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December 23, 2017 |

Archive for » December 23rd, 2017«

Christmas shoppers rush to find last minute gifts for loved ones

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Christmas is less than 30 hours away and procrastinators are scrambling to find the perfect gift for loved ones.

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. And last minute shoppers are feeling the pressure. “A lot of patience,” said Isabel Brinton-Fenlason. “A lot of quick decision making, because I can’t facilitate too much. I have to go in. Find what I want and go to the next place.”

According to the National Retail Federation, only 12-percent of consumers have finished all their holiday shopping as of December 12th. For the rest of us, Super Saturday is the last full shopping day to find the perfect gift.

Shoppers at Thornes Market in Northampton, woke up early with hopes of beating the rush. “Earlier in the week and on the weekends its really tough to get out here, because of the parking,” Matt Turgeon told 22News. “So I figured I’d come now, with the weather being the way it is. Not as many people would be here, but there’s still quite a few people out here.”

Cedar Chest is offering their customers last minute gift ideas. But items are flying off the shelf. Danielle Antes of Cedar Chest told 22News, “We’re definitely selling thru a lot of our nice scarfs and ponchos; things like that. And a lot of our kitchen accessories are going really quickly. As well as, still the puzzles are still a really popular one.”

The store is expecting a record breaking day, with hopes of $66,000 in sales. Last minute shoppers can expect crowded stores, long lines, and last minute discounts.

And we saw plenty of sale signs. 126-million people are planning to brave the crowds to finish their Christmas shopping. Six percent of consumers said they’ll be shopping on Christmas Eve. But, with most stores planning to close early, It might be a good idea to call first before heading out.

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Lovina’s Amish Kitchen: Painting, packing, plus home-demonstration parties

A cold morning of 11 degrees. It’s freezing and as Abigail would say, “Brrrr — cold!”

Eleven days until Christmas day. I just can’t believe how much faster every year goes by. Life goes on. Changes are made, some good, some bad. The most important part in life is to always let God guide us into the unknown future. He already knows what lies before us. He knows all the changes 2018 will bring. And he alone can help us accept whatever those changes will be.

Our big change here at the Eicher homestead right now is packing Mose and Susan’s belongings and moving them 5.5 miles away to their new home.

Mose and Susan’s house is almost done. The flooring is being laid. It takes a little more time to remodel an old farm house but it’s looking better. Last Friday the girls and I helped paint the walls and ceilings. Mose helped us after he came home from work. My muscles were sore the next day. We gave both bedrooms, living room, and dining room two coats of paint. Mose had to go get more paint. New drywall always seems to absorb more paint. We used a “paint plus primer” so that was easier to have it all in one. We were almost done and saw we needed still more paint so nephew Henry went to town and bought more paint. That was a long day to get the painting all done.

Mose and I finished up around 7:30 p.m. I was tired but it felt good to have accomplished our goal. And what a surprise to come home with supper all made. Loretta’s special friend Dustin came to help us after he was off work. He also did some more jobs for Mose while he was there that needed to be done before they move in. Dustin and Loretta came home earlier and prepared supper on the grill which he brought in. They had steak, red potatoes and mushrooms on the grill along with cheese for our supper. It was all very delicious and very much appreciated after a hard day’s work! Lord willing, we plan to move Mose and Susan’s belongings on Saturday.

Tuesday evening we went to a presentation about stainless steel cookware. The man showed us how to cook without water or oil in pans. He prepared supper for the six couples that were there. We were served chicken, potatoes, green beans and carrots all cooked in his cookware. Also an apple cake was prepared on top of the stove in a covered skillet. He showed us ways to use the cookware to eat healthier. I saw a few of the men (including my husband Joe) sneak some salt on their food. I never add much salt to my food because Joe always adds salt without tasting it first. My children grew up not tasting much salt on their food and don’t mind potatoes without salt. We use mostly sea salt for our table salt. It was an interesting evening and I learned a few things. He also prepared an omelet for us without having to flip the omelet, but still fully cooking it.

Last night the girls and I made omelets for everyone for supper. We made a total of 14 omelets using my stainless steel frying pan I’ve had for years, but cooking them a little differently.

Friday evening daughter Loretta is hosting a Tupperware wedding shower for Dustin’s brother’s wife, Lisa. We will serve supper to the guests after the party. Hopefully Lisa will have a successful party and pick out some free Tupperware for her new home. Jake and Lisa were married in May so a homemaker can always use some more containers, choppers, etc.

Now I must get busy. We will wash laundry today. It is nice to see the sun come out because our battery packs were getting low storing solar. With our water running off solar we need a charged battery. We do have a back-up generator but if we don’t need to waste gas its better.

I wish all of you a blessed Christmas and God’s blessings in 2018 and always! Safe travels and good health to all!

Thank you for all your support and encouragement through 2017!

Pancake Pizza

3 C. cake batter

1 dozen eggs, scrambled

1 C. cheese

6 C. sausage gravy (a recipe for sausage gravy is in my new cookbook)

1 lb. bacon

Heat oven to 400 F. Pour batter into 9-inch-by-13-inch greased and floured cake pan. Bake 15 minutes or until done. Remove from oven.

While pancake is baking, scramble eggs in a large skillet. Layer eggs and cheese on top of baked pancake. Make a sausage gravy and put on top of eggs and cheese. Fry and crumble the bacon. Sprinkle on top of the gravy. Serve with or without maple syrup.

Lovina Eicher is an Old Order Amish writer, cook, wife and mother of eight. She is the co-author of three cookbooks; her new cookbook, The Essential Amish Cookbook, is available from 800-245-7894. Readers can write to Eicher at PO Box 1689, South Holland, IL 60473 (please include a self-addressed stamped envelope for a reply) or at LovinasAmishKitchen@MennoMedia.org.

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Marni Jameson: A look back at 2017 lessons learned, Part 1

It’s the time of year when I look back at the weekly columns I have shared with you over the past 12 months, which is a bit like watching “I Love Lucy” reruns at high speed backward, and try to glean the one best piece of advice I stumbled upon each month.

Then I wrap those lessons up for you here, in a two-part series, 12-days-of-Christmas style. Here are the first six:

IN JANUARY, organizing month, I got serious about taming the tough stuff. Most of my house was under control, but certain pockets and categories defied order. For instance, I had yard tools propped in the garage like assault weapons. Every time I bumped one, it threatened to behead me.

So, I uncovered tricks to tame our most unruly possessions, including scarves, kitchen utensils, shoes, toys, and yes, garden tools. The day I seized control, I mounted pegboard on my garage wall, where, using an adjustable hook system, I hung not only the garden tools, but also saws, mechanics lights, extension cords and lawn chairs. Off the floor, these items no longer lie in wait.

Lesson: You can make anything, even your most unruly possessions, orderly.

IN FEBRUARY, I broke out of a design rut, and, with a few small moves, revived my dated dining room without buying new furniture, only accessories.

By trading a pair of round carved mirrors for modern clean-edged ones, painting the room an updated blue, and switching out the traditional area rug and light fixture for contemporary ones, I took the room from traditional to transitional. What a difference.

Lesson: Many people live with outdated decor because they think the only alternative is to start from scratch. Redecorating after you’ve done it once can feel like volunteering to do middle school over. So rooms stay the same for years. But changing the accessories can be transforming.

IN MARCH, I said goodbye to my Colorado home. Though I’d moved from Colorado six years earlier, selling the home where I’d raised my family for eight years was bittersweet.

At the closing, after we’d drained a dozen pens signing forms, and I’d started to gather my things, I overheard the lender say to the buyers: “Congratulations on your new house.” And I froze to take in the first moment in 14 years that I was no longer responsible for this house. A weight lifted. A mortgage fell away. A title changed hands, and a wistfulness rose in my chest. I shook the new owners’ hands, and told them I was glad my house was going to a good home.

Before going to the airport, I drove by the old house, and sat out front. I felt as if I were opening an old favorite book. I took a minute to thank the house for the shelter it provided my family, the celebrations it oversaw, and for its embrace.

Lesson: One, it is possible to very much want something that makes you sad. Two, always say a proper goodbye to the places you’ve lived.

IN APRIL, chaos came to our once orderly home to stay. Toys were everywhere. A full-night’s sleep became a luxury of the past, and my husband’s and my deepest conversations revolved around potty training, feeding schedules, naps and detailed reports of what went in and came out when.

We got a puppy.

Lesson: If you want a pristine, immaculate, well-ordered home, don’t have kids or pets. But that is not the life for me. If pets are part of your home life, design with them in mind. I splurged on fun pet home accessories: handsome food bowls, a gorgeous porcelain treat jar with a ceramic bone handle, and good-looking beds. (I like Jax Bones and Wash ‘N Zip.) All for puppy love.

IN MAY, a rug dealer DC and I met months earlier while on a cruise that stopped in Turkey called to say he was in Florida, with a large collection of rugs. He wanted to stop by. “Absolutely not,” I told DC. I’ve always been highly suspicious of foreign rug dealers. But DC wanted to go for it: “If you want to step up our decor, this would be a good way to do it.”

The next afternoon, Hakan Zor and his partner, Sam, pulled up with a van full of rugs, and so began one of the most memorable evenings DC and I have ever had — one spent talking over grilled-cheese sandwiches and wine about Turkish and American politics, our families, and, of course, the wide, wonderful world of handmade rugs. By the end of the night, Hakan and Sam had turned this once resistant, distrusting rug shopper into an enlightened consumer of this ancient art form — and sold us three rugs.

Lesson: I now understand why designers say if you can only splurge on one item in your home, make it a great rug. Warning: Once you learn to appreciate fine handmade rugs, you can’t go back.

IN JUNE, I learned how to age gracefully from a wine class. DC and I had been taking wine-tasting classes. He learned about wine, while I drank it, which was perfect.

At one class, a fifth-generation winemaker explained the difference between a young wine and an old one. “A young wine,” he said, “is nice to have dinner with, once. A middle-aged wine makes for a more interesting dinner companion because it has more to talk about. An old, well-preserved wine has even more complexity, and is one you want to have dinner with again, and again.”

This made me feel better, since I had been lamenting my own bygone youth when my skin would hold its own self up, when I could read the fine print without rummaging for glasses, and when my knees did what I asked them to without argument. Hence my new mantra: I’m not getting older. I’m getting more interesting!

Lesson: When storing wines at home, keep them dark, cool, and lying down. If cared for properly, great wines get more interesting as they age — and so do we. Cheers!

Syndicated columnist Marni Jameson is the author of three home and lifestyle books, including “Downsizing the Family Home: What to Save, What to Let Go” (Sterling Publishing, 2016). You may reach her at www.marnijameson.com.

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Dinnerware Market – Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Forecast, 2017 – 2022

Dinnerware Market Research Report is a Proficient and In-Depth Study on the Existing State of Dinnerware Industry. This Report Focuses on the Major Drivers, Restraints, Opportunities and Threats for Key Players. It also Provides Granular Analysis of Market Share, Segmentation, Revenue Forecasts and Regional Analysis till 2022.
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The Report Comprises of Various Company Profiles of Fundamental Market Players of Dinnerware Market

With thorough market segment in terms of different Countries, this report divides the market into a few key countries, with sales (consumption), revenue, market share, and growth rate of the market in these countries over the forecast period 2017-2022.

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 The Dinnerware Market to grow at a substantial Compound Annual Growth Rate during the forecast period 2017-2022.

 Geographical Segmentation of Dinnerware Market:

  • North America
  • Europe
  • Asia-Pacific (APAC)
  • Middle East and Africa
  • Rest of World (ROW)

 The Report highlights key market dynamics of sector. Various definitions and classification of the industry, applications of the industry and chain structure are given. The current market scenario and future prospects of the sector also have been studied. Additionally, prime strategical activities in the market, which includes product developments, mergers and acquisitions, partnerships, etc., are discussed.

The research report offers answers to several important questions related to the growth of the Dinnerware market. Finally, the feasibility of new investment projects is assessed, and overall research conclusions are offered. In a word, the report provides major statistics on the state of the industry and is a valuable source of guidance and direction for companies and individuals interested in the market. 

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Major Table of Contents of Mentioned in the Report 2017-2022

  • Dinnerware Market Overview (2017 – 2022)

    • Product Overview and Scope
    • Market Segment by Type
    • Production Market Share
    • Dinnerware Consumption Market Share by Application
    • Market Size (Value) and Applications
    • Dinnerware Status and Outlook
    • Government Policies
  • Dinnerware Market Competition by Manufacturers (2017 – 2022)
    • Dinnerware Market by Capacity, Production and Share by Manufacturers
    • Revenue and Share by Manufacturers
    • Average Price by Manufacturers By Market
    • Manufacturers Manufacturing Base Distribution, Sales Area, Product Type
    • Market Competitive Situation and Trends
    • Market Concentration Rate
    • Dinnerware Market Share of Top 3 and Top 5 Manufacturers
  • Dinnerware Market Manufacturers Profiles/Analysis (2017 – 2022)
    • Company Name
    • Company Basic Information, Manufacturing Base, Sales Area and Its Competitors
    • Dinnerware Market by Product Type, Application and Specification
    • Company A Dinnerware Capacity, Production, Revenue, Price and Gross Margin
    • Main Business/Business Overview
  • Dinnerware Market Capacity, Production, Revenue, Consumption, Export and Import (2017 – 2022)
    • Market Capacity, Production and Growth
    • Revenue and Growth of Market
    • Production, Consumption, Export and Import
  • Dinnerware Market Production, Revenue (Value), Price Trend by Type (2017 – 2022)
    • Dinnerware Market by Production and Market Share by Type
    • Revenue and Market Share by Type
    • Price by Type
    • Production Growth by Type
  • Dinnerware Market Analysis by Application (2017 – 2022)
    • Dinnerware Market Consumption and Market Share by Application
    • Consumption Growth Rate by Application
    • Market Drivers and Opportunities
    • Potential Application
    • Emerging Markets/Countries
  • Dinnerware Market Analysis by Regions (Provinces) (2017 – 2022)
    • Production Market, Production Value and Price by Regions (Provinces)
    • Production and Market Share by Regions (Provinces)
    • Production Value and Market Share by Regions (Provinces)
    • Sales Price by Regions (Provinces)
    • Consumption by Regions (Provinces)
    • Production, Consumption, Export and Import
  • Dinnerware Market Manufacturing Cost Analysis (2017 – 2022)
    • Dinnerware Market by Key Raw Materials Analysis
    • Key Raw Materials
    • Price Trend of Key Raw Materials
    • Key Suppliers of Raw Materials
    • Market Concentration Rate of Raw Materials
    • Proportion of Manufacturing Cost Structure
    • Raw Materials
    • Labour Cost
    • Manufacturing Expenses
    • Manufacturing Process Analysis of Dinnerware
  • Industrial Chain, Sourcing Strategy and Downstream Buyers (2017 – 2022)
    • Industrial Chain Analysis
    • Upstream Raw Materials Sourcing
    • Raw Materials Sources of Dinnerware Market by Major Manufacturers
    • Downstream Buyers
  • Marketing Strategy Analysis, Distributors/Traders (2017 – 2022)
    • Dinnerware Marketing Channel
    • Direct Marketing
    • Indirect Marketing
    • Marketing Channel Development Trend
    • Market Positioning
    • Pricing Strategy
    • Brand Strategy
    • Target Client
    • Distributors/Traders List
  • Market Effect Factors Analysis (2017 – 2022)
    • Dinnerware Market by Technology Progress/Risk
    • Substitutes Threat
    • Technology Progress in Related Industry
    • Consumer Needs/Customer Preference Change
    • Economic/Political Environmental Change
  • Dinnerware Market Forecast (2017 – 2022)
    • Dinnerware Market by Capacity, Production, Revenue Forecast
    • Production, Import, Export and Consumption Forecast
    • Production Forecast by Type and Price Forecast
    • Consumption Forecast by Application
    • Dinnerware Market Production, Consumption, Import and Export Forecast by Regions (Provinces)
    • Production Forecast by Regions (Provinces)
    • Consumption Forecast by Regions (Provinces)
    • Production, Consumption, Import and Export Forecast by Regions (Provinces)

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Home of the Month: Winter wonderland in Amherst

When Adam and Heidie Buffomante moved from their starter house to a new larger one, they didn’t need to hire a moving company – or even rent a U-Haul. Their new house is located right next door to their old one.

“We carried things across the lawn,” said Adam Buffomante, dean of students at the Charter School for Applied Technologies middle school.

The Western New York natives bought the house just outside the Village of Williamsville in 2016.

“The land that used to be flooded with overgrown trees now is the cozy location where our family of three – including our teacup Yorkie, Daisy – enjoys board games and family dinner each Sunday, hosting guests for weekend brunch, and styling each unique space so that it evokes feelings of warmth and joy,” said Heidie Buffomante, assistant principal at Hoover Middle School in the Kenmore-Town of Tonawanda School District.

While Heidie Buffomante points out rugs, window treatments and other finds purchased from Target, Kirkland’s, TJ Maxx, Tuesday Morning and Hobby Lobby, she and her husband are also committed to supporting small local businesses. Some of their favorites for shopping new, vintage or repurposed items include Molly + Kate in Hamburg, Nigh Road Farmhouse, also in Hamburg, and Tattered Tulip in Lockport.

“We work to bring in pieces built, created or designed by local vendors, artisans or small businesses,” she said. “Being thoughtful about what you bring into your home not only functions to welcome others but is also a conversation starter into the genuine people working towards the resurgence of Buffalo in their small business pursuit,” she said.

At the time the house was under construction and available for purchase, the Buffomantes were foster parents and looking for a home that offered more space than their approximate 1,200-square-foot starter home. The 2,700-square-foot new home built by Granite Home Builders also offers plenty of space for entertaining and hobbies.

The second floor has a “wrapping room.” “I take great pride in creating personalized gifts and wrapping them as a finishing touch. Now I have an inspiring place for doing that,” she said.

A large living space at the top of the stairs features a wall filled with Adam Buffomante’s sports memorabilia and a trunk for storing his well-organized, lifelong collection of sports cards. A carpeted dormer room, also on the second floor, is an ideal place for young visitors to play.

Heidie Buffomante, who has a passion for styling – and restyling – said that she became interested in decorating while at home recovering from a traumatic brain injury in 2014.

This month, her decor has a winter wonderland theme, with lots of white, cream, bleached wood, warm gold and silver. Even the Christmas stockings are ivory or soft gray. These seasonal accents blend right in with the cream linen-covered sofas, antique white furniture and cream velvet drapery panels.

Everything has a place. “We don’t have clutter,” Adam Buffomante said.

The couple paid $290,000 for the house and then invested in additional items including custom closet storage, custom window shutters and the kitchen backsplash.

The couple used peel-and-stick wallcovering to create an accent wall. (Sharon Cantillon/Buffalo News)

Some highlights of the home:

• The couple created an accent wall in the living room with peel-and-stick wallcovering in a pattern called “Reclaimed Wood” by Devine Color purchased from Target. In tones of gray, the faux pattern mimics distressed wood.

• The kitchen features cream-colored cabinets with a dark wood kitchen island; granite countertops; stainless appliances; recessed lighting, and a backsplash created from mini subway tiles. A pair of tractor seat stools at the kitchen island adds a fun touch, while accessories on display include MacKenzie-Childs hand-painted ceramics in the Courtly Check pattern mixed with finds from Hobby Lobby and other stores. A hot cocoa station is located near the stove.

A black-and-white checked table runner from Kirkland’s and a checked pillow from Eddie Bauer are found in the adjoining dining room and echo the pattern of the MacKenzie-Childs ceramics.

• A once dilapidated window transformed by Michele DePasquale of Buffalo Pallet Art serves as a backdrop for seasonal displays, including a pair of vintage-looking wooden skis from Michaels. In the fall, Heidi Buffomante hung a wreath on the frame. Soon, she will refresh this and other accessories throughout the home.

“My style changes and I move things,” she said.

Her husband added: “I’ll come home and the pictures will be changed around.”

The kitchen. (Sharon Cantillon/Buffalo News)

The blue print

A peek inside the Buffomantes’ home:

Layout: Living room opens to dining area and kitchen. First floor also features a master bedroom with bath and custom closet, a half bath and a laundry room with office area. Second floor features a large open living space; a large dormer room with closet; a guest bedroom, and another bedroom they use as a gift-wrapping room. There’s also a basement.

Colors: A neutral palette of grays, whites and creams with metallic accents for the holidays.

Furnishings: Antiques, items that look like antiques, some new pieces – including finds from Overstock.com.

Accessories: Framed wedding and family photos; sports memorabilia; locally purchased items, some handcrafted.

Floors: Hand-scraped hardwood, for a slightly distressed appearance. Area rugs.

Window treatments: Custom white shutters. Drapery panels on rods, including white velvet in the master bedroom and cream velvet in the living and dining rooms.

The master bedroom. (Sharon Cantillon/Buffalo News)

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Vintage Mickey Mouse plate features original drawing style …

Mickey and Minnie Mouse and their cartoon friends have been popular since the first cartoon was shown in 1928.

Walt Disney licensed the rights to use the image to hundreds of products, and collectors often specialize in one type of product like toys, dinnerware or textiles.

During the 1930s, Paragon China in England made a dinnerware set and a baby feeding set that featured Mickey and Minnie playing the piano, riding Horace Horsecollar and other scenes. They were marked “Paragon China.” Another later series was marked “Royal Paragon China, Mickey Mouse Series, copyright registered.” Paragon still makes Mickey Mouse dishes, but the mice have the more recent shorter nose and larger eyes.

A Paragon octagonal plate with a picture of Minnie playing the piano while Mickey dances was part of a sale of more than 20 pieces of the dinnerware and 13 sets.

Q: I’m 75 years old and have a fireplace screen from my grandmother’s house. It is 28 inches high, shaped like a fan and folds up. I would love to know its value.

A: When real fires were burning in fireplaces, screens were used to control the heat and keep sparks and burning embers at bay. By the late 18th century, fire screens were available in wood, leather, wicker and papier-mache with silk, tapestry or embroidery. They were portable and often adjustable. By the 19th century, fire screens tended to be light with decorative panels.

The French “peacock”-style fan, like yours, was popular from the 1820s through the Victorian era. Made of bronze and brass, the intricate pierced filigree “feathers” could fold together and lock closed. The center supports often have decorations like medallions with cameos of mythological figures, a scrolling acanthus or a dragon handle. Early peacock fans can sell for a few thousand dollars. Peacock screens of similar design but made in the 20th century are lighter in weight and worth less. Mid-century reproductions can be found for $50 to $100. Your screen was made in the early 1900s and is valued at about $700 to $900.

Q: I have a set of nativity figures that came with a certificate of authenticity that reads “Original Lepi Woodcarvings.” It says they are made of maplewood, and carved and painted at Ortisei in Val Gardena, Italy “following an original design of Rupert Reindl, our famous master sculptor.” I have the box they came in. I’d like to know something about the maker.

A: Ortisei is an Italian town in Val Gardena (Garden Valley). Woodcarvers have worked in this area since the 1600s. At first, they made practical items for the home and farm. Eventually, the town became a center of decorative woodcarving, especially nativity sets and other figures. Lepi is a woodcarving workshop founded by Leo Prinoth in 1920. The company still is in business, and it makes wooden figures based on designs by Rupert Reindl (1908-1990) and other well-known woodcarvers. Christmas woodcarvings sell for half or less than the original price.

Q: I bought a pair of canvas high top sneakers designed by Peter Max in about 1970. They were made by the Randolph Rubber Co. of Garden Grove, California. Later, at a gallery, Peter Max signed the sneakers. I had worn them about a dozen times. I gave them to a young family member who is now in his 30s. What is a reasonable amount to offer to buy the sneakers back from that family member?

A: Peter Max (born 1937) created a style of art that is synonymous with the groovy 1960s. His brightly colored cosmic pop art designs appeared on everything from paintings and posters to household items and clothing. In the late 1960s, Randolph Rubber Co. of Garden Grove, California, made high-top and low tennis shoes/sneakers with Peter Max designs.

Asking prices for Peter Max sneakers have been as high as $1,500 a pair, but at auction, selling prices range from $345 to over $800. Prices depend on whether the sneakers were in new or worn condition, and whether they were sold in their original box. The higher prices were for sneakers in new condition in their original box. An autograph would add to their value.

Q: I have about 100 old baseball coins from the 1960s. Some are plastic and some are metal. They came in Junket Brand and Salada Tea packages. I have the players Mickey Mantle, Don Drysdale, Yogi Berra, Carl Yastrzemski, Roberto Clemente and others. I also have about 20 football coins. Can you give me any information about them?

A: Coins featuring Major League Baseball players were free premiums. The 1962 set featured 221 Major League Baseball players on 265 plastic rimmed coins of six colors that held photo inserts. The 1963 “All-Star Baseball” set consisted of 63 metal coins. The American League players had blue rims; the National League players had red rims. These coins are very popular baseball collectibles. Their condition is graded like baseball cards.

In shops that specialize in baseball cards, they sell from about $5 to over $110 each, depending on condition and popularity of the player. At auction, sets of the 1962 coins have sold for $2,000 to $3,000. A single Mickey Mantle coin has ranged from $120 to over $300. To evaluate yours, contact a dealer who specializes in sports memorabilia.

Tip: Folding fans should be stored closed.

Terry Kovel and Kim Kovel answer questions sent to the column. Write to Kovels, The Daily Herald, King Features Syndicate, 628 Virginia Drive, Orlando, FL 32803.

Current prices

Current prices are recorded from antiques shows, flea markets, sales and auctions throughout the United States. Prices vary in different locations because of local economic conditions.

Bank safety deposit box, double combination dial, ornate molding, Keyless Lock Co., 5 3⁄4 inches, $90.

Royal Copenhagen, vase, trumpet, fluted, flowers, blue, 10 1⁄2 inches, pair, circa 1910, $125.

Disney toy, Pinocchio, red overalls, hat, blue bow, tin lithograph, windup, 8 1⁄2 inches, $180.

Table, glass top, five alternating height central supports, lucite, 29 by 8 1⁄2 inches, $185.

Toy, Flash Gordon, rocket fighter ship, red, yellow wings, clockwork, Marx, 12 inches, $300.

Bing Grondahl, bowl, oval, shallow, raised circular foot, Hennin Koppel, 5 by 18 inches, $375.

Weathervane, artist palette, brush through the thumbhole, gilt, repousse, circa 1950, 13 by 17 inches, $785.

Cloisonne, vase, birds, maple branches, cherry blossoms, chrysanthemums, black, Japan, 10 inches, $1,210.

KPM, plaque, couple, classical robes, doorway, urn, 7 by 5 inches, $1,270.

Globe, terrestrial, walnut stand, stretcher compass, 44 by 23 inches, $2,120.


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Bang On: Marry form, function for timeless kitchen

Kitchens, long referred to as the heart of the home, can be designed with the latest trends but still with longevity in mind.

Sentiment is important — because it is the heart of the home and gets lots of use for family and guests and who doesn’t want their kitchen to be stylish and on trend — but as a kitchen re-do can be a significant investment, whatever you do needs to have longevity.

Here are a few trends that are timeless and align perfectly with today’s informal dining and entertaining:

  • Open layouts enhance personal connections helping to balance the online nature of many of our work lives.
  • Ceilings often are overlooked for their design potential, but with a little imagination and some moldings, they can become an important tool in defining areas in open concept combinations spaces.
  • Clean horizontal lines with smooth cabinet fronts, less moldings and extra details creates a calm backdrop for family life.
  • Fewer upper cabinets can be balanced with open shelving to lighten the look and provide visual interest with dishes or unique art pieces. Even removing upper cabinet doors can brighten the look.
  • White cabinets will never go out of style. You’re more likely to grow tired of bold hues on major surfaces, so stick with accessories you can easily change for a totally new look.
  • Invisible appliances include under the counter microwaves and top loading microwave drawers which incorporate universal accessibility design principles. Tired of seeing the refrigerator protruding? With paneling to match cabinets, refrigerators can be magically transformed for a seamless look. Tired of the maintenance of stainless steel? Although it’s popularity still outranks all other finishes, stay tuned to see what impact the new smudge-proof and black finishes are going to have.
  • Countertops are available in unlimited colours and patterns. If you want durability along with a shimmering surface, quartz should be your choice.
  • The sparkle of plumbing and hardware finishes comes and goes. Brassy looking gold was in and gone, satin gold is coming in, but shiny silver lives on forever. Incorporate polished chrome or nickel into hardware, faucets, shelf brackets and more for an upscale accent that endures.

Focus on the function of the kitchen, and you can’t go wrong.

  • LED lighting has lost its harshness with new lights being softer, even more efficient and longer lasting than halogen and fluorescents. I’m glad to see those ugly curly light bulbs gone. LEDs can illuminate a toe-kick, perk up an island, or brighten the work space beneath cabinetry.
  • Single level islands increase the intimacy of a kitchen and provide valuable prep space. Gone is the concept that two levels will allow you to hide some of the clutter and mess.
  • You can never have too many deep drawers, by the stove for fast access for pots and pans, by the dishwasher for quick unloading of dishes or add readily available organizers to keep things in place and maximize effortless storage.
  • Sinks also come in a variety of sizes, styles and materials. Over-sized single sink models accommodate large pots and pans or other items that require hand washing. But think about what you need before you decide.

When planning your kitchen, remember to incorporate functionality and durability. Hopefully these hints will help you design a stylish environment that has longevity.

Twenty years ago, kitchen cabinets were considered well equipped when there was a lazy Susan or a built-in spice rack. Today there are many storage options, from pullout shelves, multi-layer cutlery drawers, narrow spaces that otherwise have false cabinet fronts (such as in front of the sink), pull outs from the kick plate under the cabinets or customized narrow spaces for cookie sheets and large platters.

You can create whatever fits your personal style.

Peder Madsen is ­president of the London Home ­Builders’ ­Association and ­vice-­president of CCR ­Building and ­Remodeling in London. 

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