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Page 87 of 211

hen I was growing up on a farm, my imaginary worlds were reached through the looking glass of movies. Of all the films that I can recall, Westerns have lingered on in my memory and even at that young age, I was drawn to the romance of the West and the fleeting renegade cowboy. There was something appealing about that rugged scene that lacked pretension. It was pure Americana. When I think of that l i f e , i t e n c o m p a s s e d more than one thing. It was field and stream and mountains and desert. It was log cabins, weath- ered wooden tables, Navajo blankets, old barn doors and the proverbial dinner bell. It was about a home of comfor t and about the people who lived it. It was about those timeless scenes in a Western that conjure up a moment and takes you there. T here is a way of liv- ing life that appreciates that which has come before. That is part of the love of collecting. It includes giving old things new life and new energy by placing them in repurposed surroundings. It can be achieved by dressing your room the way you would dress yourself. I like things that are worn. I have jeans that are ripped and full of holes. I love a distressed moto jacket thrown over a T-shir t and a lace skir t with cowboy boots. That same contradiction works in arranging antiques. That blend of texture and contrast makes for an intriguing space that reflects imagination mixed with a feeling of heritage and preservation and often is about seeing it the way you saw it as a child. If I fancy a vintage piece, I often create a room around it, like making a movie. Just recently, I acquired a Papier-mâché blue horse while shopping in a charming coastal town. That one find led to the purchase of two more wooden horses that same day. What starts as one piece becomes part of a sto ry. On this particular day, my story began to revolve around creating a room that reflected my early childhood love for Westerns. My great find of three horses that one day con- tinued with the purchase of yet another toy horse at auction, and a warm caramel-colored hide skin throw and a faded barn door at an outdoor antique fair. My Aspen- style room was now star ting to take shape, but it needed furniture. I shop from a great gal who finds discarded pieces and makes them fabulous. From her collection, I chose a galvanized high top bar table to hold three of the horses and two fabulous "very Ralph Lauren" iron bar- rel chairs with burlap coffee bag seats. The accessorizing of my Aspen-ranch room became even more excit- ing than the acquisition of the larger pieces. Added to my shopping cart was now an old iron stagecoach door stop, cowboy boots, a brass golf tro- phy with horn, an old English wool blanket, a pottery vase with an Indian head, framed Indian prints, wagon wheel hubs repurposed as tea lights, a rusted steel tower with draped steel chains and a rare horse training tool. 86 C A R M E L M A G A Z I N E • S P R I N G / S U M M E R 2 0 1 6 COLLECTING T E X T A N D P H OTO G R A P H Y B Y M A R J O R I E S N O W Conjuring Up Americana Tableaus W Western iron stagecoach doorstop and brass golf trophy with horn and cowboy boots.

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