…and what else is WOW for????

deb barrett profile pic WOW…. Yes, it is first and foremost for the honor I have of securing Deb Barrett, whose self proclaimed mission is to “inspire and energize her fellow design peers by sharing her knowledge and experience about her two passions- couture window coverings and trendspotting and Design.”   for my Lunch n Learn on Sunday April 19th at ZAAR Design Center….specifically as she is hpmkt logo 2leading, with Jackie Von Tobel, their inaugural VIP High Point Buyers Tour/ in cooperation with the High Point Market Authority, during this Market….she also leads a tour to Paris each year around the Maison & Objet show.in case you are interested. YES!

read more about Deb here....as her list of accomplishments and what she has to offer is VAST!

deb wowWOW…is for  the award, yes it is called the “WOW AWARD”, she was honored to receive in January, in Las Vegas, and wow award logopresented/awarded by WITHIT, for her commitment and work in the area of Education in the Home Furnishings Industry. CONGRATULATIONS!

WOW….is for the wonderful women that were nominated for the award alongside her….that being Katy Garrett of Connexion Software and Maria Killam of Maria Killam Colour & Design.  (Yes color is spelled correctly. Maria is a fellow Canadian and that is how we spell color/colour.) 

WOW….is for the fact that both Katy and Maria have spoken at ZAAR in the past. YES! And now, 3 for 3 eh? HONORED!

2013-10-20 02.27.09  ruth and maria

WOW….is how I feel when I recall my first connections with each of them (@ WITHIT Conferences) and how it evolved to the place where they respectively agreed to speak at ZAAR….Katy’s topic “How to Think Like a Million Dollar Designer” and Maria’s topic “Deconstructing Whites For Interiors I The Essentials Every Designer Must Know…. were smashing hits and I know  Deb’s seminar will round this all out nicely taking us on a World Tour: Smart Designs From the World’s Top Markets. AMAZING!

WOW…is for their energy, their expertise, the way they so warmly communicate so much knowledge to their audiences… SMART WOMEN SHARING!

WOW…is for the many WITHIT Members that turn out for these seminars….THANK YOU!

ruth and maria and withit gals

WOW….is for what you will feel after hearing Deb speak. Having had the pleasure of hearing her present in September at high point dc resizedthe High Point Design Center’s Designer Appreciation Day I can vouch for the fact that you will not only learn a lot but you will enjoy the process.

WOW…is how I am going to feel as I welcome YOU  to ZAAR Design Center, filling our showroom with an engaged audience, excited to learn what Deb has to share….GRATEFUL!

Won’t you join us for this WOW event????

Ooops, almost forgot to mention…this is an IDCEC CEU Accredited Course AND it is FREE!

 Sunday April 19th

12:00- 1:30

           Lunch n Learn with Deb Barrett

       ZAAR Design Center

741 West Ward Ave, High Point NC

ZAAR flag(note we are in the former Drexel Heritage Factory/entrance is on Green. Look for the yellow flags.)

Go Anywhere Shuttle Available to Transport  PH: 336.887.RIDE (7433)

FYI, have been advised that they now have GPS units installed, so no problem locating us 

RSVP Appreciated/not Required.

ruth@zaardesigncenter.com  207-838-2675


Lisa Ferguson of Decor Mentor is a strong advocate of taking Tom Rath’s Strengths Finder test, a test that, through a series of questions, will help you determine your strengths. I love Lisa’s “elevate” philosophy. I love the energy she has and her focus and drive and how she puts herself out there, making opportunities happen, not only for herself, but for all those that she comes in contact with. She walks the walk…and, if you’re going to High Point Market next month, she is everywhere, doing her thing. Just check out the events calendar! So,  her vouching for the value in taking the test was enough for me…and, so I did such, today.

The test/approach is “unique” in that the typical focus is on people’s weaknesses and how we need to overcome said weaknesses. The test is straightforward and simple to take, and only takes about 30 minutes.

My take away?

My top 5 were not any surprises to me, but what going through this process did do was validate that I am doing exactly what I should be doing, and that in and of itself was beneficial, although, not going to lie, I still wanted to have my known weaknesses validated and be given some directives on how to work through those….for that I am getting some top notch advise on my audio version of Steve Willinghams’ Inner Game of Selling…a book/CD I refer to often!

Yes, I can feel good about the “strengths” identified as being Mine. Now to work I go, using these all in the Life I Live and Work I Do, with all the People I Love!

So, as one of my strengths is communicating, any way I can, I am going to end this by sharing  my top 5, according to how I answered the questions.


“Everything happens for a reason. You are sure of it….you are considerate, caring and accepting…. Sensitive to the invisible hand, you can give others comfort that there is a purpose beyond our humdrum lives….your Faith is Strong.”  NOTE: Connecting/Caring came through as one of my “purpose theme” in exercise directed by Tracy Tyler , founder of Strategies for Success, @ the WITHIT Leadership Conference I attended in August….along with Staying Healthy, Making a Difference, Parenting with Wisdom and Love, and Inner Peace.


“You can sense the emotions of those around you….you can feel what they are feeling as though their feelings are your own….you help people find the right phrases to express their feelings…to themselves as well as others…you help them give voice to their emotional life…witnessing the happiness of others brings you pleasure”….YES!

Woo: (stands for winning others over….if you didn’t know)

“You enjoy the challenge of meeting new people and getting them to like you…strangers are energizing…you are drawn to them…you want to learn their names, ask them questions and find some area of common interest so that you can strike up a conversation and build rapport…..you derive satisfaction from breaking the ice and making a connection….in your world there are no strangers you haven’t met yet—lots of them”. SO TRUE!


“You like to explain, to describe, to host, to speak in public, and to write…AND HOW!.whether an idea, an event, a product’s features and benefits, a discovery, or a lesson—to survive….you and to divert people’s attention toward you and then capture it, lock it in….this is what draws you toward dramatic words and powerful word combinations…this is why people listen to you…your word pictures pique their interest, sharpen their world, and inspire them to act!” MY HOPE!


“You see the potential in others…each individual is a work in progress, alive with possibilities…when you interact with others, your goal is to help them experience success…you look for ways to challenge them…signs of growth in others are your fuel….they bring you strength and satisfaction….many will seek you out for help and encouragement because on some level they know that your helpfulness is both genuine and fulfilling to you.”

If you aren’t sure of where you stand in it all, I suggest you taking this test to clarify. A bit of advise, do buy online, as you can get for half of what the book sells for in book stores, BUT, don’t buy a used copy, as the access code to do the online test is only valid for one user.


“Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that  a new world is born”  Anais Nin

Yes, one of the absolute delights of my business are the many friends that I have made and continue to make as I make my way in this world through my business, Antiques by Zaar

Although I knew of Ark Antiques for the past several years I didn’t have the pleasure of meeting the owner, Susie Maley, until she ventured into my High Point Market Square showroom Fall 08.

In her home Susie blends Asian antiques with modern effortlessly.

Our initial connection was electric and I was convinced that we could do something for each other.  On the surface we had so much in commmon…running our own businesses, a passion for all things Asian, and a persona that, dare I say, tended to pull people in.  Thus not surprised that a scheduled stop to see her showroom  in NJ (en route back to Maine from the NC Market Fall 08) would seal the deal on what has become a wonderful friendship.

Our respective  businesses/lives have been the subject of dramatic changes for each of us and through this we continue to serve as support and resource for each other as able.  To that end I would like to point you in the direction of Ark Antiques, a business that has  served its time.  As such Susie is liquidating her wonderful inventory at greatly reduced prices and I am here sharing a link to her site where you can see what she still has AND the great deals at which she is selling them.

I can’t see Susie completley out of “the game” if you will, but rather taking a step back to re enter with a fresh start.  Not sure the what for her next gig will be but you can count on it making a splash and I’ll be sure to let you all know.

Now go and grab those deals!


P.S. For more photos of how Susie has merged Asian in her home, click here.

ruth whse fall 09 2

Posing in one of the several vignettes in our showroom/warehouse

One thing about being the front person for your business on ALL fronts sometimes means that one front is deprived of your presence due to the need to be fully engaged in an alternate venue.

Such is the case for me being THE face AND voice of Antiques by Zaar. Working the furniture market is all-consuming and to date, has been the only thing that has gotten in the way of my blogging schedule. The frustrating part is that I have so very much I want to blog about!

So, without yet any further delay this post comes your way, with first install on some of what transpired at the Fall 09 High Point Furniture Market.

As the Post Market Sale for the members of the High Point Design Center is literally right around the corner (Wednesday November 4th), the nudging of this takes precedence and as such seems appropriate to include a recap on the Elle Decor/Margaret Russell book signing event that HPDC co-sponsored and which I volunteered to serve as a representative of our organization at said event.

 Click the book image to go directly to Amazon to get the book for bargain price of $29.00!

It all sort of evolved as I was chatting up with the folks standing in queue for their freshly purchased books to be autographed and before I knew it I was the in-house photographer for all those that didn’t have cameras. Photos will be posted on Facebook and eventually Flickr…and available for all those to check in and let me know their names; company and person. Add some exposure for you and also give Margaret (who has asked for these photos) an album of fans WITH names!

dwell 2

John of Dwell Home Furnishings was one of the fortunate that received a photo capturing the moment that night.

And that brings me to Part Two of this blog and that is reminding all that are interested in the post Market sale put on by the members of the High Point Design Center. Antiques by Zaar will be joining other exhibitors in extending deep discounts post Market to those that venture to our showroom next Wednesday November 4th!  Jeff Moore will be there on my behalf as I will be wending my way from Montreal to New York…visiting my kids/husband, celebrating my 49th birthday, which is next Friday.

Will not let my travels get in the way of my blogging and look forward to hearing from you with info to add to the photo gallery on Facebook.




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cell: 207 838 2675

It was the Fall 2005 High Point Market where Deborah Morcott of DDM Designs would first be introduced to Antiques by Zaar, and a warm relationship would ensue, as she worked to choose not only pieces that were showcased in our showroom but also which I presented to her online.


The “find” of us was timely as she looked to accentuate a warm and gentle ambiance in what was her then project on the table, the Center for Holistic Healing in Savannah GA. What better way than to add an infusion of Asian by way of some Chinese antiques?



Not only did the venue call for such pieces but, as noted in the About Us on DDM’s website, Deborah was drawn to such with a background and global experience (she’s upped me having lived in six different countries. I’m at five) and as such brings an international perspective to her design, melding the best of the arts with practical innovations and inspirations from other nations.


Chinese Antique Sideboard from Antiques by Zaar

Chinese Antique Sideboard from Antiques by Zaar

This is most evident by the combination of art, form and function in this Mongolian console which she not only placed in the reception area of the Center but also artistically is placed on the Home Page of her website.







Chinese Antique Cabinet from Antiques by Zaar

Chinese Antique Cabinet from Antiques by Zaar

In the Fire treatment room a she found a corner for a mid sized console which is accented with candles and airy decorative artwork.


Chinese Antique Desk from Antiques by Zaar

Chinese Antique Desk from Antiques by Zaar

Art Deco desks were placed in both the Water treatment room and Earth treatment room. As always, accented with candles and serene wall art.


Thrilled to share with you these gorgeous photos that Deborah has graciously passed on to me, and thus serves to launch my “AbyZaar Designers Share” series, which is meant to not only to show off how wonderful our pieces look in particular applications but also to show off my customers. Deborah Morcott and DDM are one of the same as it is her business and her passion and I’m thrilled to have her come into my world by way of my business and my passion, Antiques by Zaar.

You can also find Deborah’s company proudly listed in our Designer Directory on the Antiques by Zaar website.

Ruth Olbrych

Antiques by Zaar, High Point Showroom

Antiques by Zaar, High Point Showroom

High Point: From Market and Beyond


Have been exhibiting at the High Point Furniture Market since 2005 and as such have just finished my ninth Market. No, not a landmark number for me but landmark in that I have gone from having a minuscule presence in High Point with Spring and Fall Markets, housing my inventory in Maine, and only making the semi annual trips to High Point for the Market events. The completion of moving our base of business from Maine to High Point was cause for a Press Release which has been distributed through various online sources as well as in print in Furniture Today. (Thank you Furniture Today for timing the posting of that for Monday’s Daily Market edition!)


Yes, Market for Spring 2009 is over as is the anticipation of what it would bring, in particular considering these economic times. What it brought to my table is a wonderful collection of people that either discovered us or were drawn to us by our ads, editorial inclusions, or our website.


What I like about Market is meeting my customers/prospects face to face. I do so much of my business online and on the phone and this is an opportunity for me to shake hands, put a face to a name and recall warmly what made this person and their company special.


 Now, I am excited about taking advantage of the venues available to me to further communicate with all of these folks. Yes, monthly newsletters will be posted. Blogs will be weekly (at minimum) and I will also be communicating on the High Point Design Center Linked In group, which I manage.


Please join me as I share perspectives on Market and business in High Point following Market.

Antiques by Zaar, High Point, NC Warehouse

Antiques by Zaar, High Point, NC Warehouse


As such, the High Point Design Center is hosting the “Spring Fling” sale Wednesday May 13th and Antiques by Zaar will be open at our warehouse location, 400 Mandustry St, High Point. Jeff Moore will be there to meet and greet. You will be amazed by our array of Chinese antique sideboards, consoles, armoires, chairs, coffee tables, tea tables, artwork and more.

For those of that came to Market, thank you and shall stay in touch. For those of you that were unable to attend, shall offer a perspective such that you can feel part of it.



AbyZaar High Point

AbyZaar High Point

If you were to Google Ruth Olbrych, it is consistently at the top of the first page that I am  on Linked In and Facebook. Similarly you would find that that I attended Rockway Mennonite High school, that I ran in the Beach to Beacon 10 k race, that I have a blog and that I have  press out there for my business Antiques by Zaar.




Also, consistently on the first pages is (of 955 listings) an article that was written about me, with reference to a talk I did  to the International Woman’s Association of Taiwan (of which I was membership chair)  http://tiny.cc/RTHeE shows up. Yes, back in 1998, with having lived in Haiti, Thailand and Taiwan, I was considered an “expert” on the topic of “Making a Home in Country Not your Own” and was happy to offer advise to those that were struggling with just that and apparently that article will “stick” with me on Google for some time to come, as it appears on pages following as well. Yes, once online, always online.


First page Googling the 16,500 listings for Antiques by Zaar would again bring you to my Linked In profile, several pages from my website,  and again, more than one rendition of my recent  press release announcing the move of my business to High Point North Carolina.


Further to this, if you were to Google Chinese Antique Furniture High Point NC, of the 11 listings on that first page 6 are all for Antiques by Zaar. In addition to pin pointing me on the map and once again reading about my recent move of center of operations to High Point, you would also see that I am a member of the High Point Design Center.


Google has yet to pin point  that as member of the High Point Design Center that I have recently formed a group on Linked In for all members and interested parties to come together for news on events available in High Point, not only during Market but throughout the calendar year. But now by way of this posting you know this. Google will catch it soon.


Soooo, all this is that you are welcome to read all about me and my business online. We are there, we are an open book and you know where to find us, online AND in the actual world, at IHFC M336, along with our warehouse open by appointment in High Point, NC.


I am so looking forward to the merging of my virtual and real worlds next week at the High Point Furniture Market.