Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Pollard Weekend: Eating & Antiquing

What a weekend.

As I mentioned yesterday, we decided to rearrange our house this weekend. We'd been talking about it for a while - switching the living room and dining room is a big move, even if it does better reflect the way you use your house. (And yes, it was my inner anthropologist/user experience researcher that sparked this.)

Changing things around, of course, means buying some new things, so we set out on Saturday morning in search of a new coffee/cocktail table and an armchair or two. While we didn't come home with any of those things, we also weren't exactly empty handed.

We started out our search down by the stadiums, at Second Chance. With stuff spread out over multiple warehouses, Second Chance can be a little intimidating. We only went to warehouse four, which includes all the antiques (and where we've found some cool pieces before). This trip, unfortunately, we came up dry.

Undeterred, we crossed Russell Street and hit Housewerks, which is one of my favorite places to browse. The first thing we saw there, right in the parking lot, was a big old mess of metal desks with swivel seats - perfect for a kid's room. We assumed the desks had been salvaged from an old school. We were wrong. After a few inquiries, we discovered that they were old prison desks...and we were even more excited.

So now Dixon has a prison desk of his very own: Cooper did a little sanding already, then took the desk to work to finish sanding and to paint it green. Dixon is super excited for his "desk that was in jail." Understandably.

After Housewerks, we ran around the corner for a quick trip to DeBois Textiles. I hadn't been before and wanted to check out the fabric, which was exactly as promised: cool, designer, and crazy cheap. The vintage clothes are outrageous, too, and if I'm ever invited to a Three's Company theme party, I know where I'm going.

After DeBois, we drove down to Catonsville for our first visit to the mid-century vintage store, Home Anthology. We arrived about twenty minutes before the store opened, so we stopped at Duesenberg's for lunch. On one hand, it was a great call - my lobster grilled cheese was delicious and way more lobstery than I ever would've expected and Cooper's brisket sandwich was Flinstones-hilarious big. It was kind of a long trip, though - it probably took forty minutes for our food to arrive. I'm not sure if that's typical or if something was going on, but we weren't in a rush, so it wasn't that big of a deal.

After lunch, it was on to Home Anthology, where I could've easily redecorated the entire house. It was so full of great quality furniture that I absolutely loved. Interesting pieces, lots of wood, really great overall (the people were nice, too).

We saw one cocktail table we were dying to buy, but it was already sold and we seriously considered a couple of chairs but decided to wait until we rearranged to remeasure. We did not, however, decide to wait on one thing: the gorgeous teak expandable round dining room table:

When it's closed, it seats about four comfortably, but when the leaves are open, it's 70 inches in diameter and seats eight to ten. The table was brand new to Home Anthology - it didn't even have a price on it when we got there - and when I saw it, I kind of freaked out. I've wanted a table like this for a long, long time - a year or so ago, Discovery Doug even sent me a link to a similar(ish) table called Capstan. Sadly, we don't have a spare $20,000 to spend on a dining room table. But if we did...

Well, we don't need to now because we have an expandable table. This one's made by the Danish company Dyrlund and we think it was probably built between 1965 and 1970. To make the table smaller, the leaves around the edges fold up, then slide underneath the smaller center part of the table:

It's in great condition and is just so incredibly cool. I've never been this excited about a piece of furniture before and I am actually kind of embarrassed about how happy it's making me.

When we got back home, we started moving things around right away. Even though we didn't get the cocktail table or armchair we were looking for, we were able to create our kitchen-lounge space with a few makeshift pieces, including one of our dining room chairs (which are from IKEA), our old living room coffee table, and a rug we've been storing in the basement. Dixon is all about the new arrangement:In that corner, you can just sort of see our other Home Anthology purchase: a little wooden table with a linen basket for magazines. We topped it with a new table lamp from IKEA:

I saw that lamp a few months ago and thought it was so cool - it's bamboo - and it fits really nicely in that corner spot.

Sunday, we got up and out the door early, hoping to find that table and chair. We started off with a great - and big - breakfast at Golden West (which, like Clementine, is so kid-friendly). I had the breakfast polenta with chorizo (spicy and delicious) and Cooper had huevos montulenos, which actually had so much food he couldn't finish it. Both dishes were fantastic. I know people on the Baltimore Sun blog complain a lot about Golden West's hipstery vibe and sometimes slow service but honestly, our service couldn't have been better. And it was quick.

After breakfast, our plan was to visit Oakenshawe 1021 for some more furniture shopping, but it was closed! Someone was there and she told us the store was having a "grand opening" next weekend, which confused me, since the website hadn't mentioned anything about the store being closed (and since I'd been there before). We were disappointed, but consoled ourselves with a browse at Paradiso, which has a very cool pinball machine coffee table and carnival game bar. We also made a quick (and fruitless) trip to the Clearinghouse in Cockeysville, where everything was too traditional for us.

I was bummed that we didn't buy anything Sunday, so I headed up to IKEA on Sunday afternoon while Dixon and Cooper started on the desk. I got the lamp and some extra dining room chairs, but also had to deal with hoards of families shopping for their off-to-college kids. I never realized how good of an IKEA shopper I am until I was faced with hundreds of people who have never been to the store before. Sheesh.

So now, we're still hot on the trail of a new chair and a cocktail table, plus we need to find ourselves a new rug for the dining room (our old dining room didn't have a rug and the old living room rug is just too small for the gigantor table). Which means we've got a lot of additional shopping to do!


Sarah G said...

Wow, sounds like my perfect weekend! I need to check these places out! Can't wait to see your new stuff....

Joyce said...

Love Duesenberg's, a bit of a hidden gem in Catonsville.

Kit Pollard said...

Sarah - you would've been all about it this weekend.

Joyce - I'd never even heard of it and I can't believe it. Not that we're in Catonsville much, but the menu was so interesting that I'd think they'd get more play...

citymouse said...

What a perfect weekend! I think I may have to do a field trip to Baltimore one weekend soon. \Thanks for all the info.

Kit Pollard said...

Citymouse - if you're planning a trip up here, you should definitely check out Pigtown Design ( - Meg knows about tons of super cool places around here. She's how I heard about DeBois...

strawberriesinparis said...

I love reading about your house changes Kit! And that table is awesome!!!


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