Wednesday, May 12, 2010
A Second Life
I am not much into television. With the exception of the show Parenthood, to which I am addicted, there is not much that I'll plop in front of the t.v. to watch.
However, there is one other show that's on my short list, a new show on Bravo called 9 by Design. It's a reality (really? ever?) show that follows around Bob and Cortney Novogratz, a couple that scoops up property, guts it, then rebuilds it, makes it fabulous, and sells it. Oh, and they have seven children, thus the "9" in 9 by Design.
My first exposure to this couple's work was about a year ago when Ward and I visited a boutique hotel in Long Branch, NJ called Bungalow. It was the first hotel that Sixx Design (the name of the Novogratz's design company) actually created, and it was amazing. It was clever in that it was very modern and hip, but also surprisingly comfortable.
When I saw previews for the show, my interest was piqued. As I've watched the first five episode, I've become more aware of my surroundings. I currently tend to lean towards a cottage style, with a hint of french country. I began purging the things that no longer served me, deciding to have a garage sale to find homes for my old favorites, and to make room for in my house for new finds.
While I've always scoured garage sales for old pieces of furniture (gems in the rough), I've been more prone to find good pieces at antique stores and the like. I'd noticed, over the past month or so, a new store that popped up in the neighboring town of Boonton. Savannah Hope Vintage. I loved the name, and the storefront had an inviting appeal, so I decided to check it out. I'd been looking to replace some new light fixtures with old chandeliers anyway, so this was a good enough reason to check out the store.
Pushing through the front door just days before Mother's Day, I was overcome by piece after piece of furniture. Actually, calling it furniture is not doing it justice. I don't really know how to refer to these pieces. Sideboards, armoires, end tables, headboards, all beautifully cared for and displayed. Much of it was repainted, given a second life. I wanted all of it. My modest Cape Cod is well-furnished, and I have little room for new pieces. However, with the garage sale coming up, I began thinking that there might be a few pieces I could swap out.
Out from the back of the store emerged a thin blonde woman, hair pulled off her face, her slim glasses perched on her nose. She was pretty and looked creative, and were it not for her easy smile, she might have seemed intimidating. I mentioned to her that I was looking for a chandelier, and told her about the space it would be illuminating. She pointed to a few chandeliers that were hanging in the window, and they almost seemed too small for the space. Both were the exact style I wanted, though, and they were priced to sell. I chose one, and mentioned that there was a light beside it that would need to be swapped out to match. She began showing me pendant lights, but I wasn't sure how they would look in my hall. The current light was flush to the ceiling. Andrea (this is her name) talked to me about it, addressing my questions and concerns. I walked the store thinking about the lights, trying to see them hanging in my mind's eye.
While walking, I kept returning to a piece that I just loved. It was big, probably too big for any space I could make available. But you know how sometimes something just calls to you? Well, it was calling. I told Andrea that I was very interested, and asked her if she'd get the measurements for me. At this point, after only ten minutes in the store, I was in love with this piece of furniture. I decided to run home, measure my space, and if it fit, return to Savannah Hope Vintage to buy it. Oh, and I also decided that the pendant light would be lovely hanging just across the hall from my chandelier. Just like that.
As luck would have it, the piece fit in my kitchen. I am not sure of it's intended purpose, but I am sure it was meant for my kitchen. It's been here for just under a week, and still, I look forward to coming home to it. This is not common for me. I am very attached to my loved ones, and sentimental pieces of furniture and jewelry, but random furniture? No. Not usually. But this is elegant and strong, with amazing detail and lots of storage. I'm in love.
The piece, as pictured with this blog (and the pic doesn't do it justice), looks like something out of an Anthropologie catalog. I mean, really, it's art. You need to see it in person, up close. I swear, I feel blessed having it. And the chandelier and pendant lamp - which have been installed - are also quite fabulous. I made very good choices.
I almost forgot to mention an end table that I picked up while I was there. It doesn't demand the same amount of attention as the others, but it's brightened up my living room quite a bit, and every time I see it, I smile.
Savannah Hope Vintage is a place you must visit. Trust me on this one. It's located at 418 Main Street in Boonton, NJ. The store has furniture of all types, beautiful glassware, paintings (I bought one today) and art, all sorts of home goods. They also carry homemade soaps, jewelry, purses, and more. Seriously, go right away and visit the store. If you are on facebook, search Savannah Hope Vintage and "Like" the page. If you aren't local, you can shop Savannah Hope Vintage through etsy, at http://www.etsy.com/shop/SavannahHopeVintage.