Ann’s entire property is full of antique items. A showroom consumes the loft of her carriage house and the basement of her 19th century Victorian home, while a massive collection of heirlooms inhabit the third-floor ballroom. Ann’s eclectic style is evident from the driveway. The house itself is a beautiful, restored antique.
She and her husband met me in the backyard and first eagerly showed me her collection in the carriage house. I could tell immediately that Ann, a retired teacher, is very passionate about gathering antiques, especially those that celebrate her former profession. School desks, a row of auditorium seats, and several rocking chairs filled the loft. Ann’s favorite collectible, however, is clothing.
The ballroom was chock-full of outfits from every decade: Mannequins were dressed in flapper dresses and fur coats or 1960's leather vests. Disco suits from the hung on old-fashioned coat racks. In addition to collecting and selling antiques, Ann also makes crafts.
“I always need a project,” Ann said as she showed me examples of her craftsmanship. She makes jewelry and knits scarves and hats. Ann’s newest hobby is learning to make clothes from shrunk wool, an art called felting.
Just when I thought the tour was over, Ann showed me to the basement that houses items too large for the carriage house. I was surprised to find old-fashioned bikes, a Coca-Cola bar lamp, and a clawfoot tub, just to name a few relics. Every item in Ann’s collection is special to her, and she has a unique story about discovering each one.
Ann sells her crafts as well as repurposed and antique items at markets around the state. But seeing the old Victorian property in person makes a trip to Red Oak well worth it. Apple Branches is open only by appointment. Learn more here.