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Antique Shopping Tours in Italy

Dear Diva Readers,
Extra, Extra Read All About It….  The Antiques Diva & Co is expanding and offering Antique Shopping Tours in Italy!!!! 

Flea Markets and Ferragamo await in Florence as do fragrant sessions with an haute-couture perfumer, creating custom scents just for you.  Wrap yourself in luxury Italian linens or linger in Lucca, enjoying the local wines and gourmet delicacies.  Stay in Sienna visiting antique sales or shop for salvaged pieces at secret sources.  Search the streets of Arezzo looking for religious relics and rustic pieces.  And while you’re at it, book a cooking course, a day at the outlets or visit our favorite vineyards with our Diva Excursions.  On Antiques Diva ® Italian Tours you’re guaranteed to enjoy La Dolce Diva as we share not just antiques but Italian lifestyle!

Inquire for details to:info@antiquesdiva.com”>info@antiquesdiva.com

Stay tuned in the coming weeks as we disclose some of our favorite Italian Sources, as you meet our Diva Guide Susan and as we share some of our favorite addresses under the Tuscan sun!

Ciao,

The Antiques Diva®

Leave the Gun, Take the Colombo…

Dear Diva Readers,

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 100px; line-height: 90px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>An Antiques Diva reader recently asked my advice.  She had gone to an auction at Amsterdam’s newest – and hottest – auction house, Gavelers, and had purchased a dazzling Italian chair with which she’d fallen head over heels in love.  And while she felt she had scored a prize at auction she wanted my expert opinion.  “What do you know about Joe Colombo?”

The boss of the Colombo crime family” I asked, not giving her time to interrupt.  I love a good murder. 

Rumor has it that this Godfather was an ardent Catholic.  They say that when a thief stole a jewel-studded crown from his church that Colombo found the criminal and forced him to return the crown and that later the thief was found dead with a rosary wrapped around his neck.” I excitedly explained, “Reportedly it was Colombo’s work.”

“Er… Interesting…” she responded, But I meant the Italian designer,”

I detected that she seemed more than a little freaked out by my mafia knowledge.  “Too much Soprano’s” I quickly explained, and then confessed that I wasn’t an expert on this particular period.  “But what is your stomach telling you?” she queried, “I paid 1500E – do you think I got a good deal?”  My first instinct was to answer in the affirmative, but while I may not be an expert on mid-century design, I know people who are!

tour-guide.jpg”>tour guide” src=”https://antiquesdiva.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/antiques-diva-tour-guide.jpg” alt=”” width=”640″ height=”480″ />

My first call was to my tours/abouttours/” target=”_blank”>Antiques Diva Tour Guide, Lucretia.  

I must confess Lucretia is the brains (as well as beauty) behind my tour operation in the Netherlands and Belgium and I knew she’d be quick with an answer.  Great buy!” she confirmed, as she went on to explain, “The name of this chair is officially: Painted plywood chair 4801 and it was made in 1964 in Italy by Joe Colombo.” 

Since a mutual friend works at this auction house, she encouraged me to reach out to Gavelers and ask their opinion on the chair.  One email was sent and forwarded onto the right party and before I could go search for a cannoli (all this Godfather talk was making me hungry) Marcel Brouwer, the 20th Century Design Specialist at Gavelers, had responded to my email, providing a bit more behind-the-scenes info on this purchase.  

Brouwer explained, “This particular chair was manufactured by Kartell and has been made out of three pieces of laminated bentwood. What was so amazing about the chair – apart from its reasonable purchase price (the white example has been sold at DOUBLE that amount before) – is its condition. Due to use, these wooden chairs normally have been worn quite a lot, specifically on top of the seat. It is rare to find an example which is not repainted. This particular chair had its first and only original paint layer. The client who bought the chair had a very good deal since vintage furniture of well-known designers, icons of the 20th century, in pristine condition will always be desirable.

Special thanks to Marcel Brouwer of Gavelers for filling in the gaps on this client’s query.  Next time I’m going to auction, I’m going to Gavelers!  

Going, going, gone, ciao, ciao!

The Antiques Diva®
(seen below on vacation in the Amalfi coast)

Gilding Course in Florence

Dear Diva Readers, 

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 100px; line-height: 90px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>I just learned of a sensational weekend course in Florence that has me dying to return to Renaissance City.  Visiting twice last year apparently wasn’t enough.  This time, in addition to treading the paths of the Medici’s, I’d like to dig deeper into Italian art. In fact, I’d like to take a weekend in Florence to LEARN a time-worn Italian art!   

Florence Art.net is offering an Easter Weekend Gilding, Painting & Restoration Course at the Maiano Estate, a quiet rural resort overlooking the city of Florence.  The skills taught in the course are useful for people who like to restore or refurbish old paintings and frames, decorate or gild frames and furniture, or even create contemporary works of decorative art using these high quality materials and techniques.  Being able to restore or produce gilded and decorated frames seems like it go hand in silk-gloved hand with being both an artist and antiques dealer!  Plus, learning the skill against the swell of the Tuscan countryside… does life get any better than this?

How could I not be inspired in a setting such as this?  On the hillside overlooking Florence with Brunelleschi’s Duomo in sight, students learn the ancient craft of gilding.  Mornings and afternoons are spent in the studio painting and gilding your works of art and learning the skills of restoration. Then to top it off, the course brings in accomplished Florentine artisans and offers opportunites to learn about Florence’s world-renowned historical works of art. 

Easter Weekend in Paradise – I mean, Florence, that is!

The Antiques Diva®

Happy New Year!!

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 258px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sx1V_i-OBGI/AAAAAAAAD8c/26aQU1BbJ0M/s400/happynewyearsimage.jpg” border=”0″ />top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>No other time of the year births such feelings of hope and anticipation. I love the turn of the calendar from one year to the next, buying a new agenda, searching the shelves until I find the perfect Day Planner to organize my year, my life. And then I pull out the colored markers from my childhood and I write reminders to myself, highlight significant dates and prepare to personalize my year with the little details that scream ME! Call me old fashioned, but I like to see what I’m doing spread out in scrawled handwriting in front of me and my Blackberry tends not to be used to its highest function merely because I like the written word – the physical act of writing. I like to tuck business cards and pages torn from magazines into the back pocket of the Agenda, and gather the tidbits that symbolize my year.

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sx1VymLWnGI/AAAAAAAAD70/_hAdQlL1jlY/s400/093.JPG” border=”0″ />As I open last year’s agenda to copy a few dates into this year’s, I lose a leaf from last October in Prague. My husband and I were walking arm & arm and on the back of a bright orange car a leaf hung as if placed there by an angle. I bent and picked the waxy leaf twirling it in my fingers, before tucking it into the notebook in my purse, a perfect symbol of the day.
to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sx1Vx8YbnGI/AAAAAAAAD7k/3hLKqgll-Wc/s400/009.JPG” border=”0″ />A paper candy wrapper is taped to a page in November with the phone number of a drag queen I met in Amsterdam and for the life of me, I can’t remember why I was going to call him, but I smile remembering that crazy night when me, my photographer friend and her British photographer boyfriend, my CFO husband, a Belgian drag queen, a Christian missionary and a Dutch TV game show host went out for drinks after a gallery opening. What an eclectic group we were and what a wonderful gamut the conversation ran.

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sx1V_AYs7eI/AAAAAAAAD8M/4aoNQshSl4c/s400/443.JPG” border=”0″ />to 10px; WIDTH: 300px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sx1VzXyPAKI/AAAAAAAAD8E/CI2gVurOdCU/s400/313.JPG” border=”0″ />to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sx1VyQAuVoI/AAAAAAAAD7s/rJBrdibFlAg/s400/058.JPG” border=”0″ />to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sx1VzNVIB6I/AAAAAAAAD78/qo48DRgXECY/s400/166.JPG” border=”0″ />A hotel business card sticks out of August, reminding me of those long hot days on the Amalfi Coast and a brochure for a private cruise marks mid-year. Our skipper wore Armani, I remember with a smile, thinking surely I overpaid for that exposition but not caring because it was the perfect day this year. We sailed to a private island for lunch, caught fresh from the Med, and wiggled our toes in the sand while watching our boat bob with the light rise and fall of the sea.

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sx1V_R_R5KI/AAAAAAAAD8U/jshE3sSwLHw/s400/553.JPG” border=”0″ />Last January finds notes scrawled of frantic to-do’s before our move from Amsterdam to Berlin and one day is circled with a giant red heart that reads “Going Away Dinner with IWC Officers” as I remember all the ladies who showed up for my last dinner in Amsterdam before moving. We took over the restaurant in a gaggle of laughter and friendship and fun.

to 10px; WIDTH: 320px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 240px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sx1bHL0B3dI/AAAAAAAAD88/QlkcZMWIGFg/s320/german-flag11.jpg” border=”0″ />February is filled with organized lists, fitting for my new life in Germany. Meeting with relocation agent, meeting with electrician to hang chandelier, meeting with guy from phone company to hook up the internet in my new apartment and so on and as the year progresses it shows my life evolving in Berlin. From noting the date of my first German class, to the address of a friend from church and the Women’s Bible Study information to noting details about a new friend.

March finds notes on my interview with The Swiss News reminding me to tell the article’s author a few important informational bites, while April is filled with pink ink, writing Parisian notes, as I planned an outing to meet Travel+Leisure. And then there was May in Florence – twice we were in Italy this year and one page is filled with websites listing real estate listings in Italy.

On the pages of my agenda, I write of life and love, of laughing and of crying. I note the date of a friend’s death and ponder what an amazing lady Jill was – knowing her changed me, made me better than I was before, inspired me for the future. And I mark babies born, my friend Kelli’s daughter’s birth being documented in the same blue ink as Kelli’s eyes and I note the meaning of the name of her daughter – “’We asked for this child, now she is ours” and I pray blessings on her, wishing great things for her future.

I’m an old-fashioned girl living in a modern world. My Blackberry travels everywhere with me and I find myself answering phone calls in foreign countries, writing emails while on the S-bahn and setting alarm reminders for later in the day, taking pictures on my phone to post on Twitter or recording my own voice as I’m driving down the autobahn and would like to remember an important inspirational point that had risen in my mind. But I’m an old fashioned girl living in a modern world. I like paper and pencils, a tangible book that serves as much as a diary as it does my agenda.

And as this new y
ear births and my new agenda is a blank page, I pick up my pen – a red felt tip – and write confidently my plans for the future.

Happy New Years, my readers – may this year shower you in all good things and blessings.

Yours,

The Antiques Diva™

The Grand Tour & PAN AMSTERDAM

to 10px; WIDTH: 197px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 88px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Su7JCR42IHI/AAAAAAAADtI/aQnsaUvd1Bg/s400/logo.gif” border=”0″ />Dear Diva Readers,

to 10px; WIDTH: 200px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 267px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Su7JvTu1qWI/AAAAAAAADtQ/TFg_q86hWpE/s400/robert+schreuder.jpg” border=”0″ />top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>A heavy card stock envelope came in the mail this week – return address Holland! It was an invitation from Robert Schreuder Antiques to attend topDefault.aspx?tabid=1&lg=en” target=”_blank”>PAN – Amsterdam, Holland’s most important national art and antiques fair and a must for every art lover! A few months ago I posted a blog describing my personal style, saying that The Antiques Diva Style is all about antiques juxtaposed with modern art. Well, PAN Amsterdam subscribes to this same mental school of decorating. At the fair you’ll find contemporary , modern art & designs going hand-in-hand with objects that have a long history—a beach scene by Cézanne, a 16th-century Madonna, a spectacular glass chandelier or a 17th C Grand Tour souvenir!

to 10px; WIDTH: 220px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 200px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Su7INkzxSYI/AAAAAAAADso/oxr5XczI5qk/s400/robertschreuder3.gif” border=”0″ />Robert Schreuder, perhaps the most charming antiques dealer in Amsterdam, included some pictures of items he’ll be presenting at PAN with his invite and he had me at Goedemiddag. The inventory in his eponymously-named, by-appointment-only shop on Amsterdam’s Ceintuurbaan is in a word, “To-Die-For”. Okay, make that 3 words, but you catch my drift… The concept behind his collection goes straight to my heart – Robert sells Grand Tour Souvenirs.

to 10px; WIDTH: 145px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 350px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Su7INiTHxDI/AAAAAAAADsg/dlbZhxxeX-o/s400/robertschreuder2.gif” border=”0″ />The concept behind The Antiques Diva Tours is that we travel, we shop, and we buy souvenirs to remember those travels. An antique souvenir is so much better than a cheesy T-shirt and so on Antiques Diva Tours we buy European antiquities and memories, returning home to put them on our mantle for all our friends to see! But in the 17th – 19th C during the tourframe.html” target=”_blank”>Grand Tour, young men and ladies were doing the same thing as we on Diva Tours do today! They were traversing Europe, visiting Italy and France, learning the most important developments in language, arts, court etiquette, legal and political systems, science, culture and refined European taste. They visited France and Italy, Austria and the Low Countries and while they were out “getting cultured”, they SHOPPED, Antiques Diva Style!

to 10px; WIDTH: 350px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 237px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Su7INZQJHeI/AAAAAAAADsY/kbF3QwP6svk/s400/robertschreuder.jpg” border=”0″ />“They bought souvenirs and these souvenirs became known as Grand Tour Souvenirs” – purchases made with an express purpose Robert explains, “of illustrating their knowledge and symbolizing their refined tastes. On their return home, these travelers exhibited the souvenirs as objects for study and discussion”

to 10px; WIDTH: 261px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 350px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Su7IW-Btu3I/AAAAAAAADsw/lgd3paWagZ0/s400/robertschreuder5.jpg” border=”0″ />Don’t we do the same thing today when we antique shop abroad? A tour through my Berlin apartment is to tour through my travels. I sit in a bergere bought in Paris, sit my drink on a side table picked up in Budapest, Holland contributes the lighting, while the object d’art is pure Italian! Germany, Czech and Austria come into play in other rooms, as does Spain and Portugal, Tunisia and Greece… Each room I display souvenirs of where I’ve been which is a direct correlation with who I’ve become – the more I see and do, the more I train my eye, the more I change as a person. I’m slowly amassing my own personal grand tour collection….. and perhaps that’s why I’m so enchanted with Robert Schreuder Antiques – their Grand Tour collection isn’t just about my own personal memories, it goes beyond them, creating layers to the story, weaving through the annals of time.

to 10px; WIDTH: 280px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 263px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Su7IM7eB38I/AAAAAAAADsI/Q5L5b-hHbvo/s400/robert.jpg” border=”0″ />On my antique shopping tours, I always ask clients why they buy antiques. The responses are often the same: they buy them because they think antiques are better made than modern pieces, because they like their lines or their patina, because they want to have home décor different than their friends, for eclectic style and because they transport us to another place and another time. The common denominator among all my clients is that they buy antiques because they are buying stories, pieces with a past and a personality. In Robert Schreuder’s Grand Tour collection, the past comes to life, bringing “black and white” to true “Technicolor”, vividly layering my present passion for antique “souvenir” shopping while living abroad like a delectable gateau “millefeuille” over centuries past, mingling my life with other-like-minded shoppers from the past.

When buying Grand Tour Souvenirs, for Antiques Diva clients the world comes FULL CIRCLE with the past and present uniting at Robert Schreuder’s Antiques!

I encourage you, if you’re visiting PAN Amsterdam, to stop by Robert’s booth and get him talking about his passion – THE GRAND TOUR. You’ll see his eyes sparkle and he’ll smile an infectious grin as he transports you to another place and another time, taking you along with him on a Grand Tour! And I dare you to walk away, out of his booth, without buying a memory from another place and another time…. Should you succeed in doing so, you’re a stronger person than I when it comes to giving into temptation!

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 187px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Su7INO1SzgI/AAAAAAAADsQ/9okFb83zrw0/s400/robert+schreuder.jpg” border=”0″ />
What:
PAN AMSTERDAM


When:

Nov 22-29, 2009

Where:
Amsterdam RAI-Parkhal

What Time:
Daily from 11 am-7 pm

Thursday 26 and Sunday 29 November
11 am-6 pm
Visit Robert Schreuder Antiques at PAN AMSTERDAM BOOTH 55.

Until next time,

The Antiques Diva™
(Seen right with Robert Schreuder last year at AFSH)

Diva-scovery: Antichita Marciana – Venice, Italy

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Smixr0DOPoI/AAAAAAAADYY/HAtKrxAQKq4/s400/209.1.jpg” border=”0″ />top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>While I love Venice, I’ve never exactly thought of it as a shopping mecca. Romantic, gorgeous and historic, yes… but I’ve always saved my euro for Italian shopping in Milan, Florence, Como and Rome, assuming that the prices in Venice would blow my bank budget for the next 6 months! But a recent trip to Venice changed my way of thinking. It started with scoring a perfect cocktail dress in one boutique nearby the train station. As the address was down-market by Venetian standards, the lower price point didn’t surprise me though I personally was pleased as punch with my purchase. As I continued on my way through town, weaving through alleyways and crossing tiny bridges over so many canals, I finally stopped consulting my map and just let my feet do the navigating. My husband and I wandered into a gorgeous linen store, scoring some plush new hand towels for the guest bathroom again at prices so low it felt like “The Italian Job!” We then visited Fortuny and while nothing in Fortuny is a bargain, it can seem like a bargain if you’ve ever shopped Fortuny in the USA, so comparatively speaking we were saving money even if my husband had to stifle back a cough when he saw my grand total for a few pillow shams!

On a roll, we rounded a corner in the arcades not far from Piazza San Marco and stumbled into one of the most gorgeous antique shops I’ve ever been into – Antichita Marciana!

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Smixsb5JuOI/AAAAAAAADYw/Z00hNhV0IP8/s400/293.JPG” border=”0″ />In typical Venetian fashion the exterior of the building was crumbling around itself, but the goods inside were fit for a palazzo!

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 274px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SmiyD7rbo7I/AAAAAAAADZA/oF6w-bWysIU/s400/scan0070.jpg” border=”0″ />Antichita Marciana specializes in 18th C paintings, furniture and special objects that will certainly be “conversation pieces” in your home! Each purchase is accompanied by a certificate of guarantee stating its period, the origin, the state of preservation and restorations done. And if you’re worried that the Italian commode (remember: commode isn’t a toilet in Europe but something similar to a buffet) won’t fit inside your carry on, don’t worry! Antichita Marciana ships worldwide, with specific transporters specialized in the care of high-end antiques and art.

to 10px; WIDTH: 374px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 266px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Smixsosm7MI/AAAAAAAADY4/6fQ-x70fVG0/s400/antichitamarciana.jpg” border=”0″ />to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Smixrx6a03I/AAAAAAAADYg/0CT9IE9mfEQ/s400/291.JPG” border=”0″ />to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SmixsOxCl9I/AAAAAAAADYo/BqcX47QNcg8/s400/292.JPG” border=”0″ />For those arm chair travelers, if Venice isn’t on your travel itinerary, never fear! This shop even offers online shopping, but alas I fear the website is currently only available in Italian. There is an English option, but your mouse just hovers over it without clicking as if insisting you view this Venetian shop in the language it was meant to be seen – Italiano!

On that note, Arrivederci!

The Antiques Diva™

P.S. Stay tuned for an upcoming Diva Blog with divalicious details on Fortuny!!!

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Diva-scovery: Passamaneria Valmar – Florence, Italy

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to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sl4w2GRzSyI/AAAAAAAADVE/yLM4HOj-IWw/s400/valmar2.jpg” border=”0″ />map from store website
top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>One of the only trimmings stores in Florence with an on-site workshop, Passamaneria Valmar has been selling every conceivable tassel, trim, tieback, cord, and border for the last half century. And what’s not for sale in this tiny family run boutique on a smart street by the Palazzo Davanzati, will be made-to-order.

Passamaneria Valmar
Via Porta Rossa, 53/R
50123 Firenze Italia
Phone: +39 055 284493

Web: http://www.valmar-florence.com/
Email: to:valmar@valmar-florence.com”>valmar@valmar-florence.com

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 311px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sl4w1lSQBWI/AAAAAAAADU8/xyaCCO6dMnw/s400/valmar.jpg” border=”0″ />

photo courtesy of store website

Until Next Time, Happy Shopping!

The Antiques Diva™

Follow The Antiques Diva on Twitter!!

What is Diva-scovery?
A fabulous find or shopping discovery – be it an Antique Shop, Vintage or Home Decorating Store – that will entice diva’s on parade to stop, shop and drop some dough!

Do you have a Diva-scovery you’d like to share? Perhaps a favorite antique shop, an excellent brand or divalicious home decorating store. Whether you’re in Paris, Texas or Paris, France or anywhere else around the globe, I’d love to hear your Diva-scoveries!! Email me at to:toma@antiquesdiva.com”>toma@antiquesdiva.com

Diva-scovery: G. Benevento – Venice, Italy

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sk9FllcDICI/AAAAAAAADPs/h4k9gSjBo9g/s400/158.JPG” border=”0″ />top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>This Venetian haberdashery opened in 1883, a family business that for the last 100 years has been handed down from father to son over 4 generations. Very few changes have been made – the store still stands on the Strada Nova (a little larger that in was when it began thanks to renovations by the founder’s son during his reign) and it still sells the same great inventory of fabrics, tassels, trims and bows, using the original counter and antique tools to roll out fabric and trims. Long considered an institution in Venice, it’s been awarded several medals for staying in business throughout WWII and is now one of the longest running family businesses in the province. Best of all, the prices are incredibly reasonable, making G. Benevento a must-shop stop on your Venetian travels!

to.it/” target=”_blank”>G. Benevento
Cannaregio, 3991
30121 Venezia, Italy

Phone: +39 (0)41.5220901

Web: to.it/”>http://www.gbenevento.it/
Email: to:info@gbenevento.it”>info@gbenevento.it

to 10px; WIDTH: 300px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sk9FlQtsN1I/AAAAAAAADPk/J7TnsC5Rb50/s400/159.JPG” border=”0″ />Until Next Time, Happy Shopping!

The Antiques Diva™

P.S. Do you have a Diva-scovery you’d like to share? Perhaps a favorite antique shop, an excellent brand or divalicious home decorating store? Whether you’re in Paris, Texas or Paris, France (or anywhere else around the globe) I’d love to hear your Diva-scoveries!! Email me toma@antiquesdiva.com

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Buying “notions” in Italy

to 10px; WIDTH: 312px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sk9YHF9mMkI/AAAAAAAADQ8/PN_OhFWagxo/s400/Laura_Ashley27.JPG” border=”0″ />top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>Call them notions, haberdashery, passementerie or passamaneria – whatever the language, whether British English, American, French or Italian, I love tassels, trims, tiebacks, cords and bows. They are small details that go almost unnoticed in homes yet make a significant difference in the decor. One doesn’t walk in a friend’s home and say “I love the trim on that chair and the tassels on those drapes!” but rather one walks into a house, commenting upon how finished and polished it is. Taking a seat, your guests will look around the room, a little bit envious, and sigh “You’ve thought of every last detail”.

to 10px; WIDTH: 259px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sk9YGBNkfPI/AAAAAAAADQk/gN_O9Ve42k4/s400/680.1.jpg” border=”0″ />The French say that passementerie adds that certain “je ne sais quoi” – the little something more that you can’t quite put your finger on but which differentiates the blasé from the va-va-voom. You might say it’s like putting a scarf on the room – that final, finishing touch.

“Scarf?” you ask. Every time I’m getting dressed and discover that I don’t look just right – that something is missing – I reach for an Hermès to drape over my shoulders or tie around my neck and suddenly the outfit, which I thought was already complete with pearls and cardigan, comes to life. Trims, tassels and notions work like a scarf when decorating your home. And while any scarf will do – I’ve plenty of silk swaths picked up here and there, scarves that caught my eye because they are pretty – my Hermès scarves are special. They’re in a class of their own. With tassels and trims it’s the same – they are the finishing touch and if they’re Italian they’re just a little bit more special.

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sk9YGVJaeUI/AAAAAAAADQs/G4GVx9I8tRs/s400/158.JPG” border=”0″ />Wherever you are in the world, you can walk into your local sewing shop and pick up something pretty and good quality, but the trims, tassels and notions in Italy have that same “je ne sais quoi” as Hermès. And just as you can buy Hermès in most major cities in the world, or online at any time, buying Hermès in Paris is special. If you shop in America, you’re buying haberdashery, but if you shop in Italy, you’re buying passamaneria – not just a household accessory, but an entire language, culture and romance.

to 10px; WIDTH: 289px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sk9YGEIvPnI/AAAAAAAADQc/RHmf-IzqSm0/s400/fringbraidgimptypes.jpg” border=”0″ />Part of the undefineable quality that gives Italian trims an emotional edge is the memory of you standing in a little passamaneria in a hidden alleyway in Italy wearing a stylish Hermès scarf (picked up on your last trip to Paris, bien sur) while speaking a foreign language, to/s1600-h/italian_flag.gif”>to/s200/italian_flag.gif” border=”0″ />smelling the Tripe vendor who has set up his cart just around the corner from the store and the slightly salty smell of the shop keeper who had been sitting on a little slatted chair in front of his shop soaking up the afternoon sun and watching the crowds go by until you wandered in through his door. You can still taste your afternoon gelato on your tongue and as you’re about to pull out the brightly colored European cash (for surely this small of a vendor doesn’t accept credit cards) a cat rubs against your legs, distracting you. A short Italian grandma comes out of the backroom, a room with a stairway that leads to an apartment over-head. She looks like she was born making cannoli. She says something you can’t understand and you smile as she bends over quickly as if she were 17 instead of 70, plopping her “gatto” named Pinnochio on the counter next to your purchase, tassels and trims, where he purrs expecting you to admire him as his owner rubs behind his ear. His paw reaches out to play with trim still dangling from the roll setting on the counter… much as you, back home after the trip, reach out to run your fingers through the silky strands of the tassel hanging from the lock on the top drawer of the dresser you inherited from your grandmother.

You’re not just buying tassels and trims, you’re buying a memory.

to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sk9YG5YApQI/AAAAAAAADQ0/0URRky2wooo/s400/065.JPG” border=”0″ />A private memory that will take you on a voyage each time you sit in a chair you’ve embossed with a trim or open that drawer where you’ve hung a tassel. To everyone else, you’ve merely added an imperceptible detail that polishes your home, but you’ve bought a memory and as you sit drinking tea, chatting with a group of girlfriends you’ll run your finger over trim following the line of the chaise longue where you sit and you’ll smile, remembering a detail that no one else knows. It’s like wearing lingerie. Even if you’re wearing a conservative collar, buttoned up, prim and proper, no one but you knows you’re wearing La Perla underneath. You have a secret.

You’ve bought “notions” in Italy.

Stay Tuned Tomorrow and The Next Day for 2 Diva-scovery Addresses for your little black book!!

Arrivederci!

The Antiques Diva™

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Diva-scovery: San Jacopo Show – Florence, Italy

to 10px; WIDTH: 300px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sk9OYy_qhrI/AAAAAAAADQE/H0M6cWNgqVM/s400/324.JPG” border=”0″ />top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>One night in Florence, while meandering from our hotel to dinner at Cammillo Trattoria, we weaved our way down the Borgo San Jacopo. Every few stores I would stop in my kitten-heeled sandles to peer into the antique and fashion boutique windows while my husband waited patiently accustomed to my frequent stops and starts. But in the light of that fading Italian evening, one shop stood out from the others – San Jacopo Show. Dinner reservations or not, I had serious Diva Business to attend to and discovering an intriguing shop for my readers took priority over a rumbling stomach. My heart rate increased as I oogled the stores contents through the front finestrino and, though the store was about to close, I snuck inside to investigate. Though the store was packed with an odd assortment of modern and quirky items, it was the lampshades that stole the show…. and made this Diva-scovery worth writing home about!

to 10px; WIDTH: 300px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sk9OYj44KsI/AAAAAAAADP8/o_7tCRIF8cQ/s400/323.JPG” border=”0″ />
to 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 300px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sk9OYeBK7-I/AAAAAAAADP0/77fdSbuxUVc/s400/322.JPG” border=”0″ />For Mannequins, Art Gallery, Fabrics, Interior Design, visit:

San Jacopo Show
Borgo San Joacop 66r.
50125 Firenze, Italia

Phone: +39 055 23.96.912
Web: http://www.sanjacoposhow.com/
Email: to:info@sanjacoposhow.com”>info@sanjacoposhow.com

Happy Shopping,

The Antiques Diva™

Another Diva Tip!

to 10px; WIDTH: 320px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 240px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sk9Ogx8Mu7I/AAAAAAAADQU/65SfUovpsPQ/s320/331.JPG” border=”0″ />On your next trip to Florence, be sure to make dinner reservations in the heart of the antiques district, just down from the San Jacopo Showroom, at Cammillo Trattoria. I’m still dreaming of my dinner… first course, Pecorino Brulee and Tagliatelle ai Funghi Porcini!

to 10px; WIDTH: 240px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 320px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/Sk9Ogo4eeiI/AAAAAAAADQM/xbSaH31hOto/s320/340.JPG” border=”0″ />Borgo S. Jacopo 57r.
Firenze, Italia
Phone +39 055 212427

Read a great restro review on this delightful gem from The New York Times!


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