As I launch The Find Antiques and Curiosities, I think it’s important for visitors to the site to understand a bit about my background, reasons for opening the business, and the journey along the way. The Find isn’t just a side venture or a bit of fun for me – it is my passion, brought to life.
My interest in antiques and curiosities really stems from my love of historical fiction and non-fiction books. I often plough through a book a day, and find myself caught up in the depictions of life and decor in the past. I admire the importance that was placed on the way people presented and held themselves long ago, and the codes which were honoured so strictly with regards to appropriate behaviours. From my late teens onwards I developed an appreciation for history and continue to learn everything I can about a wide variety of eras
For years I’ve been captivated by the old-world charm displayed in texts such as Georgette Heyer’s These Old Shades (my favourite!) and novels by Victoria Holt, Claire Lorrimer, Anna Campbell and Sherry Jones. I have also long been a fan of classics works by authors such as Charles Dickens, Thomas Hardy, Edgar Allen Poe, Honore de Balzac, and the Bronte sisters.
Other favourites include Dante’s Inferno; and Julian May’s translation of Ovid’s ‘erotic’ works, The Amores (The Lovers), Ars Amatoria (The Art of Love), Remedia Amoris (The Cure for Love), and Medicamina Faciei Feminae (Women’s Facial Cosmetics). In particular, I have enjoyed poring over the 1930 limited editions which feature sensual art-deco illustrations by Jean de Bosschere.
Over the years I have also found much inspiration and delight in television shows and movies which depict the life and designs of the past. Some that make the top of my list are, of course, the perennial favourite Antiques Roadshow; plus others such as Lovejoy, Gigi and the 1938 version of Marie Antoinette.
During the past decade, my love of antiques, and the process of learning about and procuring pieces has really cemented itself. My first memorable purchase was about ten years ago, when I discovered an elegant pair of antique, Italian kid-skin and silk gloves, plus a small, pale yellow handkerchief with stunningly intricate Point de Gaze lace detail.
Then, in 2013 I travelled to England and France and was finally able to see with my own eyes, and to touch and feel, the kind of history that I had previously only read about or viewed through a screen. This only fuelled my passion.
More recently, I’ve noticed the upward trend on social media sites (particularly Instagram and Pinterest) of people posting about and selling antiques and other collectibles all around the world. Looking at these sites, I would often think, “Wow, imagine if I could do that too!”
To further develop my knowledge and immerse myself in the world of period pieces, I started working a couple of days a week in a Sunshine Coast antique and vintage store. I had purchased some items from the owner over the years, and would often go in to browse. We became good friends and I was able to really learn a lot during my time working there.
The opportunity came, after a while, to buy the business. This led me to start thinking about all of my “what ifs”. Eventually, I decided that it was time for me to go out on my own and create a business that was wholeheartedly based on my strengths and what I was passionate about. I am incredibly excited about being able to now bring some young blood to the world of antiques and curiosities!
Once the decision had been made to create my own online store from scratch, rather than operate a bricks and mortar shop that limited me to the local area, it was time to get down to business. I have had the good fortune of meeting a number of people who have been able to help me bring my vision to life in just the way I had always dreamed.
One of the first was a lovely lady named Frieda. Frieda was actually my very first client, and she shares my passion for antiques. After spending time at her amazing house (painstakingly decorated in the French Provincial style) and being blown away by her beautiful pieces, I was honoured to be told that I could hold a photo shoot on location there. As a result, most of the stunning photographs that you can see on the website were taken in Frieda’s remarkable home.
Next, I met with the very talented graphic designer Amanda Woods, from Amanda Woods Design. She worked her creative magic to come up with The Find’s beautiful logo, and also put me in touch with two more invaluable contacts.
The first is interior stylist Simone Barter, from StyleLifeHome, who helped me create the shoots; and the second is the fabulous photographer Anastasia Kariofyllidis from Anastasia K Photographer, who was able to capture of the essence of my collection on camera. I heartily recommend these business owners, and am so delighted that their flair, creativity and dedication have helped me bring my vision to the world.
While it’s true that I’ve had some doubters who didn’t believe I could create my dream business, my determination to move forward and bring the world of antiques and curiosities to Australians from all locations and walks of life has spurred me on. The Find is built from my passion, and I can’t wait to share it with you!
Take a look through the beautiful wares showcased on the store and you will find a collection of unique pieces, all with their own stories. Items are not cookie-cutter, out-of-the-box designs, but rather are second, third or more generations old, with conditions that are commensurate with their age.
As such, everything listed for sale comes “as is”, with descriptions outlining if there are any particular breakages, flaws, missing pieces or the like. You can buy items knowing that you will have the opportunity to refurbish them to your own liking, or to display them in their perfectly deconstructed natural state. These pieces can now become part of the story of your own home.