Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Coming up this Sunday the 29th: The biannual Antique and Collectibles Fair in Old Town Clovis, CA. More than 80 dealers will bring their finest finds for your selection. Wanda Leon, for instance, has just gotten back from an exhaustive summer-long buying trip along the World's Longest Yard Sale and who knows what she's brought home. Also, you can bring something for a free appraisal by Kathy Osterberg. Admission and parking are free.


Old Town Clovis is one of those lovingly restored downtown districts that take you back, so that a stroll through the streets feels like you've been transported in time. They've set a wonderful example for any American community looking to revive their heritage.

You can check out ongoing events in town on a blog, and there's a virtual tour you can take on the Old Town Clovis website. Antique Fairs are held in March and September, sponsored by Business Organization of Old Town.

If you go to Clovis, meander through the many antique shops in Old Town. You can refer to a map of shops in Cochran's Guide, just select Contents and then click on Clovis.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Take Hubby Shopping for Mantiques

Men have been deeply involved in antiques since the first caveman started collecting old bones, but still when a lot of guys think of antiques they picture spindly gilded furniture and pretty dishes, not really their cup of tea (hope that remark doesn't sound sexist). They get that glassy-eyed look when you want them to go with you shopping in antique stores. But now there are stores that boldly offer "mantiques," "architectural," "industrial" items that definitely spark a man's interest.

One we just came across this morning is called Acme Garage, in Medford, Oregon. They describe their store as follows: "At over 6600 sq ft, our co-op is packed with high-octane vintage items." When you go there, you might want to bring a truck!

Guys! Imagine this "settee" in your man cave!

Check out their Facebook page for a preview. It's a guy kinda thing, from the banner featuring four pin-up girls reminiscent of mechanics' calendars, on down...a miner's carbide lamp, advertising signs for once-popular petroleum products, metal lockers like you had in high school, stuff from dismantled post offices and bowling alleys, giant sign letters, 1950s billboards, neon signs, repurposed furniture and all the elements a fella needs to do some repurposing on his own...Well, you get the idea. Lots of photos for inspiration.

 They've got a sign out front that says "Drop him off at Acme Garage...Free Mansitting." So next time you're in Medford stop at 2784 West Main St, bring the hubby and don't be surprised if he has the time of his life.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Paradise, California is a town named for a pun, according to local lore: someone came up with "Pair-O-Dice" and it evolved into Paradise. The main drag through Paradise is Skyway Blvd. where you'll see a string of antique and vintage stores, definitely worth the detour off Highway 99 to spend an afternoon exploring. And thanks to the wonders of the Internet, you can do a preview visit to these two stores: Skyway Antique Mall, and Bainbridge Antiques.

Skyway Antique Mall has its own website, a simple straightforward collection of lots of photos. You get an impression of a very large store, with a big selection that includes fine wood furniture.

Bainbridge Antiques has a page on Facebook, where they post excellent photos of the store and newly-arrived items. Here's a homey display of colorful kitchen pottery and glassware, like Fiestaware, Fire King, Russell Wright and Hull plus old crocks, etc. You can also find items from Bainbridge Antiques on eBay.

Paradise is off Hwy. 5 east of Chico. Other stores you'll see along the highway are Jeannie's Consignment, Skyway Blue and Aunt Mabel's General Store. On the way you'll pass veggie stands featuring the area's trademark olives and other locally-grown produce, and amazing red buttes that reminded me of a miniature Grand Canyon. Beautiful country!