Sweet Victory

First, let me share the context of this day. It was a sunny, mild winter day and I was on my way to the dentist to receive a permanent crown on a back molar (earlier temporary work having been done in December). This is not what I wanted to be doing on this fine morning. On top of which my dental insurance recently alerted me that they were not paying for one red cent of this work. Not one. Which is maddening and I won’t go into details, but honestly it was…maddening. Now my dentist is highly competent, professional and kind and I was determined not to allow my insurance frustration to seep into our interactions as he labored in my mouth. (Good plan!)

I left the office with my tooth beautifully restored and my jaw numb so I wasn’t quite sure if I was presentable to go into public. (Was I drooling? I couldn’t tell!) But I was only a few blocks from two of my favorite fancy-pants boutique thrift stores, so I had decided to treat myself to a quick rummage.

Now one store doesn’t have many hard goods and over the years I’ve only bought a few things here that I could resell. Today though I spotted these wood and brass candlesticks in an old twist style. They were nicely made with small signs of wear and use.

And there was an intriguing label attached to one of them.

Who was Michael Davis of London? Despite the proximity of the store staff, I whipped out my phone and googled him. I tried  “Michael Davis London store” and “Michael Davis twist candlesticks,” but nothing showed up that was appropriate. Hmmm. Curious. But I decided I couldn’t leave these behind. They just seemed too good.

Got home and expanded my search parameters. Discovered Michael Davis was not a store but a UK shipping firm incorporated in 1972 that specialized in shipping antiques. And the client “Old School House” was Old Schoolhouse Antiques in Brewster, NY, a regular customer (based on a “NY Times” October 1977 article).

More research indicated that these lovely barley twist candlesticks were circa late 1800s to early 1900s made of beech, walnut or oak. Similar pairs were typically priced online at $300-$500+. Some lower, some higher.

I let that settle in.

And I’ll tell you I had a moment there at my kitchen table. A moment when I realized I had chosen well. When in the words of my youngest daughter a few weeks ago “It almost looks like you know what you’re doing.” Even if I don’t sell them for $500, it felt like sweet victory. Which doesn’t happen often in life, so I am savoring it.

Wishing you happy hunting,



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