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In the good old 1950’s, no home was complete without a table with four matching chairs in the family room or den, where we could all sit around and play games. Whether it was board games like Monopoly or card games, family and friends gathered around and had a good time. Of course, this was all before the advent and meteoric sales of radios and televisions. Although the 1950’s was a good time for the game table, their beginnings go a lot further than that.
Mikey decided to move out to a farm. He didn't get many visitors, so I went to see him...when I got there, he was standing stiff as a board, out in the middle of the cow paddock. I yelled out to him, and asked what he was doing standing out there all still and straight. He replied that he was trying to win a Noble Peace prize. I said, "Well, that's great, but what are you doing in the paddock?" He replied, "I was reading the newspaper, and it said all you had to do to win the Noble Peace prize was to be outstanding in your field."
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“Peaceable Kingdom” by Edward Hicks, a Pennsylvania Folk Artist, brought in a record $6,176,000 at a recent Christie’s Auction. The painting is one of 100 “Peaceable Kingdom” versions of the paintings done by the artist in the early to mid 19th Century. This particular version of the oil on canvas measured just over 24” by 30” and is believed to have been painted in about 1849, right before he passed. These paintings all feature peaceful images depicted by the Bible and Isaiah 11:6-9.
In the 18th century, most homes had a game table made for the family room or living room. The most basic of models featured a top that opened and spun to form a square table, however many more game tables were elaborately made using the best and most exotic woods and many were ornately designed. Later models even featured many trimmings including wells for gaming chips and or holders for drinks. However, in the 1900’s game tables lost their popularity.
An Arlington police officer stopped Mikey the other day for speeding and asked him very nicely if he could see his license. Mikey replied in a huff, "I wish you guys would get your act together. Just yesterday you take away my license and then today you expect me to show it to you!"
DeLizza & Elster was a costume jewelry manufacturer for more than
40 years. This was a company well-known to insiders but not the general public. Their name was the name behind many companies selling
costume jewelry from 1947-1990, and includes a company they created for retail sales, Juliana Jewelry.
The list of companies purchasing jewelry from DeLizza & Elster during that timeframe, reads like a star-studded guest list. Companies
like Capri, Alice Caviness, Coro, Kramer and Weiss to company moguls - Les Bernard, lHattie Carnegie, Pakula, Joan Rivers, and Kenneth
J. Lane. There were home party and catalog companies like Sarah Coventry, Tara and Park Lane as well as large corporations such as
Surprise! Walt Disney and an innovative retail concept company, Bijoux Terner.
Mr. DeLizza has written a new book titled, Memoirs of a Fashion Jewelry Manufacturer (DeLizza & Elster). The book which is scheduled for release this month (February 2007) includes copies of the original black and white design sketches along with color photos of various styles of jewelry the company made. Mr. DeLizza writes, "Buy the book to read, read the book to learn and share the book with others to remember what used to be".
Fast forward to 2007 and there is now resurgence in the popularity of the game table. Probably because Americans are spending more on finishing their basements and creating elaborate game rooms in their homes. Game tables are now available not only at the local antique shop or flea market, but reproductions are popping up everywhere. Checking the Internet we saw small game tables for just over $300 to more elaborate game tables going for thousands of dollars.
Most of us are familiar with the Granddaddy of all Antique Flea Markets, DC Big Flea in Chantilly, Virginia which is promoted by D’Amore Promotions. On Saturday and Sunday, February 3 & 4, 2007, we attended the first everFredericksburg Big Flea, promoted by the same company. Being the first show, we did not expect it to be a great success right away. However, we were thoroughly surprised when we arrived and found the aisles crammed with shoppers. The building itself, which opened in January 2006, is new, spacious and very elegant. The staff was very helpful and best of all we found some really good bargains. We are hoping that D’Amore plans more of these markets in the coming year.
Another piece of furniture making resurgence as of late is the liquor bar cabinet that had its original glory days during the Art Deco era. Like game tables, there are certain reasons these bar cabinets are coming back into prominence. One may be that people are spending more to upgrade their playrooms and another may be that there has been a huge increase in the amount of wine being consumed by Americans. In either case, the cabinets that were out of style are now in vogue.
Bar cabinets were made in all sorts sizes, from elaborate pieces of art, to the most simplistic functional pieces of furniture. Some things they all had in common however were a place to store liquor bottles and a flat surface to hold an ice bucket and glasses or goblets, while you mixed or poured drinks. The bar cabinets nowadays can range in many different price ranges depending on the type and elaborateness. I recently saw an Art Deco bar cabinet being sold for a mere $100 on Craigslist. Too bad it was in St. Louis, it was definitely a steal at that price.