Summertime has arrived in Kentucky & a day of antiquing is a great reason to get out of the garden!
Just down the road from where I live up on a hill is one of my favorite stops.
He prefers to call it, “A labor of love.”
I always drive by while running daily errands & I have to say that the temptation to drop in is always there.
Especially when the doors are wide open & a truck is being unloaded!
I remember the first time I stepped inside. It hit me – the aroma of old furniture wax & the give of soft worn long-leaf pine floors that carried me from one room to the next. I wanted to move right in.
And the antiques!
Even though my grandmother taught me how to size up an antique from across the room, I was drawn in by the narrow pathways that soon had me winding through a variety of eras & styles. I love when shops are packed full! Getting up close, studying & touching such beautiful pieces is the best way to learn and find what you love.
At Clairebourne antique hunters will find the collection is varied yet somewhat focused. It’s easy to imagine relationships between many of the pieces.
Early 20th century ladies’ secretary desks sit next to garden ornaments & equestrian-themed wares and that’s just on the main floor.
Quiet fans move the heavy air upstairs where one can truly appreciate the architectural elements of this fine old place.
Lighting, trunks, books & beautifully preserved furniture all rest comfortably together beneath the massive framework.
Another woman & I were both admiring these sconces from Portugal.
My southern manners were telling me not to be “grabby” as she was simply admiring them. In my heart though they were already flanking an antique mirror in our master bedroom! We exchanged pleasantries and then strolled about in opposite directions.
Dennis, the owner of Clairebourne came over to say hello & welcome me with a complimentary bottle of his favorite furniture polish. I told him that I was writing a story about antiquing in the Bluegrass. He was delighted to be included! We enjoyed a brief conversation and he encouraged me to keep taking photographs & then excused himself to go tend to the other woman.
Turns out, she’s an antique dealer and she and her husband were buying a variety of beautiful antiques!
I eventually made my way back over to the other side of the store to have another look at the sconces and they were gone. My heart sank. Just then I noticed the antique dealer approaching me! She hesitated & then kindly told me that she was purchasing them. My heart sank AGAIN! I politely smiled & told her that they were indeed very special & to enjoy.
Dealer: “They are yours if you're still interested.”
Dealer: “I'll sell them to you for what I just paid for them.”
Because of her intuition & generosity the sconces are now beautifully flanking the antique mirror!
I love them & am once again reminded that it’s just the way folks are around here.
Call it southern hospitality or Bluegrass pride.
The Fryers were happy to take a picture & Mr. was especially excited to be featured at The Lisa Porter Collection!
Thank you Clairebourne Antiques and Judy Fryer for a memorable day of antiquing in the Kentucky!
If you’re in the area.
4648 Nicholasville Rd.
Lexington, KY 40515
Monday through Saturday 10 AM - 6 PM
All photos, Lisa Porter