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Home Front: Recycled Treasures 

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Framed teddy-bear prints the kids outgrew. The painting your uncle gave you that never quite found its wall. The carved elephant you fell in love with on vacation and promptly relegated to a cobwebbed corner.

Tyler Snidow was pondering the phenomenon of "lost art" one day. "Am I the only woman in the universe that has these?" she wondered. Surely not. So she set out on a mission to liberate these pieces of forgotten art.

Snidow recently opened Lost Art, a home-based company that holds consignment sales for paintings, prints, glassware and sculptures in good condition.

To market the first sale, scheduled June 1-3, Snidow blanketed her western Henrico County neighborhood with fliers. The effort resulted in "the most interesting and hilarious calls," she says.

One husband called and said, "My wife wants me to get rid of my man art." A woman had the opposite problem: Her husband had discovered a passion for genealogy and commandeered the walls. "I don't know if it's the coat of arms or what going up," Snidow says, "but her stuff's coming down."

A few weeks after Snidow distributed her fliers, pieces started showing up in her living room — various prints, glassware and "this Asian golden boat thing." Snidow works with sellers to set a price, which might be $30-$40 for a framed print, or more for a well-executed piece of original art. Pieces and sale dates can be viewed at www.lostartsale.com.

If Lost Art succeeds, Snidow says, she'd like to open a store to free more art. "It makes me so, so sad that it's hidden in the depths," she says. S

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