Another research day in the books.

Last week I got to spend a few hours in Philadelphia after picking up some new inventory which a past client sold me as he gets ready to move out of the country.  I decided to keep the dining table so will be offering up my Heywood Wakefield triple wishbone table and dog bone chairs shortly.  If you are seeking, I can sell this set in need of a little refinishing (6 chairs our of 7).    I am thrilled with the round Herman Miller Architect's table and it really fits my room alot better.  For as much as I loved the Heywood set, it really is a large piece even with no leaves inserted!  That said, reach out if it interests you!

 The beautiful building of the Philly Athenaeum. The library is on the 2nd floor.

The beautiful building of the Philly Athenaeum. The library is on the 2nd floor.

The finale of the trip was a Harvey Probber catalog on reserve at the Philadelphia Athenaem.  This museum is an architect's museum.  So you can expect blue prints, buildings and other items of interest.  Harvey Probber furniture is actually more transitional than MCM.  More like Dunbar and Edward Wormley designs.  These designers played on traditional designs so you will see modern elements-curves and angles in tandem with tradition materials like cane and lots of brass bling.  Check first dibs and you will see a Probber piece will set you back quite a bit.  So now you know why I spend so much time on authentification.  If it truly is a Probber, it is a rarer piece.  None of my comps have labels and neither does mine.  Rule #1 of MCM.....never trust it because you SAW it on the internet.  PROOF PROOF PROOF.  If you are spending your money on something of provenance and the dealer does not provide you with adequate proof of this, or at least a well thought out reason to why they believe it is legit....keep walking.  Unless you really love the piece and do not care if it's legit, of course.  

 My suspected Probber piece.  The brass rod is a common thread with other Probber pieces.  I have seen magazine racks like this that do not have the table top.  None of my comps are labeled.  

My suspected Probber piece.  The brass rod is a common thread with other Probber pieces.  I have seen magazine racks like this that do not have the table top.  None of my comps are labeled.  

The librarian was waiting with my materials when I arrived for the scheduled appointment.  The folio contained just a small catalog.  I was able to take pics (as is common with museums and collections.....they want to protect their collections and do not want bad photos published.  Makes sense.  Copy right protection is real.  SO I cannot share any pics with you of the catalog but she is safe there in Philadelphia waiting for you to sign her out for the hour.  It may have had about 50 pages, in black and white with some nice photography.  The really cool X or scissors chairs that have a brass rod similar to my table were in there as were some other things I recognized from around the web.  The note on the chairs said '...The new "Probber" chair is distinguished by its elegance of line, achieved through the application of new electronic laminating techniques used in its manufacture.'  Probber was young....like 15 when he started pitching furniture designs to companies.  He really was a go getter.  His line of modular couches were one of the first in the realm.  He had his own furniture company for many years, selling through designers and did a lot of custom work.  Classy is the best way I can describe his designs.  Innovative as well.  So my table or similar magazine rack was not in the booklet.  I was told about 2 places in Delaware where I can expand my search.  I plan on investigating the holdings at Wintethur and Hayley.

BACK TO THE CUTTOLI LEGER RUG..... 

I also received a few documents from my friend at Kykuit.  These were published by scholars and I could not find a free copy to view but she managed to get me a copy and I am ever so thankful.  The one I really thought would be a great read, in fact, was!  Published by Virginia Gardner Troy, 'Easel Tapestries: The American Reception of the Marie Cuttoli Tapestries 1930s-1950s' hit the mark.  Ms Troy really delves into the history of Cuttoli and her creations and then the element of reproduction of an artists work.  She works through the timeline from the original tapestry series of the 1930s through the exhibition and reception of the works into the 1960s editions.  I found what I was looking for when she touched on this specifically with the following regarding Nelson Rockefeller: “10 years later (1962) he purchased Matisse’s ‘Papeete’ and 2 Leger carpets from Cuttoli via her partnership with Galarie Lucie Weill in Paris.  Both tapestries were deaccessioned by the 1970s.”  The literal meaning of deaccessioned is when a listed item is removed from a collection most likely to sell to raise funds.  We know those rugs were not sold as they still reside at Kykuit and are once again on display to the public.  Amazing how much information gets lost in a relatively short period of time!  Troy cites documents from the Rockefeller archives which means the information exists but to reasonably piece this story together takes numerous sources of varying origins.  It is quite fascinating to discover this and now I have proof of what I figured out some time ago.  This chapter can now be closed and I can say without a doubt what I have.  As to which socialite and art collector owned mine.....I guess I may never figure that out. 🤷‍♂️

New acquisitions.

i have been adding some really neat items to my inventory.  Here is a quick overview.  

 

 Contemporary Italian chrome bar cart. 

Contemporary Italian chrome bar cart. 

 Amazing Morris of Glasgow (yes, Scotland) mixed teak and mahogany veneer credenza.  Designed by Neil Morris.  Features angled shelves and felt lined top drawer.

Amazing Morris of Glasgow (yes, Scotland) mixed teak and mahogany veneer credenza.  Designed by Neil Morris.  Features angled shelves and felt lined top drawer.

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 Unmarked teak danish style hutch.  Features glass doors (not pictured), 2 drawers and bottom cabinet.  Compact size to display your collections.  

Unmarked teak danish style hutch.  Features glass doors (not pictured), 2 drawers and bottom cabinet.  Compact size to display your collections.  

 Currently working on rebuilding this bench and I have a buyer who is customizing it with me. New strapping installed!

Currently working on rebuilding this bench and I have a buyer who is customizing it with me. New strapping installed!

More coming!  I just sold the first danish style lounge and have another that I will be restrapping and making cushions for.  Keep your eyes peeled to my Instagram or Facebook so you don’t miss anything!

Have a great week!  XO MALISSA

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From DRAB to FAB- my latest restoration is ready to rock!

Just picked up the maple platform rocker from the upholsterer and boy is it on point in many ways.  This rocker (of unknown origin) is made of solid maple and has a platform base.  It dates to the art deco era of the 20s/30s.  It was a family piece but the owner was downsizing and her children did not want it.  Anyway, the original fabric was pretty neat but had rips and lots of dirt.  So I decided this one was a great candidate to be made over.  I found this great IKAT print on the cheap ($20/yard normally!) and it was just what I was looking for.  Not only is cobalt/white totally hot right now, so is boho prints.  This piece is so awesome and comfy with it's newly rebuilt structure and it's new threads.  I can see this being a super piece for a nursery, bedroom or den.  If you love bohemian or it's plant inspired cousin, Jungalow style, this piece is for you!  Grab it now and make it part of your family traditions!  I have lots of this fabric left so will be able to offer it for more projects coming!  Listing is live on ETSY and will probably be live in about a week on chairish.  If you need shipping, reach out.  My UShip connection is now doing nationwide delivery and I will reach out for a quote.  I do not mind packing it for you and trust him more than Greyhound for a restored piece.  

 Exquisite workmanship!  This chair is ready for a whole new life!  Click on the pick to open the etsy listing in a new window.

Exquisite workmanship!  This chair is ready for a whole new life!  Click on the pick to open the etsy listing in a new window.

I have some more pieces coming in very soon.  If you are looking for a teak hutch in a compact size for storing your collectibles or china, I have a sweet one picked out.  I also have a gorgeous long and low credenza in teak by UK maker Morris.  It is Danish in look but oh so classy.  Morris of Glasgow furnished ships and even royalty and has a super history.  I will be able to offer these fine pieces at very good prices.  Remember, my online markets are priced to cover my fees.  If you want to deal directly with me and especially so if you are in delivery or meet up areas, please reach out to me via email or message.  I expect to have these pieces in the next few weeks.  Thanks so much for your support as I try to keep things moving!  Please send friends or others who are shopping for furniture if you think they'd like my style.  

BIG FUN NEWS!

Victorian ON FIRE.  So I took in a few out of my normal era pieces recently and no worries, I am not switching teams, but when I see a visually interesting piece in great condition, I want to help it get to a home where it can be appreciated and adored.  So I took in the green settee with some reservations but I knew the repair would be straightforward.  I got the velvet and hand stitched to the cushions to cover up the doggie damage and I was so pleased how it turned out.  Because I have a lot of larger items in my storage right now and it was the perfect size to add to my small retail space, I took it out.  So glad I did!  It was found by a production company who came through the Mall and they snapped it up for a new show being shot for fall.  It is called TELL ME A STORY.  It sounds like my kind of show too!  A horror based on child stories but taking place in NYC.  I'm hooked!  I also saw the stack of other furniture they bought and they are def going for a gothic vibe.  So we all have something to look forward to this fall and I will be looking for my pretty couch in the series!  I believe it was a CBS series.  Will post more when I find out when it is starting to air.  

I am caught up on my work for the moment so getting back to my notes.  This weekend is my big visit to Kykuit and I am so excited to hang out and talk about Marie Cuttoli and her fabulous contributions to the art and textile worlds.  If you check my Facebook page (Facebook.com/madformodmalissa) you will see a little blurb I posted about Marie Cuttoli last week.  She is so fascinating and I hope you all enjoy the short introduction.  CLICK HERE

Have a great week everyone!  xo Malissa

The Couch of Dreams

Last week I accompanied a friend to pick up some auction winnings and fell in love with a little couch there.  I know I focus on Mid Century Modern, but I shop with an estate company that pulls from NYC metro and they offer many high end furnishings and décor that are not in my normal sourcing realm.  This said, if you are looking for anything more traditional or ornate, please know I may be able to help you out with this.  So back to the couch of dreams....what stole the show is that it's blush velvet upholstery was in relatively decent shape, only in need of a cleaning.  The cushion has a down insert in it!  So posh!  The style is classic Chippendale but features a very elaborately carved eagle with his talon in his mouth at each arm and of course, the paw feet.  I have found no other couches like this online and it is most definitely the best of it's kind.  They told me it was from the 1920's but I will be picking it up tomorrow so cannot wait to see if there are any more clues.  If you follow my facebook, you may have seen when I posted the picture last Friday with a 'does anyone love this as much as me???' post?  Well, in fact someone does and reached out.  At this point, she is first in line to claim this beauty.  In case she turns it down, it will get listed in my markets.  I will be picking it up tomorrow along with some auction winnings I picked up.  If you want me to have a look at anything while I am on the road, shoot me a message!  I would be more than happy to shoot you pics of items that are for sale and keep an eye open at auction.  The preview for the next week's auction is usually available which is always good to get a look at.  The smalls I am bringing home will probably get listed over the weekend.

 Amazing 1920s Camelback Chippendale style couch.  Beautifully carved arms and legs featuring eagles.  This color is so hot right now in decorating trends.  Paired with navy or neutrals, it is sure to look fabulous in an eclectic or traditional space! I am hoping to reveal more clues as to the dating of this piece when I get it home. This is new territory for me so I have a lot to learn and look forward to delving into another era and style!

Amazing 1920s Camelback Chippendale style couch.  Beautifully carved arms and legs featuring eagles.  This color is so hot right now in decorating trends.  Paired with navy or neutrals, it is sure to look fabulous in an eclectic or traditional space! I am hoping to reveal more clues as to the dating of this piece when I get it home. This is new territory for me so I have a lot to learn and look forward to delving into another era and style!

 The eagle is so dreamy! Rolled arms are a common element to a Chippendale style couch.  The elaborate carvings in the arms do not seem to be common, according to my searches! Most later reproductions (the original English Chippendales date to the 1700s) seem to lack the arm carved details to this extent.  

The eagle is so dreamy! Rolled arms are a common element to a Chippendale style couch.  The elaborate carvings in the arms do not seem to be common, according to my searches! Most later reproductions (the original English Chippendales date to the 1700s) seem to lack the arm carved details to this extent.  

 This foot is known as a lion's paw foot. Another popular foot style on Chippendale furniture is the Ball and Claw, which is literally an eagle claw holding a ball.   A note on the shell referring to early 1900s Chippendale reproductions:  Shell motifs carrying over from the Queen Anne period may be present, but are not as prevalent in this style as they were earlier in the 1700s.

This foot is known as a lion's paw foot. Another popular foot style on Chippendale furniture is the Ball and Claw, which is literally an eagle claw holding a ball.   A note on the shell referring to early 1900s Chippendale reproductions:  Shell motifs carrying over from the Queen Anne period may be present, but are not as prevalent in this style as they were earlier in the 1700s.

So couches may be the thing for me!  The orange couch just sold.  So I will be couchless if the pink beauty gets claimed right away.  One thing I do still have is the beautifully restored day bed.  I would love to find this thing a home.  It is amazing.  I do realize it is more of a specialty piece which makes it a little harder to place.  My home would not be able to accommodate it until I kick a kid out.  :)  If you have any interest in it let me know.  All brand new cushions with just the right detailing.  Super neutral navy fabric from Joybird's pet and kid friendly line.  Make great seating and can accommodate overnight guests.  I would love to see it go to new parents as it would be a great addition to a nursery where you can catch some Zs and lounge comfortably with a baby.  Wish I had something as nice when my kids were babies.....I slept on the floor more than once!  ;)  Of course, great for a den, spare room and more.  All the details have been taken care of!  Delivery in my region no extra charge.  Get an instant shipping quote on my chairish.com listing. 

For my birthday, I found a great little Eames fiberglass side chair featuring an H base.  It was painted so I spent a lot of time stripping it down.  It is so cute and dated 1959.  I believe it to be an early Zenith production and the black finish on the base is original.  Super cute and worth the work to add it to my collection!  Here is a look at the project.  Stripping it took some physical work, but the product did not ruin the original shine at all!  I even got the labels free of paint!  I worked quickly in sections and was careful not to let the stripper sit too long as there were disclaimers on the product not to use on fiberglass.  It had no ill effect! 

 There were 4 layers of paint on this chair!  It took some elbow grease and was not the most pleasant job.  I have a full day into it.

There were 4 layers of paint on this chair!  It took some elbow grease and was not the most pleasant job.  I have a full day into it.

NEW ENGLAND SHOPPERS!  I have a delivery scheduled in April to Rye, NH.  I will be staying in Nashua for 2 days and then making a stop in Rhode Island on the way back.  If you are looking at something larger and I can fit it in the car with the set I am delivering, I would gladly bring along for you to pick up or I can meet you.  I am tag teaming the trip with a friend.  Please reach out!  I can hold your item with a deposit until the delivery.  This is a rare opportunity to save some shipping! 

ETSY SHOP IS 10% OFF until the end of the month.  MOST ITEMS included but there are a few I left off.  Please stop by and grab some awesome items while they are on sale!  Leaving you with a few new items to check out!  Have a great weekend!  xo Malissa

 JUST LISTED: beautiful 21" diameter faceted mirror.  Great for a hall, foyer or smaller wall.  Mirrored glass is mounted on a heavy wood piece and features black painted wood with gold painting trim. 

JUST LISTED: beautiful 21" diameter faceted mirror.  Great for a hall, foyer or smaller wall.  Mirrored glass is mounted on a heavy wood piece and features black painted wood with gold painting trim. 

 Picking these auction winnings up Friday as well!  Not sure which items I will be keeping but will be evaluating this weekend and getting them listed.  I love having access to some very eclectic pieces and I welcome you to request weird stuff!  The fun of shopping out of my area is finding higher end pieces!  Reach out if you see something you love as I will let you have first shot! 

Picking these auction winnings up Friday as well!  Not sure which items I will be keeping but will be evaluating this weekend and getting them listed.  I love having access to some very eclectic pieces and I welcome you to request weird stuff!  The fun of shopping out of my area is finding higher end pieces!  Reach out if you see something you love as I will let you have first shot!