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Welcome to our April 2008 Newsletter!

If you missed any of our previous newsletters or are having trouble viewing this page correctly, you can find a link to it on our website at our newsletter archives.

Please feel free to visit our website FindersFayre.com where you will find an array of furniture, accessories, and information about our interior design services. Read on! and email any questions, comments, or suggestions to Newsletter@findersfayre.com. Thanks again!


Contact Information

Finder's Fayre

1485 Calder Avenue
Beaumont, TX 77701

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News from the world of art and antiques

The Guennol Lioness Sells For $57.2 Million

New York, NY, December 5, 2007, News-antique.com – This afternoon, in a packed salesroom at Sotheby’s, The Guennol Lioness, one of the last known masterworks from the dawn of civilization remaining in private hands, sold for a remarkable $57,161,000, a record for any sculpture at auction.

A total of five different bidders, three on the telephone and two in the room, competed for the 3 ¼ inch limestone treasure. After auctioneer Hugh Hildesley opened the bidding at $8.5 million, four bidders jumped into the fray. When the bidding reached $27 million, a new bidder, standing in the back of the salesroom, raised his paddle for the first time. An intense battle ensued between that bidder and one determined client on the phone. When Mr. Hildesley brought the hammer down to several rounds of applause, the successful bidder, who was standing in the salesroom, would only identify himself as an English buyer who wishes to remain anonymous.

Diminutive in size, but monumental in conception, The Guennol Lioness was created approximately 5,000 years ago in the region of ancient Mesopotamia. Its creation was contemporaneous with the first known use of the wheel, the development of writing, and the emergence of the first cities.

lionessThe sculpture was acquired in 1948 by Alastair Bradley Martin and his wife Edith, whose revered Guennol Collection of choice masterworks across countless periods and cultures has been celebrated by scholars and museums for decades. The Guennol Lioness had been on view at the Brooklyn Museum of Art for nearly 60 years and extensively published. The proceeds of the auction will benefit a charitable trust formed by the Martin Family. The previous record for a sculpture at auction was $29,161,000 paid for Pablo Picasso’s Tete de Femme (Dora Maar), November 7, 2007.

Architect’s Table, France/England, c.1980

A unique piece, with a unique history.  We designed this Louis XV style table for our own use.  We purchased the wood, merisier (French wild cherry) in France, and had it sent to a very old man, (now deceased) in the North of England who used to make special custom pieces for our interior decorating business.  The top ratchets up to several working angles, also making it ideal for displaying a fine print or drawing.  All four sides are double serpentine; a drawing drawer opens on one end, three instrument drawers on the front, along with a brush slide.  Note our cabinetmaker’s “signature” on the inside…a gilded squirrel in bas-relief.  A one-of-a-kind!

50” wide
39.75” wide
31” tall



Legendary DB Cooper Skyjacking Cash Certified
(Newport Beach, California) News-antique.com -- Nearly two dozen tattered $20 bills from the infamous 1971 "D.B. Cooper" skyjacking have been authenticated by paper money experts at the PCGS Currency division of Collectors Universe, Inc. of Newport Beach, California. Each note was carefully placed into protective holders to preserve them.

The bills belong to Brian Ingram, 36, of Mena, Arkansas who was eight years old in 1980 when he found the only ransom cash ever recovered from the skyjacking.

"It's exciting to hold a piece of history in your hands that is directly linked to such a famous event," said Laura A. Kessler, Vice President of PCGS Currency (www.PCGSCurrency.com), who headed the certification team.

"Even though the notes were damaged from apparently being in the Columbia River for years, we were able to match serial numbers with those on the FBI’s list of the $200,000 in $20 bills the skyjacker had when he jumped from the jetliner. The surviving notes are now certified as part of the D.B. Cooper cash, and safely in protective, archival storage holders so future generations can enjoy them."

Ingram plans to keep one note and sell the rest. Some of the notes were displayed for the public to see in person for the first time at the Long Beach, California Coin, Stamp & Collectibles Expo in the Long Beach Convention Center, February 14 – 16, 2008.

"This is the only identifiable group of United States currency that can be directly linked to such an historic and infamous event. The only comparison of such significance would possibly be the Lindbergh ransom money, but none of those notes is known to have survived for collectors today," said PCGS Currency President Jason W. Bradford.

"I anticipate there will be a lot of interest in these bills from people who enjoy Americana pop culture as well as collectors of historic paper money. There’s usually a demand for memorabilia anytime you have a famous or infamous event or a legendary figure involved,” said Bradford.
Ingram recalled how he found the cash: “" was eight years old and on vacation with my parents on February 10, 1980, when I found about $5,800 of the ransom money along the banks of the Columbia River near Vancouver, Washington.'

"We were going to make a fire along the river bank. I was on my hands and knees smoothing out the sand with my arm, and I uncovered three bundles of money just below the surface. My uncle thought we should throw it in the fire"

His family turned the money over to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Eventually, the FBI returned approximately 25 bills to them along with dozens of fragments that contained little or no trace of serial numbers. Most of the notes have lightly written initials of FBI agents who inventoried and examined the items soon after they were discovered by Ingram.

No trace has ever been found of the skyjacker, known as 'Dan Cooper' or “D.B. Cooper,” or any other money he had when he parachuted in a rainstorm from a Northwest Airlines 727 jetliner over rugged terrain somewhere between Seattle, Washington and Reno, Nevada on November 24, 1971.

Art Market vs. US Economy - artmarketblog.com

Posted on March 17, 2008.

With a US recession (A recession is a significant decline in economic activity spread across the economy, lasting more than a few months) seeming more and more likely, people are beginning to question how such an event would affect the current art market. My first reaction would be to remind people that the US economy has been unstable for quite a while, partly as a result of the sub prime mortgage crisis yet the art market has continued to defy the odds and flourish. There are some people that are saying that it takes 12 months for the art market to show any reaction to outside markets which would make that reaction due about now considering that the sub-prime mortgage crisis really took hold in early 2007. Even if the US economy was to have a major effect on the art market (which I don’t think it will) and the art market were to experience a downturn right now, it would most likely last for a very short time because the housing market is predicted to make a recovery by 2009 at the latest and the US economy is tipped to make a strong comeback as well. There is also the fact that 2008 is an election year for the US and election years typically have a positive effect on an economy.

A US recession would reduce the number of American buyers in the art market and would most likely cause the price being paid for artworks, especially in the US, to drop. However, because of the massive contingent of international art buyers it wouldn’t be long before the American buyers were replaced. The lack of American buyers would probably cause a very short term reduction in the price being paid for works being sold in the US which would entice the international buyers to the American market thus causing the American market to recover.

The other factor to consider is that people are turning to art as a secure investment and as a hedge against inflation due to the very low correlation between the art market and more mainstream investment markets such as the stock market. All in all the art market is in a very good position at the moment and is showing all the signs of being able to weather the US economic storm.

The Care and Feeding of Antiques


Dexter S. Augier by Dexter S. Augier

Unexpected calamities like burglaries, fires and natural disasters happen every day. They become worse if you discover that your homeowners insurance policy doesn’t adequately cover your cherished antiques and collectibles.

Let’s take a closer look at the facts and identify the steps you need to take to keep yourself from becoming a victim twice.

Why homeowners insurance is not nearly enough

Homeowners insurance is designed to protect personal property; however, it is probably insufficient to safeguard your antiques collection. Homeowners insurance usually limits three things:

    1. Personal property coverage is limited to a percentage of the residence value;
    2. Personal property coverage is limited while it is away from your residence; and
    3. The amount payable for theft is limited on valuable items like silver, crystal, guns, stamps, art & antiques
  • Even if your collection is covered, you may not be able to make a claim unless you have your collection listed on a schedule.
  • Claims settlement may be based on actual cash value rather than the replacement value of the collectible.
  • Finally, losses caused by flood, hurricane and earthquake may not be covered under the terms of your homeowner’s policy.
  • If you are utilizing your homeowner’s policy to cover your collectibles, be sure to call your agent or insurance representative to discuss the coverage available under your policy. Put your understanding of the coverage in writing and request a written acknowledgement and comments.

    What to look for in a policy

    There are three basic approaches to insuring your antiques & collectibles:

      1. The Personal Property section of your Homeowners policy.
      2. A special Rider to your homeowners policy, which covers specifically itemized pieces. Listing valuables separately will effectively settle the loss before it occurs: If the insurance company has documentation, like an appraisal, proving that your antique armoire was worth $25,000. If the armoire burns in a fire, your dollar figure is already set, and you'll avoid haggling with claims adjusters.
      3. A separate policy specifically designed to insure your antiques & Collectibles…often called a ‘blanket’ policy

    Seven important areas to consider are:

      1. Blanket coverage. Broader and more comprehensive than ‘named peril’ insurance, blanket coverage provides for most causes of loss unless specifically excluded.
      2. Thorough coverage. Some carriers break coverage for crime down into three types: burglary, theft and robbery. Be sure your policy provides coverage for all three types of crime. If you live in an area prone to natural disasters like earthquake, hurricanes or foods, consider a policy that covers these types of losses. In general, look for a policy that provides coverage for natural catastrophes when available.
      3. Travel coverage. Sooner or later you will need to travel with your collectibles. Your collectible policy should allow you to travel with a portion of your collection.
      4. Shipping and mailing coverage. Is your coverage is worldwide and does it allow use of shippers such as FedEx and UPS and the U.S. Postal Service registered or express mail?
      5. Automatic increases. Some policies provide for additions to your collection or increases in value by offering an automatic coverage increase provision. This is especially important for active collectors or collectibles that appreciate rapidly.
      6. Appraisal requirements. Your insurance carrier may require an appraisal if the collectibles are very unusual or valuable. Even appraisals should be updated every few years to keep up with current values.
      7. Scheduling requirements. Although a schedule may not be required at time of purchase, you should keep an inventory of your collection including purchase records and pictures/video. (See “Preparing for a claim.”)

    How to determine the value of your collection

    Make sure your antiques & collectibles are not valued at cost or depreciated value; in most cases antiques & collectibles appreciate rather than depreciate in value. They should be valued for insurance purposes at replacement value, or the cost of acquiring similar quantities and quality of collectibles. For instance, some policies will only replace your antique rocker with a reproduction!

    Preparing for a claim

    In the event that tragedy strikes, you can expedite matters and maximize your claim if you have taken a few simple steps:

      1. Create and maintain an inventory of your collection. Having a current inventory helps you and the insurance carrier substantiate the value of the claim.
      2. Take pictures or video of your collection and keep them with your inventory. When taking photos or video, be sure to capture any and all markings that will authenticate the piece.
      3. Keep purchase records such as receipts and invoices. If possible, scan these records to a computer so you have electronic copies.
      4. Keep a copy of your inventory, pictures/video and purchase records in a secure, secondary location from where your collection is housed, such as a safe deposit box.

    Understanding exclusions

    Regardless of how you decide to insure your treasures, make sure you know about any cases in which the policy will not pay out. In general, policies and riders for fine valuables give fairly broad coverage, including losses resulting from just about any peril you can think of, except nuclear explosion, war or intentional acts of destruction. One caution: Most policies of this type will not cover musical instruments or cameras used for profit -- similar to the common exclusion of laptop computers used for business purposes.

    Also, most regular home-insurance policies will not pay to replace what some insurance companies call "items of antiquity." In some cases, that means anything more than 25 years old, but the definition varies depending on your company. That's another reason to take out a special rider on any antiques you own.

    Other exclusions common to collectibles policies include gradual deterioration such as fading, creasing, denting; nesting, infestation or discharge or release of waste products or secretions by insects, rodents or other animals; dampness or dryness of atmosphere; changes in or extremes of temperature other than fire; fraudulent, dishonest or criminal acts; voluntary parting with covered property; loss or damage while being worked on by you or others working on your behalf.

    Because exclusions vary by policy, it’s important to read your policy closely to understand what is covered and excluded.

    You’ll spend a lot of time and love building your one-of-a-kind collection. Now take a few moments to protect it. Don’t take the chance of becoming a victim twice!


    Did you know...?

    by Dexter S. Augier


    From the French word paner, which means to cover, comes this delightful and extraordinary piece of country French furniture.  Most cultures had the equivalent, usually called ‘food safes’, and were just common, country furniture.  But the French!  They made it beautiful….and made it specifically for bread. 

    The panetière would be found hanging on a wall in a country house, usually near the kitchen and dining area, and often over a petrin, a piece of furniture designed specifically for housing a dough board.   It originated in the 16th century, and continued in use right up to the end of the 19th century, evolving from a utilitarian piece into a graceful article of furniture. 

    They almost always have legs, but were not put onto another piece of furniture or on the floor.  The legs are merely for finishing off its elegant proportions.

    Antique panetières are much sought after, and are now put to an interesting variety of uses….a challenge for your imagination!


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