Antiquing in Franklin Tennessee

As we negotiated the horrible traffic in Nashville I was surprised. I don’t know why, and I realize now that I shouldn’t have been but Nashville is huge. I guess I figured it was about the size of Omaha but oh no, many skyscrapers later, I now understand that Nashville is a very big city. With relief both from the husband and myself we finally found ourselves on the road to Franklin.

As we approached our place to lay down our heads we both had a sense of Deja Vu. We had been here before. When we took our southern trip to Florida a couple of years ago we needed a cheaper place to stay so we picked a Quality Inn. We were just there to get some sleep so we didn’t really care about accoutrement. This was probably the worst room we had on that trip. As we approached I began to get a sinking feeling. Now a Best Western it was the same motel. I had booked it for 3 nights! I had pre- paid! OMG what had I done. We walked into the room and in 2.5 steps you were on the bed. There was a monster storage/desk unit on the other wall with barely enough room to get by to go into the bathroom. I was happy to see that things had been spruced up but, yikes!. There was fresh paint on the walls but the hinges in the bathroom had so much gunky paint on them it was gross. The paint was pealing on the trim and we both felt like we were in a jail cell. No worries we could stand this for just 3 nights couldn’t we? After all we were going to be exploring anyway, right?

Freshened up and with great enthusiasm (I had been dreaming about the Winchester Antique Mall since I walked out 2 1/2 years before) we set out to find buried treasure. After the round about, if you go down a bit further there is the tingling in the blood. What will I find? I took no photos in this mall. Frankly I didn’t even think about it. I was too busy assessing the situation. We began to wander and my eyes are dancing over the possibilities. What could I do with this? Rejecting that. I came across a darling little stool. It was Welsh with a very dark stain and I think old growth oak. It wasn’t the type of stool even a child could sit on. More like a salesman sample size although, I have never seen one. What it would make was a terrific riser for a vignette. Oh yeah I really liked it. I turned over the price tag and at 167.00 I had to think about it. We kept moving.

When I am in my zone I move much more slowly. I can analyze a shop or antique booth in 5 seconds flat. My sister in law said to me once while shopping in Okoboji “Boy you can really case a joint fast” and it’s true. I know almost instantly if there will be anything there for me. The point is the husband disappeared. No problem, I knew I would find him eventually! He comes back and he whispers in my ear I will get that stool for your birthday (which was in a couple of days) if you want. I said let me see what else we see.

Moving thru the mall I am seeing fabulous things from a wonderful oil painting of sheep that I considered, pieces of furniture I could entertain but we didn’t have the truck and my home is full. If I bring any furniture home, from now on it is going to have replace something I already own. As we continued, nothing was jumping out at me and telling me it needed to go back to NE. I was beginning to think I wasn’t going to find just the right thing. We were nearing the entrance, feeling a bit disheartened, I turned a corner and there it was. What’s this? I have never seen anything like it. This is so interesting. A stoneware crock with a very different shape and all of this applied clay. Ok, English for sure, that’s obvious, but what does it say? Ok, this is going to be expensive. I turned over the price tag and Yup it was. Could I dare to bring this home? Could I dare to pass it by? If it was the only thing I brought home from this trip I new I would be content. I asked the owner if she could do better and she agreed to take 40.00 off. I was thrilled and with the pooling of our funds it came home with me.

But wait there is still Scarlet Scales! Tucked in behind Winchester is a small shop that shares the parking lot. That was where I had purchased the Wedgewood footed bowl a couple of years ago.

We’re in luck. They are open. Hmm what can I see in here, a mix of reproductions and antiques. I was hoping to find some old clay pots on this trip and they had some marvelous new clay pots, I should have bought. But, then I saw the old ironstone with advertising. They had just a few pieces but they had a couple that I hadn’t been able to get my hands on. There was a couple of pieces I wanted but after asking for a better price I decided on just the one. The pieces had just been put out and had come from Brimfield antique show in MA. I understood and was willing to pay the full price. What did I buy? Tooth paste for just 75.00!!! Oh but it is a fine example of tooth paste!

Feeling very satisfied the person at Scarlet Scales said we had to go over to City Farmhouse just one block over. In an old House with a wonderful front porch you enter a world of dreams. Spare and quiet with the sun coming thru the windows it was just kind of magical. The husband got into a conversation with the owner while I looked around. I have to say there was not one thing in that shop that I wouldn’t have loved to own. The doors, the work tables, the cupboards. Well let me introduce you to City Farmhouse

This was the first thing we saw on the front porch. Oh I’m going to like this shop!
Scruffy wood, Crystal chandeliers, yes please
I would have given anything to take this home with us. Look at the doors.
So wonderful on a trunk in a large window
Love the pew, but oh those doors, they were at least 8′ tall
Loved the wicker basket chandelier
I know now after all these years, that all the finding/losing, forgetting/remembering, leaving/returning, never stops. The whole of life is about another chance. And while we are alive until the very end, there is always another chance.
Jeanette Winterson

And then the owner told me his wife had a book. Well I had to go get that. City Farmhouse Style. He informed me his wife was on site and would I like it autographed. Of course I couldn’t say no!

After a lot more conversation he said I have something you will enjoy seeing and he was so right. He went into the back room and brought out this small little flag made by a French woman with 48 stars. All hand sewn and made to wave for the Americans when they liberated France from the Nazi’s. This was an incredible piece of history. The stars were appliquéd onto the flag both front and back and sewed with such tiny stitches. I have no idea what he would have charged for the flag or even if it was for sale, but OMG what a treasure and I was so honored that he felt it was something I would enjoy seeing. It was only about 18×24″. This textile loving girl was enthralled. Just look at that patina.

So ended our antiquing in Franklin TN. Though I didn’t buy anything at City Farmhouse except the book, it made a lasting impression on me. To see such wonderful salvage displayed in such a sensitive way, made my wheels turn and I felt so privileged to have had the experience.

Thanks for Stopping