12 hours ago
Monday, July 12, 2010
Toad Shops Globe
I'd be happy to say I don't watch much television, but even I may be stunned by the length and breadth of such a lie. For Mrs. T, television is the background music of life, me I'll take Bach.
One show I do enjoy, and it pleases me to live in an era when my shopping lists via the convergence of the Internet, Google, EBAY, and PayPal, can be fulfilled by others rather than my having to roam the worlds markets is The Sundance Channel's Man Shops Globe .
Each week, Anthropologie's shopping guru scours the world for unique finds to fill their shops. As I watch the program I'm both amused by the scope of things available, while at the same time ethically challenged by the process of liberating local artisans wares, on the cheap to sell on the high street.
One episode stopped me in my tracks. Most boys are collectors, I'm no exception. While in Jodphur they stopped in the local market to see what treasures were available. I stood transfixed, as they quickly discarded rack upon rack of my childhood treasured lead British soldiers from the Raj.
Since we are each 6 degrees from a decent rolodex, it wasn't long before I discovered a source in Jodphur of my own. Shopping for silk for a new dress or suit lining? Check EBAY. Vintage Sari silk and crepe de chine at give away prices.
Thank you Paypal. If you happen to be in India, or have your own stash, I'm always looking for more, thank you very much.
Unknown to me until recently is that every last nut and bolt in an Anthropologie store is for sale. If you see it, it has a price. That is most unlike my favorite shops to eyeball, the adult disneyland of Ralph Lauren's flagship stores. As a rule, you risk having your hand slapped, along with a brief monologue with security if you so much as get too close to some of the display goodies.
So where does all Ralph's stuff go?
Sothebys of course.
With some regularity Ralph consigns old stock to Sothebys Auction House. The catalogs are breathtaking in their quality and breadth. Portraits, furniture, rugs, knicknacks. If you've seen it in a store, ad, or video, it will eventually end up at auction. Gavel prices while variable, won't usually take your breath away.
Ebay usually has stacks of old catalogs available.