Antique hunter Anne Hillstrom’s whirlwind shopping tour to Paris comes to a dead stop, as dead as the man sitting next to her on the plane. And to make matters worse, her identity has been stolen, leaving her to face her worst nightmare. She must sell all her precious antiques with the help of her business partner and co-blogger, CC Muller. Together, they open a pop-up antique store in the quaint suburb of Glen Ellyn Illinois. Their blog fans flock to the store looking to find that perfect treasure and so does a killer. When the Sweet Shop lady next door is found caramelized, the success of the pop-up sale turns bittersweet. Anne and CC dust off the clues, unraveling a centuries-old mystery that leads them to one conclusion. They must find the killer before the killer finds them.
I am so thrilled today to have Ms. Anne Hillstrom with us on the back porch and let us know how to find treasures all over the world! Take it away, Anne!
This is my very first guest post, and I’m thrilled to be able to debut it on Back Porchervations. For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Anne Hillstrom. My friend and antique hunting partner, CC Muller, typically writes our blog posts but I thought I would today. Together, we appear in a series of books called the Antique Hunters Mysteries.
I should say I’ve never meant an antique that I didn’t find some value in. While I don’t live in Kentucky like LuAnn, I recently traveled through Kentucky on my way back to Chicago from Asheville, N.C. CC and I toured the fabulous Biltmore estate but that’s a story for another day so stay tuned. While in Kentucky, I visited several antique stores in Georgetown and in Lexington. What a delightful way to pass the time.
At the first store, I saw local items related to horse farming, including bridle bit bracelets, Kentucky Derby souvenir cups and even an old horse blanket. While CC wasn’t looking, I might have bought a trinket or two. The bracelets designed by a local artist will make great presents and be a visual reminder of our summer excursion. Even though I do buy antiques for resale, I always make sure they are something I would keep if I can’t sell them.
Now I know some people who read our stories think I am obsessed with shopping. That’s not quite all true. I’m also obsessed with food. While traveling, CC and I enjoyed some delicious meals including a fantastic one at the legendary Loveless Café in Nashville. The fresh-made biscuits were warm from the oven, melting the generous helping of butter and fresh strawberry preserves. I can’t wait to go back there just for the biscuits though I might have gobbled up a slice of their pecan pie.
And, while we were in Nashville, I did find time to do some antique shopping in Franklin, Tenn. CC bought a memory box which contained actual bullets found on the battlefield of the battle of Fort Donelson, near the Cumberland River. I myself am not as partial to war antiques as CC. Instead I have spent my days longing over this 19th century 18-carat gold necklace with a two-carat pink sapphire (see picture). It was slightly above my budget but it would make a wonderful addition to my collection. I will need to ask them if they have layaway.
And, then from Nashville, we went to Asheville. This was the highlight of our trip. A tour of the magnificent Biltmore Estate. I’ve always wanted to see this grand achievement, and it surpassed my expectations. I could picture myself wearing the necklace and perhaps a sumptuous silk dress by Worth dining in the ornate dining room. It is the stuff dreams are made of. Perhaps someday. One can only dream. Unfortunately I spend much of my time dreaming, and it is typically for things that are beyond my budget.
You can read about my shopping love in our most recent book, Killer Finds. Even a dead body or two couldn’t deter from my true love of antique hunting.
That was our exciting summer adventure. I hope you all have a fantastic summer vacation. Let me know where you are traveling to, and perhaps, I can share some antique hunting tips for you fellow enthusiasts.