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Gail McLeod

Client Feedback on England Antiques Diva Tour

Dear Diva Readers,

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 60px; line-height: 50px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>We love nothing more than when a client takes the time to write a Thank You note after their tour.  This week our English Diva Gail Mcleod has been leading back-to-back clients on tour in England taking them to Sussex, The Cotswolds, down on the English Coast in Kent and through London.

After one of those tours, a client wrote:

“My mother and I had an absolutely fabulous time with Gail.  I could easily see why you named her the most knowledgeable woman in Antiques in England.  Gail took us to some truly fantastic shops and we were able to purchase even more than we thought we would.  This has been above and beyond our expectations and we’re so happy we did this!  I hope to be back again soon.

All the best,


Delighted to have another happy Antiques Diva client!

The Antiques Diva®

Antique Young Guns

Dear Diva Readers,

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 60px; line-height: 50px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>Many people picture the “antique world” as a slow-moving menagerie of gray haired dealers, whiling away the hours in dark shops, just waiting for the odd customer to stroll in. While this scenario can certainly be found, there is also a new breed of antiques dealer and these entrepreneurs are taking over the antiques scene in Europe! There is a group called “Antiques Young Guns” comprised of career driven people under the age of 40 who make their living as antique dealers, working in auction houses, learning how to be restorers, and organizing regional and international fairs.

Antiques Diva, The Antiques Diva,

The Antiques Diva & Co is happy to be associated with this group as 3 of our Diva Guides are members of the Antiques Young Guns!  Alys Dobbie is our newest Guide, offering customized tours in London (including the world famous Portobello Market) and Brighton.  Our Swedish Guide Daniel Larsson is also a member of the group.  Daniel’s knowledge of Swedish & Gustavian antiques is amazing, and his connections in his native country of Sweden are invaluable to our clients when they want to find the perfect pieces while also learning about their history.

Young Gun, Antiques Young Guns, The Antiques Diva


One of the founders of Antiques Young Guns is Gail McLeod.  The Antiques Diva & Co is lucky to have Gail as our Diva Agent in the UK, as she is extremely well-connected and possesses a vast knowledge of antiques and sources. She is also the founder of National Antiques Week as well as the editor for Antiques Are Green.

young guns, The Antiques Diva

Gail, alongside other founding members George Johnson of Lady Kentmores (whom we’ve tapped to start leading our Scotland tours later this year) and Mark Hill have developed a website where young people working or wanting to work in the antiques industry can become members, allowing them to connect with other antique aficionados , sharing information, tips and contacts, and interactive links to shops allowing them to buy the hottest and best antiques from Young Guns.  While the members are currently British based – they are recruiting for American members! Be the first Americans to join the Young Guns!

Antiques Diva, The Antiques Diva

The whole concept of Antiques Young Guns is really exciting because it is solidifying the future of our industry.  By bringing these young minds together, the synergy that is being created is a powerful force!  This is definitely a group that I will be watching with much anticipation to see what they come up with next.   If you want to know What’s New in Antiques… you’ve got it – the Antique Young Guns are bringing antiques into the next millennium!

The Antiques Diva®

25th Anniversary of the Bath Decorative Antiques Fair

Dear Diva Readers,

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 35px; line-height: 20px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>This week marked the 25th anniversary of the Bath Decorative Antiques Fair in England and I just so happened to be taking a group of ladies on a tour in Bath at the same time!

Antiques Diva Tour  Bath Decorative Antiques Fair

Although these particular clients were tourists and not trade clients, we opened the doors to give these “mere shopping mortals” access to wholesale shopping – diva style.  We went to the fair on trade day (using our own trade credentials to get our clients in the door).  It’s always great to get first choice of everything!  There was definitely excitement in the air as vendors brought in a vast array of pieces from Georgian and early Victorian to mid-century Danish and 18th C Gustavian…and everything in between!  Variety is the spice of life.

Bath Decorative Antiques Fair

Bath Decorative Antiques Fair

Bath Decorative Antiques Fair

Bath Decorative Antiques Fair

Bath Decorative Antiques Fair

Bath Decorative Antiques Fair

The day was filled with plenty of shopping and special VIP rendez vous with honorary diva’s – such as renowned antique expert Judith Miller! She took our ladies out for an hour at the fair to give her opinions on their purchases and to walk through the stalls pointing out what she noticed with each vendor.  But more on that later…  Toward the end of the day, the party celebrating the fair’s 25th anniversary kicked off.  Shoppers at the fair were ushered out but our locally based Diva Agent Gail McLeod managed to secure us invites for the fete.  Champagne and hors d’oeuvres were passed and there was a lovely cake cutting to celebrate the silver anniversary.

Bath Decorative Antiques Fair

Bath Decorative Antiques Fair 7

Bath Decorative Antiques Fair

Bath Decorative Antiques Fair, Toma Clark Haines

Bath Decorative Antiques Fair, Toma Haines

Bath Decorative Antiques Fair

We were so pleased to mix and mingle with industry colleagues and leaders such as the Editor of Home and Antiques Angela Linforth and Assistant Editor Dominique Corlette.  We also clinked glasses with Marc Allum and Lisa Lloyd from the Antiques Roadshow.  George Johnson of Lady Kentmore Antiques gave us news about the Antiques Young Guns alongside fair organizer and founding member of Antiques Young Guns, Gail McLeod.

All in all it was a fantastic opening to a fun filled fair and I look forward to sharing some of my favorite items from the fair with you in the coming days!

Stay tuned for more from the Bath Decorative Fair.

The Antiques Diva®

PS:  To book an Antiques Diva Tour or inquire about our Buying Services so you can source antiques abroad virtually, email”>

Mercanteinfiera and The Antiques Diva in Parma

Dear Diva Readers,

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 50px; line-height: 30px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>I had to write to tell you about my recent trip to Parma, Italy with a sensational group of clients on a VIP Tour.  As you know we normally do private one-on-one tours; however, every once in a while, we get together with a group of VIPs for a meeting of the minds.  Where better to get together than Italy’s largest Antiques Fair – Mercanteinfierato paint the town red!

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The fair covers five pavilions and is the largest of its kind in Italy with over a 1000 dealers from all over Europe, including Britain, France and Belgium. Together under one roof they offer a vast array of furniture and decorative pieces from ancient Roman & ecclesiastical artifacts to fabulous antiques prints and decorative arts, 18th century furniture to Italian modernism and collectables. The pavilions or ‘Padiglione’ as they are known in Italian are divided into styles; of main interest are #6 which houses jewellery, both precious and costume, 20th century Furniture and Decorative Arts, Vintage and Repurposed.

Antiques Diva and Lynn Yaeger

Antiques Diva Justin Shaulis

Mercanteinfiera Parma Antiques Diva

Mercanteinfiera Parma

Mercanteinfiera Parma

Mercanteinfiera Parma

As Susan, our locally-based Italian Guide explains,

“In Italy there is a little bit of everything but perhaps of most interest are lighting, mirrors and huge amount of paintings and prints (some with great mattes and frames) varying in style from the classic landscapes and still life to contemporary; some are purely decorative others are great masters. There are of course Roman artifacts but if they are genuine one can’t pretend that they go for a song, however some of the religious pieces are a bargain. Italian country is a very different style to French country, cleaner and simpler lines perfect for both a modern and traditional home. There are also lots of fun agricultural pieces which are great finds, for both decoration and repurposing. On the central-eastern side of the country there are many painted pieces; both Florence and Venice were famed for its artisan painters, many of whom moved east towards Le Marche. One can’t dispute that Italian 20th century design was highly innovative and creative, these pieces are still not totally appreciated by Italians and so are good finds too.

In short Italy probably has much more than you ever imagined, it just takes a little time to get to know the country, the people and the business… we know too that half the fun is finding merchandise but when time is short – and time is money – a little help goes a long way! And that my dears, are why we at The Antiques Diva & Co are here to help you.”

Mercanteinfiera Spring 2014 dates:

1-9 March, 2014

To book an Antiques Diva Italy Tour – any time of the year – email”>

Ciao Bella!
The Antiques Diva ®
(Seen here with a few VIP friends @ Mercanteinfiera)

Mercanteinfiera Parma

Join Us for Champagne at Decorex

Dear Interior Designers,

Are you coming abroad to London this Fall to attend Decorex September 22 – 25, 2013?

The entire Decorex event is going to be down-right diva worthy.  This is the UK’s premier luxury design and interiors show.  And though popular for years it’s just gotten better – they are moving to their new home at Perks Field and The Orangery, Kensington Palace!

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Not only do they have a brand new, prestigious venue, rumor has it this interior design show has an even better collection of suppliers and designs as well as an inspirational array of speakers on board.

Antiques Diva


Locally based English Agent for The Antiques Diva & Co and head of Buying Services, Gail McLeod, will be at the fair meeting VIPS for “un coup de Champagne” at the  Martin Brudnizki-designed Champagne bar!

We’d LOVE to meet you too!! If you’re heading to London to Decorex email me”> to make a Champagne Date!

Warm Regards
The Antiques Diva® & Co

National Antiques Week – The Awards

Dear Diva Readers,       

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 80px; line-height: 70px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>I was delighted that after this last month – which has literally found me on 3 continents in a months time (India, America & Europe) – that I was able to take time out of my busy travel schedule to attend the Awards for National Antiques Week at The Decorative Fair in London.   Gail Mcleod –  The Antiques Diva & Co’s English Agent who manages our tours/england” target=”_blank”>antique buying tours for the UK and our buying services – just so happens to be founder of National Antiques Week and she finagled me an invite to this prestigious invite.  This meant I was able to rub shoulders with the movers and shakers of the England antiques trade such as Spencer Swaffer, Martin Johnson and the Fontaine boys and even shared a glass of bubbly with famous interior designer Nicky Haslam!!  My friend Ronda Carman of All the Best blog (and author of the fabulous new book Designers at Home) must have had burning ears for we chatted about her fabulousness over our coupe de champagne!

Judith Miller

 Publisher Homes & Antiques, Judith Miller and Winners Debbe Perry & Jim Broomfield of Brackley Antiques Cellar  

The awards being presented at the event were two fold – first there was the Homes & Antiques Magazine award for Best Shop of the Year.  Drum roll please… and the winner of  Antiques Centre of the Year for the UK is  Debbe Perry & Jim Broomfield of Brackley Antiques Cellar!

Brackley Antique Cellar is the largest purpose-built antiques centre in the Midlands of England with  over  160 independent dealers, 30,000 sq ft of antiques and collectables, under one roof and all on one level!  It has Diva-Divine written all over it.  The presenter for this competition was Judith Miller –  Miller is THE Goddess of Antiques. Moreover, she is a delight – she’s a fountain of information – and quite simply as friendly as she is informative.  NEWS FLASH for my American Readers – Judith will be in NYC and Houston this November and is making special bookings for talks, book signings, etc.  Stay tuned for more details.

Mark Hill

Nickey Haslam and Mark Hill

For the Young Guns competition the presenters were also equally high profile!   In order to be eligible for the Young Guns award you had to be an antiques vendor under the age of 39.  I was thrilled that by a hair I was still in the age bracket categorized as YOUNG!  The award presenters were Nicky HaslamMark Hill and George Johnson.

Timothy Medhurst

Photo:  George Johnson, Nickey Haslam, Timothy Medhurst of Reeman Dansie Auctioneers
and Mark Hill

The Winner of the 2013 Antiques Young Gun was the 21 year old Timothy Medhurst of Reeman Dansie Auctioneers whom the judges all agreed was an outstanding ambassador for the trade based on his enthusiasm and energetic support for the campaign, his willingness to promote his fellow dealers and his absolute commitment to his profession. Well done Tim!!

Joint runners up were:  Keeley Harris who owns Discover Vintage and runs multiple events across the UK including Festival of Vintage. The judges agreed that Keeley’s achievements and hard work together with her ability to include and work with her peers has really put her on the map and we felt that her success will be an encouragement for other young dealers in the vintage trade.

Chris Oxley of the family firm P A Oxley Antique Clocks has been a pivotal member of the Antiques Young Guns group on Twitter and has been a fantastic supporter of the campaign and his fellow Young Guns. Chris has displayed a heartfelt commitment to the family business since his teenage years and has taken the business – a traditional and highly respected business – into the 21st Century with gusto.

Special Award:  George Johnson, Alys Dobbie of Nana Dobbie, Nickey Haslam and Mark Hill

The judges were delighted to be able to award one extra prize on the night, having struggled to select just three winners from such a starry line-up! One of my favorite London hauntsAlfies Antique Market – generously offered a free stand at this famous and iconic London landmark antiques, vintage and Mid C Retro emporium for two months in the summer of 2013 and this award went to Alys Dobbie of Nana Dobbie who the judges agreed was the ideal person to make the very best of this opportunity. Alys has established a destination vintage and Mid C shop in Brighton and works with her father to manage another Nana Dobbie shop in Cornwall. She is perfectly poised to take London by storm and what better place than Alfies? Alys has a great sense of personal style and her shops reflect this and at Alfies she will have the chance to meet and interact with seasoned and experienced dealers – a true Young Gun experience.

Mark Hill

Goerge Johnson

All the Young Gun shortlist will benefit from a fantastic package of prizes from the generous sponsors including:  Hotel Una Brighton; Cooper Antiques Fairs; Penman Antique Fairs; On-Line Galleries and Antiques are Green.

Congrats to all who received the awards and a special shout out to our Antiques Diva English Agent Gail McLeod for her tremendous work she does promoting the antiques trade in the UK.  I’ve said it for years that Gail is the most connected woman in antiques in England…. And seeing her in action at the awards Thursday night had me brimming with pride that she was part of our team.  Gail is not only a member of the Diva Team, but she’s a dear friend and business mentor.  We love you Gail!!  Congrats on another successful National Antiques Week.

Antiques Diva

Gail McLeod – Founder of National Antiques Week and the English Agent for The Antiques Diva & Co

Warm Regards,
The Antiques Diva®

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