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Sanibel Antique Shows will bring vast diversity and unique items

By Staff | Jan 7, 2015

Renate Taylor, the Sanibel Antique Show promoter for the last 15 years, is expecting another year of unique and interesting items for the shows of Jan. 10-11, Feb. 7-8 and March 28-29. Each show will be held at the Sanibel Community House and will run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Photo by Brian Wierima

The Sanibel Community House will be taken over by some of the most unique and diverse antiques in the area for three weekends in the months of January through March.

Three weekends are planned for the Sanibel Antique Show, which include Jan. 10-11, Feb. 7-8 and March 28-29. All the shows are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $6 with $1 off with either a postcard which was sent out, a news article or advertisement about the event.

There will be 25 vendors at each show, as well.

The shows feature antique vendors from all over the United States, which makes each booth unique and presents items for sale for anyone who walks through the Community House doors.

“There will be new, fresh items each weekend and someone is always bringing something very amazing and unique,” said Antique Show promoter Renate Taylor. “The vendors are from all over the country and they view this as a very special and exceptional show. It is a dedicated and sincere group of individuals.”

This will be unlike the usual antique show, in that Taylor has limited the amount of jewelry vendors. Instead, her goal is to present a more versatile show, which can attract an array of peoples’ interests.

A sampling of antique vendors and items they will have for sale includes lot of silver and gold items, Victorian pieces, watches, knives, military memorabilia, post cards, tin toys, linens, Asian tiles, small pieces of furniture (usually Victorian), paintings, buttons, 100-plus year old Victorian glass, dolls and there will even be a fossil dealer in attendance during one of the weekends.

One of the leading experts on quimper French pottery will also have a booth at the Antique Show.

One of Taylor’s guidelines is that the items being sold have to be antiques, meaning at least 50 years old.

“I personally bring to the table Steiff bears – stuffed bears from 1950’s – and there will also be a couple of certified dealers who bring very good, quality jewelry,” Taylor said. “There will also be a dealer who sells primitives, which everything is 150-160 years old.”

Taylor has been the promoter of the show for 15 years and has seen some very rare items on display. The most expensive piece she witnessed sold was a rare clock, which went for $110,000.

The price range of the antiques vary widely, from some items going for $8 to the high-end ones which can be priced between $40,000 to $50,000.

The location is also a nice benefit, in that it is held at the Community House, which has a storied history on Sanibel.

The Community House was built 85 years ago by Island residents and has remained as a destination for both residents and off-island visitors since.

“It’s a genuine Florida landmark,” Taylor said. “It’s built like an old Florida place, with no hurricane damage. This is Florida.”

The vendors who do travel the long distances, have the Sanibel show marked on their calendars. Taylor said there are 10 to 15 vendors who have attended the show the last decade or more.

For Sanibel Island resident Patty Timson of Hirdie Girdie art gallery, she has been a regular vendor for the last 15 years and loves what the show has to offer. Timson’s specialty is American pottery from the 1930s through the 1950s, along with some art pieces created by her husband, Stan.

“It’s a lot of fun and it brings out people from all over,” Patty Timson said. “I have my regular customers, who I get to see every year and I’ve made a lot of good friends at the show. There is a good variety for everyone.”

It’s vendors like Timson who also make the atmosphere inviting for people who attend, Taylor said.

“The group of dealers who come and do the shows, are very friendly and make it an interacting show,” Taylor said. “These dealers will interact with you, they are warm and friendly. It’s a happy, light atmosphere.”