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IPBA Annual Convention

27th Annual Convention

Spartanburg, SC
April 30th, 2015 to May 3rd, 2015

Hosted by the Spartanburg Marriott, IPBA convention attendees enjoyed all the genteel Southern hospitality of the area. The hotel staff were some of the best we have ever worked with, according to Convention Chair Deborah Washington. They made sure our visit and convention were awesome experiences for us all.

Two fabulous tours were offered pre-convention – a day at the Biltmore Estate with tours and lunch, and a tour to the BMW Plant and Zentrum Museum for those car enthusiasts.

New to the convention this year, we attended the Spartanburg Art Museum as a special exhibit of members Jay and Pam Kaplan’s DeVilbiss collection were on display. The Art Museum welcomed us with a lovely cocktail hour and a brief introduction to the event. Also displaying their art glass craft were new members John Littleton and Kate Vogel.

At our grand opening of the “Perfume Bottle and Vintage Vanity Show”, Show Chair Helen Browdy presented a special dedication to Randy Monsen sponsored by his friends and fellow exhibitors. Randy left behind a legacy of leadership with numerous contributions to the organization. With his partner Rod Baer, he conducted the Perfume Auction for years and published creative and informative auction catalogs.

Within our showroom, we were pleased to have on exhibit “Czech Treasures” from the private collection of members Michael Pye and Bruce Groves. The new Atomizer Specialty Group created a lovely venue of vintage Marcel Franck bottles and advertisements to act as a backdrop to the new MF bottles that our Keynote and guest, Bernard Dennery, brought to show. Great-grandson and grandson of the original founders, Dennery is reviving the MF company and is collaborating with the niche perfume market.

Also new to convention, our Keynote presentation was an evening event with dinner. Our Annual Meeting was held earlier in the day where President Jeffrey Sanfilippo presented the club’s many accomplishments and new goals. On the horizon is a new wing to the Sanfilippo estate in the works that will house IPBA Archives and Perfume Bottle Museum Exhibit.

Another new feature this year, VANITY VALUATIONS. Saturday was open to the public. Vanity Valuations was an event much like the Antiques Roadshow where the public was able to bring in two vanity items for evaluation by our panel of perfume bottle and vanity experts. We also opened the last two hours of the Collectors’ Flea Market to the public. A record number of flea market exhibitors enjoyed lots of selling action. Back again was Parts Exchange, hosted by Shelley Bechtold, from an outsider, it appeared to be feeding frenzy of sharks!

Other highlights of our convention included an enthralling presentation on Cameo Glass by member Victor Weinstein, a rousing Treasures Found event,  time for Specialty groups and Chapters to meet. Round table topics this year included Evening in Paris, Perfumes of the Russian Soviet Era, Schiaparelli, Steuben, Guerlain and the IPBA Young Collectors.

And last by certainly not least, we had a fabulous Perfume Bottle Auction, celebrating a 100 Years of Glass Design, with Ken Leach hosting the event again this year, and celebrity auctioneer Nicholas Dawes entertaining the crowd as well as expertly guiding the auction.

All in all, it was a very exciting convention – with lots of good friendships renewed and made, lots of smiles, food and drinks – and lots of outstanding perfume bottles and vanity treasures to take home along with memories of Spartanburg.