By Laura McAlister
Whether you’re looking for a timeless piece for your home or decorations for your daughter’s dorm room, Antiques at The Gardens is likely to have it.
Birmingham Botanical Gardens’ Antiques at The Gardens: Heirlooms in Bloom will be Oct. 7-9. As in years past, some of the best antique dealers from across the nation will be selling their finds at the sixth annual show.
Chairing this year’s event are Barbara Burthon and Elizabeth Broughton. Both said great care was taken this year to offer antiques in all price ranges.
“We really tried to run the gamut this year,” Barbara said. “It’s nice because if you’re just looking for little antique pieces for yourself or your daughter’s dorm room, you can find it, and if you’re looking for something pretty major, we’ll have that, too.”
The event will kick off Oct. 6 with the Sterne Agee First Look Party. The show officially opens to the public Oct. 7.
Perhaps the biggest draw to this year’s event is the featured speaker at the Red Diamond Lecture Series. World-renowned interior decorator Charlotte Moss will be the keynote speaker.
A Virginia native, Charlotte draws from her Southern heritage to create luxurious living spaces. She’s the author of seven books; the most recent, “Charlotte Moss Decorates,” will be available for purchase at Antiques at The Gardens.
“We’re just so excited about Charlotte speaking,” Elizabeth said. “I mean, wow, to have someone like her really just makes this an even more outstanding event. She’s truly regarded as one of the outstanding leaders in interior design.”
Charlotte’s work has graced the covers of top home magazines, and she also has received numerous awards, including Elle Decor’s Vision Award and the Royal Oak Foundation’s Timeless Design Award.
“She’s obviously a person of incredible elegance,” Barbara said. “She has a way of bringing warmth into the home.
“I remember in the ’80s and ’90s going to her store in New York. I didn’t know then that she was from the South, and I remember thinking how it reminded me of the homes in Alabama. Now I know why.”
Another special aspect of this year’s Antiques at The Gardens is the honoree – Frances Blount.
Frances has been an advocate of The Gardens for years and has in part made the Botanical Gardens what it is today, said Nonie Brown, an Antiques committee member and Frances’ close friend.
“She is just wonderful and so deserving of this,” Nonie said. “I just think it’s wonderful that we’re honoring her.”
Frances was instrumental in raising more than $3 million that would fund the entryway of The Gardens and the Garden Center, improved parking and pathways and the renovation and creation of several gardens.
“We’re really trying to shine the spotlight on Frances this year,” Elizabeth said. “She has been a significant force for The Gardens for many years. She’s not only an advocate for The Gardens, but she’s also done some tremendous stuff with fundraising.”
The show will be open to the public Oct. 7-8 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Oct. 9 from 1 to 5 p.m. Tickets are $10. Visit bbgardens.org to purchase tickets or for more information.
All proceeds from Antiques at The Gardens will go to the Botanical Gardens’ education programs.
“That’s really the best thing about this event,” Barbara said. “This event raises money for education.
“A lot of people don’t know, but about 10,000 kids are bused in a year to The Gardens. These are children that probably wouldn’t have this opportunity otherwise, and it’s free. There are also some great therapeutic programs that are really wonderful.”