Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Finial Fanatic

I have been collecting old wooden finials for some time now. The first one I ever received was given to me by my husband for our anniversary. He bought it in a small shop in Essex. It was originally owned by Gretchen Mann, a designer whom I absolutely love. So, you can imagine how thrilled I was. I remember going through a Country Loving magazine shortly after that and seeing a wonderful feature story about her home. Low and behold, there was my finial on the center of her dining table.

Soon, I bought three more of her beautiful antique finials and thus my collection began. But, what is it about these little bits of history that attract me? I love the sculptural quality of the various shapes: urn, acorn, ball. I love the years of paint chipping on the edges – it adds timelessness to the piece. How much longer has this piece existed than I? How many sunsets and rises has it seen sitting upon a porch baluster? How many children’s hands have palmed it quickly running down stairs as it sat upon a newel? There is something beautiful and absolutely simple about them that speaks to me.

“Things are pretty, graceful, rich, elegant, handsome, but until they speak to the imagination not yet beautiful.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson

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