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Last Minute Diva: #ATT Antiques Trade Tuesday

Attention Antiques Dealers,

I know you’re as into Social Media as I am and I hope you’re following me on Twitter and Facebook!   

That said, I knew you’d want to be the first to know about “Antiques Trade Tuesday” – the new way for members of the antiques trade to get noticed on Twitter!  If you’re using Social Media to gain exposure to new clients then Tuesday nights on Twitter is #ATT – Antiques Trade Tuesday – proving yet again that Antiques Are Fun!!!

Every Tuesday between 5pm and 7pm – UK TIME – Antiques Dealers send a tweet with the #ATT  hash tag telling what makes their shop great. The winner of the night is re-tweeted by the trade introducing YOU to their followers! It’s a great way to toot your own horn and to promote the antiques trade in general, gearing excitement amongst industry professionals!

Your tweet can be funny or serious as long as you say why you are awesome – giving you a Tuesday night chance to win the opportunity to have your tweet (and contact details) retweeted and exposing you to potentially thousands of future clients.

The twitter account you need to follow for all the news and information about #ATT is www.twitter.com/antiquestuesday 

Hopefully this will be another way to promote the antiques trade and will also provide a bit of fun on twitter on a Tuesday night because Antiques are Fun!

Happy Tweeting,
The Antiques Diva®

Where in the World is The Antiques Diva®?

Dear Diva Readers,

Since returning from my month-long sojourn in America for the Christmas holidays, the New Year has started off with a bang! We’re only into the end of our 2nd month and I’ve already traipsed thrice across Europe, dashing to Amsterdam, Den Haag, Antwerp , Brussels and Paris. Sometimes I don’t know whether I’m coming or going and whether to say Bonjour, Goedemorgen or Guten Tag!


Meanwhile as I’m on the road, The Antiques Diva & Co keeps appearing in different places around the world wide web! First it was a mention in Apartment Therapy’s article on French Shopping Vacations and Tours followed shortly thereafter by a few of my articles appearing in the Bonjour Paris newsletter.

Karen Fawcett - Bonjour Paris Editor

Going Going Gone was about the Paris auction house Hotel Drouot while last month’s Bonjour Paris column Ask The Antiques Diva® shared details on the Salon des Antiquities de Bastille in Paris. And while I’m on the subject of Bonjour Paris, I must say I was delighted to be invited recently to attend a champagne cocktail hour chez Karen Fawcett, the Editor of Bonjour Paris. During that event I was delighted to meet Lisa Buros-Hutchins, the effervescent founder of Your Paris Experience!

Saxon Henry - Roaming by Design

Meanwhile, I was honored to spend a weekend in Paris with social media maven and journalist Saxon Henry. While we were out and about in Paris she posted about our wanderings on Roaming by Design, telling details of our meeting with passemeterie-artisan Remy Lemoine whose work graces the interiors of some of the world’s top designers. When Saxon & I weren’t gallivanting about, we took some much-needed down time in the city of light and one of our favorite nights in Paris occurred when I decided to don an apron and whip us up a 5 course dinner!

On top of all of this, I was delighted that the Italian Luxury Linen company blog Belvivere did a feature on The Antiques Diva & Co! Mrs. Conti had me blushing like a bride over the praise she lavished on our European Shopping Tours and the inventory in our Online Store.

Speaking of online stores, the Belvivere linen shop is divine and a visit to CEO Jay C Conti’s website is a wonderful lesson in linen. Recently I was honored to be asked to write a testimonial for Conti’s upcoming book, “The Luxury Bedding Makeover System -A Step-by-Step Workbook To Dress Up a Beautiful Bed & Revamp Your Bedroom Décor”, which unravels the mystery of thread count, teaches the language of linen & deciphers quality in bedroom decor.

Andrea Martin - Expat Women.com

While that covers Europe, I was surprised to get a note from a contact on LinkedIn who had heard Andrea Martin of Expat Women.com speak on women entrepreneurs. My contact Jeannine wrote,

“I went to a talk in Singapore about owning your own business and the speaker used you – The Antiques Diva – as an example. I was like “Wow!, I know her”…. I’ll never forget going to your beautiful home in Amsterdam. It was so well decorated and all of the food and every detail was just right. I’m sure your business must be great if you put as much love into your business as you do your home.”

Love indeed – my company The Antiques Diva & Co continues to grow out of passion for what I do! If you want to follow my day-to-day, make sure to become a fan on The Antiques Diva & Co Facebook page or follow my tweets on Twitter!

Until next time,

The Antiques Diva®

Photo credit below:  Angelica Arbulu Photography

Love & Lust: Objets de Decoration – Style & Design: Best of the Web Award

Dear Diva Readers,

I was delighted Friday afternoon to discover that The Antiques Diva blog, alongside French Garden Antiques and Design Commotion, was given this award by The Decorating Diva:

The Decorating Diva happens to be the premier online magazine for coverage on the latest trends in home design, green design, color, home decor and healthy home living. Plus, they give great reviews of a variety of home decorating products!

The Decorating Diva was founded by Carmen Natschke, the award-winning designer and co-founder of Room In A Kit LLC. In 2002 the parent company decided to spin off a sister company of Room In A Kit LLC by launching The Decorating Divas workshops where students learned everything from how to faux paint to how to accessorize like a professional decorator. At each workshop, dozens of students asked about online decorating and buying resources and The Decorating Diva online magazine was born from those requests!

Each week The Decorating Diva draws attention “to the very best and most fabulous design, decorating, entertaining and style sites on the Internet”. Their criteria is simple: They look for value to the reader, engaging content, originality and creativity. They select the most outstanding sites that they find (or that are submitted to them for review). Do you know someone who fits this description? Then recommend them! Recommend your favorite design and style blog by sending nominations to bestoftheweb@thedecoratingdiva.com and give another blogger a chance to be delighted!

Want to read what The Decorating Diva had to say about The Antiques Diva™?

Decorating Diva writes:

“The Antiques Diva is written by the fabulous Toma Haines, an American expat living in Berlin, Germany with an extraordinary eye for luxe European antiques, vintage jewelry, and art. Toma has taken her love of antiques shopping and made it a career – lucky for antiques lovers (and travel lovers, too) the world over! Toma offers European antiques and decor shopping tours in Paris, Amsterdam, The Hague, Brussels, Antwerp and Berlin. To keep up with Toma’s latest antique finds, follow The Antiques Diva on Twitter.”

Thanks Decorating Diva – Though we both know you’re a diva every day, we’re giving you “The Diva of the Day” award here at The Antiques Diva™ site as a small way to say Merci Beaucoup!

Be inspired,
The Antiques Diva™

Fall France Brocante and Art Market Calendar Update

Dear Diva Readers,

Joel Garcia, Paris’ pre-eminent organizer of brocantes, art salons and antique fairs just released their upcoming “CALENDRIER DES MANIFESTATIONS A VENIR”. Add these dates to your agenda!

ANTIQUITES BROCANTE / VIEUX PAPIERS – Antique Markets and Flea Markets/ Old Paper Markets

23 Octobre – 1er Novembre : Salon du Livre et Papiers anciens – Paris – Espace Champerret / 23 October – 1st November: Old Books and Papers Salon

5 – 15 Novembre : Salon d’Antiquités Brocante – Paris – Place de la Bastille / 5-15 November: Antiques and Bric-a-Brac Market – Paris – Place de la Bastille. Read more about a special Antiques Diva Tour of the Place de Bastille Brocante.

GRANDS MARCHES D’ART CONTEMPORAIN / Large Contemporary Art Markets

3 – 6 Septembre : GMAC – Valbonne – Le Pré des Arts / 3-6 September: Valbonne (Alpes-Maritimes region) Art Fair

15 – 18 Octobre : GMAC – Chatou – Ile des Impressionnistes / 15-18 October Chatou (Paris suburb) Ile des Impressionnistes

27 Octobre – 1er Novembre : GMAC – Paris – Place de la Bastille / 27 October- 1 November Paris Place de la Bastille

Find more information on the Joel Garcia website!

Until next time,

The Antiques Diva™

Follow The Antiques Diva on Twitter!!

__________________________________________________

THE ANTIQUES DIVA™ TOURS – CLOSED FOR ANNUAL VACATION DURING AUGUST – REOPENS SEPTEMBER

Fourth of July Special Edition: The American Spirit

Back by popular demand – in honor of the United State’s Independence Day celebration – I am reposting an article of mine that was published in Expatica in 2008. This is just one expat’s take on what it means to be an American and living overseas.

Happy 4th of July!!!


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

This morning I received a call from a good Dutch friend asking what I was doing to celebrate the “4th of July”… and I realized that as I’ve lived outside of my own country for nearly a decade, I haven’t celebrated America’s birthday in years. During our first years living overseas (we were in Paris at the time), my husband & I would turn up our noses on French food for 1 day of the year to go to Planet Hollywood on the Champs-Élysées with our American friends Mike & Cindy (who’ve long since returned to Oregon). We’d celebrate with an orgy of fried foods, laughter and music so loud that we had to shout to hear one another. I remember another year in Paris when we went to a 4th of July Party / Going Away Party for an American friend who was returning to the States. The party was held on a roof-top terrace overlooking the Eiffel Tower and just a few weeks later we sat on a 5th floor fire escape overlooking Trocadero watching the Bastille Day fireworks display with an English man, a French man and a Chinese woman. That year somehow the two events merged in my mind as my very own Independence Day celebration – a melding of the American me and my French sensibilities. Maybe that was the year that I started to become an “international citizen”. It must have been that next year that the 4th of July happened as if it were any other day. Without the makeshift stalls selling firecrackers at the edge of town, or the American flags waving from front porches, I wasn’t reminded of the holiday! Without the visual reminders, I never thought to remember the celebration.

The 4th of July is as American as Apple Pie, Baseball, Parades, back-yard BBQ’s, red and white checkered tablecloths and ants invading the picnic! The date technically commemorates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, declaring independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain, but it is much more than a federal holiday. In all the parades, fireworks and enthusiasm, Independence Day defines the American Spirit. As my Dutch friend and I chatted on the phone this morning, discussing the meaning behind the American Independence Day, she asked me a difficult question – the type of question that foreigners often ask – taking me by surprise and making me verbalize an intuitive answer.

“How do you define the American spirit?”

As an American – true red, white & blue – I’ve lived outside the USA for almost a decade. But my birthright remains strong, providing a framework in which I find & define my identity – I’m a passport-wielding American, but in spite of an international lifestyle, I am an American through and through! An Irish friend who spent a few years living in New York told me “What I love about Americans is that they step into a room and expect to be adored! It’s a wonderful trait Americans have – a confidence and a belief in themselves that defines the American spirit.” Whether it’s a Nike slogan “Just do it!” or the rugged self-assurance of the now politically-incorrect, iconic Marlboro Man, as Americans we possess a “can do” attitude that often translates into an entrepreneual spirit.

My dad always says that the last two words in “American” are “I can” and the longer I am overseas the more I realize how this self-empowered, do-it-yourself attitude truly is an American trait. As Americans we are self starters. The American dream is based on the belief that all people are created equal – essentially anyone can do whatever their personal skills & desire allow them to do. While European friends who watched hours and hours of video, post Hurricane Katrina, might disagree with this statement, I believe that the social hierarchy found almost everywhere else in the world is not as readily in effect in America as it is elsewhere.

I think my European & Asian friends wrinkle their brow in confusion at me sometimes – asking “Why do you do it?”IT being any number of things from moving to a new country, volunteering as the president of an international club, helping organize my town’s antique fair, starting a new company or writing a book (which, fingers crossed, a publisher will someday fall in love with) and in the meantime blogging about my life as Th
e Antiques Diva™. More than once a friend has said, “Wouldn’t it be easier to have stayed home in Oklahoma? To have ‘read the book’ rather than ‘tried to write one’? Why bother to learn Dutch when you are only here for a few years? Why waste the time & effort starting a company for that same reason?” “What do you get out of volunteering on the Board of your women’s club? Why not merely be a member and reap the benefits without so much bloody work?”

But to do any of these things is in my very nature as an American. An elderly Japanese friend, who is a member of the same women’s social club as I am, remarked one day after I returned from a solo trip driving back from England (and taking the car on the ferry) to Holland by myself, “You’re so good at finding your way around Europe. Americans are always good at finding their way. In our club, American members always know where to go, how to get there, and then they are the first to volunteer to coordinate a group activity to go out and do or see something!”

As a foreigner living abroad, I don’t take my new home for granted. I go to the museums, I visit the tourist sites, I eat at the best restaurants (I like to say “I’m eating Europe, one bite at a time”) and try to learn as much about the area as I can. Part of the joy of day-to-day life in being a foreigner living abroad is that you get the excitement of being a tourist while dealing with the drudgery of day-to-day issues such as a plumbing repair in a foreign language (trust me, that teaches you vocabulary you never wanted to know) or grocery shopping without being able to understand the labels.

So now, while living in Holland and France before that, I’m still an American, red, white & blue. But through cultural absorption of the surroundings of my new countries, a part of me becomes “Almost French” or “Almost Dutch”. But to be “almost any other nationality” is in fact part of what it means to be an American. When you are American, you are always – through your ancestors – something else. I’m English, I’m Irish, and I’m Scottish, with a little Native American somewhere down the road thrown in. I’m certain a German fell in the pot at some point, and I must tell you I can’t walk through the streets of Istanbul without someone thinking I’m their cousin! A Russian friend was recently granted her American citizenship, an Indian friend waits to take their nationality test, and my former Afghan housekeepers immigrated to America with hopes of someday becoming American.

Anyone can become American.

The United States is a cultural melting pot with many nationalities thrown together to form a new nationality. Perhaps it is the very nature of how America was founded – by pioneers – that defines the American Spirit. Perhaps our Pioneer Past is the reason why we, as a nation, tend to be self-starters and entrepreneurs. And perhaps the very fact that as pioneers we succeeded in forming our new land gives us the inherited internal confidence that my Irish friend spoke of.

I’m not sure that I have the answer to my Dutch friend’s question on the definition of the American Spirit, but as my friend and I chatted on the phone I realized that, for me anyway, when I look through a lens at my home country across the pond, I almost feel I can see America more clearly now from afar. Even though I forget to celebrate the 4th of July, I think I’m more patriotic than I ever was when I was living in America. Just like the person in the forest who couldn’t see the forest for all the trees, I couldn’t see America for all the Americans! America was normal to me so I suppose I didn’t truly appreciate what was special about it or Americans.

Now when I visit my family in Oklahoma each year, my mom laughs at my desire to ride horses. As a child, or heaven forbid as a teenager, my interest in life on the ranch was non-existent. But through the wisdom of adulthood I look back and realize how good I had it! I now appreciate so many things; I realize how special & unique to my home-town they are: I appreciate the horses, the rodeos, the cowboys, even the cows, the Friday Night Fish Fries and Church Potluck Dinners. Without having these elements in my life, I’m even more aware when I do have the opportunity to experience them! I’m more of an Okie now than I ever was when living in Oklahoma! In part because being away helps me realize what’s special about my hometown.

And it’s the same with America. I feel sometimes, through moments of homesickness for the USA, that I am better able to see what makes America – or American’s – so special!

Happy 4th of July!

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The Antiques Diva™

One Minute Diva – Amsterdam Sotheby’s Auction Alert

JAN SCHOONHOVEN, 1914-1994,R 61-5, JALOUZIEËNRELIËF / FANLIGHT-SHUTTERS

When: Wed July 1, 2009 – 7pm
Viewing: Friday 26 – 29 June, 2009 – 10am – 5pm
Where: Sotheby’s Amsterdam, De Boelelaan 30, 1083 HJ Amsterdam

What: The sale of Modern and Contemporary Art at Sotheby’s Amsterdam on 1 July is highlighted by a wonderful relief by Jan Schoonhoven, R 61-5 (Fanlight-shutters) from 1961 and an early work, White, Black, Blue and Red, by the British female artist Marlow Moss who had close ties with Piet Mondriaan. Works by Marlow Moss can be found in the collections of the Tate Modern London, the Henry Moore Institute Leeds and the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam.

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