Beth and I had a day out to the antique mall and gave her booth a new look for spring. (here is her post about the day)
Years ago, we shared this spot, and my hand painted roses are still there on the wall behind the space. I no longer do this for a living and am glad. But when I get invited to help Beth, it brings back lots of memories and I have a great day playing with old things and arranging them.
When I had a booth, I just adored working on it. Decorating was so much fun, I almost got ticked off when someone bought something and messed it up. Almost, not really. I was smart enough to know that when you sell something, that means you get to go buy more and redecorate the booth again!!
My husband HATED me doing the booth when I had it. I spent way too much time hunting, hauling, and redoing furniture. And driving it to Kansas City to get set up at the mall. I guess what I'm saying, is that I was obsessed. It was an over whelming addiction to me, all I wanted to do was work on fixing up furniture and redo the booth. I got to the point where I was resentful when the sun started to go down and shadows made it too hard to paint on things outside. Which meant that I was working pretty late on summer evenings.
It was hard on my body, too. Some of those pieces could get pretty heavy, and I was too independent (or impatient?) to want to wait for help unloading the van and dragging it all out to the driveway to work on in all sorts of weather. I ached. My joints hurt. I was exhausted all the time.
All I ever wore were terrible old clothes covered in paint, and there were painty messes everywhere I went. I had a big spray gun for priming and base coats, and would over haul 5-6 large pieces in a day, then do hand work and finishing after. I was always covered in over spray, plus I used the clothes I was wearing as paint rags to clean my brush.
I was crusty.
My garage still has the outlines of furniture on the wall, from over spray. And the floor is covered in spilled paint colors.
But I thought I loved doing it. That is, til I gave it up. There was an adjustment period, where I couldn't help being sad because I wasn't shopping for broken or ugly things to make beautiful.
But once I got away from it all, I realized just how tired I had been. And how it had taken over my life. White paint and roses were my drugs of choice, and I had been hooked deep.
Giving up the antique business was kind of like giving up Diet Coke. Horribly hard at first. But as time went by, I adjusted and lost the yearnings. Now, I can pop a top of pop and have a cold one sometimes and enjoy the taste, but don't need to drink the whole 12 pack. I feel better because of it.
I can also set up a room full of stuff to sell at arty events here and there and get a taste for antique dealing again, without having to furnish a booth or spend 80 hours a week sanding and brushing and hand painting. I've learned it's much nicer to shop for or make smaller things that fit in an envelope to sell online.
No more 300 lb cabinets for me. No more endless hours of grueling work.
My life is better now that I'm not a Diet Coke junky or hooked on dirty, ugly furniture in need of redoing.
But man, it was fun to be back at the mall, foofing and verving with Beth. It's nice to know that I can recover from my addiction and stay on the straight and narrow.
Well kind of. I have been known to buy a 12 pack of Vanilla Diet Coke when I'm stressed. Or buy the occasional dirty, broken piece of furniture that is just too good to pass up. I don't think I'll test my will power by trying meth and seeing if I can kick it.
Beth also gave me this photo. It must have reminded her of me. Although, I'm more of a hoodie type than a bandana wearer. And I need a few more chickens to measure up to this lady's glorious flock.
Anyway, click on it to open to a larger window and save it to your computer from there if you'd like to use it in your own work.