Thursday, December 11, 2014

Rachel Ashwell coming to Remnants of the Past

When I first was exploring and trying to define my decorating style, Rachel Ashwell of Shabby Chic interior design style was going strong.  I think many of us were defining our style with Rachel.  Rachel's simple, romantic, slipcovered, shabby and white decorating style appealed to many of us.  I remember seeing Rachel on Oprah Winfrey and Oprah saying "Rachel Ashwell single-handedly turned shabby into chic and it caught on like wildfire!"  I feel that Rachel Ashwell helped many of us to be excited about our homes and to define our individual interior design styles.

I met Rachel in the early 90's at the Ventura Flea Market.  Unbeknownst to Rachel, we were haggling over the same item.  I  lost, and admired her unpretentious personality…  Many years later when I first started Remnants of the Past, I invited Rachel to Remnants.  The customers loved her!  Rachel has such a down to earth appeal and Remnants shoppers loved connecting with her.   I have everyone of Rachel's books as many of you probably do. Since that appearance, we have kept in touch.  

Well...I am excited to announce that Rachel Ashwell will be my special guest at Remnants on Saturday, April 25th, 2015 at the fairgrounds in Pleasanton.  She will be signing her new Book, Rachel Ashwell The World of Shabby Chic: Beautiful Homes, My Story & Vision.  More details coming in the new year. For updates, visit


More exciting news to share!  Since I started Remnants over nine years ago, I am always receiving requests from customers to bring Remnants further South. I've just have never had the time to explore this idea.  An opportunity arose and I am thrilled to announce that Remnants of the Past will be in Santa Barbara at the Earl Warren Show Grounds November 2015! Customers from Northern and Southern California can now enjoy Remnants fabulous vendors.

The Spring show will be in Pleasanton and the Fall show in Santa Barbara. I am so excited for 2015!

Be sure to visit my Etsy store for gifts, decorating your Christmas table and special items for your home.  We have vintage horn carving sets, silver candle holders, and linens. Follow me onInstagramFacebook and Pinterest.

Now that 2015 for Remnants is settled, I am going to slow down and enjoy this season of thankfulness, renewal, a Baby in a Manger and my family.  Take the time to enjoy your friends and family, decorate your home, fill your kitchen with the smells of Christmas and reflect on 2014 and bring in the New Year of 2015 with a renewed spirit.


Monday, October 13, 2014

Antiquing in Phoenix


One of my dear friends, Debbie, has been telling me for ages how wonderful the antiquing in Phoenix is.  Debbie comes up with the best finds!  One day, Debbie called me and said the Sweet Salvage Event and the Junk in the Trunk Show were happening the same week.  She was going to call a bunch of friends to gather at her house for a girl's weekend filled with shopping Goodwill, thrift stores, antique stores and these two fabulous shows.  How could I say no!  I booked my flight and waited with anticipation for that week to come.  There were seven of us and we shopped every one of the stores and then waited for the Sweet Salvage event which is the third week of every month.  We were fortunate to attend the Wednesday night preview.  Oh my gosh!  There were about 12 vendors and they have three weeks to put their booth together according to the theme that was decided upon by Kim, the founder.  The displays were over the top!  You are not able to shop that night but believe me, I scoped out every little item I loved and marked it down where it was located.  The next morning, we woke up and were out the door at 6:30 in the morning with a quick stop at McDonald's for a cup of coffee and were second in line.  The show doesn't open until 10am and we were so ready to start.  It was around 100 degrees with insufferable humidity but the staff handed out iced waters and big umbrellas.  The doors opened and we were off!  Because I scoped out the whole store the night before, I was able to pick up ALL the items I wanted.  �� After that we hit several shops and then crashed out at Chateau Debbie's with appetizers and wine.  A perfect end to a day.  



                               Do you think we had fun shopping! ��

Staying at Chateau Debbie's is like vacationing at a 5 star resort.  Every need was taken care of and then being with good friends was the icing on the cake. 

 Next day, was a free day with a stop at Anthropologie and a wonderful warehouse called Antiquities Warehouse.  Over the top antiques!  Steak, salad and wine and we were all ready for bed because we had to get an early start for the Junk in the Trunk Showthe following morning.  


Next morning another early stop for coffee and then waiting in line.  The doors open and we were all off in different directions.  Because of Remnants, I am used to vendors preparing their spaces with over the top merchandising.  Junk in the Trunk is a one day show and the vendors have limited time to set up so the displays were not what I was used to but believe me, there were LOTS of treasures to be found!  Came home with a truck load and van full.  

Being amongst all these ladies, we all have our OCD quirks.  Saturday afternoon, Debbie, our host, brought freshly laundered towels to the table to fold.  I asked if I could help, I a received a firm NO!  Debbie quickly laughed and said I have a certain way of folding my towels.  Well, that just started a conversation and a show and tell of all the different ways each of us folds our towels.  Well, let me tell you, Dawn, from Washington, took the cake.  We were all in awe and here is a quick reason why.  Have fun watching.

IMG 0957 from judy watkins on Vimeo.

Sunday, we all starting wrapping and packing our loot because we were all leaving for home.  I packed my carry-on inside the biggest suitcase I owned.  Debbie dropped me off at the airport and I lugged that piece of luggage to the counter and the gentlemen quietly tells me that I am five pounds over and that I need to remove items to reach the 50 pound limit.  Are you kidding me! I paid him the $100!  No, way was I leaving anything behind.

I arrived home to a happy husband, son and puppy.  I guess they missed me for that week fending for themselves!

I was so happy and content.  I've never spend a girl's weekend ever before and the friendships that I gained and the time spent together were priceless.  It is only one time a year that these two shows are in the same week and I have already booked my flight for next year!  I can hardly wait!



Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Remnants of the Past Next Show ~ April in Pleasanton

Do you feel the slight briskness in the air in the morning?  See the moisture in the grass?  My Boston Ivy leaves are just starting to change color, waiting for the warm winds to blow them down the street.  Fall is such an amazing time of year leading right up to my two favorite holidays.  I love to take long walks with the shadows reaching across my path. 

These walks give me time to reflect.... I had some big changes in 2014 including moving Remnants to Northern California. I keep an inspirational phrase on my office chalkboard that says "Reach for the Extraordinary".  Thinking about this quote, I am happy about our decision to expand the show north, but I am not thrilled with the venue. Inside was beautiful but the outside surroundings were not the look and feel that is reminiscent of Remnants. It was not the perfect fit, It was not "extraordinary".  

A friend suggested a new venue that I was not aware of ~ a fairgrounds venue in Pleasanton, California.   A few weeks later, Cheryl and I took a drive to check it out. The moment we drove into the quaint town of Pleasanton, we felt a sense of connection. Entering the fairgrounds through a large walnut grove was just beautiful!  The expo is newly remodeled and less than 1/4 of mile from a cute downtown filled with wonderful shops and restaurants, and it has vineyards and wine country only a short drive away.

We were greeted by a wonderful staff that worked with us through all the details ~ I am happy to announce that the Remnants of the Past new home will be at the Fairgrounds in Pleasanton.  The new venue doesn't have a Fall date available for us so our next show will be April 25th & 26th.  (Giving us more time to make the show extraordinary!)  We are very excited about our new venue. Please stay tuned as we move forward to our Spring 2015 Remnants Show.

Once, I settled on this new venue, I thought, what am I going to do with myself! It didn't take long.  I miss not having a booth at Remnants and the thrill of the hunt for unusual items.  I decided to open an Etsy Store.  In the store you will find antique treasures and vintage finds.  In addition, I am carrying a wonderful line made by  Fair Trade artisans from Dharma Door USA  made by women from Bangledash. (Read William and Katie's story here.)

Hope you have enjoyed your summer.  I love entertaining outside with friends and fixing fun appetizers to share. Here is a recipe that I have been making almost every weekend because it is so easy! 
Padron Peppers with Lime Zest
Toss Padron peppers with a drizzle of olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat until blistered.  (I push a wooden spoon into the peppers to make sure they are tender).  Season with the zest of one lime and the juice.  Then sprinkle flaky sea salt (I used French Grey Sea Salt, my new favorite). Yummy!!!
Watch for your next newsletter as I share news of Remnants (April 25 & 26 at the fairgrounds in Pleasanton, CA), new vintage finds and ideas for the upcoming holidays.


Monday, August 11, 2014

Back from Vacation

It seems like forever since I have blogged or been on Facebook.  Actually, it was a nice break.  Just returned from a wonderful vacation with friends.  We were invited to join friends in the San Juan Islands on their boat.  We flew into Seattle then took a sea plane from Lake Union into Roche Harbor.  I was a little nervous going on such a small plane and landing on water but it was wonderful and beautiful.

Roche Harbor, Washington

English Colony

Aye, aye mate!  ��

Sunsets were beautiful…

To say the least, we came home refreshed, relaxed, full of fresh crab and ready to hit the road!  One of the things I realized on my vacation is how much I missed having my own booth at Remnants.  Nothing beats the thrill of the hunt.  I know that it would be challenging for me to manage a booth and a show at the same time so I thought, why not open up a Etsy Store.  So I did!  I have just a few things up but I am so looking forward to hunting again.  Take a peek!



Monday, July 14, 2014

A Shopper's Delight ~ Remnants of the Past Vintage Show


After many naps and foot soaks, , I think I am back to normal following an incredible weekend at Remnants.  I was delighted to see so many new customers to the show and watch their excited expressions as they viewed the beautiful booths of our 87 amazing vendors.  Remnants of the Past has the finest purveyors of antiques, vintage and re-cycled goods and this past weekend was no exception.  Ki Nassauer, our special guest was such a delight.  Her warm personality and her smile lit up the venue!  Here is a taste of Remnants' weekend... 
I wanted to share some of the hundreds of comments I received about the show:
     Katrina wrote:  "This is one of the most beautiful shows I've ever been to!!! I have wanted to go for years but San Luis Obispo was just too far away.  Thanks for bringing it closer."

     Michelle wrote:   "It was an amazing event.  Beautiful in every way! Look forward to November."

      Nyla wrote:  "So glad we made it....  To all the vendors, I want to thank you all for making this event memorable and inviting and as always the booths look fabulous!!!"

      Lidy wrote:  "Thank you, Judy Watkins!  It was truly a spectacular show, with wonderful vendors.  Totally worth the drive up from Huntington Beach.  I know a lot of hardwork went into this show, and we appreciate it so much.  Came home with fantastic treasures."

      MaryJo wrote: "Great show!  Can't wait for November!"


I would like to thank Loaves & Fishes Family Kitchen for their wonderful volunteers who helped with move-in and move-out, as well as running the Porter Package Check.  And a heartfelt thanks to my wonderful family, and my team ~ Cheryl, Helen and Pam ~ for their continued energy and enthusiasm.  And finally, my vendors, who have supported me since my first show in 2007.  They are truly the best of the best!     
We are busily planning the next Remnants of the Past Show which will be held at the Santa Clara Fairgrounds in San Jose on November 8th & 9th. Please LIKE us on Facebook as I will be posting more of what is coming up.

Have a wonderful Summer!

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Remnants Welcomes Loaves & Fishes

We are so fortunate to live in a country that allows us to have so many freedoms.  I believe that part of who we are has individuals and as an American citizens is to help the oppressed, children, elderly and homeless.  I feel that Remnants of the Past has been so blessed to have such faithful and generous customers over the years who have helped raise money for the local charities and for that I am extremely grateful and thankful.  With the move from San Luis Obispo to San Jose, I wanted to find a local organization that met the needs of the local community.  I am so happy to announce that we have partnered with Loaves and Fishes of San Jose.

What an awesome organization that is committed to providing no cost, hot nutritious meals and support services in a signified safe and caring environment.  They provide meals to needy individuals with a special heart for children, the elderly and the homeless.  They even have a Goodwill Garden


Having this special garden made me even more excited to be a part a little part of Loaves and Fishes.  This organization has a faithful base of over 1500 volunteers who give of their time, food and supplies to help operate Loaves and Fishes.

Loaves and Fishes will be at Remnants of the Past providing Porter Service for our customers.  As you shop for your antiques and vintage treasures, you will be able to safely leave your purchases at the Porter Station for a small donation of $5.00.  Just look for the volunteers wearing their white aprons with the Loaves and Fishes logo and they will gladly answer any questions and help you with your needs.

Please welcome Loaves and Fishes!



Monday, May 19, 2014

Hotels for Remnants of the Past Customers

I love when people and organizations work together!  Since moving the show to San Jose, we have been connected to many wonderful organizations and people that are very excited that we have come to San Jose.

We have been able to work with local hotels to give our customers special rates for their hotel stays during the show.  I have them listed below.

Make your Reservations HERE

To make reservation, call 408.282.8811 and reference Remnants of the Past

Make Reservation HERE

To make your reservation, call 1-800-346-5550 and reference Remnants of the Past

San Jose has provided a variety of prices for you.  I am so excited to have you visit us in our new location.  There is so many things to do.  I will be providing things to do here in the San Jose area from wonderful shops, restaurants and fun things to do.

See you soon!