Would you take a dollar?

It was my very first purchase at a flea market. A Florida native, we had made a summer Saturday trek to Renninger's in Mount Dora. A booth had stacks and stacks of children's books and I desperately wanted one. My mother, handing me a dollar, instructed me to pick out the one I wanted and then pay for it myself.

I was five.

The jovial man was sitting next to his wife. With my mother's dollar clenched in my fist, I stepped towards him, pointed out the book I wanted, and asked the price. 

It was a quarter.

I looked back at my mother over my shoulder. She nodded, encouraging me on. I clearly remember looking between the dollar in my hand to my mother and then back to the book. Turning to face the man once more, I squared my shoulders, puffed out my chest, and then pointed my finger at him, asking boldly... "Would you take a dollar?"

Laughter ensued. The man ended up giving me the book. So went my first lesson in bargaining.

I've gotten better since then. }

I come by this gathering - curating - collecting thing honestly.

It started over 30 years ago when my mother, Deanna Darlyn, guided my discovery of color and scale. She passed on a passion for "the hunt" on childhood trips to garage sales, estate sales, and flea markets. My eye refined itself further as I worked alongside her in antique shop booths and later our interior design business.  

And we are just links in generations of women who knew what it was like to follow their own creative callings.

My grandmother, Helen Adair, fearlessly rearranged her home at the slightest whim, using her own pieces and new finds { new meaning rummage/garage/thrift sale haul }, yet yielding original and inviting rooms. Honey, my great-grandmother, wove her own cane hats and cut patterns for the latest styles from newsprint freehand during the Depression. There is not a photograph of her where she is not dressed impeccably. Alice Elizabeth, my other great-grandmother, cooked enormous meals for farmhands with a from-scratch pie and cake at every meal, bedecked in jewelry. 

And they are just the tips of a larger iceberg. Women who ran hotels and numerous businesses in 19th century Kentucky. Artists. Musicians. Inventors.

These resourceful, remarkable women not only gave me a history but form the foundation for my life as it constantly moves forward.

I was named after women who had stories to tell.

Who loved and lived in a fearless fashion while always being authentically fashionable.

Alice Adair & Co. is as much a tribute to their legacy as it is my adventure in following their examples.

Now I get to spend my days with the objects I love, interacting with amazing people who want to connect each object's story and purpose to how and where they live their lives.

And that is priceless.