One of the bloggers I identified with very early on in my blogging career was/is Lauren Liess from Pure Style Home. Besides having an awesome eye for design in a really down to earth way, Lauren is a local, she's my age and she often talked about how much she loved her grandmothers' style. Somewhere along the lines I realized she was speaking my language.
Lauren would often mention her friends Eddie and Jaithan and I came to realize Eddie was a staple on Martha Stewart's show and for his work styling many of the pics in the glossies that we look at every day.
[their previous home featured in Lonny]
While in San Francisco for work last week, mom wrote to tell me she signed us up to go to the DC Flea Market, which would have been cool enough in and of itself. But we were also going to walk thru the booths alongside Eddie Ross to learn a few things about thrifting and styling. I was super pumped!
[Pay close attention to how GORG these two dudes are. Envious of their effortless style!!]
Already feeling their welcoming vibe from the correspondance with Eddie's cofounder and partner, Jaithan, our sentiments were amplified after our tour around the Dulles Expo Center while Eddie opened our eyes to things we hadn't really thought of.
What we learned:
1- Even sets (of china, glasses, napkins, etc) are never something to worry about or a cause for passing up something you love. You will almost always be able to find the missing parts at another round up, on eBay or Replacements.com.
2 - To remove stains from linens, try Laundress non-chlorine bleach.
3 - Take inspiration from the things you find along the way. Maybe you love some Transferware plates but don't have a need for them. Take their color combo as inspiration for a tablescape… cranberry and green or brown and mulberry make great color combos.
4 - The seamstress at the local dry-cleaners will make a fabbo tablecloth for a lot cheaper than your upholsterer.
5 - If you stick to buying what you love versus what you think you should get, you'll never go wrong.
6 - Always talk to the vendors about their stuff. They have been collecting for a long time and will be able to pass along the history of your 'find'.
7 - Mother-of-pearl goes with just about anything. Snatch up any pieces you find that you love and you'll always have a place on the table for them. MOP and horn can be cleaned with good ole' mineral oil. But no harsh detergents or it will crack.
8 - If you can't remove stains from linens or to revamp a tired look, dye it with RIT dye.
9 - "Barkeeper's Friend" is great for rust stains on linen and cleaning just about everything!
10 - Traditional serverware has many non-traditional uses. For instance, use a funky, curved banana dish for holding linens in a powder room. All sorts of linens, from cocktail napkins to hand towels, make for great guest bathroom towels, when having a gathering. Load up a basket and have your guest s use individual hand towels instead of a communal towel.
11 - If you spot a must-have table cloth in the wrong size or color, it can always double as upholstery fabric for a headboard or pillow.
12 - Don't be discouraged by the price of something. Especially if it's a set. If you break it down, a set of 10 glasses may be $100, but you are getting each glass for $10 and if it's a collectible or part of something you already have, it's a great price. Collections are built over time, not all at once. It's OK to pick a pricier item to scoop up along the way.
13 - Mix your antiques and flea market finds with current, relevant pieces. Pick up a few yards of ikat or chevron fabric to make a tablecloth and add your polished silver collection and funky old plates. If you intermix your vintage finds with newer things it will tend towards eclectic and collected-over-time versus grandma's attic.
One of my favorite quotes of the day had to be when Eddie shared that Jaithan often says there is an old grandmother deep down inside him waiting to be let out! Hence his magnetism towards doilies and fine silver.
|[Eddie, Nancy, Bethany, Jaithan]|
|[Eddie talking about Flow Blue china]|
|[Enlightening us on fine linens]|
If you have the chance to meet up with Eddie and Jaithan next time they run through your town, do it to it!
BTDubs - why is my mom so cute??