Holiday Happenings

Hi, it’s Bonnie.

Shop- Eras

Hope your weekend was as good as ours. We were out visiting stores Friday and Saturday so, today, Sunday, is really a day of rest!!! Not just for us, for the poor car as well. It’s absolutely our pleasure to try to get to as many places as we can.

Friday we were at Fourth Street Antiques @4thstreetantiques in Temecula. The store was so well done, warm and welcoming. Lynn from Sweet Peas Charm @sweetpeascharm gave a workshop outside about her plaster paint with a make ‘n take. It was the cutest frame to put a picture of your pet for the tree. Inside the store we were amazed at all the vendors who dressed up their booths and brought in new pieces. And then there was the luscious buffet they set up–oh that cheesecake!!! They had a great crowd and it’s easy to see why. Drop by and see their trees and Dickens figures, they are so perfect. And put the open house on your calendar for next year, we are!!!!

Saturday was a packed full day. First off to So. Pasadena again. We stopped in at Lloyd and Lane @lloydandlane address is 1026 Fair Oaks. They have changed to their Christmas decor and are having a sale. They told us about a holiday open house they are having. It will be Nov. 29 from 5-8. What fun! Hope to see some of you there.

We next stopped at a private house having an event called  Lavender Marketplace in Sierra Madre. We were surprised at how many vendors we knew. Erika was there from She Sheds. @shesheds_thebook She has a book with She Sheds from different places out,  (Hint, hint good Christmas gift for a friend), and is working on another book right now. Also there,  Dragonfly Dreams @dragonflydreams and the junk diva @thejunkdiva and many other vendors. This is a gorgeous gorgeous house and they give  workshops with a magnificent lunch, hope we can go sometime. Check it out at @lavendermarketplaceworkshops.

Vintique Alley

To finish we ended up at Shabbyology, one of our favorites. @shabbyology 534 E Edna Pl Covina. Open Fri Sat Sun. Oh, there is so much Christmas there!!!! We wanted to buy it all. Check out  pictures on our Instagram.

Coming up we are headed out to the places on the flyers pictured throughout this blog. Try to get to some or all of these. It is uplifting to get out and talk to vendors and gets you in the holiday spirit. We see old friends and make new ones, get ideas, and support small business. Amy and I see that as our mission and hope you enjoy hearing about and visiting these stores and vendors with us.

Thanks for reading…Bonnie and Amy

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

Holiday Plans???

Hi, it’s Bonnie and Amy,

We just posted a holiday event Bonnie will be going to this Saturday Oct 21 at Embellished Nestings 6759 Brockton, Riverside. Beautiful store, open for the event 4-8, see flyer below or on our Instagram.

Embellished Nestings

And so it begins.

We already have a full calendar with all the stores we want to get too, but now we will start adding in all the pop-ups and special shows. Love love love this. So a request–if your favorite store is having an event or you are participating in any and you want to shout it out, let us know. Send us a flyer and we’ll post it. Below are some we know about already. Others are still in the planning, so watch for updates. Help us to let everyone know so people show up. Nothing sadder than a room of 4, and the one phrase we hear too much is “I would have gone if I had known”. We personally think going to holiday happenings is essential to making it a cheerful season. No matter what your holidays at home are like, you can relax, eat a little, and talk to people who love the same things you do. Just think— someone else is doing all the work!!! That’s our Christmas present!!!!

Also if you are a vendor or store owner and would like to write a blog for us please contact us by leaving a comment here or on Instagram. Here’s your chance to promote yourself! We love to hear from your point of view, your successes and failures. We can add 3-4 pictures too. You only need to write about 200-300 words. Come on, let’s hear about how you got started or your biggest successes.

Thanks for reading…Bonnie and Amy

No Flea Markets???????????????????????

St. George Christmas lights

St. George Christmas lights

Hi-it’s Bonnie
After Christmas I made a trip to St George, Utah with my best friend of 53 years. Her grandson is in school there so we went to visit him, now for the third time. Of course, by now we have checked out most of the stores, antique and vintage, around there. Most were closed after the holidays and on Sunday. I posted a few pictures on Instagram, some of the pieces we saw were so good, I got a lot of ideas. It’s a beautiful area and everyone is very friendly. However we decided that neither of us could live there. Any guesses why? It’s not Mormons ( no problem there), it’s not the lack of bars (except in restaurants) I’m not that much of a drinker, it’s not the weather ( but I love So Cal)-it’s that there are no swap meets or flea markets around. What!!!!
It’s like taking a bottle away from a baby. I think I have withdrawal pains. I can’t wait for Sunday to go to Driving Miz Daisy and reassure myself it’s still going on. What the heck? How boring is life without our Sunday outings?? And Saturday and Wed-Friday at the stores? For me, going out, meeting vendors, seeing friends, checking out displays and new merchandise, getting some sunshine (I hope), getting a little exercise, it’s the best.
Next week we will head out to some stores and check out their winter displays. Get ready store owners!! I cannot believe how inventive and talented these vendors are. I could live in several of the stores front windows, they look so cozy and well-arranged!
I don’t know about you guys but Amy and I are filling our calendars for the first part of the year. Feb. looks so exciting with Junk in the Trunk coming to Pomona, and Junk Bonanza at Del Mar-I can’t wait to see some of the vendors we met last time and meet some new ones. These are the cream of the crop-make your plans to go too.

2017 is going to be a great year. Amy and I started in April 2016, now we have over 2,100 followers

on Instagram and have made many many new friends, so it has been very fulfilling for us.
Everyone have a wonderful 2017, hope to see you all soon.

Thanks for reading, Bonnie…

Department 56 and me

Hi, it’s Bonnie…

Village on Vintage Ladder

Village on Vintage Ladder

Department 56 and I have a love/hate relationship. One of my sisters bought my other sister, Robin, and I each a 3 piece starter set in 1987. Of course we fell in love with it so since then we have bought a piece for each other almost every birthday and Christmas. They started making these villages in 1976 and Dicken’s Village in 1984. We both collect Dicken’s but Robin also collects the Halloween series. ( See, I can control myself a little.)

So like any collection, it is a little out of control. Not to say that we have all of them-because we don’t-they come out with several new ones each year. But we both have about 60-100 houses, businesses, and vendors-selling mistletoe and hot drinks and such. Sometimes we buy each other the same one without knowing.
We have ordered online, I got some at the Rose Bowl, some at Canterbury

Vintage House

Vintage House

Gardens in Escondido, some at Stats in Pasadena and Whittier, some in Napa when I lived there, and some at a store we loved called Windsor Cottage in Rancho Cucamonga which is now out of business. Windsor Cottage put on a tour each year at Christmas where you could go to 4-6 different collectors houses and see their villages displayed. It was so much fun. Almost like trick or treating! First you would meet at the store, get refreshments, look at the new pieces, then they would hand out a map showing the houses on the tour. It was wonderful because one-the collectors who did all the work, could see it was appreciated and two-because we got to see the private setups. You would not believe the beautiful incredible ways they arranged these villages. Trains ran through them, snow fell into the scenes, skaters moved around ice rinks. Every house had refreshments, some were decorated from top to bottom, and it was a great night always. We did the tour for several years, and sometimes there was a Halloween one too. I have searched for other tours and never found any-if you know of one please comment. I now have a group of 10 people searching for one. Or maybe next year, we could start our own.

Dept. 56 Village

Dept. 56 Village

So after last Christmas when I barely decorated (had a bad knee), I decided this year I would put out the villages-no, some of the villages. We went to Junk in the Trunk in San Diego and I bought a ladder. Anyone on Pinterest has seen these ladders with Christmas villages, can’t say I was original. Then I conned my son into buying and cutting wood to stretch across the steps for my birthday present. I am beginning to like projects rather than presents. We got it in the house and it was up to me, no one else left to blame!
I have a shed full of holiday decorations so first I had to hire a friend to help me get to the villages. That was 3 hours of packing away stuff I had thrown in the doorway all year and 2 1/2 hours of me cussing and dragging trash away. My organizing fairy took the year off. After we unearthed the villages I started bringing them in the house. It takes awhile to unpack because they are in styrofoam boxes and break easily. But I did it! Then I arranged them by shelf-businesses on one, houses on the next, and I planned to put a church on the top. Best laid plans-it was a little too wobbly, making me have nightmares of it falling on my 92 year old mothers head during Christmas dinner. I ended up buying a gorgeous lightweight angel at Driving Miz Daisy ( $6.00!!) and placed it on top. I put batting on the boards and a border of fake snow and we were ready to go. 6 hours later and the top picture is the result.

Dickens Village

Dickens Village

I love the way it looks and I love the villages. The houses all have names ,like Blueberry Cottage and Hollyberry Cottage, I have 2 post offices, since I worked for them and two English mailboxes, even 2 different churches and several pubs-do you think there’s a reason for them??? Hmmm. It may not be decorator heaven but it works, and I did it!!!

I had a little get together to show them off and they were a hit. Now to get through 16 people at Christmas Eve without any breakage and then I get to repack, re-cuss and back they go-to my nice clean storage. Since I have so many I thought I would mark the boxes with the year and next year use the ones I couldn’t fit this time. That way I can see them all without killing myself to overdo it. Those days are gone.

I hope you enjoyed my story and looking at the villages. I plan to leave them to my granddaughters and hope this tradition goes on… They are beautiiful and charming and I have gotten so much happiness from them, I hope they will too.

Thanks for reading…Bonnie