COMMENT OF THE DAY: HOW THE DECLINING MARKET FOR ANTIQUES IS FUELING THE SELF-STORAGE BOOM “My mom has an amazing collection of stuff like this. I think about it all the time. . . . worried what I’m going to to with my great great grandfather’s table, and my great grandmother’s silver. I don’t have the room for it at this point in my life . . . but I don’t want to give it away. I almost feel like I need to get a storage unit for it.” [Chef DB, commenting on The Underappreciated Riches of Houston’s Antique Set]
THE UNDERAPPRECIATED RICHES OF HOUSTON’S ANTIQUE SET “Someday,” antique dealer and appraiser David Lackey muses to intrepid radio reporter Allison Lee, “the Millennials . . . may be horrified when their children want mahogany furniture and doilies and figurines.” But for now, Lackey seems resigned to the great generational decline — and accompanying price drops — in the market for antique furniture: “There are half as many antique shows in Houston as there were 20 or 30 years ago,” he tells Lee. “Traditional English and American furniture, overall, has fallen maybe 50 to 75 percent.” Lackey operates his business out of the Antiques of River Oaks antiques megashop (pictured above) in the home-furnishings-themed shopping center at 3461 W. Alabama north of Greenway Plaza, but he’s also out and about, soaking up the zeitgeist: “I go into more estates — or I’m working with older people and they’re selling a lot of their stuff because they say their kids and grandkids do not want it. They’ve made it very clear. The younger generation, for the most part, is not very interested in formal candlelight suppers. They don’t want silver, china, crystal, because they don’t intend to entertain that way.” [Houston Public Media] Photo: David Lackey Antiques & Art
High-school Spanish teacher-turned-interior-decorator Paloma Contreras, who with her husband moved from a carefully tended suburban home to a Montrose townhouse last summer, is selling a number of furniture pieces that aren’t making the cut in the new digs, including the alphabetically labeled items in the top photo above (and, in the other view, the very ottoman beneath her).
As a Houston design blogger of long standing, however, Contreras has a few advantages other would-be furnishings-hawkers might not. For example, the items she’s showing off in the “Huge Blog Sale!” announcement she posted earlier today were photographed in situ in Contreras’s previous home by NYC-based photographer Lesley Unruh for a designer home tour on One Kings Lane last year (where many of them were also included in her “tastemaker tag sale”). Also, there’ll be no Craigslist-y or consignment hassle for Contreras, whose La Dolce Vita website has plenty of local followers: “All pieces will be sold to first person to email me . . . with the item name and your confirmation to purchase. From that time, the interested party will have 1 hour to send payment in full via Venmo.” Oh, and no delivery issues either: “All items are for local Houston pick up only. Pick up will be this Saturday, June 10th. Time, address, and other details will be disclosed to buyer via email.”
Photos: Lesley Unruh
First order of business at all future meetings around Motile: achieve full consensus on table height. The rendering above from Mayfield and Ragni Studio shows the Houston architecture and design firm’s plan for an adjustable conference table, allowing working teams to alternate at will between sitting and standing (so long as they can unanimously agree on exactly when to do so). The table is headed for this summer’s NeoCon design trade show, where it’s in the running for a HiP award; if you like the idea, the trade show’s online voting system appears to still be operational (though the voting period appears to have formally ended yesterday).
Table the Motion