Motel Mischief, Arts and Crafts Style

I am writing this week’s column from a hotel room in Salt Lake City, where I taped a television show Wednesday morning before appearing at the national SNAP! conference for do-it-yourself bloggers. In my other, non-Arts and Crafts life (and most of us have one of those, right?), I serve as the spokesperson for Minwax, doing television and home shows, monitoring their Facebook page, and even writing a column for them at

As I was sitting here in my room today, I watched a pickup drive away loaded with furniture that obviously had come from one of the guest rooms. Naturally, I assumed it was authorized, but, what if it wasn’t? What if a guest decided to sneak out with more than just a bath towel and that little bottle of shampoo?

Which reminded me of a time in 1987 when I drove from North Carolina to Mississippi to pick up a matched pair of Gustav Stickley slant arm Morris chairs I had bought from a gentleman over the phone. On the way home, rather than leave them in my old Ford van, late that night I carried them into the ground floor motel room I was staying in.

The next morning I was preparing to leave around eight o’clock, as were most of the other guests in the rooms around me. And so I opened the back doors of my van and proceeded, much to their amazement, to begin carrying out what they must have thought was furniture from my room. Of course, I was loading up my two prized Morris chairs.

Their stares made me wonder if anyone would alert the front desk staff that a strange man was stealing furniture out of his room, so I decided to take my time just to see what would happen. To my disappointment, none of the motel staff appeared at my door. Of course, with what they were being paid, I doubt if they could have cared enough to risk a confrontation with someone deranged enough to want some cheap motel furniture that smelled of cigarette smoke and stale beer.

No trip to Salt Lake City is complete without a visit to Scott and Riley Booker’s warehouse, Euro Treasures Antiques. Scott has been collecting and selling antiques of every era for years. His son Riley has joined him in business, and Riley has a special interest in Arts and Crafts. He has a wide range of Arts and Crafts furniture, from Gustav Stickley down to high quality generic pieces. Today he had a great and large Roycroft armchair on display (upper photo).

I wandered through their expansive warehouse, marveling at the assortment of furniture, ranging from 18th century French and English to American colonial, Federal, Victorian, and Arts and Crafts styles. Each time I am there I learn something new, as I wander through the maize of furniture, pulling out drawers, inspecting joints, and memorizing construction and design details.

And if you would like a sampling, take a look at an assortment of Arts and Crafts pulls I photographed and posted on our Facebook page.

Reminder of the Day: You don’t have to buy something to have a great day antiquing.

Until next Monday,

Have a great week!