I just spent Halloween in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and along the way stopped at Olde Good Things--“the place for architecturaloligists,” which is basically a junkyard for design aficionados. What a trove.
I haven’t seen such splendor since Bambi. Picture an airplane hangar-sized building stacked toe top to crown with all manner of architectural remnants: chandeliers, fluted columns, stained glass, theatre seating, tin mirrors, marble putti, clocks by the row, old signage, hand painted wallpaper, mantles, windows and ancient doors. And when I say doors, I mean a huge room stacked full of them from churches and mansions thick and high. Office chairs from the 40s go by the acre. My favorite was the stone yard with enough marble Marys, martyrs, gargoyles and grotesques to build a church of your own.
But what to do with such relics? I think creativity is the key. If I had a garden I’d create fountains and grottos galore. The size of some of these big pieces invites you to skew scale and add drama to your big loft or brownstone. I’m told the cliental is as eclectic as they are, and OGT is a big feed for the film and television industry. For once I’m not writing about color--color it olde. The Scranton warehouse is fun and dirty, a little adventure. Items are definitely cleaned up for us city folk by the time they get to the Manhattan stores.
(Note: I didn’t have my camera in Pennsylvania so I shot the photos at the store in Manhattan.)
Manhattan, New York
124 West 24th Street
New York, NY 10011
between 6th & 7th Avenues)
400 Gilligan Street
Scranton, PA 18508
- Mark Chamberlain, interior and decorative painter