Design. Decor. Inspiration.
The Palos Verdes Peninsula must have been a hot bed of artisans during the mid-century, because this our second estate sale in the course of a year to feature a fantastic collection of studio pottery created by our PV based client. If you came out to (and loved!) our estate sale for Pat Cox then you cannot miss Vi Mayfields estate sale! This is one estate sale to get excited about and make a drive for, even if it means cutting out of work early…
When Stacy sent me the photos for this estate sale I got super excited and started itching to learn more about Vi and her work. It turns out that her process is quite interesting, she uses seaweed to wrap the porcelain (her preferred clay) and fires it at a high temperature. It isn’t until she waits many hours for the clay to cool that she is able to see the affects the seaweed had on her art. I can only imagine the anticipation she felt awaiting these results.
Here’s a statement from Vi herself regarding her work: The beautiful Palos Verdes peninsula helps to both inspire and create my ceramics. I choose to work with white porcelain clay because it gives the purest colors, even though it is more difficult to work. I form each piece by throwing it on a potter’s wheel or carefully shaping it by hand. After the piece has dried to a firm but pliant stage, called, greenware, I trim away any excess clay, then burnish the surface to give it a soft sheen, like the sea pebbles along our shore. After the piece is fully dry, I fire it in my gas kiln at a relatively low temperature. This first firing enables the pot to withstand the handling and more intense heat of the second firing. I gather seaweed from the beaches on the Palos Verdes peninsula. The salts from the seaweed will create beautiful seashell colors and designs. I especially like the type of kelp that has small bulbs, as they create interesting patterns. A lot of people stop and ask me what I’m going to do with it, especially whether I’m going to eat it! After the seaweed has dried, I wrap it carefully around each pot, then place the pot in a special enclosed container, called a saggar. I fire the kiln to 1750 degrees Fahrenheit, or Cone 010. This takes about five hours. In the intense heat of the kiln, the salts of the seaweed react with the white clay to create colors and patterns unique to each piece. The pots must cool slowly, over about eight to ten hours, so that they won’t crack after exposed to outside air. This is when it’s hardest to wait; it’s like having lots of surprise packages that can’t be opened yet! At last, when the pots are cool enough to lift from the saggar, I can see what gift the sea, the clay, and the fire have given me.
Come to our estate sale this Thursday and take home some truly unique pieces of art!
We never pre-sell, I don’t know why that is (maybe to keep everyone happy) but we don’t do it. For the first time ever we’ll be pre-selling a pretty bitchin’ O’Keefe & Merritt stove. So if you’ve been on the lookout and are ready to throw down for the stove of your dreams contact firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule your appointment on either April 22nd or 23rd between 7am – 2pm. We’ll be accepting offers but our starting price is $2,500. The highest approved bid will take it home – this seemed like the only fair way to let everyone interested in the stove see it. We will not be sharing others offers to get the bid up so please do not ask.
Now… eye candy. Here are some of my favorite interiors featuring O’Keefe & Merritt stoves.
This weekend Nanette is going to be running the show south of the boulevard in Sherman Oaks. I was by there Tuesday to snap some shots and found a few items that peaked my interest. Maybe you’ll like them too, but if by chance we don’t like the same things trust me when I say if you like vintage there’s a lot to be found!
Here are some photos of my favorite items at our south of the boulevard Sherman Oaks estate sale.
Find more information and photos on the listing page.
Thanksgiving is possibly my favorite holiday. The weather in LA is unpredictable but lately (last few years) hot. The beaches are without many tourists but with Angeleno’s taking advantage of the good weather there can still be weekend traffic in Malibu (best beaches, yea!!). But there’s way more sand this time of year, the sunsets are tremendous, the hiking payoff is stunning views without smog (sometimes… this is LA), and those winds make the valley gorgeous as well! Plus, everyone on the East Coast is freezing and we’re still chillin’ in sandals and going to estate sales. Oops! This just turned into a post about how much I love LA.
Back to Thanksgiving. I’ve been so busy all year long that I worry a bit I haven’t been as grateful to everyone who makes my life a happier one to live and having the season turn to a time of year that is about giving helps me slow down and think about how nice it is when we all share – a smile, fruit from our own gardens, kind words. Unlike it’s glamorous cousin, Christmas, Thanksgiving is about sharing not receiving. It might have it’s past but I like to take it for what is; a time to be aware.
I want to take this time to thank everyone who attends our estate sales, everyone who thinks of us when they have a friend or client in need of an estate sale, anyone reading this blog. Thank you for your support. We value your patronage. We value your feedback too – please, if you have ideas about how our service can improve your experience don’t hesitate to share it with me. I love hearing from you guys!
In 2006 my now husband invited me to meet his friends at their annual T-2 holiday party (think Thanksgiving potluck with leftovers). I needed an easy holiday cheese recipe that could be pre made and finished on site, lucky for me my then colleague had this (apparently Paula Deen) recipe in her back pocket. Ever since then it’s been my go-to and most often requested holiday dish.
1 wheel of brie
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon brandy (butter / oil works in its place)
1/4 cup nuts of choice (I use walnuts)
fruit & crackers for serving
Combine brown sugar, brandy, and nuts in a bowl and mix – cover and chill. I usually skip the cover and chill part of this step simply because of time, it always turns out well. Pre-heat oven to 500 degrees. I like to cut the top off the brie leaving a small boarder of the outer portion, heat for 5 minutes. Take out of the oven, pack on the sugar/nut mix, and stick it back inside for another 5 minutes. Just pay attention, you want to make sure the brie is soft and oozy but that the nuts and sugar are not burnt.
Serve alongside fruit and crackers.
Trust me… you’re welcome!