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Sunday, March 28, 2021

Vintage Fashion On HGTV's Everything But The House


ebth vintage fashion

mariana leung hgtv
lara spencer mariana leung

How does it feel to sell vintage fashion you collected for years on HGTV's Everything But the House? Weird. Emotional. Liberating. After my husband's parents passed, we had a 7-acre farm upstate to process and big decisions needed to be made. Going through lots of clutter, we attempted to have a garage sale, only to have the roads blocked for the filming of the movie, A Quiet Place.

Sorting through a parents belongings while experience grief is an emotional process, and it took a few more years for my husband to decide which items were truly meaningful to the family vs. items that were best used towards a meaningful project. His parents had always hoped we would continue to appreciate the rural county property as much as they did. Since we both work and live in Manhattan, that would be difficult unless we found a way to have a life upstate. 

We enlisted the help of Everything But the House, an online auction company out of Cincinnati Ohio, and HGTV. The amazing team there sorted through a houseful of antiques, artwork, travel souvenirs. My husband's pop culture memorabilia. I took this time to also clear out years of vintage fashion, antique handbags, designer collectibles from NYFW, and personal fashion treasures. As much as I loved each piece, I had to look towards the future. 

The pieces I was most sad to see go were the Judith Leiber quilted clutch, the 1920s beaded flapper dress I bought at the Manhattan Vintage Show in the 1990s, and a few gorgeous handpainted silk kimono from the 1960s. A nostalgic piece I personally wore was a purple velvet spiral bra from nightclub days purchased at Trash & Vaudeville on St. Mark's Place in 1994.

The television show is hosted by GMA and Flea Market Flip's Lara Spencer who was a lot of fun and knows her stuff! I learned a lot about the industry from Jacquie Denny, the auction maven of the site, and decorative arts expert Andrew McVinish. I learned about the history of some items, their markings, and their purpose that I couldn't find online, but also about bidder behavior and selling trends in the moments in between takes. What I didn't expect was how much joy it was to see how happy buyers were for their items. I had never thought about the second life of an object. For example, there was a woman who purchased a ceramic planter my Mother-in-law had brought back from Italy. As much as I loved the story of it, the style didn't fit with my husband and my taste. I preferred to include my Mother-in-law's actual artwork over her travel souvenirs. However, any guilt I felt about that decision was gone when I saw Kay W., the loveliest Southern Belle talk about how much she loved the planter, how many flowers she had in it and how she felt the planter loved her back.

In the end, we were so appreciative of the bidders that were enthusiastic about the sale. With work opportunities and rentals down last year, the proceeds from the auction went towards much-needed improvements to the barn and house to welcome guests to the property, our passion project, Wicked Finch Farm. 

Wicked Finch Farm is where my boozy jam and tipsy marshmallow recipes are created (yes, I make things that aren't always fashion). It also hosts guests as an Airbnb. We also run workshops for the boozy jam and other tasty things. With more improvements, we hope to upgrade to an event space some day. 

I hope you can visit or sample or products! 

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