I'm talking about the place, not the photo.
I spent yesterday in Round Top, Texas, population 77, for the Spring 09 Antique Weekend. Two friends, both long-time attendees of the event, asked me to join them for the day. "The day?", I questioned. Hmmm, feeling a bit guilty making the decision because a) no job which means b) should be spending lovely spring day looking for job. But hey, I won't be shopping for anything, right? It took all of 30 seconds for me to convince myself I deserved a day in the country.
Thousands of dealers from around the country and thousands of buyers converge on this tiny town twice a year, and my first experience tells me I will be back next fall. Lots of junk, yes. Lots of time wading through all of the tents, barns, and traffic, yes. But many magnificent items are there to be found. Here are two of my favorite finds:
Takaan hand carved wood molds from the Ridgefield Gallery. Through a 400-year Philippine carving tradition, these molds were used as sculptural tools for the production of paper mache art objects. The detail in these woodcarvings shows not only the original skill of the carver, but also unique wear on the surface from repeated use. I was told by Ken that the takaan shown in the photo above was part of a series made for a designer in Milan.... Lovely.
My other favorite is this antique print of a cacao pod I found at Nostalgia Fine Art. This print comes from an early 19th century German medicinal plants book, and is hand-colored. The yellow pod is the "fruit" of the Theobroma Cacao tree, and it is the source of the beans that are made into chocolate.
Pumped up on Starbucks triple americano, we made it to three of the primary areas including Marburger, the Big Red Barn, and Warrenton, working our way through the huge collection of vendors.
At Marburger Brett found the right piece of antique Swedish furniture. At the Big Red Barn I found other Swedish temptations. And at Warrenton Heather found the tent giving away margaritas. And when we began to lag from all the walking, carnival food kept us going (in my case a corn dog, spiral potato chips, and a chocolate chip cookie), as did a late afternoon stop at the Bubble Lounge for some Veuve Clicquot.
Sipping Veuve Clicquot and tromping around farmland in the middle of Texas seems incongruous???
Visit Round Top this weekend and see what it's all about. Go to my Flickr page to see more photos from the event, and checkout the antiques weekend link at the top of this post for all the details on directions, parking, and exhibitors.