog – La Reine’s Day Trip to Litchfield County, CT

La Reine is back with another exciting Guest Blog for Antiques Diva Readers!!

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SdOvbLqpEKI/AAAAAAAAC08/3kW4fRWX8P8/s400/la+reine.jpg” border=”0″ />top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>In early March, the sun peeked out of the NYC clouds, the temperatures skyrocketed to nearly 60, and The Big Guy and I decided the open roads beckoned and it was time for a day trip. Our former home in nearby Litchfield County, CT, is only about 90 miles northeast of our home in NYC, in the northwest corner of Connecticut, and since it had been nearly 15 years since we’d returned, we decided to take a little walk down memory lane combined with a little antiquing, lunching and shopping.

to 10px; WIDTH: 320px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 240px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SdOvqwu1FoI/AAAAAAAAC1U/fRZYkEeqLpA/s320/LitchfieldCounty_Spring%2520Trees_Large.jpg” border=”0″ />Litchfield County is known for its rolling hills, picturesque Revolutionary-era villages, prep schools, horse farms, and of course, antiquing. For 3 years we lived halfway between Litchfield and Woodbury, two villages known for their shopping and antiquing. We drove up I-95, crossed over to I-84, and found our way to route 6, where we slowly cruised through the countryside and enjoyed the melting snow and barren trees, watching winter slowly dissipate. After the obligatory stop in front of our former Victorian-style home, we took photos to text to our kids, pointing out how few changes the present owners had made.

to 10px; WIDTH: 320px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 212px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SdOvgico4AI/AAAAAAAAC1E/u7aUiQV4iSU/s320/la+reine+conneticut.jpg” border=”0″ />Then onto Litchfield, where we had spent many weekend afternoons browsing, shopping and lunching, often after an afternoon cross-country skiing in the nearby White Memorial Park. As we were only there for the day, we decided to limit our Litchfield excursion to West Street on The Green, the “main drag” or town center of this charming town. Our first stop was Les Plaisirs de la Maison, a French-Country antiques store which conveniently had a parking spot directly in front. While I was investigating the dishware and tabletop accessories, TBG was checking the framed maps of France, looking for maps that included our favorite holiday spot, Corsica (often missing from old French maps as it went back and forth between France and Italy). Despite the 20% off all inventory promotions in effect, we didn’t find anything we desperately needed or wanted, although if I go back, a magnifying lens in the shape of a fleur-de-lys was intriguing. However, we enjoyed watching another couple trying to decide if a 6 foot by 3 foot table with 6 leaves was big enough for their entertaining needs: we have a small 2 bed/2 bath on the Upper West Side, where I’m not sure this table would make it in the elevator: I know it wouldn’t fit in my dining room!

to 10px; WIDTH: 320px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 214px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SdOvm8MNk5I/AAAAAAAAC1M/DkcCqcYMbHU/s320/les+plaisirs+du+maison.jpg” border=”0″ />Then, it was well past noon and our Starbucks cups were long empty, so on the advice of several shoppers, we strolled to the corner and tried a recently opened restaurant, @the corner. We were not disappointed. As usual, TBG tested the burger, and I ordered the Thai chicken wrap, and my only regret was that I hadn’t ordered the other half to take with: it was far too large to eat in one setting, but I was afraid of it sitting in the car all afternoon.

to 10px; WIDTH: 230px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 320px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SdOvyHbWRLI/AAAAAAAAC1k/eqyju1oAyIM/s320/R.+Derwin+Clothiers.jpg” border=”0″ />After a hot and foamy cappuccino, we wandered into Kitchenworks and Gourmet Gifts, which I did not remember from previous visits. The owners assured me it’s been in Litchfield for 30 years, but had recently relocated from around the corner. After purchasing a few kitchen necessities (including a microwave egg cooker, which we have used quite successfully several times), I continued on to Workshop Inc, where I scored some hugely discounted Christmas napkin rings (for my gift drawer!) and a new summer top, sadly full-price. TBG had spotted a long-ago favorite, R. Derwin Clothiers. This men’s store is clearly for those with English-country aspirations: Hunter boots, Scottish cashmere, Italian suiting, TBG was happy happy! After wrapping up a silk pocket square and brightly knit cashmere socks, I reluctantly dragged TBG along to our next stop, and the next, and the next. Soon, TBG was stocking up on teas at Flora & Fauna; the Harney and Sons Paris blend is delicious, and appropriately housed in a white and blue tin!

to 10px; WIDTH: 320px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 47px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SdOvyXed3mI/AAAAAAAAC1s/REsyq_lK9oQ/s320/white+flower+farm.gif” border=”0″ />Before we knew it, the sun was lowering in the sky and we hadn’t even been to Woodbury! So back down rte 6, past White Flower Farm (unfortunately closed for the season, but there will be a Part Deux: we will be back in the spring!) Shortly we were stopping at Mill House Antiques, on Main Street in Woodbury, one of my long-time favorite antiquing wonder-amas. The grounds and buildings alone are worth the visit: the 17th century shop is situated on the Nonnewaug River, with a grist mill out back, 7 out buildings, and luscious gardens, all carefully restored.

to 10px; WIDTH: 320px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 240px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SdOvyJVvF6I/AAAAAAAAC1c/H_C69MWlbXc/s320/main_showroom_building.jpg” border=”0″ />While The Big Guy entered into a long conversation on the limited edition Lionel train on display (the owner hopes to open a train store on one of the out-properties soon), I wandered the 4 buildings filled to the brim with tables, chairs, chandeliers, clocks, end tables, paintings, pottery and glassware: all gorgeous, all quality, all pricey. My favorite discovery was the “Rolodex Table”: a round English landowner’s drum table, with the perimeter constructed of drawers, one for each renter, so the landowner could keep his accounts straight. Too clever! Keep your eyes open at this well-known antiques haven: you never know who you might see here!

C’est triste, we had reached Saturday 5pm closing times for the shops, and we sadly drove past many more antiques and specialty shops in
Woodbury, all along rte 6. However, we know we’ll be back when White Flower Farm gets their tomatoes and herb plants in stock, this time we’ll leave a little earlier, and lunch a little quicker!

A la prochaine,
La Reine