Thank you for finding That Old House amidst the chaos of the Internet. We are delighted that you are here.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Drop Dead Gorgeous

What is it about old Drop Leaf Tables?
I'm nuts about them.
I think a lot of other people are, too.

They are so practical, modestly slipping their slim silhouettes into narrow spots in our houses,
but then bursting out, triumphantly, with their wings unfurled to pitch in at parties and shindigs.
They are the "We need more table space, stat!" heroes of the furniture world.  

The first thing I sold in my antiques booth
last November was a much-used cherry drop leaf table.
With a few issues.
But someone took it home, with all its scars and boo-boos, and I hope is still lovin' it.

I have an old cherry drop leaf table next to the sofa in our study.
Howard and I bought it many years ago in Zelienople, Pennsylvania, when we lived in Pittsburgh,
and it has served us as a kitchen table, a bedroom night stand, an entry table, a living room end table,
and now it holds a lamp, coasters, magazines and books in a cozy nook.

Upstairs in the Pink Bedroom, there's an Empire flame mahogany drop leaf table that I'm not yet sure what to do with.
It's got one large leaf, and becomes a lovely generous 5-legged square when that leaf is up.
It could be a card table, but I think it is a little large for that.
I have pink towels for overnight guests piled on the top, so I didn't take a picture of the whole table.

(Yes, we make our guests use a slop jar . . . . anything for antique authenticity.)

There is a drop leaf table that I would love to
sling into the back of my trusty red minivan and haul home.

It lives in Virginia, and I saw it this past weekend at my niece Emily's antiques booth.

Square legs.  It has square legs, love them, and a drawer that just hollers "Empire!"
And fabulous wide board leaves.

But last week in Virginia, I already had a drop leaf table in my minivan,
one that I'd gotten at an auction Thursday night in Richmond at Alexander's auction house.
That one is still upside down in my minivan; it will be going to my booth, probably tomorrow.
You know, when I clicked "Auto Correct" in the photo program on the computer, I was hoping
it would mask out the wrapping papers and moving blankets scattered around the back of the minivan.
It did not.  Useless.
 I don't often see acanthus carved legs, so I really wanted this table.
 The wood you see behind that leg, above,
is the top to this, below, which is also reclining in the van:
Another auction "win" for me, but that's a whole 'nother tale.
Anyway, if you are in Virginia and wondering what to do around Ashland, go visit
Hickory Creek Antiques on England Street.  Emily's booth, Ha'Penny Vintage,
is the second on the left as you enter. You'll know it because it's the nicest.  I am not at all biased.  Really.

Emily's Ha'Penny Vintage blog is here.
On this warm and sunny Friday, I'm off to Philadelphia with my sister.
Play nice while I'm gone! -- Cass

Link Parties to visit and love:

Feathered Nest Friday makes its home at French Country Cottage.  Click here!
The Charm of Home features Home Sweet Home on Fridays.  Click here!
It's Vintage Inspiration Friday at Common Ground.  Click here!
Miss Mustard Seed hosts the Furniture Friday Feature.  Don't miss it! -- Click here!



  1. I keep meaning to visit Hickory Creek Antiques, and now you have given me the kick in the pants it's gonna take to get me there. I HOPE you had lunch at Homemades by Suzanne while you were here ... I always take visitors there because the food is totally to die for! Sure wish I'd known you were in my neck of the woods ... just sayin'.

    1. Hi Connie! Next time I'll let you know, I promise!
      This visit was a QUICK one.

  2. I have an old drop leaf table in our little guest house at the lake. Its; white and chippy and I treasure it! What beauties you have found!


  3. Oh my word, all of those tables are gorgeous and what you have in the van is unreal. I'll just take what's there please. Hugs, Marty

  4. At least you give them a fancy slop jar. I love drop leaf tables too. They're magical. Poof and they have a totally different purpose.

  5. I love drop leaf tables, too. Yours? GORGEOUS!!!! I have 2 of them-wait-I have 3 of them. Yes! I AM greedy! I think they are just so versatile and usable! xo Diana

  6. I had one and they threw it out on me after I had it half sanded down...I love them too very nice...Happy weekend...with love Janice

  7. I do miss our drop leaf table. It was oval, and from Pa. Maybe it will turn up sometime when you're stocking your shop!

  8. Beautiful treasures. I have about three drop leaves, one has turned burl legs which I bought in England. I love how they provide instant tabletop space. Have an awesome weekend! Blessings, Barb

  9. I don't think I'll ever get over selling my old English oak barley twist drop leaf table. It was years ago and I needed money for the kids' school, so out it went. I've never seen another just like it. A drop leaf table is such an asset - it moves easily into any room.

    1. Barley Twist! Oh, my heart bleeds!!!
      And for such a silly thing as the kids' educations. Bosh!
      I see them once in awhile on Craigslist, oak barley twist drop leaves.
      If I find another one, I'll send you the link so you can weep.
      You can thank me later....

  10. Beautiful tables :)
    and do not miss...




    Last week it was 110 nice Blogs
    It is FUN :)
    Håkan ( The Roseman)

  11. oh my, you sure have a passion for these babies and what a description!! they are so beautiful and i love that house of yours!!

  12. Cass,

    If I could find a spot for that table, I would snatch it up in a "NJ minute"! Where is your antique booth?!

    Your Friend,

    1. Hi Deborah!
      I've got a booth at Somerville Center Antiques, 34 West Main Street in -- of course -- Somerville. There are quite a few antiques/vintage shops in a few blocks' stretch of Main, and some really excellent restaurants and cafes. Nice place to spend a few hours.

      Somerville is the country seat of Somerset County, easily found off Route 287.
      Come on by!
      PS I'm only there one or two days a week for working, but I stop in at least once a week to tidy up and add items.

  13. Hi Cass! I so agree with you about drop leaf tables! They are SO functional! I don't know why everyone in a small space doesn't use one for their kitchen or dining table! Push it flat against the wall on one side with the other side up if there are only 2 or 3 of you, pull it out and raise both sides for 4-5 of you... put it back against the wall when you're done - perfect! Mine is in my attic at the moment, I can't get rid of it even though I currently don't have a space for it. I know that the minute I get rid of it I will suddenly need it again!


  14. Pittsburgh? Git aht! and was that a Nevin Robinson above the chest in the Parlor (in your 3/22/12 post)???

    Do tell!

    Lois from southwestern PA (oh, who am I kidding, I'm from Pittsburgh!)

    1. Git aht yourself, Lois! Yes, Pittsburgh.

      We moved there the year after we got married, when my husband was offered the news director's job at 1020 KDKA radio (Pittsburgh is what we're all about). Since he'd learned about KDKA in college communications classes, he jumped! This was in 1979 (yikes, we were young!) and KDKA radio was still King of western PA.

      We loved our 3 years in Pittsburgh, and I was back in the summer of 2010 and found many things different, but many more things still the same -- which I liked!

      And we have two Nevin Robinson's. One was a gift from KDKA -- it's a trolley downtown (oops, dahntahn) bearing a KDKA billboard and I think passing Kauffmann's Dept Store. The other one, which hangs in our parlor, is of the 3 rivers area, and was a gift from our wonderful friends and neighbors on the North Side in Allegheny West -- a going-away gift when we moved back to New York. It is the "old" Pittsburgh skyline, the one we knew.

      Wonderful place, Pittsburgh. I'm a native New Yorker, Howard is from Boston, so for us the experience of a smaller city was so much fun; I'd go back!

      Thanks for visiting. Sorry I can't respond to you privately, but you are "anonymous" and have no email response possibilities.

      Younz have a great day now! :-)

  15. Hi Aunt C!

    It was so fun to see you guys in our neck of the woods...and many thank yous for the booth mention!!! I will go update the blog as soon as I leave this comment (Blush!). I love that table you got with the carved legs...I'd be tempted to keep it and push the limit of just how many tables one needs in a house :)

    it was great to see you, such memories and moments of chin-nozzery...
    love, emily

    PS Gotta put in a plug for my peeps at Squash-a-Penny Junction antiques too! Exit 98 past Kings Dominion, a left on Doswell Road...if your in the Ashland area anyhoo...

  16. I am drooling over that "auction" win that is for you, Cass, in the back of the van!!! LOVE that style & I can't wait to see better photos of it & where you put it.


  17. I love drop leaf tables! Yours turned out gorgeous! Thank you for joining Home Sweet Home!


Thank you for visiting That Old House; it's always exciting to find new comments -- they are treasured! Because of increasing spam, I have reluctantly eliminated "Anonymous" commenting. Legitimate anonymous commenters, please forgive me! You might try using "Open ID" instead. Blogger's spam software worked for a good long time, but, sadly, no longer.