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At Peek at Sunnyborrke Antiques’ Brimfield Wares

by Tom Carrier (01/23/09).

By Tom Carrier
WorthPoint Worthologist

WorthPoint is getting to be a regular fixture at Brimfield, the thrice-yearly outdoor antique fair along Route 1 in Brimfield, Mass. With about 5,000 dealers set up in tents about a half a mile on either side of this otherwise rural country road, there is much to see. Dan Borsey, “The Man in the WorthPoint Van,” provides another glimpse at the treasures offered by one of the dealers, Sunnybrook Antiques, located at The Meadows, one of the dozen or so independent “shows” at Brimfield.

Jim and Jill Elias, proprietors of Sunnybrook Antiques of Swedesboro, N.J., are experienced auctioneers and appraisers who have been setting up in Brimfield since 1974. “We like to invite people in to see our merchandise; it’s like inviting them into our home. We meet a lot of wonderful people who become our repeat customers,” Jill says.

As auctioneers and appraisers for the past 30 years, the Elias’ have seen quite a number of great items come and go through their auction gallery. At Brimfield, Jim featured a series of hand-painted “Gone with the Wind”-style electric lamps. “The lamps are from the 1940’s. They are electrified copies of the oil lamps of the 1800s that were made to look like the oil burners. To me, they are just beautiful decorations for the home.” These hand-painted electric lamps have had an auction value from $75 to $200, depending on condition and style as found in WorthPoint’s Worthopedia.

Sometimes finding unusual items in the homes is not so unusual at all. However, where you find them sometimes is. Take these complete ladies dresser sets—in green silk and mother of pearl frame around a circular mirror—for example. “It has the original frames, the picture frames, the comb, right down to the earrings,” Jim says. “They had eight of these stacked under the eaves of the house.” They were all found in their original 1940’s era boxes, completely unused. Each of them are still in their original bright, vibrant color that includes the brush, comb, nail clippers, perfume bottles, powder jars, and atomizers, a complete 14-piece beauty set packaged in an art Deco style. WorthPoint’s Worthopedia shows a similar version selling at auction for $176 in 2004.

Another interesting find is an early 20th century mantel clock by Winterhauer of Germany, known for its quality movements. Manufactured during a 35-year period, the company produced the wind up clock in wood as a decorative piece in the traditional low-swept style common for a clock featured on a fireplace mantel. The first traditional mantel clock was developed in France in the middle of the 18th century and were characterized by the lack of a carrying handle. The mechanism of this particular clock is in complete working order. “They typically bring from $400 to $4,000 on the internet,” Elias says.

The couple also has a very large collection of late 19th to the early 20th century glassware, china, porcelain, books and reverse painted picture frames available at their outside booth at The Meadows during the antique season at Brimfield, Massachusetts. So visit them when you can.

Watch a video featuring Jim and Jill Elias at Bromfield here.

Tom Carrier is a general Worthologist, with an expertise in a wide variety of subjects.

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