Pam Stone, founder of The Benefit Stop Foundation Inc., never imagined one day partnering with Martha Stewart, but when she attended Stewart’s tag sale in April at her estate in Katonah, NY, a more away, the two women started talking and found out not only that they’re practically neighbors, but they share a passion for philanthropy.
After buying Stewart’s collection of vintage posters at the tag sale, Stone returned after the sale ended and took seven truckloads of items back to her auction gallery, which now cross the auction block Wednesday, June 15 at 10 a.m. Proceeds will go to the Martha Stewart Center for Living at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, the same charity that Stewart’s tag sale raised money for.
“Martha Stewart’s ‘Great American Tag Sale’ was an iconic event and we are thrilled to turn it into a sole proprietor auction that expands its online reach to a global audience,” said Stone. “Maven of style, Martha had so many wonderful pieces from antiques and collectibles to furniture and decorative arts in her homes. Buyers who missed their chance at her exclusive tag sale, where tickets to entry sold out in minutes, have another opportunity to acquire some of these pieces.
Across her many brands, Martha Stewart has designed decor for every room in the home, from bathrooms to kitchens to outdoor living spaces. Furniture is perhaps the most important and featured in this auction is a trestle style dining table ($1/2000) designed by Stewart for his Bernhardt line and this very table was used in his Katonah home as dinner table.
Notable pieces of furniture like this table are dotted throughout the auction, including an antique painted two-piece cabinet ($500-$2,000), measuring 72 inches tall. It features glass doors with three shelves and the lower half has two dovetail drawers on doors that open to reveal a shelf. Stewart is well known for her love of bright colors and yellow was a particular favorite with a cheery yellow kitchen gracing the magazine cover of the January 2012 issue of Martha Stewart Living. This particular firm appeared on his television show. For the do-it-yourselfers, there’s also a Martha Stewart Living handcrafted children’s drying rack, new in box ($100-$4,000), 31 x 33 x 20 inches.
You can never have enough chairs and this auction features a wide range of seating styles, some personally designed by Stewart. Highlights include a group of five painted vintage chairs with Belgian linen seats ($500-1,100) having central backs carved with modern-looking Baroque-style flowers and shapes, 39 inches tall; a pair of vintage Chinese lacquer chairs ($500-1000) designed by Stewart for his Bernhardt furniture line, and a vintage mid-century modern makeup chair ($50-200) in gray leather and with chrome tubular arms. The chair started at Stewart’s television studio before he moved to his Katonah home. Perfect for outdoor entertaining, a dozen wicker chairs (and a few teak chairs) will also cross the block.
Stewart has homes in Maine, New York and Connecticut, so the auction items aren’t just from his Katonah property. His Maine home on Mount Desert Island is called Skylands and was once owned by Edsel Ford and it was fully furnished down to a collection of vintage posters mostly purchased by him and passed on to Stewart. They ranged from travel themes to products such as Peugeot cycles. Stewart has kept them on the walls for many years since buying the house in 1997. For lovers of vintage posters, Jules Cheret is well known as a master of Belle Epoque lithography and posters and he is pictured here with one of his works, “Halle Aux Chapeaux”. ($600-2,000) depicting a woman and a little girl happily trying on hats in Cheret’s Art Nouveau style. Framed, the work measures 53 by 38 inches.
Other posters expected include an American Railway Express lithograph ($500-$2,500), designed by artist Robert E. Lee, 57 by 37 inches; and a vintage Sideo lithograph, France ($500-$1,000) titled “Sideo La Premiere Marque D Huile Pour Autos”, 47 by 63 inches and an obvious nod to Ford is an El Nuevo Ford lithograph made for the market Spanish ($500-$1,500) advertising a Model T sedan and sports coupe.
Also coming out of the Skylands domain is an impressive and sizable collection of rugs, including many of the colorful braided oval variety, led by a braided rug ($200-800) in black, red, yellow and green, 134 by 120 inches, and a having sand, yellow, beige, red and brown tones ($200-800), 181 by 115 inches wide as well as a vintage handmade wool Afghan rug with braided fringe ($150-300) with geometric details multicolored on a red background. From Stewart’s Westport, Connecticut, the estate is a vintage handmade Victorian wool rug ($200 to $500) with multicolored floral and geometric details, 138 by 106 inches.
Rounding out the auction is an antique French tapestry fireplace screen ($400-$500) having an ornately carved dark wood base and woven French tapestry in shades of red ochre, marigold and sage, 38 by 22-¾ by 13-¼ inches; and an English lead downspout with a gargoyle face ($100-300), 32 inches high, which retains its charm even when well weathered.
The auction gallery is located at 185 Kisco Ave, Suite 201. For more information, https://www.thebenefitshop.org or 914-864-0707.
185 Kisco Avenue Suite 201
Mount Kisco, New York
About Benefit Shop Foundation, Inc.
The Benefit Shop takes donations from the finest estates in Bedford and beyond and presents them in one convenient and beautifully staged location. Estates get a tax deduction, the buyer gets a good deal, and nonprofits in the community get the money. This elegant and eco-friendly concept is the brainchild of Pam Stone and she is delighted with the response from the community. It’s no secret that nonprofits, from hospitals to homeless shelters, are having a tough time in this economy. Responding to the call for funding to fill the gaps, local resident Stone envisioned a new possibility, an auction gallery with merchandise donated by the large estates that surround the area. For 10 years, Stone has been busy visiting estate sales in the area, encouraging people to make high-quality, tax-deductible donations for the satisfaction of helping a multitude of community organizations, including Neighbours’ Link and the Boys and Girls Club, as well as the continued support of Northern Westchester Hospital. According to Pam, “Often these kinds of stores benefit a big national charity, but I really wanted the beneficiary to be my community, for the people who live and work here.” Mission: To give, to discover, to do good.