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Real Estate / Home + Design

The Treasure Trove

500,000 Pristine Pieces Found in a Dallas Warehouse — and Now the Horde’s for Sale

BY // 04.07.16

When David Wildman purchased Dallas-based Pettigrew Associates (now Pettigrew Luxury Furnishings) six years ago, after the death of its longtime owner, John Orr, he discovered some 500,000 pieces of pristine inventory in a massive warehouse behind the showroom: hundreds of thousands of parts from unassembled vintage rock-quartz and faceted-crystal chandeliers, hundreds of boxes of alabaster lamps; and about 1,200 chairs, sofas, tables and headboards hand-carved in Italy — all in a raw state, waiting to be finished by the showroom’s team of artisans. (Pettigrew, founded in 1954, built a reputation for providing custom reproduction furnishings and accessories to the design trade.)

“The quantities of what’s in the warehouse are just staggering. It’s sensory overload,” says David, who is majority owner of Pettigrew along with his wife, Donna Wildman.

It took years to sort through the Dallas warehouse’s original stockpile to determine what was there, since most of it was still encased in decades-old crating and packaging. This extraordinary hoard will now be available to purchase in late April at a tented tag sale to be held outside the Pettigrew showroom in Dallas.

“This is a dealer’s or a designer’s dream,” says Ernest Maese of Lewis & Maese Antiques & Auctions in Houston, which is handling the sale. “We’re marking everything 75 percent off what the owner paid [wholesale] decades ago,” says Maese, “with further discounts on Saturday and Sunday and for bulk purchases.”

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A portion of the riches set for a giant sale at Pettigrew Luxury Furnishings.

Valued at $9 million, the inventory includes full Baccarat and Waterford-style chandeliers, some seven feet tall; multitudes of individual vintage rock-crystal, rose and amethyst-quartz drops, as long as 10 inches; antique European chairs and tables acquired by Orr that were used as models for reproduction in Italy; stacks of old carved frames; Bombay chests painted in a base of dirty gray or dirty white; and unfinished French-style bergères and Directoire-style furniture.

Wildman is also offering excess inventory at deeply discounted prices from his two other businesses next door — Coupralux giclée printmaking studio and Wildman Framing. Open to the public, Friday to Sunday, April 22 – 24, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Pettigrew, 1805 Market Center Blvd., Dallas, 214.747.2232.

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