Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Meet the Thrifter: Beatriz Macias

I know it has been a long time since my last featured thrifter, but don't despair, I am working on some really interesting interviews with some friends that have been collecting for a long time. I am sure we are going to learn a lot from their thrift finds.

While my diligent friends work on their interviews, I have decided to restart this feature by sharing my home and my small collections with you. I hope you like them.

For those that do not know, my name is Beatriz Macias and I am Colombian. My husband and I came to the US eighteen years ago and we have lived in Washington State and Southern California with a 3 year stint in Italy. I trained as an Architect in Colombia and after moving to SoCal and the birth of my son, I went back to school and got a Masters in Fine Arts. I have worked as an architect, artist, teacher, interior designer, photographer, and retail seller. All these experiences converge now into my new job: Mid Mod Mom.

I am not sure when I became a thrifter, but I remember keeping things in my room that others discarded, I was that child with her pockets full of stones, flowers and candy wrappers. I had many collections and they were beautiful! I only became aware of thrifting stores once I moved to the US. My husband and I furnished our first apartment with Salvation Army furniture; then when I started taking art classes, second hand stores provided a lot of materials for my installations. I did not collect much those first few years when we were both students thinking that we were moving back to Colombia. We kept things simple. Everything changed once we decided to make this country our new home.

Living room with David Trubridge's Coral lamp in the forefront. Two Domino Mobler armchairs picked at a local estate sale on the left.  Coffee table is Drexel Profile by John Van Koert. Original prints by local artists and some of my own work on the back wall.

One of my first collections was original artwork, as it was easy to trade great art with fellow students. I am a printmaker and many of the works I have are original prints. I have a lot of work stored and waiting to be framed.

Wood chair on the left is an amateur job that looks like a Cherner chair - thrifted of course. Small chair is an original Thonet that used to be my great-grandma's. Dining room chairs are contemporary Kartell designed by Philippe Starck - purchased in Italy along with the reclaimed teak table. Coo coo clock on the left is an antique one that belonged to my father in law. Vases on the table are part of my inventory.

I have an eclectic taste and like to mix old and new, hand made crafts and fine art. I love color and texture. Because Mid Mod Mom focuses on Mid Century Modern design I have added many of my finds to our house. Since opening my store a year ago, I have been lucky enough to have the support of all the wonderful people on ThrifBreak. I am now a more informed thrifter, and I am aware of all the beauty that hides behind the dust. Thanks team!

Dresser is one of my best finds at $25 with a 50% discount coupon: a Heritage Henredon Furniture piece from their Circa'60 collection; golden walnut with beautiful detailed handles. On top of the dresser: my budding Dansk mill collection, a Hella Jongerius vase for Ikea, a Colombian wood tray and a wonderful piece of textile art. All but the tray have been thrifted or traded.
Art wall in the dining room with more original prints. Don Shepherd's Whirpool bottle next to an Italian granite bowl  that hosts our collection of pebbles and sea glass from all the different beaches we have visited. Suzani from the Grand Bazaar in Istambul.
Ikea furniture works well in our mixture, some texture provided by a thrifted Moroccan rug and a couple of sheepskins and woven pillows. 

One of the areas of Mid Century design that enchants and baffles me is hand blown glass. I know I have yet to learn much more, but I have developed an eye for it. I think necessity has been my guide through this learning process. Glass is not usually marked, so it is usually passed by other resellers. I have made a couple of mistakes so far, but all of it is part of the learning process.

My small collection of Mid Century glass with an amber vase by Arthur Percy for Gullaskruf of Sweeden, a green Empoli vase from Italy, a teal Blenko decanter by Winslow Anderson,  and a Blenko sheared bowl by Wayne Husted.
In the background sits a contemporary version of Artemide's Nesso lamp designed by Giancarlo Mattioli in 1967.

I like a lot of contemporary design too and I am a bit partial to Italian design. Our kitchen remodel was influenced by what we experienced while living in Italy. There are a lot of Alessi pieces and a collection of coffee makers (I am Colombian after all). If you want to see more pictures of our kitchen remodel visit my Flickr album. I guess the kitchen was thrifted too, as we did most of the work ourselves.

Another Hella Jongerius piece  for Ikea in the foreground, West Elm lamps,  Neva Time Square clock*,  Alessi Fruit Mama*, Francis Francis espresso machine, Bertazzoni range, Alessi tea kettle*, Skinny LaMinx tea towel. *thrifted

If I had to choose and make a thrift wish list, I would have to include some Eames chairs, a PH-5 Poulsen lamp, a Finn Juhl armchair - or two, a Rembrandt etching, a pair of Salterini Hoop chairs, and so much more... the list changes everyday. One thing I know for sure is that I want to keep on thrifting, that I want to keep on learning, and that I want to share and learn with my wonderful friends. 

31 comments:

  1. Great article, Bea! It's fun to see your beautiful home. And I'd love to thrift a Rembrandt etching too ... it's also on my list.

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    1. Thanks Scott, I am sure we will find it!

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  2. Your home is AWESOME! And I love learning about your background. Had no idea you lived in Italy for a while. Thanks for sharing with us!

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  3. Your home is BEAutiful-just like a magazine feature! Your dresser find is amazing. I enjoyed reading this. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Thank you Nichole. Are you interested in a feature? Drop me a note if you are!

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  4. What a gorgeous home! Thanks for sharing, lots of inspiration here.

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  5. Lovely read, lovely home and lovely lady! I love how thrifting started as a way to furnish your apartment and then evolved into something unexpected. That little seed seems to be planted in so many of us.
    I would love to hear more about your time in Italy. I did not spend nearly as much time there but I enjoyed every single second of it!

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    1. One day we will meet in person and we can talk all about it. Thank you Jen.

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  6. You have a beautiful home filled with great finds. That dresser is killer. This is a great series I enjoyed reading over the previous posts as well.

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    1. Thank you Francine. I'm glad you enjoyed the series.

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  7. Love everything about it and the history with all the finds and pieces.

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    1. Thanks! Will you care to be featured Asha?

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  8. You have an absolutely gorgeous home:)

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  9. Fun to read a bit about you - and see your cool home. I enjoy your eclectic style very much. Thanks!

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    1. Thank you Jessyca, it was fun to share.

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  10. Such a lovely home! You have an incredibly good eye for putting pieces together.

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    1. Thank you Dana. I love to play with color and shape :)

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  11. Beautiful home.
    You have accomplished something rare in collecting- restraint. There's is a lot to see yet it's not overwhelming. Impressive in every way.

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    1. Thank you Steve. Your opinion means a lot!

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  12. What a beautiful home you have. Love all the special 'found' pieces. I'm also a collector - vintage furniture, pottery, transistor radios, carnival glass, lamps and housewares, for now. ;) I completely agree with your assessment about collecting blown glass - very difficult to navigate. The vibrant colors get me every time. I guess we'll just have to learn more over time. Thanks for sharing. Melissa

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    1. Thank you Melissa. I would like to take a sneak peek at your collections! I just do not have the space...

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  13. Oh man I missed this with the craziness of school starting! So wonderful to see into your beautiful home and read your story. Thank you for sharing with us! ~ Jenny

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    1. Jenny, thanks. I'm looking forward to see into your home too!

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  14. You have an amazing home! I just adore the Moroccan rug, they have always been a favorite of mine. I also love the pops of wall color and personal art.

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    1. Thank you, and thanks for the link on your blog, I will add you too.

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  15. You have a gorgeous home: such an eye for design, and as Steve had said, admirable restraint. Thanks for sharing a peek into you and your life: I'd love to learn more about each thrift breaker in this format. Cheers!

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    1. Thank you Mai-Li for your comment. I am glad that you like this series. I will try and bring more interviews soon.

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  16. I am really getting into glass lately. I wandered upon the exact same decanter as you and Dana ID'd it for me as Blenko. Thanks for more info! I will reference your post over on mine. :)

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