Shop Small Business

Beggarsbanquet_vintage

We have been all over in the last month and met some new store owners “ Hi, The Attic” @theatticonmyrtle in Monrovia and Lloyd & Lane in South Pasadena whose owners name is Bonnie too, for just two ” new to us” stores. All of them are getting their stores ready for Christmas and all the vendors we see are preparing their booths too. It makes us stop and think all that is required to run a junking or vintage or independent business. These people are busy!!! Selling it to you is the last step. All the picking, all the prep work, all the loading and unloading, all the decorating is such a huge job, and then they wait to see if anyone is going to buy it. Last weekend we went to 4 shows. See Instagram for more photos. At each show, and they were all well attended, the vendors were already talking about doing more projects, going out picking again, what they had at home to finish and on and on.

The point is that when you buy from one of them you get something that has been loving picked or repainted or refurbished or handmade or handcrafted. It’s not a manufactured mass market piece. It has meaning and hard work and love behind it. So when you go to a show think about that. When you go to any major store think twice before you buy new and see if you can’t buy from a vendor or an independent store.

We do this blog and our Instagram because we LOVE the shows and stores. A few years ago we could hardly find any independent stores. Now they are all around but lately some have started going out of business again. The experts say most new businesses fail in the first 18 months. Let’s all do our part to keep all the ones we love in business. That means buying from them, attending their events, encouraging individual vendors, and telling others about them on social media. It is almost the only way to advertise now. We have no qualms about promoting stores and dealers we love. It has become more and more a reason to seek out new stores, talk to more vendors, wave around that little pink business card of ours. We want them all to succeed so we can go see them again and again.

So during this holiday season give thanks to your favorite store or vendor. Tell them you appreciate them. You never know when someone’s having a bad day or week and your words pick them back up and keep them going. Help support small business, shop on small business Sat Nov. 25th, but remember them all year. We hate going and finding an out of business sign when we get to our destination. Let’s all do our part to make sure that doesn’t happen.

Thanks for reading…Bonnie and Amy

Thank you, Fall!!!!

Three Speckled Hens truck

At long last it feels like Fall. most days anyway in So. Calif our version of Fall. Cool enough now for us to get to some more stores, meet new vendors and see what’s out there.

We had a busy Sept. even with the heat. Visited Lake Elsinore, Ontario, Rainbow, Thousand Oaks, Yucaipa, Glendora, Riverside, Upland and more. The Fall colors are here!!!  If you check the ig you will see we are trying to post everything we can with flowers, leaves, greenery.

We have some projects in the works, we will be announcing soon. But, this last weekend in Sept, we went to Paso Robles for Three Speckled Hens flea market. If you haven’t heard of it, it’s a big one. Over 100 vendors, and spread out over the Paso Robles fair and event center. We were so excited we could hardly take a breath, to see all the vendors we met last year and meet some “new to us” other ones. So fun to get away for a few days and to be going there, it was such a good time!!!

Junque Love

Amy here: Our trip to Paso was so much fun! (with the exception of the ‘death motel off the 101). We made another side trip to Morro Bay so I could gather sand dollars and stop by Junque Love again. This store has brought in so many new and exciting items.

At the ‘Hens’ we were honored to see some of our sweet friends. Junk Style Design, Lilwoods, Countryside Barn and Plaster Paint Company. And to meet a few new ones (some for the second time) Atelier, Rusty Love, Twisselman Trading Co., Farm Girls Market. This is one of the best markets in the lower half of California. The Hens girls do a fabulous job getting it ready and bringing in vendors with fantastic finds.

We will be posting events soon for Oct Nov Dec. If you want us to post yours send an email to weremadabout@gmail.com. No charge, we just want to keep having events and stores to go to, and we assume you want to hear about them. Our ig is getting closer to 5,000 when we will have a giveaway, it’s at 4,715 as of today!!! Hooray!!! Our plans for Oct include @vistavintageandmakersmarket, a Halloween party @Shabbyology and @thecoastvintagemarket so far.

We noticed that the dealers and store owners feel re-energized now too. They are busy busy busy getting holiday stuff out, rearranging, and clearing out summer goods. It’s a fun time to visit your favorites and make some new ones. On our ig we try to post addresses for these stores so it’s easy to find. Believe us when we tell you we are not highlighting every store we go to, only the ones we think you will like. We will be visiting more vintage clothing stores and adding them, because they are so popular now. Almost every store has added flannels, at the very least, and some are carrying only clothing. Great trend. Lots of dealers are making or tweaking their flannels and the results are great. Ie: @checkeredpastclothing and @repurposedsoul and @sarahs_junkdrawer. Then there is @flea_market_flair too, and @bblessed, one of the first vendors we saw with them. Let us know your favorites. We‘re Mad About them all!

Thanks for reading…Bonnie and Amy

April Activities

Hi, it’s Bonnie

 

 

Happy May! Does anyone else remember May poles? What a simple time that was. Our school would dance around the pole winding fabric lengths and make a bow at the bottom. God I’m old!!! But it was fun!!!

Speaking of  fun, in April we started off a great month,  with BarnHouse Chicks market in Thousand Oaks. Wow, the vendors were great! Even vendors we know were talking about the other ones, saying they had wonderful merchandise and arranged their booths expertly. Met some we didn’t know and are now following to see where we can find them next. Make sure you follow the ones you like, that’s why I add the @ instagram tag.

As you can tell we are trying to find more of these special events and shops so if you know of any we haven’t mentioned please put in a comment here or on our Instagram, we’re mad about, where we now have over 3500 followers!!!! Pretty good for not having a store or selling anything!  The saddest thing happened last week, we went to a store we love and found out they are closing. The rent is going way way up and they decided to try other avenues. I hate to see that happen and the only way we can keep all these places in business is to give them our business. We are trying to get to more events from Ventura to San Diego. We want to see more of you! We are planning a trip to Paso Robles on May 6th for Three Speckled Hens, already got our hotel and tickets!! We also want to go to Arizona soon and on the bucket list is Round Top Texas, of course!!!

Stores we stopped at in April include the ones in  Crestline’s TopTown,@ The_Rusty_Bucket_, My Favorite Things, @Encompass, and Sara’s Antiques and Atelier, it is gorgeous in the mountains and a lovely days trip! We only went up that far but next trip plan on hitting Lake Arrowhead and Big Bear too. It really clears your head to go up there. I used to live in the mountains and I really miss it. Nothing like fresh cool air. Did I say it’s beautiful up there?

We hit Savoir Faire in Fullerton, which is always the first Sunday of each month. It is growing rapidly and is one of the markets that has vendors who only sell there.  We always get to see @Rusticandrefined_Vintage and Love_picking_junk there as well as @Piers2oranges, three of our favorites. It’s a place to see unusual pieces from some vendors who have been doing this a long time. And of course, we always make sure we get to@ Drivingmizdaisy,  2nd Sunday of each month. We are using the @ for Instagram on purpose so you can look them up easily. If you go to no other fleamarkets or stores we would recommend Driving Miz Daisy for the one you can get too. It has a great selection of booths, it is very well divided between furniture, handmade, food booths or trucks, jewelry and clothing. Some markets have an abundance of jewelry or all the same booths, Not here! Food trucks all over. It also has a booth with fresh fruit, we got yummy strawberries last time, and they really try to arrange the booths so you have a variety of things to browse. Plus they always have music, sometimes 2-3 small bands, which is fun to stop and refresh and listen to. It’s at Saddleback College in Mission Viejo, lots of trees and green around. Did we mention real restrooms? Add all this together and it will be your favorite monthly adventure. You never know what you will find! We go every month.

We try to get to stores in-between flea markets because we are so firm in our belief that we need to keep all of them in business. We don’t buy much, our houses are full, and it’s impossible with all the great pieces we see, but we believe that we are doing our part by writing about them, and putting them on Instagram and Facebook. Let us know events you are selling at or going to.

One of the pictures is of @ Newagain_furnishings in Glendora. It’s fairly new so get over there and support them, at 1200 E Route 66, Glendora, Calif. Open Thurs-Sat. I am in love with just about everything in the store. I think Joann has a great eye for home decor.

 

Thanks for reading…Bonnie

 

 

Love Pop

Hedgehog

We recently began a professional affiliation with Love Pop, you may have seen their advertisements on our site, we absolutely love their cards! They are intricate and adorable.

Love Pop was started by 2 best friends who met at Webb Institute. Wombi and John were training to become Naval Architects. A trip to Vietnam found them bringing home gifts to family and friends. These gifts were hand crafted cards adored by all who received them  and sparked the idea for Love Pop.

Lovers

Love Pop cards are reasonable priced for the all the detail of the cards. A store bought card can you run you up to $5, to be read and then stored away or worse thrown in the garbage. Love Pop cards are works of art guaranteed to be displayed and adored.

While we do not normally push advertisers on our readers, we feel this company closely matches our professional values and we love to help support small and grassroots businesses. After all, we blog about small businesses in order to help them grow. You can find their link on our home page. We hope you will visit their site and find Love Pop cards to be as charming as we do.

Thanks for reading….Amy

 

Vintage & Restore by K

Recently, we signed up to a blog collaboration with Krista from Vintage & Restore. She sells a fabulous line of furniture paint. I wanted to share about her paint with our loyal readers.

Charcol by Vintage & Restore by K

Charcol by Vintage & Restore by K

I received a gorgeous dark grey paint, Charcoal and clear and brown waxes. I was quite excited to use the paint and set about trying to find the perfect small piece to re-do. I admit, it took me longer than I wanted to complete the piece and write this blog. Family first.

Perfect piece (thanks Hubby)

Perfect piece (thanks Hubby)

At last I hit upon the perfect piece and quickly approached my husband with fluttering eyelashes to ask permission to paint a small table of his. It was the perfect size and desperately needed to be re-done from the 1990’s brown to a more updated chic look.

This paint was incredibly easy to work with and has great coverage. The 4oz jar provided more than enough paint to complete the task with a bit left over. It went on smoothly and required no prepping other than a cleaning of the furniture piece.

I allowed for several hours drying time, though it dried quickly in 90*

Distressing

Distressing

November Southern California weather. Not complaining, but ready for some cooling. After the paint had thoroughly dried, I roughed up a few places to allow the wood to show through. I was looking for a nice vintage feel. I then took the brown wax and applied a light coat, being careful to work it in. Yes, I put brown wax over grey paint…and I LOVE it. I was able to achieve the nice dark rich dark grey look I had been hoping for. It came out beautifully. I am so happy with the piece and the spousal unit was quite pleased too.

Finished piece

Finished piece

Krista has developed a pleasing line of furniture paint. Her company is based out of Colorado and her passion began in the same way it did for so many of us. She was looking for a way to update her furniture and create some side income. Her paints are a great bargain and come in fabulous colors. Ocean Mist will be part of my next order, a gorgeous blue green that reminds me of the Dominican Republic ocean.

Finished piece

Finished piece

You can find her website http://www.vintageandrestorebyk.com/. Please visit and enjoy!

 

Thanks for reading….Amy

Emporia on Route 66

Hi everyone!

Emporia Sales Counter

Emporia Counter

We are adding to our blog by interviewing some of the shop owners of the places we go regularly and love. We have listened to all of you and realize that you want to know more about how they got started, the basics of their business. We all dream of opening cute little stores but it takes a lot of grit and determination, not to mention dollars. So hopefully this will be interesting to you and informative, we’ve learned so much.

Our first interview was with Emporia. They are located at 719 E. Route 66 Glendora, Calif. Phone 909-263-5404. Instagram and Facebook are under emporiaonroute66. We first saw an advertisement for them and dropped in about 3 months ago. We’ve been back twice since. What a fascinating place. It is owned and run by Greg and Theresa who also own Shamrock Salvage Design and by Kim and Michelle who own American Vintage Fare. They teamed together to make Emporia. The great thing about the four of them is that they all have skills to offer and combined make up a talented foursome. It’s great to have others to bounce your ideas off. They also had a head start by owning businesses but it is still a learning curve to have a storefront.

Emporia

Emporia

One of the things we liked about this shop is that it is constantly changing. The pieces they have are either handmade, repainted, homegrown, vintage and all unique. They believe, as we do, in preserving the past and protecting our future. In their words “our store is a place that helps the environment by preventing further butchering of our forests and prevents items from ending up in landfills.” We are often amazed at the items we see re-purposed that a few years ago would have been tossed. That’s one of the best things about the current reuse/re-purpose/repaint/remake/relove movement. We hope it goes on forever. Once these precious pieces are gone there’s no history or stories left for our children. American- made is a theme they take to heart. Craftsmanship is a key word also, many of the pieces in the store display wonderful talent and skills.

Emporia vignette

Emporia vignette

The store is a easy relaxing place to browse. It is set up in vignettes, which helps a customer to picture the item in their home. Whenever we go in we have to look around 2-3 times so we don’t miss anything new. Often we get home and look at the pictures and see pieces we didn’t really notice in the store, because there is so much to see and like. What we like is if a piece of furniture doesn’t sell right away (which most of them do), it is re-positioned and styled, so nothing is ever the same or stagnant.

Flag table (photo by Emporia)

Flag table (photo by Emporia)

One of our questions is always “which one is your favorite piece?” Theresa named one that we noticed right away (shown). It’s their American Flag table. She said it was over 100 years old, made of reclaimed wood. All 4 of the owners are super proud to be Americans and their picks show it. We feel the same, being a military mother and grandmother.

One of Emporia’s missions is to help other craftsmen and artists. They want to open additional locations and are always looking for vendors who feel the same as they do about our country and their crafts. As Theresa stated “small business helping small business”.  So if you are looking to place your work give them a call. Friendly and warm are how we would describe them. Often one of our pet peeves is that shop keepers do not acknowledge their potential customers. No fear of that here. A quick hello is often all it takes to make you feel at ease in a store. That interaction is essential to a business and Emporia does it well.

They are open Thurs-Sun. Hours are Th, Fri, Sat 11 am-6 pm, Sun 11 am-3 pm. When we were in the store we were remarking on how many places we go now that also keep that kind of schedule. It gives the owners time to work on projects, go pickin’, and rearrange the store. We like it because we can fit our schedule to meet more owners and see more shops in the same day.

We often get asked about making money from what we do. Nope, we don’t. Bonnie is retired but Amy still works 32 hours a week so she can’t get out as often and does our behind the scenes work. We do have ads on our blog, and we would love it if you click on them when you visit, this will help us to make some revenue to assist with travel expenses.  We both hope to meet a lot more vendors and shop owners in the near future and interview them. Our instagram hit 1500!!!!! this week and we can’t say thank you enough. The knowledge that you like what we bring to the table is wonderful. Remember we have Facebook, Pinterest & Twitter under weremadabout, please like and follow us!

Thanks for reading… Bonnie and Amy.

 

November calendar

Here we go. Get ready for a month filled with events and places to visit.

****Whoops-correction to calendar-San Diego Vintage Flea Market is Sun Nov 6th. We made a mistake but be sure to go on Sunday, we were there in Sept and it is a great and busy market.

 

November Calendar

November Calendar

Plaster Painted Pumpkins!

Fall pumpkins

Fall pumpkins

Fall is my absolute favorite time of year. I adore the changing of the colors, crisp golden leaves, a little cool nip in the air. It’s refreshing and welcome after a hot summer. I love decorating and baking and Fall festivals. So it was second nature for me to paint my pumpkins, just one more tradition for the season.

I painted my pumpkins a couple of years ago and loved how they turned out. The idea probably came from Pinterest. (Isn’t this where all amazing ideas eventually end up?) I grabbed different colors of spray paint and ribbons and adornments and glitter and went to town.

 

This go around, I had just bought the beautiful Merlot plaster paint from Sweet Peas Charm (go read the blog Sweet

Merlot Plaster Paint

Merlot Plaster Paint

Peas Charm & Pumpkins, if you haven’t yet). I love this color so much, that I had to incorporate into my Fall decor. This is the same Merlot I used on my wooden pumpkin. I used 2 coats on the pumpkin and sprayed it with Jewel’s Magic Spray by the Plaster Paint Company. This helps to set the paint and creates a nice finish.

After the pumpkin dried, I chose a stencil that I felt was Fall-ish in design to put a finishing touch on. I used a cream colored art paint, as I didn’t have any plaster paint in a soft cream. I used 2 different designs and then dabbed a few ‘sparkles’ around to give it a finishing touch. One more coat of Jewel’s Magic spray.

Stenciled Pumpkin

Stenciled Pumpkin

And now I have a colorful festive pumpkin for my kitchen island!

Please comment and let me know what you think.

Thanks for reading…

Amy

Peltzer Family Farms

This past Sunday, the family and I took a day trip out to the pumpkin patch. It’s a yearly tradition for us to go to the pumpkin patch and make a day of it. Peltzer is one of our favorite places to go in the Fall.

Peltzer Vintage Truck

Peltzer Vintage Truck

The farm has grown over the years and this past year went through a major transformation. I was pleasantly surprised at what I found during this visit. Peltzer has grown to include a petting zoo, gardens, a train ride, panning for gems, food trucks, a wedding venue and wine tasting room. Plenty to do for kids and parents, plus wine at the end! Did I mention the vintage trucks, tractors and rustic decor? Oh yeah, and pumpkins…of course!

Vintage Bed of Pumpkins

Vintage Bed of Pumpkins

We arrived about mid-day on a slightly warm but gorgeous Southern California Wine Country day. After just coming out of a Plaster Paint workshop, I was eager to get my hands on the perfect pumpkins for my next projects. A few years ago, I painted my first pumpkins and really loved the way they turned out, so naturally I wanted to do it again. I love decorating for the holiday and Pinterest, so of course I always need to out do myself.

We found several great pumpkins. Perfect shapes and size. As a family of amateur photographers (with me having a large learning curve) we took to spending about an hour staging and photographing pumpkins of all colors. As one friend asked me when I put a few up on Facebook, “are there really grey pumpkins”? The answer is, Yes there are.

We paid for our pumpkins, (they accept credit cards) put them in the truck and decided to explore the newest parts of the farm. In years past they had a corn maze, this year they had pig races and a food truck, which came in handy because the youngest in the house is a growing pre-teen boy (they eat-a lot). While the boys awaited for food, I checked out the wedding venue.

The Peltzer wedding venue is set in a rustic garden atmosphere. The entrance is a wooden canopy covered in vines

Peltzer Wedding venue

Peltzer Wedding venue

with a garden in a trough, lined by wine watering bottles. Ingenious, right? Just inside the entrance is a small reception area with a guest book table, as you turn to enter the ‘chapel’ you are pleasantly surprised by a 1939 GM vintage truck. The bed of the truck is a wildflower garden. The chapel has wooden benches for seating and a year round garden growing on both sides. There are lights strung about, with a watering tower and vine covered canopy at the alter.

Next door to the chapel is the reception area with frames hung about, completely secluded from the rest of the farm, intimate and private. The reception area is available for birthday parties and the farm to table dinners the winery holds. The farm to table dinners feature guest chefs and sell out quickly.

After checking out the area and the vintage tractors, we headed up  to see the building at the top of the property. What a surprise! They have set up their future crush room so perfectly. Everything is reclaimed wood, vintage and clean. There is a collection of vintage truck front ends adoring one wall. My husband was taking pictures when Dennis ventured over.

Peltzer Tasting Room

Peltzer Tasting Room

Dennis has a great sense of humor, he jumped right into selfies with my husband and then proceeded to share with us about the winery, crush room, dinners, and the future plans for Peltzer’s. He spoke about how they had designed the room to be versatile and ready for quick set up of events and crush. Then he shared about the vintage tractor right in the middle of the crush room. It has been in the family since it was purchased new, around 1928 I believe.

Dennis introduced us to Anthony, who helped us sample wine and set us up with a new wine membership. I almost bought some delicate stemless wine glasses, but settled for a delectable Butterscotch Brownies candle by Wild Rose Farms. Delish!

It was a great day out with my family. so the next time you are in search of a day trip to find the perfect pumpkin, try Peltzer’s Family Farms 40275 Calle Contento, Temecula, CA.

 

Stay tuned for the next project….

Thanks for reading…Amy

Sweet Peas Charm & Pumpkins

This past weekend mom and I went to Old Town Temecula to attend a workshop held by Sweet Peas Charm. Lynn is the sweetest lady and so creative. I first met her at the Temecula fair earlier this year. Her display booth held plaster paint by The Plaster Paint Company. There were several colorful furniture pieces. Lynn specializes in bringing life back to furniture. Her gallery at www.SweetPeasCharm.com is filled the pieces she has created. From a clock table (ingenious) to side tables and chairs. She is inspirational!

Sweet Peas Charm

Sweet Peas Charm

There are 2 locations to find her creations and Plaster Paint. Fourth St. Antiques in Old Town Temecula (a great place to spend a day) and The Merchant’s Mercantile in Anaheim. She can also be found at some of the Southern California Vintage markets. Check her site for dates and details.

Mom and I signed up to take a plaster paint workshop and create a few unique pumpkin decorations. It was a small workshop, just perfect for getting to know everybody. Her sweet daughter in law Valerie was there, along with my mom and two of the nicest girls we’ve met.

Lynn had the table set up with wooden pumpkins, a selection of Plaster Paint colors and adorable stencils and embellishments. There are about 48 colors to choose from, including some Metallics. Although we love Chalk Paint, this is more affordable and easy to work with (see colors in gallery below).  I chose the Merlot color (hello!! Remember the T’wine bottles) and mom choose Sweet Cream. The paint has great coverage and it didn’t take long for it to dry. I have to say the Merlot was

Merlot & Sweet Cream Pumpkin

Merlot & Sweet Cream Pumpkin

STUNNING!

After about 10 minutes of drying and chatting, we moved onto the stencils. I choose a pattern, while mom choose a sweet flower design. We laid the stencil over the first layer of paint and lightly dapped the stencil color over it. It doesn’t take a lot of paint to get the look you want. Valarie choose the Toasted Marshmellow and painted arrows and Family on hers (adorable), the other girls did a Black and “Spooky” and a Chevron pattern. All the pumpkins came out so unique

Sweet Cream & Coraline Pumpkin

Sweet Cream & Coraline Pumpkin

and cute!

Of course, I had to buy some paint, Merlot, Native Stone and the Jewel’s Magic Seal (a great sealer). Stay tuned for my project using The Plaster Paint….

 

Thanks for reading…

Amy