The Interior

In case you missed Gleason‘s spectacular post yesterday, this is Part 2 of a three part peek into the home of Stephen Ramsey, an antique collector living in his beautiful home in rural Virgina. Be sure to read to the bottom – there’s a sweet surprise that awaits you.

PART II-The Interior


In the “shop room” there are many treasures to be found.

I am dying to have my own secretary. This one is from Lynchburg, Virginia and dates around 1810-20.

The Mongolian spice cabinet dates back to 1800. It was made to sit on top of a table and store spices and herbs.



The bedroom is so cozy. I can imagine evenings spent curled up by the fire, reading before bed.

The painting was found in Charleston, South Carolina at John Pope Antiques. It dates back to the 1700’s in Italy. You can date it by the ships in the harbor. The moody blues and grays in the painting balance the room perfectly.



The dining room is begging for a dinner party with friends, fire roaring, candles lit, wine flowing, and plenty of food, company and laughter. The painted floor really completes the room.

The painting over the fireplace was done during the Victorian period. Stephen discovered it in Raleigh, North Carolina. He says the woman seems to be scolding her dog. I love how the vibrant red in her dress really allows the painting to pop off the white wall.

The sideboard was made in Georgia out of southern yellow pine and dates back to 1830-1840. I have requested that Stephen put a permanent hold on it until I win the lottery so I can take it home to enjoy!




What an ingenious idea to use sheets of copper as the shower wall. Being inside keeps the patina from changing as rapidly as it would outside.



The kitchen holds the most amazing collections of all. I have enjoyed sitting by the fire chatting with Stephen and taking in every inch.

I asked Stephen what this cannon ball was used for, he laughed and immediately corrected me-it is a chandelier weight that was used to lower chandeliers to light the candles. How ingenious is that!

The painting, found in Charlottesville, Virginia, dates back to 1939. A woman painted it to hang in her oil-executive husband’s office. She thought he was running around on her so she did this to deter the women in the office. I am wondering if it is a self-portrait. Either way, I admire her determination to fight for her man.

The brass shoe trivet is from 1790-1800 and was used as an iron stand. I can’t get over the boot detail used as the legs for the trivet.

The iron “egg” hanging from the beam was used as a gate weight.

What a unique key collection. Can you guess what the longest one was used for?

It is a piecrust crimper/cutter from 1800. How cool is that?

I actually thought this was a porthole of sorts, but it was a clock. What a great shape!

This is an old recipe book that contains the most phenomenal cake Stephen makes – King Carl XII Almond Cake (Recipe provided at the bottom of this post.) I have yet to make it but am waiting for a good rainy Sunday!



The sun porch has the perfect bits to enjoy in all of that sunlight.

Recipe courtesy of Stephen Ramsey

Images via Gypsy Lady Designs

Welcome to “Wilderness”

Oh, do I have a treat for you! The amazing Gleason from Gypsy Lady Designs is back with a visit to the home of Stephen Ramsey, an antique collector and dealer in Virginia. Stephen invited Gleason over to explore and photograph his never-before-documented homestead. This is part 1 of a three day series and I have no doubt you’ll be as spellbound by Stephen’s home and graciousness as I am.


Wingina, Virginia is a real place. Located in Buckingham County and tucked away in the hills between Charlottesville and Lynchburg, Virginia, it is full of undeveloped land, rich in local history and home to few residents. It may be less than an hour from my hometown but I had never heard of it until meeting Stephen Ramsey. Stephen was a customer at an antique mall I used to manage in Charleston, South Carolina. Finding out that I grew up down the road from him—as well as the fact that we are both passionate antique collectors—made us instant friends!

Last fall I roped my Momma into spending a day antiquing with me, driving from Lynchburg to Charlottesville with a stop to see Stephen at his home. We pulled down a gravel road surrounded by woods and entered a beautiful open field with two gorgeous homes and a handful of construction workers running around rebuilding a chimney. Stephen made us coffee and gave us a tour of his home and his antiques that were for sale. Well, I was captivated! Not only by his home but the gorgeous pieces of our history that he surrounds himself with on a daily basis. Stephen could have easily been an interior designer. He decorates with extraordinary antiques but the way he displays them makes you feel relaxed and right at home.

I have a feeling that this passion of his runs thick in his bloodlines, like mine. His whole family seems to be in a field that relates to the past—antique dealers, antique boat restorers, log cabin preservationists and the list continues on. They all seem to live in houses that date back to, at least, the 1800s and requiring their blood, sweat and tears to preserve them. Stephen collects from wherever and whenever he can—estate sales, auctions, antique stores etc. His collection is Southern American antiques and he also has a love for anything discovered in nature. I would describe Stephen as a kind, quiet, Southern gentleman, with an unforgettable Virginia mountain accent. After each visit, I leave in awe of the knowledge just passed on to me and hopeful that there is something I am able to share with Stephen as well.

Following Stephen’s annual Boxing Day party this past December, I asked him if his house had ever been documented. When he responded no, I offered to come back and photograph it, and he kindly obliged. I returned this past spring and spent over four hours capturing every little nook and cranny.


Welcome to “Wilderness,” tucked away on twelve acres of woods and hills, built in 1780 by the Jones family, of Wales. In 1855 the Cabell family purchased the property and then it became Stephen’s in 1996, and he has called it home since.

With the grounds covered with as many gems as the interior, you can’t help but try to take in every inch.

What a wonderful collection of millstones. My Momma was drooling!

Even the barn has character.

Momo, the horse, saying hello.

Twinkle, the donkey, shying away.

The property cemetery is filled with beautiful headstones and history buried deep.

The arrow rock was given to Stephen by a nephew, who discovered it under a building’s foundation that he was restoring.

More Exterior Details…



Stay tuned for Part 2 tomorrow

Images via Gypsy Lady Designs