PaperCity Magazine

PaperCity Houston December 2021

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33. "But put it in a pared-down 2021 setting and pull back a bit, and it becomes an objet d'art." The popularity of antiques among younger generations has roared back, following decades in decline. "Charlie and I grew up with antiques, but the store is a reflection of what people our age are wanting," says Augie, 25. "They're decorating their houses and entertaining a lot, even small gatherings. We're selling dishes and hostess gifts like our tole flowers like crazy." Cris launched Studio Gusto, an interior design extension of the store, to deal with requests they receive to help with people's houses. It all comes naturally: For 20 years, she and her late husband, Paul Briger, ran an accessories and furniture business in Mexico City and San Miguel de Allende, where they raised their sons. After Paul's death, the family moved to Palm Beach four years ago, where they'd always kept a house. The idea to open a store sparked while working on an interior design project and they needed extra space to store inventory. That's when they came across a warehouse owned by noted Palm Beach antiques dealer John Wilson, who was retiring. "We decided to go all-in and put our seatbelts on," Peed says. They bought some of his inventory and then traveled to the South of France to buy more, then to Mexico to work with artisans on their papier mâché and tole flowers. "That was how it started," Cris says. "Our business plan was: Go!" They recently returned from Italy and France, where they rented a car and scoured the countryside for antiques. "In the South of France, we were driving through these fields with our GPS, looking for some guy in a château who had 10 unbelievable hand-painted pots," Peed remembers. Just when they'd almost given up, the field gave way, and the old château revealed itself in the distance. Not only did the Frenchman sell them the pots, but he invited them inside to show them a beautiful watercolor rendering of the château — and sold them a "cool old mirror" to boot. "It's the thrill of the hunt," Peed says. "It's what keeps us going." And the Texans coming. Casa Gusto, 6316 Georgia Ave., West Palm Beach, Florida, Antiques at Casa Gusto include engravings with hand-painted mattes and frames. Vignette with an antique architectural column, bust, and buffet. Papier-mâché Banana Leaf Botanical 74

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