It was 11:00 am when today I entered the Treasure Trove antique shop, where did the time go? It’s now 5:00 pm and the store workers are pushing me out the door. They can’t believe I have been in there all day and I can’t believe I forgot to eat, my favorite activity!
I am a contemporary woman, absolutely love the time I am living, but I adore the past and surround myself with anything unusual and original. Growing up in Europe it was customary to visit regularly “mercato delle pulci” flea market, they are the back door of history. It has been said that the dress Marie Antoinette wore for her coronation, turned up in a flea market years later after commoners had worn it and misused it badly. Flea markets and second time around stores are the creative source for a prolific fantasy. You must imagine a voiles curtain as a tablecloth instead, or a crystal glass for cotton balls and q-tips, or even a Bakelite purse no longer for an Opera night, but for a business networking event, where the purse might be used as an ice breaker.
I also find old jewelry very interesting. A long time ago women used the parure, meaning matching set composed of broach, necklace, earrings bracelet and ring. I wouldn’t go around decorated like a boring Christmas tree, that’s why I buy only one of these pieces from a parure no longer matching and use it as drawer knobs, or as a decoration to hide a picture nail, other than wear it on a cashmere sweater, or attached to the pocket of a pair of jeans.
Going to a flea market I will never leave with what I had in mind to find and neither anyone else I know. This time I was looking for a particular mirror I didn’t find, but I left the store with things absolutely not needed that I will use in my décor with a spontaneous joy. I will hang the green hat on the French chair; I will wear the Bakelite purse to a business networking, serve coffee with the golden plate non-matching spoons, serve chocolates and strawberries in the red Depression glass vase; the Pierrot brass face has found its niche between my drawings on the gallery wall in the corridor and the crystal ball ended up in the pot with the Amaryllis.
If you are looking for furniture with a flavor of the past, I would recommend bringing with you measurements of the room you want to decorate, measuring tape, picture of the room, perhaps some of the texture you are going after and a color palette, then you need to learn the skill of bargaining. Often cash is alluring and speaks better than a credit card, if you want to bring the price down considerably.
The personalized décor I like for me is the type in which everything comes from different eras and lives together very well without clashing. In my house the metals, the woods and the picture frames are all different, but they mix so well people always wonder how I do it. Simple, break all the decorating rules and shock anyone who comes to visit! Long time ago, I tried to have a minimalist home to avoid those dusting moments every woman hate, but I didn’t feel comfortable in an empty home, it wasn’t me, the house was cold and uninspiring. As a result, I was out all the time and neglected my house anyway, thinking that there wasn’t much to clean and could have done it in a few minutes. Those minutes were never appropriate, nor convenient because I didn’t want to be there. Now, my house is warm, full, opulent and very colorful. Vintage is for the courageous!
Time for a glass of wine! I deserve it, I have helped history staying alive. Ciao,
Copyright © 2013 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved
Valentina Cirasola is an Italian Interior and Fashion Designer, working in the USA and Europe. She blends fashion and interior well in any of her design work. She loves to remodel homes and loves to create the unusual. She is the author of three books, all-available on