One of my favorite parts of developing the Brimfield Flea Finder app, has been meeting so many talented passionate people who love what they do. This series of Brimfield Dealer Profiles will highlight a small sample of dealers that can be found using the app. For the July show I will focus on a handful of dealers who have participated and supported the app from the beginning. I’m thrilled to help shine a little more light on these businesses that they work so hard on building and running every day.
Flawlessly painted furniture. Roadside at Stephen’s Place. Use the Brimfield Flea Finder app to find their booth at the show or their contact info between shows.
Painted furniture isn’t hard to find in Brimfield. But it isn’t all finished as impeccably as the furniture in the Juniper Hill booth. The quality of the pieces is obvious immediately. Linda and Suzanne, the sisters behind Juniper Hill, pride themselves on the high quality and timelessness of their pieces. They describe much of their work as French Country, which it is. But I could also see a lot of their pieces effortlessly fitting into a coastal or cottage look. Linda says,”We offer flawless restored furniture for everyday use, real furniture that will last for years to come.” In fact, their pieces are so well done they often have to convince new customers that the pieces are, in fact, restored and not brand new.
The sisters grew up with an antique dealer mother. An appreciation for the beauty of antique and vintage furniture is in their blood. We have that in common! In 1998 they began selling at Brimfield with a mixture of dried florals, furniture and small collectibles but an article in Romantic Homes Magazine the following year ignited their passion for painting and restoring furniture and they decided they wanted to focus on that. They were both taken by the beauty and lines of depression era furniture and they used their vision to give pieces a second chance. Early on they created a website and began to sell online. Linda says that they are the kind of girls that need a creative outlet to be happy. This was that outlet for them, but it was also a business that helped provide vacation and college funds for their kids. Sixteen years later their business has built a strong reputation and many repeat customers who Linda says “truly appreciate our work.”
When they started selling their painted furniture in Brimfield back in 1999, they were amongst the first (of many to come) to offer “Shabby Chic” style painted furniture. Linda says they were known as “the girls with the white furniture.” In those early years, they were selling to children’s furniture stores and boutiques that resold their items. As time went on they were excited to see their furniture being shipped all over the world. Brimfield has given them the opportunity to get themselves in front of a large number of people, and just as importantly, the right people. Linda says over the years they have handed out thousand and thousands of their printed cards and have built customer relationships that keep them busy 12 months out of the year. They have connected with interior designers and customers that want quality restored furniture, consistent results and excellent customer service. They have been in the same location (roadside at Stephen’s Place) since 1998 making it easy for customers to find them.
But Brimfield has been a part of their lives for even longer than their business. In the late 60s their mother exhibited at May’s and they would often attend with her. They have been shopping for their own homes in Brimfield for their entire adult lives. One of Linda’s favorite #brimfieldfinds is a signed oil on board from May’s in the late 70s (way before hashtags) that was purchased for $15 and has been valued in the thousands. “Those were the days!” They aren’t able to shop Brimfield as much these days, but when they do it is for themselves and not to resell.
In the past few days I have heard a bit of grumbling about the July show. I may even be guilty of it myself. It’s hot and the crowds aren’t as large. But Linda says she loves the July show because it’s when the serious buyers come out. If they are going to put up with the heat, they are there to buy. “July has ended up being a wonderful show for us, very successful usually.” I hope that trend continues for them this year!
Favorite Brimfield Memory: “Our favorite Brimfield memory was when Diane Keaton walked through our booth and commented on how lovely our furniture was! I walked around behind her in amazement that she was there and was honored to be in her presence! I’m not usually impressed by superficial meetings with movie stars or “famous” people, but she is truly charming and really a beautiful person.”
Favorite Brimfield Food: “Apple Fritters.” (Note to self: find out more about these apple fritters!)
Best Tip for Shoppers: “Choose different locations for parking each time you attend the fair. Most of the time shoppers park at the same end of the show and never make it all the way down to the opposite end from where they parked! Change it up! Park at the end of the fair you don’t usually go to because you’re too tired to walk that far! You may find dealers you never knew existed and amazing finds!”
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