Dusty chairs stacked high, chandeliers of every size hanging from the ceiling, knickknacks crammed in every corner, obscure items long forgotten, a wonderland of polished junk waiting to be someone’s treasure – this is the ubiquitous antique and vintage retail scene.
Nashville is chock-full of antique and vintage shops. Many of them, like Gas Lamp Antique Mall I & II , have become destination places for tourists who’ve come from all over the country. I am a huge fan of these shops, and spend a large portion of my time shopping in them for clients. They are filled to the brim with well-curated items, and they have made the antique shopping experience a breeze.
But sometimes, the picker in me needs to get out of the city and find treasure in places a little less expected. You may be surprised to find that some of the best flea markets, yard sales and antique shops can be found in small towns. The prices are lower, and you’re likely to find a larger selection of rare finds. The shops are not as fancy and digging through junk is required. But the hospitality and charm of these small establishments will win you over quickly.
Last week I went north to the quaint town of Goodlettsville and spent the afternoon antiquing. Goodlettsville is an easy 25 minute drive from downtown Nashville and all the antique shops are within a few blocks of each other on North Main Street.
Each place was uniquely their own and worth every minute of my time. A bit rough around the edges, but the selection was extensive and diverse. From 17th century dining sets and velvet couches to turn-of-the-century phone booths, there were gems in every direction. If I had brought a moving truck, I would have taken an entire house back with me.
So the next time you are thinking about taking an antique expedition, think about going to the Goodlettsville antique district. It’s definitely worth a trip.
Below are my top 3 antique shops and a fantastic place to eat in Goodlettsville. Enjoy!
Goodlettsville Antique Mall
Favorite Finds: High-End Antique Furniture, Vintage Chairs, and Rare Collectibles
A family owned business for over 30 years with a large selection of antiques and vintage furniture, collectibles, dinnerware, tools and automobilia. The shop has recently been renovated, and has a great layout, the booths are well-organized, clean, and the items are of high quality. The staff was very friendly and knowledgeable.
Tara’s Antique Mall
Favorite Finds: Ephemera, Military, Whiskey Jugs, and Primitive Furniture
A charming shop ran by longtime antique collectors, Claude Bellar and Nancy Pennington. As you entire the 12,000 sq. ft., store, you are greeted with smiles, cookies and fresh coffee. The environment is deliberately slow and laid-back, and you are encouraged to take your time. The staff had an incredible knowledge of each item they carried, and welcomed any questions.
Rare Bird Antique Mall
Favorite Finds: Art, Mid-Century Furniture, Collectibles and Unusual Finds
A refreshingly quirky multi-dealer store. The shop showcases everything from automobilia, advertising, glassware, pottery, furniture, jewelry, rust, as well as the largest amount of country store collectibles in the country. Many set-designers and prop-stylists have purchased items from Rare Bird for TV shows, major motion pictures and magazines. Voted best antique mall in the area.
Chef’s Market (don’t forget to eat!)
Delicious, unbelievably good southern cuisine. Owners, Jim and Cheryl Hagy, set out to bring a casual, chef-inspired dining experience and a fresh approach to the classic meat-and-three to Middle TN.
And finally, here are a few of the things I took home with me. These rare finds were less than $25 (total), and their value is well over a $150. Aren’t they fantastic?!
(American Folklore & Legends educational chart by John Dukes McKee, Rolling Stone tenth anniversary with a fifty-page color collection of Annie Leibovitz greatest hits, and a pair of mid-century silk-screen crane prints)
All Seasons Garden & Brewing Supply Co is one of my favorite Nashville stores for gifts, gardening and home goods. A family-run enterprise, All Seasons is the quintessential mom and pop shop. Chock-full of eclectic handpicked treasures, creative displays, and the most incredible customer service.
When I owned my home décor store many years ago, I rarely had time to shop for myself. And when I did, I found that many of the Nashville shops were uninspiring. The products were all the same and the element of surprise was lacking. My husband, a home brewer, had mentioned All Seasons to me numerous times. And like a good wife, I completely ignored him. I knew they carried a plethora of beer gear and gardening supplies, but what did that have to do with my hunt for a good gift shop? Well, all I can say is that I am bummed that I didn’t go in sooner. All Seasons was exactly what I was looking for – a charming local shop that provided high-quality products and service, with a passion for discovery, healthy-living and sustainability.
Co-owner, Emily Thompson, is an incredible buyer and has quite the knack for blending nature and interior style. Her eye for scouting unique goods and turning them into beautiful displays is what makes the gift and gardening portion of this shop so special. With brilliant attention to detail, every portion of the shop has something to dazzle you. An enchanting style mixture of vintage, modern, and rustic goods with an excellent selection of uncommon plants and trees.
Although Nashville’s retail scene has changed dramatically for the better, All Seasons is still on my top 5 local places to shop. It’s one of those places that you become a regular. If you haven’t had the pleasure of shopping in this lovely store, please make a point to stop in soon.
HERE ARE A FEW OF MY FAVORITE THINGS:
1. Air Plants & Tiny Succulents: Every shape, size and species that you can imagine, they have in abundance.
2. Hanging Planters: From modern to traditional, they carry a wide range of unexpected planter styles that hang from the ceiling and uncommon wall hooks.
3. Wall Art: Fun, graphic art that has a bit of cheeky humor. My current favorite wall hanging says “Kiss My Grits”.
4. Plants for the not-so-green-thumb: If you are a serial plant killer, this is the place for you. All Seasons has a large variety of hardy plants that can survive almost any kind of neglect.
5. Gifts: Decadent candles, sculptures that happen to be planters, hanging mobiles, books, home décor, lighting, wall-mounts – there is a lot to see here.
Tweed Baby Outfitters is having their annual Prop Sale this Friday & Saturday, Nov 14-15th from 10am to 6pm. And guess what? Flock South will be there too!
If you haven’t been to Tweed, then you have been missing out on the cutest shop in Nashville. There is not a single children’s shop in town that compares to this adorable local boutique.
So what is a Prop Sale? The owner, Maggie, say’s it best:
“Each fall, Tweed hosts a fun [like, my favorite day of the year] two-day sale to sell off many of the shop’s merchandising items and one-of-a-kind vintage finds. Think crates, globes, pendants, stools, ladders, trunks, and other unique antique oddities. First come, first to find the cooooolest props!”
For more information, go to Tweed’s Instagram or Facebook page.
Tweed is located at 1200 villa place suite 110 in Edgehill Village
*Photos via Style Blueprint and Tweed Baby Outfitters
Two and half years ago I closed the doors of my home décor store. Retail was changing and I knew I had to let go. At least for a little while. I won’t deny it, it was a lovely store. Full of handmade goods, one of a kind treasures and baubles that made you smile. Everything had a story to tell. Customers would come in with a look of wonder, anticipating new finds. My treasure hunt became theirs and it was a delight to watch.
It’s hard to let go of something you love. But it’s exciting to know that as you close one door, another one really does open. This past season has been a wonderful (and scary) experience of self-discovery. I was worried that if I closed my store, no one would remember me and I would have nothing to do. Well, that was not the case. Within a month, I was hitting the ground running making new relationships, working on large design projects and partnering with some of Nashville’s finest.
And now I am starting anew, once again.
Today I am stepping out into the light, in all of its frightening glory, and putting a voice to my work. As a stylist, you learn so much, meet so many people and find a plethora of good finds. Sharing those discoveries is half the fun. So join me on my new adventure, and enjoy the ride.
Welcome to Flock South.
* The HELLO printable can be purchased on Etsy at Designsbybiancab