Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Serena & Lily

Usually I hate mailing lists. I'm actually one of those people who spends hours on the phone trying to get people to stop mailing me stuff: charity mailings, credit card offers, mortgage invitations, etc. But, somehow my name/address has been added to a jackpot mailing list from home design heaven. After a long day at work writing annual reports and planning fall programming, I arrived home to a beautiful catalog from Serena & Lily.

This company is fantastic. I want to be Serena or Lily. Preferably Lily, because I like that name better. But I digress.

They sell some furniture, fabric, rugs, paint, and baby stuff. Their designs are colorful, chic, and just a bit eclectic. Their rugs are on the high end of affordable for my budget...but still in that range. Yay! And their baby stuff. Oh goodness. It actually makes me want to get pregnant or adopt just to buy things! Ha! (Mom...don't faint...I'm just joking.)

Here's a look from their design studio.  This is the perfect tool for someone like me!

And if we ever have a child...the nursery of my dreams would be outfitted in the Dylan collection. Boy or girl...the elephants are just so cute.

And check out their Bazaar - fun, one of a kind objects pictured in their catalog for purchase. 

So...thank you to the genius data entry specialist who added me to this mailing list. And Serena & Lily, you will have a new customer as soon as I receive another paycheck.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Auction fun

Antiques are an obsession. And it's really too bad that my wallet can't support this obsession. So...I go to auctions in my current home state, Maine, where prices (on antiques and other things) tend to be a bit lower than say, Massachusetts, Connecticut or Pennsylvania. Last fall I went to an auction near Farmington, Maine for the sole purpose of a Maine painted bed that I saw pictured in an auction flyer.

I dragged my dear friend Kate along with me. The two of us sat teeth-chattering under a tent in the cold fall rain surrounded by a lovely assortment of Mainers. I hinted to the auctioneer that I was there for one thing...and one thing alone: the painted bed. He agreed to auction it off relatively early. Wink, wink.

So before the auction started, I inspected the bed; it hadn't been amended to a normal modern bed size (twin, full, queen, king) and looked to me to be almost full size. It had holes in the rails for the roping (as do most New England antique beds). The rusty red paint looked original. The headboard had original 'decoration' with black paint on top of the red paint. It was in pretty great condition. I loved it and decided I could go up to $250. What's funny is that you probably can't even buy a bed at Wal-Mart for $250...

The auction started and a few things were lined up, selling for relatively low prices. My adrenaline started pumping when I saw my bed disassembled and carried to the front of the tent. After a few bad jokes, the auctioneer started it at...$25. No...I am not joking...twenty-five dollars.

So I bid. Then another person bid at $35. I brought it to $45. And...then...the other person stopped. The auctioneer called $55 multiple times...trying to entice the second bidder. The second bidder didn't bite. The auctioneer paused...eyeing the second bidder once more, then lifted his gavel..."SOLD. $45 dollars to bidder number 61." That was me!

Yep, I bought my Maine painted bed for $45.00 last October. And I just got around to roping it up.

Here it is assembled, but not roped. The white board below it is called a bunky-board. I had this made at Portland Mattress Makers. My original plan was to have the bunky-board sit level with the rails on-top of L-brackets and then sit a full-size mattress on-top of the rails and the bunky board. I found a problem: modern mattresses are too high and will hide the headboard. So...I'm going to have a custom mattress made. Then I will lower the bunky board below the rails (on longer L brackets) and then sit the custom mattress inside the rails. Cha-ching. So much for my $45.00 bed. Custom mattress will be expensive. the meantime, I decided to rope it up, place the bunky-board on top of the ropes (so that the mattress doesn't sag) and put my futton mattress on-top.

This is what it looks like from underneath. Roped, with the bunky-board resting ontop of the ropes.

Here it is assembled, roped, and fitted with our full-size futon mattress.
And here's the side view. This futon mattress is actually very comfortable with a featherbed on top. You can see some of the 'decoration' on the headboard.