There is an old business axiom called "The 80/20 Rule." It basically means that 20 percent of businesses/workers produce 80 percent of the sales/work. It's more like the 95/05 rule in the antiques business in that a small minority of antique dealers seem to come up with almost all of the really interesting, high quality stuff. Raleigh's Adlib antiques in my Hayes Barton neighborhood is such a business. It features great early antiques with original finish, attractively displayed.
In addition to antique furnishings, the shop owner Libby curates a great collection of Navajo turquoise jewelry. She travels to New Mexico and the Southwest periodically to restock with beautiful, authentic pieces.
This dramatic 19th Century sporting portrait would be quite a dramatic focal point in an historic home. -I'll bet the subject of the painting broke a lot of hearts long ago.
Early trade signs like this druggist's trade sign with original weathered gilt finish are rare as hen's teeth today.
Although the shop features primarily American antiques, some European pieces like this English sporting oil painting are mixed in to good effect.
This pair of side chairs is typical of the care that Libby takes in curating her collection. The chairs have their original finish and upholstered with beautiful Brunschwig & Fils fabric. Yet they are made to be used and are instilled with a sense of fun.
Religious iconography has become much more popular. Often chalkware figures like this are missing hands or other pieces. Dealers have told me that long-ago owners intentionally broke off pieces for good luck and add to the authenticity. -Don't know if he just made that up to sell a broken piece or not!