Welcome to the Okemo Antiques Show.
Quintessential country from Salt Box Antiques, Sugarloaf, Pennsylvania. The sawbuck table with its original surface was $4250 and sold; the blue tabletop desk was $2150; and the game board, “Sara, 1832,” was $850. When Sarah Yenkevich delivered the table, she happened to have an 18th-century wagon seat in the van that she did not bring into her booth because of space. At the time of delivery, she had to move the wagon seat to get out the table, and the new owner said, “What is that?” Another sale was quickly made! Is there a moral to the story?
You cannot argue with the simple approach. Meryl Weiss of American Classics, Canaan, New Hampshire, wrote on the tag of her 1920’s 58" x 55" hooked rug, “Just a great hooked rug!” It was priced at $6800. The $2400 checkerboard-top table was not bad either.
The large footed basket sold to a dealer. The red one-door cupboard was $975, and the red sled, $395. Brooks Antiques, Frenchtown, New Jersey, had a very good show. They also sold the wooden birds on stands and the labeled Heywood-Wakefield chair from Maine.
The blue bench was $1250 from Missouri Plain Folk, Sikeston, Missouri. The architectural element in front of it was $395.
by Fran Kramer
On the back of the Okemo Antiques Show program was a very simple request: “Please visit all of the fine shows of Vermont Antiques Week,” and then the shows were listed. Talk about being a gentleman. The scholarship part comes from the dealers. Most were veterans who knew their merchandise and were keen to have conversations with potential customers. Remember when?
I wonder, is the civility shown at all of the Vermont shows a reflection of the fact that all of the shows’ management includes women? Now, do not say “sexism”; it is just a question. The degree of civility and attention to creature comforts such as food was noteworthy, and the spirit of cooperation at all the shows was exemplary. Dealers commented on the lovely venue, the Okemo Mountain Resort in Ludlow, and on the ease of loading and unloading at this show, for example, and the courtesy of the show managers.
At the 19th annual Okemo show, held October 6, 2012, with a preview on October 5, the team of Patricia and Don Clegg of East Berlin, Pennsylvania, manage with a “soft touch,” having taken over from Marlin Denlinger about 16 years ago. Despite losing approximately six dealers to the ADA/Historic Deerfield show in Massachusetts, the show was exceptionally strong and very well laid out. Each booth begged for a picture.
The Cleggs reported the best preview crowd ever, with about 300 patrons, 50 of whom bought tickets ahead of time. How, you ask? Well, the Cleggs have developed a clever procedure to avoid any mix-up of who is really first in the preview line. About four months before the show, on their Web site, the Cleggs offered the chance to buy preview tickets via e-mail. They numbered all preview tickets to avoid those hectic opening moments and to make sure the number one patron is really number one whenever he/she arrives, as long as it is before the show’s opening. This also enables the Cleggs to see where folks are coming from, such as Nebraska, Kentucky, Louisiana, and Texas. Who knew?
The dealers themselves came from a larger variety of states than those at the other shows. Thirty exhibitors from New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Missouri, and even Alabama presented a smaller blend of the New Hampshire dealers’ show, the Heart of Country show in Nashville, and other shows with visual appeal, unusual merchandise with an emphasis on Americana, and established dealers.
One dealer who was absent—and missed—was Thomas Longacre of Marlborough, New Hampshire. Pat Clegg said that he had called a few days before the show about unexpected surgery; he is now doing well, but those of you who know him might send a greeting his way.
Selling was quite brisk the first hour or two, and then, as in the other shows that weekend, there was a lull, followed by some lookers, then some buyers, and still more sales. Dealers called the next day a “steady Saturday,” meaning steady second-day sales. Pat Clegg said that on Saturday this time they had 40 more patrons than Saturday in 2011.
Among the big sellers at Okemo were Michael and Lucinda Seward of Pittsford, Vermont. Their booth was almost bare after the preview, but Michael was out at the other shows that evening and the next morning buying up a storm.
J & R Ferris, Boonville, New York, had an excellent show, according to Clegg. Pratt’s Antiques, Victor, New York, also wrote up a lot of sold tags. Many dealers sold to other dealers who in turn sold to patrons.
Again I turn to food. The preview crowd had a bounty of wine, cheese, and fancy appetizers. The show was “dedicated to the memory of dealers Corinne Burke and Marvin Eliot, who passed away since last year’s show. Both were icons in the field of American country antiques. They will be sorely missed.” How true. And how nice to acknowledge their contributions to the antiques business. Didn’t I tell you how old-fashioned courtesy was a theme at this show?
For more information, call Don and Pat Clegg at (717) 259-9480.
Jane Wargo of Wallingford, Connecticut, was another exhibitor with a flair for display. The penny rug was $1550, and it had been professionally mounted. The pond boat with replaced sails, early 20th century, was $350.
The tavern table, maple and pine, 25" x 40" x 28", from Gloria Lonergan was $3850. The birdcage stand sold, but the bannerette vane ($2500) and the set of six Windsors (three shown, $3350) were still available.
Fine period furniture from Michael and Lucinda Seward of Pittsford, Vermont. The 18th-century Queen Anne chest on bandy legs (left), with replaced brasses and an old replacement top, was $1800; the Queen Anne chest with original brasses on the right was $1500; and the New England ladder-back chair with an old surface was $975. The painting of a lady in black sold. The American flag paper hat sold, as did lots of other stuff.
Originally published in the January 2013 issue of Maine Antique Digest. © 2013 Maine Antique Digest