It's been a busy 2012 for the antiques hobbyist, but we aren't done yet. There are two more shows to get to before year's end. Here's the scoop:
The promoters of the Treasure Island Flea Market will have their monthly show this weekend, and there will be a twist that benefits each of us. You see, the vendors are moving indoors for the winter months. This good news means we can escape the rainy, blustery weather and shop longer hours.
Indoors, visitors undoubtedly will come in contact with more sellers. After all, some merchants are unable -- or unwilling -- to exhibit items such as delicate glass or ephemera out of doors.
Another reason to visit is the fleet of food trucks offering mouthwatering fare. There's even an area where you can buy a glass of wine to accompany the sandwiches, pork buns and other goodies freshly made on site.
The fun happens at 1 Avenue of the Palms -- the last remaining usable building from the San Francisco World Fair held at Treasure Island in 1938. Hours are 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; $3 admission (no charge for parking); call 415-898-0245 or go to www.treasureislandflea.com.
The other shindig -- one eagerly anticipated by legions of Bay Area antiques lovers -- is the San Mateo Holiday Antique Show and Sale. Known as "The Bustamante Show," this event draws top-notch sellers and merchandise.
A key aspect of this sale is a code of ethics established by management; it's one of the strictest in the industry. Buyers are assured any artifacts they acquire are "The Real McCoy."
Typical of the vendors on hand is Keith Kinkade. In the trade for nearly 50 years, this San Jose-based dealer is frequently found at high-end shows across the Southwest and throughout the Golden State. His followers are many, since Kinkade offers awesome wares at a great value.
At the sale, expect dozens of merchants with paintings, furniture, rugs, quilts, silver, glass and china, folk art and more. Typically, everything is set out in orderly fashion, with legible price tags.
The Bustamante Holiday Show and Sale takes place at the San Mateo County Event Center, Fiesta Hall, 1346 Saratoga Drive, San Mateo; hours are 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday; free admission; parking is $10. Call 209-358-3134 or go to www.bustamante-shows.com.
Last month, we lost two great champions of the decorative arts. One, a familiar face on the PBS megahit "Antiques Roadshow," was someone I'd never met. The other, a friend I admired, lovingly took care of a national treasure in our midst.
Wendell Garret (1929-2012), a regular on the "Roadshow" since its launch in 1997, passed away Nov. 14. His scholarly appraisals were a highlight of the show, as he spoke with authority punctuated by a wonderful wit.
Garret was also an accomplished author and senior vice president at the New York offices of Sotheby's. I first became familiar with him while he was editor (1972-90) at the magazine Antiques. He remained editor-at-large of that publication until his death. His easy-to-read yet commanding way of putting together words is something this writer has always wished he could do.
Admirers will see Garret on upcoming episodes of "Antiques Roadshow" filmed this past summer. The new season starts Jan. 7. Check your local PBS station for times.
Closer to home, Northern California suffered a tragic loss when Tom Rogers (1932-2012), longtime curator at Filoli -- the splendid country manor surrounded by more than 650 rustic acres in Woodside -- died Nov. 21.
I can't recall when or where I first met this debonair gentleman, but we hit it off from the start. During his tenure (1989-2011) at the grand estate, Rogers not only increased the scope of its collections but made a huge number of people aware of the stately site's existence.
Before his stint at Filoli, Rogers had taught for 27 years in the Mountain View-Los Altos Union High district. That was most probably where he honed his perspicacious ability to deliver a captivating lecture.
Rogers had a booming voice and a very distinctive way of speaking. Anyone who caught one of his programs left with a substantial chunk of knowledge, but participants also felt entertained. And that's because this man was a first-rate impresario.
Filoli was constructed and developed by two great Bay Area families, but whenever I'm at the estate, I can't help but think that I'm visiting "Tom's house." Maybe the next time you're at Filoli, you'll feel the way I do.
A note of thanks
I've lost count of the number of readers I've been in touch with over the past year. Thousands have stopped me at antiques shows, estate liquidations and flea markets to say hello. Lots more have been in touch via email or snail mail. In all cases, I am grateful for your kind words.
I'm thinking of putting together a roundup of the tips and advice you often share. Got a great way to clean silver or take a stain out of grandma's linen? Have a furniture restoration specialist to recommend? Please forward your invaluable information to the addresses at the end of this column.
May your coming year be full of the best of everything.
Contact Steven Yvaska at firstname.lastname@example.org or 750 Ridder Park Drive, San Jose, CA 95190.