This is the number one question that I get from people. When I have a show at a market or even when I post photos on Instagram and Facebook – people always ask me where and how I get my inventory.
The answer is – in a nutshell- everywhere. This past Summer, I spent time in Pennsylvania, Maine, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and even Texas. Whenever I am out and about, I am always on the look out for inventory.
It’s not that I am looking for a specific era or even style. It’s more that I am looking for something that resonates with me and that I think will “fit in” with the Sky Lark House style. Finding items that are authentic and that have character is particularly appealing to me. Finding items that are handmade and that are beautiful – well that’s like hitting a home run.
Normally, dealers specialize in certain styles or eras. Some sell only mid century modern, some sell primitives from around or before 1850, some sell only English ironstone. Sky Lark House is bit more on the primitives side but perhaps with more white and some splashes of color. I prefer to think of it as a Farmhouse style. Meaning many items are handmade, were used and as a result have charm and character.
This stool is a perfect example. I don’t think it is especially old – perhaps 50 years or so. However, it is handmade and has its original paint.
As far as places I go to obtain items – most of my inventory is purchased from other dealers. I also go to auctions and estate sales. I also visit flea markets and yard sales. Finally, from time to time, people will reach out to me to see if I am interested in an items they own that they no longer want or need. The jellycupboard is a good example of this. It was gentlemen who no longer wanted this item taking up space in his garage. The jelly cupboard belonged to his grandmother and his mom kept the jelly cupboard because she loved it. Sadly, his mom passed away several years ago. He simply didn’t have the same love for the cupboard that his mom did. He just wanted it to go to a good home.
These paint brushes were found while I was in Texas. Fortunately, they fit in my suitcase so I could take them home. It’s a real bummer when I find a great piece when I am out traveling and I have no way to get it home.
I am also always on the look out for architectural salvage. Finding items with the craftsmanship and materials that simply aren’t used today. I love corbels, trim pieces, and pediments. Here is a photo of architectural salvage.