I stroll through my shop — Staunton Antiques Center — sometimes, and I just marvel at the sheer number of things that have been made over the past two centuries.
Stuff to blow you away!
Curated, Classy, Compelling
I look at what my associated vendors choose to curate, such an unbelievable array of things, from pop culture to high art, from ultra mod to oh-so-traditional, from comfy and cozy to formal and refined, and my mind just reels — where does it all come from?
To think of the scale of manufacturing over the centuries, some of it by hand, some in factories, some super local and totally Virginian, and others from the East Coast, and still others from across the Atlantic all the way to the other side of the world.
And it just keeps coming!
The fact that in any given week we can source a plethora of “new” items for the shop (all vintage and antique, of course, but new to us) never ceases to amaze me. And trust me, I’ve got a soft spot for the auctions, estate sales, and other places from which I source the things that come into my shop and every time it’s a new adventure in discovery.
You Can’t Go Wrong
One thing I really, really want to do is to offer my customers real quality and choice when shopping for furnishings, house wares, decor, and memorabilia. I want to stand right alongside the best furnishing houses in the country today and say, “My range of choice can rival yours any day of the week.”
And more than that, I want the quality of our goods to do the same. That second point is kinda easy because the great thing about antiques and vintage is that the quality almost always far exceeds anything you can get today.
And still there’s another bonus — antiques and vintage are far more environmentally friendly because they already exist! We don’t need to cut down a new forest or fill a tanker ship with oil to get antiques to market. And we keep “waste” out of the landfill by re-selling those same infinitely re-useable goods, as I’ve written about a lot on this blog.
Thanks, Grandma Jones!
None of this even speaks to still another elusive quality inherent to vintage and antique goods — and that is their story.
A little patina, a sense of gravitas, that feeling that this “came from somewhere” that no Ikea or Wayfair or Target piece can ever rival.
Just look at a Mid Century Modern couch or a Colonial-era corner cabinet or an Art Deco mirror or a rustic pie safe and you “just know” that somewhere along the line it came from Aunt Shirl or Great Grandmother Duncan or crazy Uncle Joe or the little old couple who lived in the holler…
Now, for Americans, all that might be wonderful, but what Americans also really love is a good bargain. A great price. And on that point antiques and vintage furniture and home goods can’t be beat.
That’s not to say they’re free. Or so cheap it’s a non issue. Antique and vintage pieces are still priced at fair market value and are even governed in their pricing by pedigree, brand, or style. And they’re an investment in lasting style.
But they can still be had at more than competitive prices than their contemporary rivals yet without the grave environmental damage or the cheap quality so evident in contemporary goods.
So if ever there was a time to hit the antique and vintage shops in search of that perfect piece to invest in and make a part of your story, it’s now.
Make it a hobby. You’ll be you glad you did!
— Ellen Boden, Proprietress, Staunton Antiques Center