Last fall I was in Antwerp, Belgium visiting my friend, transplanted New Zealander-and-photographer Di Mackey. She kindly accompanied me to the "antiques row" of Antwerp. In one antiques store, I was thrilled to discover books in English with gorgeous Art Nouveau covers. They were part of the display, but I persuaded the owner to sell them - for five euros!
I was captivated by these two 19th-century iron, metal and leather dress forms (see second one on the table in the background). Considering that these are quite rare - and my daughter is a designer - how could I resist? The problem was getting them back to Paris. They're waiting in Di and her husband Gert's apartment to be picked up. Maybe after the snows melt?
Speaking of snow, this antique sled was among the interesting items on offer at this particular shop.
This huge early 20th-century pharmacy cabinet (which took up an entire wall) was once in a pharmacy school. The cabinet comes with a framed black-and-white photo of the graduating class.
Shall I tell you a secret? Antwerp is filled with beautiful antiques - for about a third less than the prices in Paris. If you're an Art Nouveau fan, you'll be in seventh heaven here. I'm planning a repeat visit to this charming city very soon. It's only two hours by train from Paris and well worth the visit for the architecture alone.