One Minute Diva – Brederode’s Najaarsbrocante 2010

to 10px; width: 400px; height: 300px; text-align: center;” src=”” border=”0″ alt=”” />Dear Diva Readers,

top: 2px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! Brederode Kunst & Antiek is back with their Najaarsbrocante the 10th, 11th, and 12th of December with a fabulous private sale in Amsterdam’s Jordaan! Brederode joins together with area antique dealers to make a special weekend of antiques, art and open doors. This year’s sale will feature lanterns, candelabras, mirrors, glasswork and a variety of French brocante items! But Brederode isn’t the only one opening the doors to her private residence for a pre-Christmas sale: visit Brederode to get a map to other vendors participating in this open door weekend in Amsterdam.

Don’t forget to mention The Antiques Diva® sent you!

Dec 10, 11, and 12
from 11am-6pm

Lijnbaangracht 56D
1015 GS Amsterdam

Read past Antiques Diva blog posts on this special weekend to see some sights from former sales!

Happy Shopping,
The Antiques Diva®

P.S. The Antiques Diva® & Company blog was just featured in a list titled “40 Antique Shopping Blogs” to know! Check it out!

A Word from our Sponsor – Auction Hunters!
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to 10px; width: 160px; height: 120px; text-align: center;” src=”” border=”0″ alt=”” />The LA Times says it “should satisfy fans of the Antiques Roadshow”

DALLAS or Bust!

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 309px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”” border=”0″ />Dear Diva Readers,

top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>This December finds me dashing through the snow back home to Oklahoma to spend time with friends and family for the holiday season! In addition to stopping off in New York City to visit a friend and do some whirlwind Christmas shopping – this leads to me to ponder, “Is it still Christmas shopping if all the shopping I do is for myself?”I’m also taking a few days to do the Diva Loca in Dallas!!! Although I grew up in Oklahoma, a stones throw away from Texas, I rarely crossed the border. So when it came to shopping in Dallas I didn’t have a huge repertoire of addresses on file.

Victorian Cobweb came to the rescue, posting some” target=”_blank”>great antique shopping resources! Thanks Victorian Cobweb!

To read Victorian Cobweb’s Dallas Antique Shopping tips –” target=”_blank”>click here!

Have a Happy Holiday Season,
The Antiques Diva™

PS: As always, Diva Tours is closed during December & January! We’ve some great antique shopping tours planned for Spring 2010 – email for details.

Feel at Home in The Hague

top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>Just a few short weekends ago, Holland celebrated its annual “Feel at Home in The Hague” Expat Fair teaching newcomers “How to Live in Holland”. The Antiques Diva™ took part in the fair offering new expats hints and tips on antique shopping in Holland. Those of you who weren’t able to attend missed a roaring good time, but we don’t want you to feel too left out so for readers and arm-chair travelers at home, we’re posting the article in full!
The Antiques Diva™

Antiques Shopping in The Hague

top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>By mere happenstance, you’re in Holland at the best time to buy antiques in the last quarter century. Right now, Holland is offering some of the best bargains in Western Europe. Antiques have fallen out of favor with the fashion-forward low-landers and every Jan, Henk and Peter is cleaning their “zolder”, banishing anything Rococo, Baroque or beyond. As the Dutch lose interest in antiques, prices drop and savvy shoppers benefit from increased selection and lower prices. As an antique shopping maven, my mantra is the time is ripe to cash in on the age-old adage, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”

Of course, “trash or treasure” are subjective words. An 18th C heavily-carved Dutch walnut armoire might have sold ten years ago for 12,000 Euros. Today you can pick one up at auction for 2,000E. But you needn’t spend thousands to cash in on this recession. I’ve bought 200 year old copper pots and Art Deco lighting fixtures at Diemen’s De Eland for less than the price of dinner at IKEA. As a non-Dutch speaker, going to auction seems to be a daunting affair. But don’t let the words get in the way. De Zwaan located on Amsterdam’s Keizersgracht #474 is part vaudeville show, part cultural immersion course. Go to viewings and peruse the catalogs in advance. If serious about buying, ask that your lot be sold in English. Should your budget be a bit bigger, Sotheby’s and Christies always offer English as an option.

A perfect place to start your tour is Amsterdam’s Spiegelkwartier, where over 100 of the best mid-to-high-end antique shops have congregated in the shadow of the Rijksmuseum. Two of my favorites are located on the Prinsengracht – Ria Jong’s at 574 and Arphi Antiques & Atelier at 827. Next on your list should be De Looier Antique Mall at Elandsgracht 109, which has a decidedly more casual feel and significantly lower prices.

I do not like the flea markets in Amsterdam. Though considered institutions, the Albert Cuypmarkt and Waterlooplein tend to be too heavy on the fleas. The Monday morning Noordermarkt is full of used clothes and bric-a-brac, however I’ve found a few stalls selling genuine antiques. I picked up an art deco bronze for a third of its value. Sundays May to October head to Nieuwmarkt for casual browsing.

While Amsterdam is charming with its chunky gables and glittering canals, The Hague feels regal with her international flavor and, in this diva’s opinion, is the best place to shop in Holland! From May until October, on Thursdays and Sundays, an antique and book market sets up on the Lange Voorhout selling the sort of brocante items you would expect to find on a stroll through Provence. On my last visit, I found some antique French stemware, a painting straight off the fields of Flevoland and a great Prussian lithograph. Around the corner from this tree-lined square is the main antique shopping artery of The Hague – Denneweg and Frederikstraat. Similar to the Spiegelkwartier, but smaller, this area has a greater range in high- to low-end items. From here a trip to the Noordeinde is necessary for art and antique gallery hopping. Two of my favorite shops are Frank Vrolijk Antieke Bouwmaterialen at Heilingweg 177 and S Van Leeuwen, Noordeinde 164.

The Hague VVV offers a brochure of the Art & Antiques District. Every August, Kunst en Antiek Dagen offers a program full of art & antique related activities. Horse-drawn carriage rides are free of charge, showing the best routes as they traverse the quarter while a special “en plein air” exhibit takes place around the Lange Voorhout.

If there’s one thing The Netherlands does well, it’s antique fairs. The pièces de résistance is TEFAF, the world’s leading art and antique show, held each March in Maastricht. Maastricht compliments the fair with a great number of antique shops clustered in the Wijck district. But s’Hertogenbosch hosts AFSH, with prices more targeted at Mercedes drivers rather than museum curators or those with private jets. Thus, I find this high-end fair more accessible for extravagant splurges. As in Maastricht, Den Bosch has her own antiques quarter and the VVV offers a map listing the antique shops. My favorite fair coordinator is InterEvent’s, which hosts among others two fairs in Naarden – La Table held 13-16 November, 2008 and Kunst & Antiek Weekend on the 22-25 January, 2009. While adding dates to your agenda, you mustn’t forget to add the popular PAN Amsterdam November 23-30, 2008.
If you’re interested in antiques, you might be interested in booking a private tour with The Antiques Diva™ Exclusive Antique Shopping Tours of Holland, Belgium and France! Visit The Diva’s blog for weekly “where to shop” updates.

Antiques Diva Blog and Antiques Diva Tours

Lady Lotus Does Des Moines

THE ANTIQUES DIVA™ TOURS – CLOSED FOR ANNUAL VACATION DURING AUGUST – REOPENS SEPTEMBER While my tour guides are taking a much needed holiday and I’m away for the month of August sipping champagne at sunset on a Mediterranean Cruise (after taking a driving tour of Italy), I haven’t forgotten you, my loyal readers, in my absence. August 2008 you’ll enjoy a multitude of guest blogs, pre-posted light blogs and miscellaneous reader questions. Don’t worry, I’ll be back with more great addresses and shopping tips this fall! All email inquiries or posted comments will be responded to come September!


Dear Antiques Diva,

top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>After living eight years abroad, I was used to my husband whisking me away to Italy, Australia or Japan whenever he had a business trip. So imagine my surprise when two months ago he told me his next business adventure would be a little closer to home. I realize we no longer live in Paris or Tokyo and as we currently reside in the Midwestern part of the United States, Des Moines, Iowa is only five hours away by car, but still I found I missed those international days when a business trip meant someplace tres exotic and foreign. I had to be wooed with talk of room service, steak dinners and great antique shopping.

In all honesty, I think he made up the latter, thinking I’d be interested in joining him for the conference if he told me there was antique shopping to be found. But somehow he got lucky and I felt your readers should be informed that not only is Des Moines a great place to visit but there is also a lovely place in West Des Moines for antique shopping. It’s called Historic Valley Junction.

When I first drove up to the outdoor shopping area, I was a bit hesitant. Although it was positively reviewed in my guidebook and two city newspapers, it looked more like an unloved construction zone with workers ripping up the main artery at the end of the street. But I drove around the mess, parked and started walking behind some ladies chatting about finding the best cake shop ever. Well, there was no way I was going to miss out on such a treasure, so I lurked behind as they entered “Let Them Eat Cake”. This small wedding cake business features personal-sized creations for you to eat there or take for later. I was swooning in butter cream, marzipan and edible wedding flowers!

Since I didn’t want to shop with frosting on my fingers, I took note of the place for later and made my way to the main shopping area along 5th Street. I didn’t walk far before my eye was caught by the gorgeous scrapbooking window displays of Heirlooms by Design. It had been eons since I browsed a dedicated scrapbooking store, so I did some damage to my credit card, then headed back to the car to drop off two groaning bags and check out the cake store again (mmm … still looks divine!)

This time I made it at least two more shops down 5th street before stopping. The” target=”_blank”>Heart of Iowa features souvenirs, funny gifts and gourmet foods. I picked up a little espresso cup ($5) featuring the state logo for my husband, Dr. Mr. T’s travel collection, but left the gorgeous local pottery, John Deere toy tractors and tasty jars of jelly.

The next place I found was Porch Light. This shop specializes in antiques and gifts complete with a cute little outdoor area of flowers and garden items. Chairs were hanging from the ceiling, shelves were laden with glassware and pottery … they even had a huge trunk filled with my favorite things – old glass windows and doors! I couldn’t resist a galvanized metal laundry tub from the 1940s which would be perfect to hold my fireplace tinder back home, so I scooped it up for only $25.

I spent the rest of the afternoon zigzagging across the street and through the many antique shops. The Paris Flea Market had gorgeous groupings of both old and new French items, like their cute, cute, cute wall of tea towels. A-Ok Antiques specialized in fun looking games. I was captivated by the Fortune Teller gumball machine, but at $945 I left it in the shop. And did I need a chandelier? David Meshek’s display in 5th Street Finds must have had over 500 pieces of antique lighting.

In addition to antiques, there are numerous art galleries, clothing stores and specialty boutiques. One of my favorite spots was Sisters by Especially Lace. My eyes feasted on the gorgeous bed coverings and little nothings scattered about, but I especially liked a ribbon-bedecked straw hat. The shopkeeper helped show me how it was “crushable”, so I walked out with this $33 treasure, w
hich helped keep the sun out of my eyes as I meandered back to the car (via the cake shop, of course!) with bags a plenty and a pink champagne cake ($5) for dessert back in the hotel.

Don’t tell my husband, please, but I actually hope his next meeting takes place in Des Moines just so I can visit Historic Valley Junction again- sooner rather than later!

Bonne Shopping Diva Readers!

Lady Lotus

Reader Question – Brocante Temploux in Belgium

THE ANTIQUES DIVA™ TOURS – CLOSED FOR ANNUAL VACATION DURING AUGUST – REOPENS SEPTEMBER While my tour guides are taking a much needed holiday and I’m away for the month of August sipping champagne at sunset on a Mediterranean Cruise (after taking a driving tour of Italy), I haven’t forgotten you, my loyal readers, in my absence. August 2008 you’ll enjoy a multitude of guest blogs, pre-posted light blogs and miscellaneous reader questions. Don’t worry, I’ll be back with more great addresses and shopping tips this fall! All email inquiries or posted comments will be responded to come September!


Hello Antiques Diva,

top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>I am an antiques dealer in Atlanta who currently buys stock in France. I would like to expand my buying area by including Belgium and hope that you can help me with this.

I am interested in attending one of the brocantes you listed in a recent blog — the Brocante Temploux 23-24 August, 2008. BY any chance do you know if there is shipping available?

Thank you for your help.

Antoinette from Atlanta


Hi Antoinette,

top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>Sadly the fair coordinator, Luc Halleux, has explained that “With 1000 exposants and 150,000 visitors, we already have a lot of work. So we cannot organize any shipping and we do not have contact with any company to do it. Apologies and Best Regards!” Should you have any more questions, you can contact Luc directly at”>

Even though The Antiques Diva Exclusive Antique Shopping Tours of Holland, Belgium and France does not organize shipping, I didn’t want to leave you high & dry on this question so I put my Belgian Antiques Diva Tour Guide, Lucretia, to work searching for a solution! Her advice is that as Temploux is nearby Namur, your best bet might be using a shipping agent there to help orchestrate your overseas shipment. While The Antiques Diva™ Enterprises cannot make any official recommendations (as we haven’t tested these companies yet), we did find a few potentials for you to investigate.

One Entry is an interesting company which allows you to compare costs for a multitude of services – international shipping included. The website recommends a few vendors who are helping antique dealers by organizing overseas shipping. Antiques Carriers looked particularly interesting as did Belga Traders.

Last but not least, should you need antique shopping advice while in Belgium (or before going), please feel free to ask! The Antiques Diva Offices are closed the month of August but whenever possible we try to help and might be able to squeeze in a last minute appointment if you’re in jam!

To shop with a local on your arm while in Belgium, Lucretia’s fees are 25 Euros per hour + transport costs (i.e. fuel/train) or for a full day shopping service 140 Euros. Lucretia is Belgian, speaks English, French and Flemish fluently (as well as pretty good Italian & German) and is an expert at bargaining in all these languages! Her Masters is in Decorative Arts and she’s an absolute delight to shop with! You’d love her!

Good Luck with your shopping adventure!

All the best,

The Antiques Diva™

Unopened Mail – Calendar Update!

top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>Over this past month and a half, having been out of town traversing Europe with my darling dreadlocked 16 year old nephew, a mountain of mail has grown on my desk. Part of the wonderful joy of being The Antiques Diva™ is that I receive copious quantities of snail mail & emails updating me on the happenings in the art & antiques world.

You might think that I’m just incredibly savvy, spending hours doing research on the best art & antiques fairs around (and as I am a notorious insomniac I do surf endlessly at wee hours in the morning), but in fact, more often than not, these show dates & addresses are sent to me in the post on cards or publicity folders to my home business address and I merely share my wealth of resources with you.

I’m the environmentalist’s & postman’s worst nightmare as I’m on everyone who is anyone’s mailing list. As my notoriety as The Antiques Diva™ has grown, these postcards come more frequently often accompanied by handwritten notes saying, “Why don’t you tell your readers about this upcoming show?”

Last night with my nephew safely returned home to his parents after his European tour, I began sorting through the post, tossing out junk mail or expired fair information, and in the rubble I found a few upcoming shows/fairs worth mentioning.

So get your calendar out – The Antiques Diva has a few last minute dates for you!

Olympia International Art & Antiques Fair – June 5 – 15, 2008 – Olympia Exhibition Halls, open daily 11am – 7pm. Over 250 vendors are selling priceless works of art & antiques from almost every period and continent. Very Posh event. Don’t miss the Diamond Lunch next Saturday if you can help it – it’s sure to be brilliant!

31st Foire aux Antiquaires St Germain – June 5 – 15, 2008 – Place St Sulpice, open daily 11am – 8pm. Da Vinci Code fans will find this setting all too familiar as the L’Eglise St Sulpice, from which the square where the fair takes place takes its name, is prominently displayed in the movie. More to my liking is the fact that I’m as likely to find a gorgeous antique to buy as I am to run face to face with Catherine Deneuve (who lives in a gorgeous apartment overlooking the square). Madame Deneuve is spotted annually picking through the brocante in the most elegant of French attire.

tower.jpg”>tower.jpg” width=”84″ border=”0″ />tour-eiffel-paris_362265_42074.htm” target=”_blank”>Salon de L’Antiquite et de L’Art Tour Eiffel – June 6 -16, 2008 – Quai Branly and Pont d’lena, open daily 11am – 8pm. A prestigious fair held at the foot of the Eiffel Tower in beautiful, beautiful Paris. A picture perfect setting for antique shopping!

Modern & Contemporary Art Auction Sotheby’s Amsterdam – Sale: Wednesday 25 June 2008, Public Viewing: 20-23 June daily 10am – 4pm. Highlights of the sale include R 79-2 by Jan Schoonhoven, Music Hall by Jan Wiegers, and Cobra artist Karel Appel’s gouache on paper titled Beest.

The Swan Auction House – Algemene Kunst –En Antiekveiling – Sale dates: June 9 – 24, 2008. De Zwaan is known for the incredibly low prices with which they auction their goods! Furniture items can be snatched up for a song and I know more than one antique dealer in A’dam who buys their inventory here (and then marks it up 20 or 30% from their purchase price – why pay more when you can get it from the antique dealers source)! Check the Auction House website for an exact listing of the various dates the different categories will be auctioned. Of particular interest to me is the June 13 (1pm) auction of antique furniture – specifically chairs, settees, lamps, clocks and barometers!

to-find-my-favorite-french.html” target=”_blank”>Brederode Voorjaarsbrocante 2008 – June 13, 14, 15, 11am – 6pm. This won’t be the first (or last) time you hear me wax poetically about this Secret Sale held inside a private apartment on the Lijnbaansgracht in the Jordaan. Antiques, Home Furnishings, and Garden Décor abound in beautiful tableaus. Make sure you mention that The Antiques Diva ™ sent you!
Lijnbaansgracht 56D (by the Westerstraat), 1015 GS Amsterdam

Viscontea – Casa d’Aste End of the Season Sale – Antiques, Modern & Contemporary Auction – Sale June 26, 2008. Public Viewing: 23 – 25 June, 2008 daily from 10am – 7pm. An auction catalog will be available on the site as the date draws near! And, miraculously, the site is available in English as well as Italian and French. I’ve not bought from here before but am curiously intrigued as I’ve heard good things about them! Should you know anything about this Italian Auction house, please let the Antiques Diva know!

Happy Shopping!

The Antiques Diva™