With a global reputation as an collectible art appraiser and dealer, Reyne Haines has a refined eye for art"”an appreciation she shares with her family. That's why their house could never be anything typical or mundane.

 

When Reyne and her husband, Tim, first walked into what is now their home in the Clifton gaslight area, their real estate agent assured them, "Oh, you don't want this house." But as they examined the architecture and layout, and pulled back the living room carpet to reveal hardwood floors, they realized it was exactly what they wanted.

"I could see how this nice house could be a great house"”at least for people like me," Reyne recalls.

 

Built in 1951 by a student of Frank Lloyd Wright, the house is a small, low-slung ranch tucked into a hillside above Lafayette Avenue. "It's an oddball on this street," Haines notes. "There were six castles on this street and now there are four standing. This house doesn't fit in."

 

When the couple bought the house nine years ago, it had three bedrooms, three bathrooms, a small kitchen and dining room, and a rear patio. About four years later, they added a second floor. One of the best compliments on the improvements came from neighbors. "You own the Frank Lloyd Wright house. We saw you put an addition on it, and if we hadn't jogged by this house before, we wouldn't be able to tell," she recalls them saying.

 

The rear patio was folded into the kitchen, enlarging the newly modernized cooking area. An angled corner window brings "the outside in." Stone kitchen tiles match those on the small patio in the back yard, in the Wright tradition.

 

But what stands out the most in this unique home is the art and furniture, and how the collections blend the interests of the family, including Reyne and Tim's three children.

Tim collects furniture, art and textiles from the Arts and Crafts era (early 1900s). The sewing sampler in the kitchen illustrates the step-by-step progress of embroidering detail on three aspen-shaped leaves. The rectangular dining room table and matching chairs were designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. Most of the mission-style furniture in the living room was created by Gustav Stickley or Shop of The Crafters at Cincinnati.

 

With Reyne's support, each of their children collects some type of art. The small hallway between two kids' rooms features pieces found by the two girls. "How do you get 3 and 6-year-olds to go shopping in an antique show?" Reyne asks. "Give them something of their own to look for." She encouraged each girl to collect a pattern of Depression glassware. "You girls are going to leave home and go to college," she told them. "By the time you leave, you'll have everything in that pattern."

 

Sophie, 14, collects Depression glassware called Diana, in the color of amber. Older sister Parey, 17, likes the kind called Pink Mayfair Painted. Son Kody, 13, collects American coins.

 

Upstairs shelves showcase Loetz Titania and Tango, and early Tiffany glassware, which Reyne collects. The colors of an iridescent Loetz Titania include a rarely seen pink. A cream Loetz vase with vertical black stripes (an art deco interpretation) reminds Reyne of candy canes. She laughs when explaining her attraction to the Loetz Tango pieces. "I like the little ball feet."

 

Gracing one wall is a framed Tiffany sales sample; showing off small, square tiles of rich intense colors. Nearby, the lustrous colors are mirrored in two acrylic paintings by James F. Dicke II, a contemporary artist from New Bremen, Ohio.

 

Reyne Haines has bought and sold Art Nouveau glass since 1991. Four years ago she founded Reyne Gallery, in downtown Cincinnati, which specializes in 20th century Decorative Arts, with an emphasis in Tiffany Studios. For the last eight years she has also been an appraiser on the popular TV program, Antiques Roadshow.

 

Now, she's planning a big leap: teaming up with Lark Mason and iGavel.com to form a new quarterly auction house, Twentieth Century Decorative Arts. "I always enjoyed buying at auction, and consigning to auctions. This just seemed like a natural next step," she explains. The partnership with iGavel allows buyers to preview items in Cincinnati and online during the sale.

 

Haines' fascination with Art Nouveau glass stretches back to the 1980s, when she moved to New York City from her hometown of Houston to pursue a career as a stockbroker. Between job interviews, she walked around New York, looking in windows and buying art. "If I liked it and I could afford it, I bought it." The wealth, history and rich ethnic heritage of that multi-generational American city provides a strong foundation for a thriving antique and art trade. After six months she had bought enough Art Nouveau glass to recognize quality versus quantity. "You gain an eye as you are exposed to more," she explains. She realized she could sell five pieces to afford a better one. After attending a couple of shows, she obtained a dealer's card and began selling her unwanted pieces.

 

What gives her the most satisfaction? "To place something in a museum where everyone will see it. That's exciting. Many of these things are unaffordable. You got to have it for just a little while."

 

And she has advice for those considering art as an investment. "If you buy something you like, you've never paid too much for it."