Monthly Archives: July 2017

Antiques Buying Trip England: Lincoln Cathedral

Sacre Coeur in Paris

If you’ve been following the story of our antiques buying trip in France and Belgium, you’ll know that our next stop is England!

At this stage in our adventure we had finished our tour around France and Belgium and returned our big rental van in Paris. It had been packed with antiques that we bought, but now we had time to hike up to Sacre Coeur for a final view of the city.

It was beautiful but hot at 100 degrees temperature!
I was definitely ready for cooler temps in England.

Meanwhile, we enjoyed the view over Paris:

View from Sacre Coeur in Paris

Then we flew to Manchester, England. When we checked in to our hotel in Lincoln, we discovered another great view. This was the view from our hotel window – Lincoln Cathedral!
View from our hotel LincolnWe were in Lincoln to meet up with antique clock dealers, but the sight of this cathedral was just too tempting. Here’s another view of the cathedral:

Lincoln Cathedral view

We had a few minutes free so we decided to go in. I have seen quite a few European cathedrals in my travels, but I have to say that Lincoln Cathedral may be the most fantastically beautiful one I have ever seen.

Lincoln Cathedral Interior

Lincoln Cathedral stained glass window The first cathedral was built here 1088 but after an earthquake (a very unusual event in England) they had to start rebuilding in 1192. The nave was built in the Early English Gothic style, as you can see in the photo above.

The cathedral was the tallest building in the world until 1549! It is still the third largest cathedral in Britain in terms of floor area.

This beautiful stained glass window is so detailed, it’s amazing to think how old it is.

 

Find the carved imp

The carvings are wonderful and they are everywhere. Find the imp! He looks like foliage at first glance but he sits in the corner above the carved head. It’s a medieval joke!

Lincoln Medieval town

We also strolled through the charming medieval town before we got down to business searching for antiques. It was all very colorful.

July 11

Greg couldn’t resist trying on this traditional English bowler hat. We’ll leave it to your imagination to wonder whether he bought it or not! In my next blog post, I’ll show you some of the fantastic grandfather clocks that we saw, and more of the English sights we enjoyed.

AimeeAvatarAimee owns EuroLuxHome.com with her husband and best friend, Greg. Aimee sources amazing antique furniture, vintage lighting, & high-quality reproduction furniture to help her customers decorate their homes in a unique way. She loves her 8 (you read that right) fuzzy children and is renovating a 1920s bungalow in South Carolina. Find us on Facebook or connect with EuroLux on Google+. Or you can sign up here to receive this blog in your inbox.

 

Belgium Antiques Buying Trip: Religious Treasures

We continued our European antiques buying trip in Belgium, where we found a wonderful array of religious treasures to ship home, as well as antique furniture. In my last blog post I wrote about the antique and vintage chandeliers we found in Belgium.  So let’s have a look at our next discoveries.

antique religious treasures

We were mainly driving around France, Belgium and England to visit antique stores and dealers so we could find pieces to ship back to the USA. However, on one day in Belgium we helped clear out a house and we found some great religious pieces. Apparently the lady that died was the girlfriend of the local priest! That would explain why she had so many exquisite crucifixes and religious statues.

Antique religious statues from Belgium

Here are some of the statues we found. The details on the Madonnas and saints are beautiful. You can see that the hand-painted robes and faces on the figures still show bright colors and there isn’t much sign of wear and tear. They were obviously well-cared for and loved, and probably kept in a fairly shady room so the colors didn’t get bleached by the sun.

Antique Store in Belgium

We also bought some wonderful antique furniture in Belgium. In my post about our antiques buying trip in France I shared a photo of a very picturesque antique shop in Normandy and some other stores that were packed to the rafters,. But this one in Belgium was a first!  This dealer uses an old grocery store as a warehouse. I guess it is called “upcycling!”

Will all the antiques fit in the vanAt the end of our buying trip in Belgium we had a huge bounty of furniture and religious treasures, as well as 85 vintage chandeliers. The chandeliers were all individually wrapped and you can’t see them in this photo. We pack them inside the big furniture so they are protected and also to make the most of every inch of space. But just imagine 85 individually wrapped chandeliers!  So now the question was: Could we fit everything we had bought in Belgium in THIS rented van?

Inside the van

And the answer was…. Nope! It worked out to be about three van loads. But we managed to get everything safely transported. Next, our very full shipping container will set off for the USA in the last week in July and land in Charleston about 4 weeks later. Then the real work begins!

As for me and Greg, we drove back to Paris to turn in the van, and then we flew to England to drive around the Midlands looking for grandfather clocks and Chesterfield leather sofas. That’s another story for my next blog post!

AimeeAvatarAimee owns EuroLuxHome.com with her husband and best friend, Greg. Aimee sources amazing antique furniture, vintage lighting, & high-quality reproduction furniture to help her customers decorate their homes in a unique way. She loves her 8 (you read that right) fuzzy children and is renovating a 1920s bungalow in South Carolina. Find us on Facebook or connect with EuroLux on Google+. Or you can sign up here to receive this blog in your inbox.

Antiques Buying Trip Belgium: Vintage Chandeliers

The next stop on our antiques buying trip in Europe was Belgium, which Greg calls his second home. I already wrote about our travels around France as we hunted for antique treasures to ship home to the USA, and you can read our last French antiques-hunting blog post here. As we drove our rented van into Belgium, we guessed we’d have an interesting time ahead of us, and we did. Well, Greg and his muscles did…

Finding Belgian vintage chandeliers

We were very happy to find some treasure troves of antique and vintage chandeliers.  Soon the numbers mounted up….

Antique Chandleliers from Belgium

As Greg said (sang): “30 chandeliers on a pile in the van, 30 chandeliers on a pile, take one down and sell it online… 29 chandeliers on a pile in the van.”  By the time we finished buying vintage chandeliers in Belgium, we had 85 chandeliers in the back of the van!

antique Renaissance dining set

I also bought the largest blue Delft vase we’ve ever seen – 2 1/2 feet tall! And I love all the details in this amazing antique Renaissance dining set with a Gothic iron chandelier. We bought it all to ship back to the USA because we know our customers will love these pieces.

antique buffet carving

This is a close-up of one of the carvings on the enormous antique Renaissance buffet. You will notice how fine the detail is. You can almost see the movement in the gentleman’s tunic.

Gothic iron chandelier

The iron Gothic chandelier is also spectacular. The ironwork is superb, as you can see in the figure here in full armor…

Iron Gothic Chandelier

Now Greg had an even bigger packing job on his hands, between all the chandeliers and furniture. Could he fit everything in the van?

Greg packing antique chandeliers

You bet he could! Greg has mad truck packing skills. I’d back him against anyone to get the largest quantity of fragile and beautiful antiques packed safely and tightly in the fastest time. Greg says that his superpower is probably from all the Tetris he played as a kid.

In our next adventure in Belgium, you can see some of the wonderful religious treasures that we found, which have a surprising story behind them!

AimeeAvatarAimee owns EuroLuxHome.com with her husband and best friend, Greg. Aimee sources amazing antique furniture, vintage lighting, & high-quality reproduction furniture to help her customers decorate their homes in a unique way. She loves her 8 (you read that right) fuzzy children and is renovating a 1920s bungalow in South Carolina. Find us on Facebook or connect with EuroLux on Google+. Or you can sign up here to receive this blog in your inbox.

Antiques Buying Trip in France Part 2

Greg and I have been in Paris and Northern France on an antiques buying trip before we head off to Belgium and England to find even more antique treasures. We already posted about the first days of our antiques buying trip in France, so here’s the next adventure in our European Pickers tour 2017!

Normandy Antiques Shop

This is one of the antiques shops that we visited. Greg loves these old half-timbered buildings in Normandy.

However, our travels aren’t always so charming. In one place we arrived at what we thought was an antiques store, only to find a pile of junk and rubble. It looked more like a place where old cars go to die! And the less “glamorous” side of antique hunting in Europe is sitting in a grocery store parking lot trying to confirm where to head next!

Our cell phones make life easier, unlike our earlier days of antique hunting in France where we had to rely on paper maps and public phones. Travelers’ tip: We have a Travel Pass with Verizon and can use our phones just like in the US for $10 per day. It’s totally worth it!

shopping for antiques

This was one of our more successful destinations. Antique jackpot! If you spot something in this photo and you want to buy it, there’s no point telling us to pick out the second chair from the left in the third row from the back! We’ve been and gone already!

Where the antiques hide

So this is where the antiques hide! Sometimes you have to dig around a bit.

antiques picking in France

And we realized at another destination that sometimes you have to climb up to the highest vantage point to find the good stuff! You can spot Greg down there somewhere.

Carving on buffet

As a sample of some of the good stuff we found, this is a fantastic carving on an antique buffet. Look at the detail… it’s really wonderful.  We look forward to welcoming this fine gentleman to the USA soon, once we have shipped him home. He has no idea of the voyage ahead of him!

Therese of Lisieux

Our last stop in France was the second most visited pilgrimage site after Lourdes, the birthplace of Saint Therese of Lisieux. Known as the “Little Flower,” she suggested doing many small good deeds as a way to express piety, for which she was canonized in 1925. We have sold antique statues of Saint Therese a hundred times over the years, so we knew that when we had the chance to see the real deal, we needed to go!

Van

We picked up this van in France so we could transport our purchases as we travel around France.

Next we head in the van to Belgium, which Greg calls his second home.

In my next blog post I’ll show you our travels in Belgium and the amazing treasure trove of chandeliers we found. The next puzzle will be… can Greg fit them all in the back of the van along with all the chairs and other furniture?

AimeeAvatarAimee owns EuroLuxHome.com with her husband and best friend, Greg. Aimee sources amazing antique furniture, vintage lighting, & high-quality reproduction furniture to help her customers decorate their homes in a unique way. She loves her 8 (you read that right) fuzzy children and is renovating a 1920s bungalow in South Carolina. Find us on Facebook or connect with EuroLux on Google+. Or you can sign up here to receive this blog in your inbox.