Cody sat down with Pat and her cat ‘Willie Mo’ from the Ruby Lane Shop Lake Girl Vintage to get to know them better. Pat has been an exclusive member of Ruby Lane since 2011 and her cats have helped in her business. “Life is not complete without a cat. I grew up on a farm with many cats and I have always had one ever since. Most recently, my cats have “helped” me with photo shoots of items and appear several times in my shop.”
Cody: Do you remember when you started collecting?
Pat: “I started buying antiques at auctions when I was 8 years old. I still have the Fostoria dessert set from my first auction. If it’s shiny and sparkling, I need to take it home to the nest. Art Deco is my passion, but I adore jewelry from all eras. In costume and fine jewelry, the the craftsmanship is simply top notch and those pieces look as good today as they did 100 years ago. I have been dressing in vintage clothing since the 1960’s, starting with my mother’s dresses from the 1930’s.“
Cody: Tell us about you and your shop.
Pat: “Most of my offerings are from my sister’s collection and my own for the past 5 decades. I have “met” so many people/customers through being a Ruby Lane dealer, people with the same tastes, many artists, musicians, and dancers. I have spent most of my life as a musician and teacher in addition to being a collector. Customers have shared fabulous stories about why a certain item or piece of jewelry is important to them. I have met several of my customers/friends in person, from my hometown in Chicago all the way to Adelaide, Australia. I love exploring antique shows and auctions because you never know when you will see something that brings back a memory.”
Cody: We know you love to shop for treasures with your sister. What is one of your favorite memories of hunting for something special?
Pat: “One of our most vivid memories of shopping together was an auction in Ellisville, IL. in the early 1960’s. Our great grandmother, Hattie, had passed and the auction was at her home. Mom let us have one thing each. I chose a Seth Thomas clock, which still sits on my mantle. My sister, Ginger, still has the cherry gate leg table in her living room and Mom got her sewing chest and hidden inside was “the big penny”. Yes, we still have that, too!”
Cody: What draws you to Art Deco? Do you like the architecture the most or art and decor of the era?
Pat: “Art Deco, simply the best in fashion and jewelry, but the thing I love most is the music. I am a piano player and my favorite music is the jazz of the 20’s, 30’s and 40’s. I still have my mother’s 78 record collection from those times.”
Cody: Can you give us a story of an experience you had as a seller on Ruby Lane that was especially rewarding for you?
Pat: “Sometimes an item on Ruby Lane touches the heart and when that happens, the stories are unforgettable. Once, an antique diamond ring I offered spoke to a woman who had survived the sinking of the Andrea
Doria. She related her story of the wreck and the story of the ring. The ring was identical to one of her Aunts. She had always loved the
ring and this was her chance to have one exactly like it. I have heard several accounts similar to this, but she was impassioned and
the ring obviously meant a great deal to her and I was thrilled to help her find it.”
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