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Mirror Mirror On the Wall

Dear Diva Readers,

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 40px; line-height: 20px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>Mirror Mirror on the Wall… who’s the fairest of them all?  London’s Decorative Fair of course! Continuing our look at the Design Trends for 2014todays topic is antique mirrors.

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If one mirror is good, 9 or 12 is even better!  Our favorite vendors across the board at Battersea Park where the Decorative Fair is held were clustering groups of antique and vintage mirrors for maximum effect.  The result is more that of a work of art when positioned this way than as just a tool to see yourself.

Keep the tones of the frame similar – gold with gold, silver with silver, but be bold in mixing shapes.  While all star bursts look great, don’t be afraid to shake it up a bit by adding an oblong mirror to a wall of circular mirrors.  And remember, sometimes it’s hip to be square.

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Decorative Fair

Bonne Shopping,

The Antiques Diva®

PS:  To book an Antiques Diva England Tour or inquire about our Buying Services so you can source antiques abroad virtually, email to:info@antiquesdiva.com”>info@antiquesdiva.com

The Diva’s Dish on Naarden’s Art and Antiques Weekend

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;”>When I went to the Kunst & Antiek Weekend in Naarden-Vesting a few weeks ago, I had such a good time that I decided it would be downright criminal to neglect to divulge the details of my diva-licious day! Plus, you know me… I love to share shopping secrets and on that particular day, my pocketbook was stuffed to overflowing as I collected business cards, pamphlets, brochures and magazines.

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This fair is a great source for antique shops, art galleries and boutiques

While the Art and Antiques Weekend is great to visit, in my opinion it is even better to use as a resource for compiling your own personal database of shops, galleries and boutiques you would like to visit in the future. Going to this show is much like enjoying a wine tasting – it tempts your taste buds for more. All this to say, I didn’t spend one euro more than the 12.50 Euro entrance fee – however that fee might end up costing me thousands in the long run as I revisit all the stores and websites on my list!

While I can’t share a full list of all the shops servicing the show, I will share a few of my favorite finds – the best of the best of Naarden’s Art and Antiques Weekend. First off is the eponymously-named Anouk Beerents Antiek Spiegels, whose owner is as exceedingly charming as her inventory of 18th and 19th C gilt and silver-leafed antique mirrors. I was immediately bewitched upon entering her stall and her laughter was delightful as I danced around the many mirrors, unable to take my eyes off my reflecting reflections.

“You should see my atelier” she enticed as I pirouetted past one mirror and into another. Her studio in Amsterdam, located on the Prinsengracht, is so big that she has more than 300 mirrors in inventory. Although the warehouse is only open by appointment, she does offer an incredible perk, saying “just drive into Amsterdam, and pull your car directly into my studio!” Now that is what I call on-site parking!

Just next to Anouk’s stall was another shop bearing the name of its owner — Robert Schreuder’s Antiquair. Robert charmed me immediately by commenting on my new purse and regaled me with a tale of his recent visit to the Louis Vuitton museum outside of Paris, a place I hadn’t realized existed. His stall was beautifully decorated with an assortment of antiques and he spoke with a friendly and engaging smile that encouraged me to linger. Unfortunately, Robert doesn’t have a shop address you can pop into and visit at will, as he is, in fact, a hobby-antiquaire while keeping his day job as a high-powered attorney. He spends his weekends assembling a remarkable collection of furniture from the Neoclassical, Empire and Biedermeier periods and amassing an assortment of antique Grand Tour souvenirs. You can visit him at one of the many upcoming fairs where he’ll be displaying pieces from his collections. Better yet, make an appointment to visit him in his private atelier in Amsterdam nearby tos/ig/Top-5-Amsterdam-Parks/Photos–Amsterdam-s-Best-Parks.htm” target=”_blank”>Sarphati Park. I have half a mind to give him a call to make an appointment and take a second look at his French mahogany writing desk (dated around 1830) and priced at 5,700E.

Perhaps more in my price range was the English Davenport Desk (complete with secret drawer right out of a Sherlock Holmes novel), also from the 1830’s, selling for 3,600E at S. Van Leeuwen’s. S. Van Leeuwen’s is located in the north end of The Hague, nearby the Royal Palace, in a beautiful 18th C mansion. For almost 100 years they have been selling a delicious inventory of high-quality 17th and 18th C antiques as well as collectibles from the 19th C.

Another vendor from The Hague who caught my attention was the Galerie Het Cleyne Huys, a modern art gallery specializing in Dutch artists. A significant amount of their wall space was devoted to the works of Corry Kooy who simply stole the show with her portraits and travel impressions. The prices on her pastels and oil paintings were such a good deal that I considered purchasing one on the spot. Ultimately, I decided to wait and attend one of her upcoming shows at the gallery so that WG could have a say in the decision.

Amsterdam’s Dolf D. Van Omme’s 19th – 21st C European Fine Arts dazzled me with their collection of high-end art. Prices started around the 2,000E price point and moved judiciously towards the teens and twenties as the pedigrees improved. Of particular interest was the work by Leo Gestel and Piet van der Hem. While I know Antiek de Eikelhof more for their 17th C Dutch, English, Spanish and French commodes, armoires and bureaus, it was their paintings at the fair that caused me to pause for more than an instant. A well-versed clerk explained the difference in the paintings and informed me which artist was undervalued and what was a good investment piece. While I’ve never visited their store in Marienheem, I’m certainly adding them to my list of “Must See’s” in the future.

Last, but not least, I cannot neglect mentioning two of my favorite jewelers at the fair – Le Camee and Ans Hemke Kuilboer (Nieuwe Spiegelstraat 67, Amsterdam). Anyone who knows me well knows that I love Ans Hemke Kuilboer, and an afternoon in Amsterdam’s Spiegelkwartier is not complete without trying on a few baubles in her shop. I was delighted to find her at the fair! Sadly, Le Camee doesn’t have a shop in town. They only “do the fairs” but I’ve been assured that they’ve already signed up to have a stall at InterEvent’s next fair, Authentiek, held in the Paleis Het Loo on April 17 – 20.

At the end of the day I was exhausted from all that hard-core Antiques Diva research. You must know it’s hard work being a diva! In fact, I was so worn out from all that window-shopping I had half a mind to rush over to Het Arsenaal to check out the services in their day spa – Beauty Results.

After all, a Diva’s work is never done!

Until next time, Happy Shopping!

The Antiques Diva™

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