“Early furniture, mortar and pestles, butter molds and stamps, wood bowls, wood carriers, coverlets, firkins, crocks and jugs, spice boxes—let’s just say I am a collector,” Lynn says. And although she cherishes her country collectibles, she is careful not to let them end up as clutter in her historic home. She offers the following tips for taming too many treasures:
Be Like-Minded. Display similar objects together to help items read as one coherent and organized whole instead of miscellaneous multiple odds and ends. “I like to keep my collections together instead of spread out,” she explains. “I have a cupboard of coverlets, keep my butter molds on a shelf and my butter stamps in a big wood bowl.”
Remember Overlooked Nooks. Take advantage of even the smallest or otherwise overlooked spaces, such as above a cupboard, on the floor, or in a cozy corner, to stretch your display space. Lynn stows baskets over a dining room cupboard, stacks grain bins on the floor, and fills cubbies and cupboards with favorite small pieces.
Cull Your Collections. Feel free to weed out lesser items to prevent your collections from piling up too high. “When I find something better, something always has to go,” Lynn says.
Spread the Wealth. Pass along pieces that no longer fit in your home or make you smile to fellow antiques enthusiasts. Lynn doles hers out to country-minded friends or sells them in her antiques booth or online.
Stash and Store. Rotate collections to experience the joy of rediscovery. When not in use, Lynn tucks away extra treasures, often in early trunks and cupboards.“I don’t like clutter,” she notes.
“I don’t believe in things being just for show. I use absolutely everything.”