Friday, January 30, 2015


"New year, new you". We've all heard this a hundred times. Somewhere in my late 30's, I accepted that the new year does not have to mean a new resolution must always be made. Now, as I get older, I seem to evaluate a 'new me' nearly everyday! What I once liked, I no longer do. Culture changes so rapidly that I find myself saying no to most of it. When I skim over iTunes top 10 music, I rarely know most of the hit makers. I quickly say to myself, "You need to stay on top of this. Don't turn out to be an old lady or more importantly an out of touch old lady! Do your homework, stay interested, get with it!". Then I just as quickly say, "Who cares? Been there done that". I used to know all the music when I was younger. I always knew who the face was on the cover of the magazines. And although tv critics are out of control now, I used to know who they were talking about! Now, I simply don't have a strong enough interest to do any homework. Is knowing what Kim Kardashian is doing going to help my soul?

I have joked among my friends for years now that my home looks like I am Amish. Once a magazine shoot was over, all the layering and paraphernalia went back to the store. Now, four years after my shops closing, I am still looking at bare walls. No joke, not a single picture is hanging in my house- and I am fine with that. In fact, I love it. So despite changes that come and go, internally and externally, the one thing that still has not changed for me is my love of white (and neutral and gray and raw wood). All of that screams SERENITY NOW! I simply love no color. But don't get me wrong, I often see colorful items that I comment about. Just the other day I saw a new car that was the most amazing olive green. I just don't want to live with it (or wear it!).

A clean, organized, white life does something to my soul. It's hard enough to stop the tapes playing in your head or the eyes from darting back and forth wanting everything you see or the mouth talking nonstop and saying things you wish you could rewind; controlling your environment is more doable than all those things I fail at miserably.

As I looked over my recent Pinterest posts, I couldn't help but notice a theme I seem to have going on that wasn't intentional; simplicity. The majority of images that speak to me now say something much more than just being a pretty picture. They depict a stillness I am striving for. I am ready for the chaos to calm down, whether figuratively or literally. I want less to see but more meaning in what I see. I want richness without visual confusion. I want stillness without being still. January or not, seems like a good time to begin.

Sunday, December 21, 2014


Merry Christmas everyone! Just a quick note to say I am so grateful for your support throughout 2014. Curious Sofa has gone through many changes in these last twelve months and I am grateful to all of you who have stuck around for the ride! Most importantly for local Kansas Citians, I am back to selling larger goods inside Top Hat Mercantile, a once a month vintage shopping event. It is good to visit one on one with my customers again and bring a little visual inspiration that you have come to know me for. Please follow me on Facebook for all the latest news and to see the fresh merchandise that will be arriving in the coming months. Happy New Year everyone! May it be the best one yet!    -Deb 
 Enjoy tremendous savings all through the website. I am cleaning out the old and bringing in the new. 

Tuesday, November 25, 2014


Are you getting bored?

Bored with TV, Pinterest, Facebook maybe even Instagram? How many ideas have we seen over and over, year after year but they all seem to leave us with a big yawn? I for one am having a hard time seeing something new and fresh that makes me want to get out my scissors, glue and create. It seems everyone is doing it. Martha, what have you started??!!

As I flipped through Instagram this morning, I found something that stopped me in my tracks. I am doubtful I will make one, but OH! How I love it!!

Recycling, repurposing and renewing at its finest. From my friend and Hallmark artist, Gary Head, a new Christmas wreath made from old, green file folders. Let the cutting begin!


Saturday, October 04, 2014


It's October, it's First Friday, and that can mean only one thing: Curious Sofa is in full regalia for Halloween. It's been 4 years since I had to do a 'big wow' for this haunted season so creating another display was tough to get off the ground. My first hurdle is that my space is about 1/10th the size of my former store so a big wow is hard to do now. But I had no choice than to dust off my styling pants and jump in.

It's funny how things evolve as an antique dealer/stylist/(perfectionist!). I really had nothing in my mind of what theme I wanted to do or a product to inspire me. I did know I had a giant, 93" black farm table that I was using in my studio and a sprinkling of Halloween product from the internet, so that was about it.

Then as I spent the week hunting for antiques as I always do, I discovered these amazing blue chairs and suddenly a theme was born:

Blue chairs with black vinyl for Curious Sofa? Well yes, especially to go with my black table. But blue for Halloween?? For me, I can stretch an idea that can hopefully make sense to someone (especially me!). All of this lead me to remember a display I did in 2008 that never got much attention because my picture of it was so terrible. I called it the Witches Banquet. I added a giant tree stump down the middle of this farm table, a vase of black and burgundy roses, witches hands holding red cabbage, furry rats, Spanish moss and off I went.

I LOVED this display but I shot it at midnight, without a flash and all the wonderful details were lost so I decided to revisit it again for 2014.

Below is my 2014 version: 
- The walls were already lined with printed kraft paper I had left over from the last show. I secured dried corn stalks between them.
- I hung vintage gold mirrors on top of the paper, making the entire back wall a dull gold color.
- The black table filled the space, left to right, with tree stumps down the middle.
- I had three antique chandeliers hanging over the table.
- The four blue chairs on both sides of the table that lead me to turn off all the lights in my space and add blue tinted bulbs making it look more like midnight.
-  I had collected dozens of old brass candlesticks to hold the battery charged candles.
- My popular witches hands were at each place setting and then I added black crows, fresh (not orange!!) pumpkins, an old mantle clock, a few old sepia photos, Voila!


I always love adding an upholstery piece to my space because so much is wood, paint or metal. This velvet wing chair sold first thing:

Two days before the show I found this old 70's French style hutch which was perfect to place at one side of the space and fill with more Halloween goodness. The dark brown/black color was perfect.

Behind the dining table I added a skinny industrial table perfect for this concrete owl and large lanterns. And I had to get the mannequins out again to display the skeleton heads. Always a crowd favorite.


Across the isle is Tobacco Road. My other space with vintage clothing, rustic home goods, boots, bags and more. I have a great collection of leather jackets and cable sweaters for fall and of course, love the winter whites!

Also, Top Hat Gift Shop is full of new Halloween items; masks, owls, signs, lanterns and more.
Sad to think it all comes down in 48 hours but that is how this venue works. Please hurry down if you're in Kansas City or mark your calendars for the next show, November 7, 8 & 9 when all my spaces will be transformed to a glorious winter wonderland and Christmas will be oozing from every surface! (Yikes!)

Saturday, September 27, 2014


Don't even think about it, over 30 new vintage items just posted!!

I am a sucker for these June Cleaver beaded necklaces. Mix with new accessories and cashmere sweaters for a fresh update.

LOVE THIS French anatomy poster. Perfect for grown up Halloween decorating.
Some of you will get the humor of this donkey boy pillow. A comical touch for the home or child's room.
It is so hard to find original paintings at an affordable price. This sweet bird picture is acrylic, maybe watercolor. Original vintage frame.

Vintage velveteen runner with the perfect colors for fall decorating.
Italian Florentine ring box with stamp images adhere to the top.
Offering a set of 3, Silver jewelry boxes. Use on your vanity or display your designs at a craft show.

Brand new but with the look of wonderful antique hooks, each with a stamped plate of Zeus to the background!

I discovered this stack of vintage receipts ready for all of you scrappers. Use for paper flowers, decoupage or line an old cabinet drawer.
I can't find enough of these vintage champagne buckets. Get your cocktail party ready!
Vintage wooden file drawer, in an unusual shape to be used for a sconce or to cleverly stash your supplies.
Alfred Meakin China Plate with embossed edges and the perfect stain and crazing.

Be still my heart, I should have kept this amazing Moroccan pouf! All leather, great condition, ready for a stylish dog bead or hookah party!
Everyone loves these vintage gooseneck lamps. I especially like adding a small wire and hanging them as sconces over a favorite painting. This one with original red paint.
This lovely vintage mirror is narrow making it a perfect size to hang on that skinny wall. Wondefful etched design to the top and sides.

SAVE THE DATE! Curious Sofa is ready for Halloween during the next First Friday show at Top Hat Mercantile. Don't miss it!!!

Thursday, September 18, 2014


I always get an email around this time of year, asking when my Halloween merchandise will finally be posted to the website. Today it is! I know what you're thinking... not the WOW you are used to seeing these things used in my former store. But this is where your own creativity comes in. It can be difficult for me now to show you the 'how to' of using these items in a creative way. I no longer have sofas and chairs, tables and walls to display with. But instead, just a 500 sf studio that has a few different surfaces and backgrounds. So let me do this via cyberspace:

 Who doesn't love these giant paper lanterns? Add three of these on your porch or in a tree on Halloween night to illuminate your home for Trick or Treaters. Hang from a strand of Xmas lights and watch them glow. BUY HERE

 These sweet little mice are good from Halloween to Christmas. Clip to branches, leaves or group around a centerpiece. BUY HERE

 I love these large felt totes not only for a new type of trick or treat bag but also for hanging on your front door (or inside door). Fill with dried flowers and stems. BUY HERE

Using old bottles is all the rage at Halloween. Peel off these labels or turn them around and add your own design.  BUY HERE
 Love this Scaredy Cat bag for the front door too.

 Only one left! This Cat on a Stick; mask or centerpiece.

 Sisal Owls for Halloween and Thanksgiving!
 How cool is this?!! From Kansas City artist Lesa Dailey, this Crepe Paper Mask is a collector's item. Design an outstanding costume to compliment this or secure around a pumpkin or place in a centerpiece. BUY HERE

 Sturdy and long lasting glittery WELCOME sign to use on your front door alone or inside a large wreath.  BUY HERE

 This dramatic mask is a perfect example of using masks for decorating. Place in a vase along with feather and twigs for a stunning centerpiece. BUY HERE

   My new favorite item is this set of three luminary papers. Printed on sturdy vellum each design is different. Use as-is and wrap around your glass hurricane or battery candle. Cut shorter for a variety of sizes. Use up the stairs, outside or in a centerpiece. BUY HERE

Halloween garland to use a dozen of different ways: Drape from a mantle, hang over a doorway, cut apart and use as ornaments. Sturdy glittery cutouts on black satin. BUY HERE

AND AS ALWAYS, vintage items just in too!