This week marks the 42nd annual Round Top Antiques Fair, which sits between Carmine, Texas, a town of 230, and Round Top, population 84. Gadora and a new Lady friend, Annie, made the trek an hour(-ish) East from Austin and looked for the promised Big Red Barn sign. While both towns come alive during these antique weekends, it is the original Round Top fair folks come to see.
Not the place for bargains, three large circus tents were filled with well-edited antiques, collectibles, art work and furnishings. There were booths with scoops of a thousand vintage buttons, booths showcasing impressive carved cane collections, cases of turquoise jewels and rows of bakelite bracelets. Spots so full you had to inch in sideways.
Hard-pressed to choose my favorite thing, and I wanted to drag something home, there was a recurring theme throughout the day. Besides the creepy doll parts (and what is it exactly about a swap-meet that brings out the odd body parts?), which I’ll blog later… apothecary cabinets were key. This salmon-hued 48-drawer, one-time card catalog, cabinet is the winner. The owner, Cindy from Smokehouse Square Antiques in Amana, Iowa, gingerly offered, “it’s got room for all your things, ribbons, yarn… it’s great if you’re a hooker!” We both snickered.
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Around the corner we found Eva Lee’s Country Accents Antiques and this impressive general store storage unit of solid Oak. Annie and I investigated it for some time. Wondered if it were beans and grains it once held, or hardware…
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Then we found this octagon-shaped wooden cabinet, with 72 pie-shaped drawers. The sign read, “Hardware cabinet. Manufactured by The American Bolt and Screw Case Company. Dayton, OH. (1880-1909). $2,895.” This was not the piece I’d be dragging home, but impressive none-the-less.
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The second tent held a real gem and what seemed like the whole center aisle transformed into, as Annie expressed, an “Alice in Wonderland” sort of space. Whimsical, other-worldly and wildly entertaining. Doug and his wife, Carina, of Atlanta’s Eneby Antik came by to offer assistance as we lost ourselves in their curiosities. The 38-drawer Swedish cabinet, ca. 1850, was originally used for storing food. “One drawer has “russin” written on it – which means “raisins,” offers Doug. $3,195.
Around every nook and cranny of their well-appropriated temporary space was a surprise. Beautifully layered, otherwise ordinary objects when grouped with like objects made a bold and inspiring statement. I snapped a few shots, and asked for their card. They handed me two. Eneby (named for the North Stockholm village Carina hails from) Antik and Bobo Intriguing Objects. With just a little surfing, I’ve decided Gadora must bookmark this spot. The cabinet (below) from Belgium, ca. 1880, was originally a curious cabinet, from an apothecary. $1,795.
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Round Top was a successful trip. While we were petered out after only a few tents, and pop-up roadside flea markets, Gadora’s imagination is overflowing with possibilities for the next big project.