My Vintage Booths in July

Wow, I can’t believe we’re already in August. Kids are already going back to school and Summer feels like it’s slowing down. Despite customers being on vacation and buying school supplies, July was a good month for Classic Cottage Co. Let me give you a little recap on the whole month!

Side Tables Sold

Possibly because we live in a college town and students are gathering dorm items, side tables/nightstands didn’t last longer than a day after dropping them off. Woohoo!! I was glad to see them go!

Chandelier Shock

Total shocker. I found two BEAUTIFUL chandeliers (priced low enough) while picking this month. Woah! This never happens. Like seriously never. Chandeliers are among the hardest items for me to find while picking. Finding two within 30 days has never happened to me before. July was the month of chandeliers.

Favorite Item of the Month

My favorite item of the month had to be these black metal lockers. I’ve had many metal lockers come and go but these were really something. For starters they were huge!!! The doors were mega! Also, after purchasing these (note – without properly seeing them) Aaron noticed they were actually old military lockers from a military base a few hours away. Cooooool!! Needless to say, these didn’t last longer than the weekend.

Now we’re on to August! We’ve already taken a quick vacation and we’re ready so bring on the sales!

Beautiful Antique Set

Does anyone else love gorgeous antiques with stunning detail? This. Girl. Does.

I found the most beautiful dresser and chest set. I bought this set for my vintage Business Classic Cottage Co. It was one of the most challenging Classic Cottage projects yet but totally worth it.

This set was gorgeous when we found it but needed a little TLC to make it usable again. Aaron spent hours fixing drawers and other little details on each piece. I bought this set in such excitement I didn’t even realize some of the drawers didn’t work properly. Yikes!! Thank goodness Aaron knows a little woodworking!

Time for the big transformation. The white paint!! I went with a clean crisp bright white paint to make this set pop. Since it has a lighter color, you can see each little detail. Sometimes I feel bad about painting antiques but this was a good decision.

Before I wrap this up, let’s talk about the mirror. It’s amazing! In fact, I believe the mirror makes the entire set. It’s a large three panel mirror with original glass. Sweet detail is all around the glass itself. Beautiful! (You can tell this piece totally excites me)

Aaron and I both agreed this set deserved the very best. We spent extra time and you can totally see that it was time well spent. I’m so glad I went into a thrift store and spotted it a few weeks ago. Hope this post inspires you!!

PS – This set is located in Classic Cottage Co. at The French Flamingo in Opelika. 

4 More Things You Can Often Find at Thrift Stores

Spring of 2017 I published a post called 4 Farmhouse Finds from the Thrift Store and many of you seemed to enjoy it! I figured I would post another article with tips on what to look for at Goodwill and Salvation Army!!

Baskets

Every house needs baskets! They’re functional yet cute. Baskets are a easy cheap way to add texture to a room. Look for these at the thrift stores! You can find all sizes – large & small.

Terra Cotta Pots

Give me a used old planter over a new one any day! Especially if the previous owner (or their children) painted it and thus paint is chipping away! Also, I love the way nature ages the pots. (We’ve talked about this before) Anyways, try looking for these at your local thrift store. If the price is right, snag ’em!

Wood Rolling Pins

Of course, wood rolling pins!! Maybe it’s just my area but nearly every time I go to the thrift store I see these. Vintage or not – the wood ones look cool displayed in a kitchen.

Lamps

Lamps are an awesome item to watch for at thrift stores. I’ve bought several. In fact, I’ve bought two gold retro style floor lamps for my sister recently on two different occasions. I’ve even seen nice matching pairs. Keep in mind you can always replace the lampshade to freshen the look!!

So there you have a few secrets from a “picker” on what to look for at the thrift store. Thanks so much for stopping by my website today!!

Another Chippy Cabinet – Vintage Find

Last month I found another white chippy primitive style cabinet & I haven’t shared it with you guys yet! You know my love for old cabinets.. we’ve talked about this obsession before.

I found the old cabinet at a nearby antique mall… again.. same as the last chippy white cabinet I recently bought. Could it be I hit a goldmine??😱Tip – always always shop your local antique malls!  Even though I’m a “picker” I still shop/buy/support local vendors.

So, here’s the deets on the cabinet..

It was a steal! I believe it was under $55. Tip – Yep, you don’t have to be full-time “picker” to find awesome deals. However, you do have to Snag it QUICK while the deal is good!! 

I mentioned it’s white. However, it has hints of brown (what seems to be a really dark wood stain at one time) popping through. Over the years the paint has crackled but it’s not really actively chipping off – Yay, for no messy! The cabinet has two doors – Yay, for storage! One of my favorite parts is probably the back because it has vertical panels of dark aged wood.

Time to stage it! We have a white old metal dresser behind our couch and I thought the two would look good together so I sat the cabinet on to the dresser. The front of the cabinet faces the kitchen and the back faces the living room so I get to enjoy that awesome aged panels of dark wood. In fact, I’m looking for the perfect art to hang on the back!

So there’s another chippy cabinet find! Hope you enjoyed this post. Thank you for reading!!

Comparing Springs… Ups & Downs

I mentioned in a post published on New Years that my business struggled last Spring. Now that it’s the first of June, I think it’s safe to compare Spring of 2017 to Spring of 2018. I truly hope this post brings you encouragement.

(Throughout this post you’ll see pictures from the early days)

Last Spring I nearly gave up on my business. I built this business from $0.25 items at yard sales. Truthfully, it was a steady build. Then Spring of 2017 came and my sales STOPPED.

(Classic’s Opening Day. Not the best quality pic, sorry) 

Oh no! Nothing was selling. Looking back, I had made some bad buys and lost money. Not to mention, it felt like the antique mall was slow. I didn’t have much money at all to reinvest for the months to come.

I remember telling Aaron I was going to have to call my former boss and get my job at the hair salon back. After investing everything (not that I had much to invest), I had failed. But this mindset only lasted so long.

Aaron told me you can never judge a success within one year. Long story short, thankfully he bailed me out. (I still owe you, babe)

I was determined. During that time Classic Cottage only had one location and was in a smaller booth. I remember rearranging the space nearly everyday. I looked around my house for items to sell (Maybe I’ll tell you more about that later). We didn’t give up.

Things began to turn around. Shortly after, during the Summer of 2017, we expanded again and then we added another location.

Fast forward a year later, May 1st we expanded yet again and it takes both Aaron and I to keep Classic Cottage stocked. If you had told me this a year ago, I wouldn’t have believed you. Will there be more lows? Yes. Will I push through as I have before? Yes. There will always be lower/slower months. You just have to plan and push.

(The first time I stepped back for a look after one of our expansions)

I truly hope this encourages you to chase your dreams and never give up.

xoxo,

Karlee Bowman

Classic Cottage Co. is EXPANDING.. AGAIN!

We’re so excited to officially announce Classic Cottage Co. is expanding for the fourth time. It’s easy to see our location at Angel’s Antique in Opelika, Al is busting out of the seams. Our inventory is still moving as fast as we can with the space we have.

Our last expansion at this location was last July. Aaron and I were so proud to have a larger space in a corner location with our custom design. We are now seizing the opportunity to nearly double our amount of floor space by expanding out to the booth directly beside us. In other words, our current booth IS NOT relocating.. only getting bigger!

The vision for this expansion is to serve our customers by offering a more industrial/rustic/primitive style merchandise. You’ll find items like industrial metal base tables, wood crates, metal tool boxes, light fixtures and much more.

French cottage style lovers will adore one side and the rustic industrial farmhouse lovers will appreciate the other.

Look for this expansion May 1st! We look forward to offering our customers beautiful unique treasures in Classic Cottage Co. at The French Flamingo and our expanded location inside Angels Antique.

Karlee & Aaron

The $4 Carboy Jug

A few weeks ago, I spotted a vintage 5 gallon carboy jug in a thrift store. It was lying on its side in a glass cabinet (so, it blended in well..) as if it were waiting on me to find it. (or perhaps someone hid it away for next time..) I have a few of these vintage glass jugs throughout my house, but like I said only a “few” because around here they seem to be VERY hard to find for a decent price.

I shortly realized the vintage jug did not have a price tag. Aww, darn! We’ll it never hurts to ask, so I took it to the front counter and was pleased to hear it could be mine for only $4!!😱

After sharing this exciting find on my Instagram stories, I received many messages asking to see how I styled it. Well, we’ve been out of town and my business is booming so I haven’t had the chance to “style it” (Although, these jugs can pretty much style themselves😉). However, I already have a couple throughout my home.

Vintage carboy jugs are really easy to style. I literally place them anywhere and they look cute! For example, there is one above our microwave in the kitchen. Behind the glass carboy jug is a little collection of wood cutting boards. Since the jug is glass you can see the wood texture behind it! So these jugs make for nice layering.

If the glass carboy jug alone doesn’t suit you, add some florals! I’ve seen this done countless times, yet it still looks fresh because you can make it your own by using your favorite faux flowers or leafy greens. Also, you can change out the flower/greens with the changing of seasons.

 

So many ways to style a carboy jug! Thanks so much for reading my blog today.

xoxo,

Karlee Bowman