Rural Missouri - May 2013 - (Page 40)
N E I G H B O R S
Love of antiques leads Denine Bremer to the simple life
Raised working in a gas
station and in her parent’s
two restaurants, Denine
says she loves to meet new
people. “I’ve never met a
stranger,” she admits.
When she’s not hosting the cabin sales, Denine
is scouring the country in
a never-ending quest for
antiques. Some she sells
at the First Monday Trade
Days ﬂea market in Canton, Texas. Others go into
her booth at Bear Ridge
Antiques in Crocker and
other antique malls.
Denine sells a different type of antique in her
booths. Here, she specializes in “industrial,”
“shabby-chic” and “vintage” antiques. These pieces
might include rusty signs or
painted furniture made in
the early 20th century.
“I sell that because it’s
what’s hot,” she says. “I
can go to landﬁlls and dig
out great stuff that people
threw away. And I can sell
it. It’s sad, kind of, but
by Jim McCarty
ome people dream.
Others turn those
dreams into reality. Denine Bremer
is one of the latter. For 24
years, she’s been selling
antiques while keeping the
ones that interest her the
A few years ago, she
spruced up the house
where she had lived and
put it on the market.
Long before it sold, she
was making plans for
her dream home. “I had
already talked to the builders,” she says. “I was going
to build whether I sold my
house or not.”
Many of those who
attend Denine’s antique
shows at her Dry Creek
Cabins near Dixon do not
realize that her home is a
Above: Several times a year, Denine Bremer opens her Dry Creek Cabins to fellow antique lovers. She
modern log cabin. It ﬁts
specializes in primitives and uses them to decorate the four log cabins she owns, including the trapper’s
perfectly with the other
cabin at left and the modern cabin at right that she calls home. Below: Rugged simplicity is the décor
log cabins and rustic outinside Denine’s cabins. She loves to decorate almost as much as she loves collecting antiques.
buildings on her property.
that’s the way it is.”
Visitors tour the old trapper’s cabin that was
For herself, however, Denine wants much
carefully moved from its previous location near
older antiques made between 1850 and 1900. Her
Hayden and decorated the way a solitary mounfavorites are the “make do’s,” everyday items that
tain man might have lived. They walk through
were repurposed by the thrifty pioneers instead
the two cabins moved from Licking and set up
of being discarded. One of her favorites is a grater
as a dogtrot, with a spartan bedroom on one side
made from a license plate punched full of holes.
and a country kitchen on the other.
Among Denine’s most treasured pieces is one
They just assume the home where she lives is
of the ﬁrst she collected. It’s a log pot ﬁtted with
just as old.
a forged iron handle. After she bought it, she
In reality, Denine’s cabin home is a modern
learned it began life holding grease to lubricate
re-creation that reﬂects her love for primitive
wagon axles. She’s also a big fan of primitive
antiques. Yes, there is a TV inside, along with
wireless Internet, a stove, refrigerator and microHer pioneer mindset spills outside the cabins,
wave. But visitors seldom notice these nods to
too. On her porches are hollowed-out logs once
sils, plates and bowls still get used for meals.
used to preserve meat or to hold grain. There also
Her favorite setting surrounds her rustic table
Carefully camouﬂaging the few modern touchare stacks of grindstones.
and chairs. A small cabinet with many little drawes are countless antiques: wrought-iron candlesThe cabins share a stark beauty Denine admits
ers holds ﬁve highly coveted Firken sugar buckets.
tands, wooden ware, barrels and faded cabinets,
wouldn’t appeal to everyone. The colors are
Above them is a shelf packed with wooden bowls.
to name just a few.
mostly browns and grays, with just an occasional
Completing the look is a corner cabinet, its var“I told them I wanted it to look primitive,”
nish cracked and peeling. On the
Denine says of her unusual home, which was
splash of faded blue or red paint.
bare plank table is a wooden bowl
built from sawed logs by High Country Timber
“A lot of people could live like this and a lot
couldn’t,” she says of her primitive furnishcarved from a slab of wood. It holds
and Stone in Licking. “I just knew in my mind
basically how I wanted it. And everything I had
ings. “It’s a lifestyle, a simple life I call it.
bought, I knew where it was going to go.”
Two or three times a year — whenever
Everyone says I was born too late.”
Walking through the cozy cabin, she points
she has accumulated enough antiques to
Denine will host one of her sales from
sell — Denine opens her cabins to anyto treasures she claimed for herself. “That was a
5 to 8 p.m., June 7, and from 9 a.m. to
one who wants to come look.
meat cooler, and I thought, that is going to go for
5 p.m., June 8. The cabins are located
my kitchen sink. This is a dry sink, and that will
“I tell them when they get here, make
work for the sink in my bathroom.”
yourself at home,” says Denine, a member
between Vienna and Dixon, just
off Highway 28 on Maries County Road 506.
of Gascosage Electric Cooperative. “Go through
Her tub is a rusty galvanized tin relic that just
For more information, call 573-528-4945 or send
everything here. We just want everybody to enjoy
ﬁts in the tiny bathroom. Meat hooks have new
an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
it and tell stories of things they know.”
life holding coats and towels, while wooden uten-
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Missouri - May 2013
Rural Missouri - May 2013
Table of Contents
Chronicle of the corncob pipe
Missouri Snapshots contest
The family that drills together
Out of the Way Eats
Where bluegrass grows
Hearth and Home
Veggies and vision
Rural Missouri - May 2013