Pam Miller’s World of Whimsy

By Karen Parr-Moody


Vaulting onto a horse while fully armed? Terrible idea. This was what Cambyses, King of Persia, discovered in 522 B.C. when he attempted such and stabbed himself.


The technological solution was stirrups. Gold, brass, fancy, simple: They were soon made in an array of materials and designs to give riders leverage when mounting and managing a horse. Paired stirrups were first recorded by a Chinese pottery horse in the 4th century A.D.


This is just one interesting tidbit that one learns from visiting Pam Miller’s new booth, T-305, at GasLamp Too. They will also learn that silver plates can be linked together to form an amazing piece of wall art and that a French Neoclassical bed frame looks positively amazing, even if the tufted silk is a tad tattered (photo, above right; $1,950).


“It makes a statement,” Miller says of the bed, noting its elaborate detail and sense of romance. “You can't ignore this bed. It has a strong personality.”


Pam Miller has long managed one of the more whimsical booths at GasLamp with Rusted Silk. And Miller’s booth at GasLamp Too is full of more of the frills, French-ness and fun we’ve come to expect from her.


Her brand identity, in her words, is “items that can be used in many different rooms and applications.” But any observer could easily tack on the words “romantic” and “fanciful,” for this is what one finds in her GasLamp Too booth.


She comes by it naturally. Her parents had the first antique mall in Nashville on McFerrin Road in East Nashville. 


In opening up a much larger booth at GasLamp Too, Miller found she had more room for her romantic and whimsical wares.


“GasLamp Too gave me the room for more furniture and hand crafted beds and mirrors that I will be introducing this summer,” she says.


It also gave her more wall space for items such as the wreath made of silver plates in the photo, above left ($895).


“I made this with the help of a friend,” she says. “It was a lot harder to make than it looks. I had seen a very small wreath of coasters and it gave me the idea for a larger version. I already owned all but one of the silver plates. I love the size big and bold.”


A little of the exotic goes a long way in a room, and the stirrups in the photo, right, would certainly bring it on. The antique brass Spanish stirrup, covered in an ornate pattern, is in great condition for to be more than 100 years old ($245). The brass Spanish stirrups are from sometime around 1880 ($265).


“Exotic pieces go way back in the French décor,” Miller says. “They offer a splash of nature and comfort to me. It can be in fabric, or paintings, but if you look at old books of decorating, there will be some hint of animal print sofas, throws or art.”


The votive in the photo, left, is only about 15 or 20 years old, but Miller says “it offers some elegance and whimsy.”


Who doesn’t love a romantic bed, as seen in the photo, below right?  As soon as Miller saw it, she recognized what a unique and wonderful look it has and what it could do for a bedroom (ruffled coverlet and two shams, $75).


In fact, she said the bed will be in her new home if it doesn't sell by the time she moves in.  “That is the reason I purchased it.”


In addition to bringing buckets of whimsy to GasLamp, Miller says she is like all of the dealers in trying to offer unique items at price points acceptable for different incomes.  And, like the other dealers, she knows such items don't just appear. 


“Many footsteps, lots of cleaning, loading and unloading, investment of time and energy and more make GasLamp and GasLamp Too what it is today,” she says.


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