Monday, October 31, 2011

The Big Estate Auction Last Weekend / This Weekend. So Big It Happened Twice! Status: Missed Second Act.


Does this (one of many in the home!) interior lighting detail give you an idea of what was to be expected at this Estate Auction. Yes, it was a good one. Yes, I attended. Yes, I did actually buy something. Yes, I still Hate auctions.

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Since Illuminate (my estate sale buddy) had other early morning obligations, she was unable

to attend the estate sales I got up for that Saturday. Instead she opted to attend this Super

Vintage Modern Estate Auction instead. Since you don't need to show up early and be first

in line to snatch up the best stuff she thought she might have an opportunity to acquire some

goodies for both of us. I gave her a wish list based on the photos provided by the seller

and my limit on each. Turns out I didn't really need to do so.

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Most of what I was actually interested in was in the basement and the auctioneer didn't get to

the basement until about 1:30pm! I had already hit THREE estate sales and been home to

swap cars by then! We had gotten a few text message updates about the auction from

Illuminate during the day and when we were DONE done with the sales she was saying we

should still come by if only to see the house. Good call.

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Three (count them THREE!) fantastic unmolested vintage bathrooms! In ONE house! Aren't

they great? Get tired of Blue and Pink - use the Yellow and Grey bathroom.  Tired of the

Pink and Grey Bathroom - use the Blue and Pink one!  These folks collected bathrooms

like I collect...well...anything else!  Talk about luxury.


The home even had TWO full kitchens. This one was the "main" kitchen on the upper level.

This home must have cost a fortune when it was built. What they say is right...the Rich Really

Are Different - They Gots More Money! Dang...maybe I shoulda been a millionaire! Did ya

notice that the lower cabinets are St. Charles?  St. Charles are known mostly (by those who

know of them at all) for their Steel cabinets.  The upper cabinets Are in fact steel.  Strange

combination if you ask me.  Why would someone opt for both steel and wood cabinets in

the same kitchen?  Beats me. I just hope all this awesome vintage goodness doesn't end up

in a large dumpster in the near future!  I don't think it stands much of a chance though.  This

is a high dollar property and it seems to me that most people who pay high dollar don't

really appreciate the original amenities a home such as this sports.


Wouldn't it just be a dream to fill this joint back up with Barcelona Chairs, Saarinen coffee

tables, maybe a Hans Wegner dining suite? Only the finest, baby...only the finest!  Check

out the built in planter full of fake tropical plants!  That is so awesome.  I'd probably fill this

area with Paul Frankl rattan tiki style furniture since there is a whole other living area on the

other side of that pass through fire place.  The other side has room enough for a full formal

living room area as well as a formal dining area.

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There were a few items on the main level that I was interested in but failed to acquire such as

the Vladimir Kagan glass top coffee table. From what I heard it sold for $300 plus. Again

with the eBay prices. ::shakes head:: I haven't seen one lately but I have seen plenty of these

go for $300-$400 on eBay. Whatever. Illuminate bought the cool teak bowl. I had one of

these a while back but it had a different plate in the middle. The plate is easily removed and

replaced. You just have to find another plate the exact same size. I tried to put in a Salem

Biscayne plate I think and it was just a hair to small. The plate keeps the sides tight so it has

to be exact. I don't know if they got around to selling the casual dining set before I arrived

so I have no idea what it went for. It sure is cool though. I don't think I'd give up my Brasilia

dining set for it but it would be a close fight! They didn't get around to selling the Milo

Baughman recliner the day we were there. I'm pretty sure it was sold this last Saturday. I'd

love to know what it went for if any of you attended the second day. My limit was pretty low

so I'm sure I wouldn't have score this gem anyway. I've already got my I

really need another?


Like every sale (it seems) that I attend...all the best stuff is in the basement! There was even

a second full complete kitchen down there, albeit a more traditional and less flashy one. Still,

cool appliances! The basement was HUGE too. Half of it was finished with this kitchen,

plenty of living space and a full size billiards table! I guess this was the party area.


These Baughman style club chairs were what I was mostly after down here. Turns out they

had "Italy" stickers on the bottom of the chrome frames. Were Milo Baughman chairs ever

made in Italy? They were probably the most desirable items in the basement as bidding went

above $350 I believe. I bowed out about $125. They would have been great in our living



Illuminate really wanted the table lamp. She bid bravely up to about $45 and then gave up.

She did manage to get the fuchsia office chair though. It has a tag on the bottom from

Dolnick's, a high end contemporary furniture store here in St. Louis. This was probably

pretty expensive when it was new.


I would have liked to bring home the Zenith Allegro "Wedge" stereo but someone else

wanted it more than I did. There was another Zenith available with the "Circle Of Sound"

barrel speakers that was sold as a lot with all the other stereo equipment on that long low

danish style coffee table. I didn't feel like buying all that stuff just to get the cool speakers

so I didn't even bid. I did bid on the long table but there was another buyer there who I

could tell was just going to out bid me no matter how high I went on anything he wanted

so I bowed out early. I wasn't there to drive up anyone else's costs for the day. Did I

mention I hate auctions. I'm not the kind of guy who will throw money at a problem but

instead try to fix it myself. I try to spend time as apposed to money.


This super long sofa sold for only $125! That's only $25 more than I told Illuminate to bid

on it for me. I didn't bid on it since I thought better of the idea of trying to get it home. It

was Really Big and Heavy and looked like it might need to be re-upholstered. No thanks.

Too much trouble. The Girlfriend was eyeballin' the big box of plastic dishware but we

didn't stick around long enough to bid on it. It was a Looonnnngggg day and I did win /

buy the danish daybed I featured a few days ago so we still had to load that up and make

our way home. These last few weekends have had lots of good sales to attend. I hope

the good luck holds up!


  1. Looks like they had some great stuff. That "astro turf" carpet brings back memories of my grandparents' home.

  2. I saw this auction, but just didn't have the energy to travel to it. I love those green chairs as well, but definitely not for anything close to $350. Such a beautiful home!!!

  3. I wish they were selling those wall sconces! I loved them, and four of them too!

  4. Dang what a cool pad! Glad you were able to come home with something. I posted a link to this post on the Retro Renovation FB page, as I know the folks over there would swoon for the bathrooms, and the kitchen, and the everything. Thanks for capturing these cool old places before they get "improved" by the new owners.

    and, as an FYI that's not just plasticware that's Boonton Color Flyte melmac! ( Love those color combos and have a number of the double bubble serving bowls (my niece says - rightly so - they look like someone's butt!) ;-)

  5. Modtomic this is a fun blog and it's weird to see these pictures as I'm the guy who won the long coffee table. This auction was great fun and what a house. The problem with prices was that quite a few resellers were in attendance and competing with each other. They really drove the prices for the good stuff up and past the bargain level.

    The Kagen coffee table sold for $385+ (and add 15% buyer premium to that). The dining suite which was in good, but not great condition, sold for $200ish. I might have gone to $45 on the long coffee table but it had a broken leg so I'm not sure it was worth much more. I got the box of melmac for $5, a bargain by any measure. Fun times!

  6. Great house...I also love the wall sconce! We sell them, but they look nothing like the original in this house. I agree with you that the people paying this much for a house probably will not appreciate all the original amenities. That's a shame.

    Thanks for sharing