and Aida Turturro
waiting on line for an hour to get into a sale? That would be for the Southampton Fresh Air Home Decorators-Designers-Dealers
Sale, Auction and Cocktail Benefit Party. The bargains on home furnishings really are that good. "Five hundred dollars for two leather couches?!" longtime volunteer Sally Richardson
told us. "I can't believe I missed that!" Perfectly positioned the weekend after Memorial Day, this is where you can spruce up your Hamptons home for the price of a night out. But, you'll have to fight for Aida's leftovers. She's the whirling dervish shopper who seems to float the camp for physically challenged children singlehandedly, year after year (until you see the wads of sales slips others are holding).
Designer Libby Langdon and Kenny Meszkat. (Photo: Lee Fryd)
First Aida furnished her Montauk home. Then the homes of friends. Now she has moved into decorating, officially, currently designing a Montauk home and a NYC brownstone. Yet she still can't figure out where to place what she got at this sale -- an hour later. "You caught me at the end of an exhausting...," she told us, too tired to even finish that sentence. "I had energy a few hours ago and I was PSYCHOTIC shopping."
She flashed a stack of receipts. "I'm not even sure what I got. Some things I don't why I bought, I have to give them away already." She was thinking of ten chairs, and friends who need but can't afford. "The money goes to this great charity so who cares? It's like making a donation and having fun while you're doing it. I bought couches, lamps, outdoor furniture that are being given away in a minute." But not the outdoor furniture. "I always wanted these beautiful antique wrought iron chairs. That's making me very happy. But, I need to find the special cushions. That's the stuff I hate doing."
We'd rather find the cushions than get on line an hour early. "People usually start queuing up at 4:45, but it's crazy this year," Designer Committee Chairman James Allan Smith
said. "We were a little nervous with the economy, but people are just tired of waiting. They really wanted to buy things, and they got good deals." He says about a third of their designed rooms comes from estate sales. Some things are brand new designer picks that clients nix. And many pieces come from wealthy retirees, emptying their city homes to move to the East End full time.
Aida had made a day of it with Edie Falco, of the hit show "Nurse Jackie
" and "The Sopranos
" fame, and the other girlfriends she had brought. Last week, she appeared with Edie on "Nurse Jackie." "That was a lot of fun," she said. "Edie's the best. The best. I see her all the time. We're good friends. We were here at 4 on the line and we went to lunch together." Were there others that early? "Well I started it," Aida admitted. "Others started coming at 4:15 and there was a lot. You gotta get here early and check it out, babe. I'm ready to rush." And she was off.