Archive for July, 2012

First Thursday Art Walk


Jul 25, 2012 0 Comments

Join us Thursday August 2nd from 6pm-9pm for August’s First Thursday celebration! We will have plenty of artwork to purchase, wine to drink and cheese to munch on! See you Thursday August 2nd!

First Thursday Art Walk!


Jul 25, 2012 0 Comments
Join us Thursday August 2nd from 6pm-9pm for art, wine and cheese! We will have tons of artwork for sale, original and prints, as well as jewelry and pottery. Browse the shop, enjoy some wine and buy yourself some art!

Guest Blogger Ginger Rodriguez: Fab or Fake?


Jul 18, 2012 0 Comments
One of our dealers, Ginger Rodriguez, is our guest blogger this week. She tells us about using reproductions v. the real thing and how to spot the difference. Enjoy!

I’m totally fine with reproduction furniture and I purchase them all the time for my spaces… but actual antiques are a whole different thing. Sometimes there’s no substitute for an item that has a history…not to mention the level of hand-craftsmanship which often is just awe-inspiring.
And of course, there’s the price! When you pay for an authentic antique, it had darn-well better BE an authentic antique!
But how do you really know?
Here are some great tips to help you in you determine the Fab from the Fake.

Perfectly Imperfect: As we grow and live through our life story, along with the good things, also come a few scars… and it’s the same with antiques. I think a person, or an item – without any mars or irregularities… just lacks character! (who knew antiquing would get so philosophical!) Look for wear, flaws, and color variations. Reproductions often have them too, but they are contrived and painted on… close examination will expose the bluff.

Not too Matchy-Matchy: In the past, things were done more frugally. The most desirable wood species were treasured and usually carpenters did not use them where it didn’t matter. Examine the piece carefully and see if the parts that show – are a different wood from the parts that do not show.

Feeling Stuffed: Foam rubber, nylon batting and other synthetic materials were introduced only around the 1920’s and can be a dead giveaway. Truly old items will be stuffed with horsehair, hay, cotton, wool or other interesting natural fibers.

Nobody’s Perfect: and this includes wood workers. If the decorative carving is too perfect, then it was probably done by machines and not the old fashioned way, by hand.

Join In: With a few minutes of study, you can become knowledgeable on the basics of … Joinery! That is how wooden items are put together. Where you see Dovetails, doweling, mortise and tenon techniques and other detailed methods… that’s a good indication of age. Also remember, Phillips head screws and the presence of fiberboard say “modern” !
Today, manufacturers often rely a lot on gluing. Antiques will usually have finely-crafted parts where the strength comes mostly from craftsmanship creating a joint so tight that glue was used less, or not at all.

The Smell can Tell: If I blind-folded you and put you in an old book store, you could tell it… a little musty, a little dusty, but in a good way. Same with antiques. If you can get you nose into a drawer or close to upholstery, you will often be able to determine real from repro. The scent of varnish, paint or polyurethane probably means new.
You are now well-armed with my Fab or Fake Facts……and are hereby advised to

Ginger Rodriguez, Space 398

Summer Style


Jul 13, 2012 0 Comments
With summer in full swing and thoughts of the derecho (hopefully) drifting away, we can focus back on our nests and all the fun summer decorating there is to do. Summer colors are probably one of my favorite parts about summer style. I like using lots of neutral colors like sand and wood and incorporating pops of bright colors like turquoise, yellow and bright green. 

Nature is in its full splendor this time of year, with flowers and veggies at their peaks, they make fantastic decorative pieces. The photo above showcases several pieces from our newest dealer WestBayInteriors. She utilizes lemons and moss in glass containers to show-off summer’s brightest hues. 

Do you have pieces in your home, maybe just decorative, that you switch out for the seasons? I love the glass containers pictured above because you can add a splash of each season with just a small change, like adding cranberries in the winter or squash in the fall, without having to buy new pieces.

What are your favorite seasonal decorating tips? We would love to hear from you!

Show Us Your Shabby!


Jul 13, 2012 0 Comments
It’s contest time! Submit a photo of your favorite piece from Not Too Shabby in your home and be entered to win a private shopping party for you and five friends! Submit photos to our Facebook page or email them to by July 27th. Show us your Shabby!  

Hot Outside, Cool Deals Inside!


Jul 6, 2012 0 Comments
Stop in this weekend and cool off! This beautiful antique Asian cabinet is ready for a loving home. You will find great deals on sofas, dining tables, desks and more at Not Too Shabby. Be sure to check out our newly updated photo gallery (click the photo gallery tab on the top of the page) for merchandise pictures!

See you this weekend!

New Dealer Downstairs!


Jul 6, 2012 0 Comments
We have a new dealer downstairs! We would like to welcome WestBay Interiors to the Potomac West family. Ginger Rodriguez owns WestBay Interiors and is a busy interior designer in the Washington DC area. She brings an elegant, chic, eccentric look to our shop with plenty of modern accents. Her pieces are often one-of-a-kind and are a wonderful mix of old and new! Come check out her space downstairs at Potomac West!