Archive for the ‘Flea Markets’ Category


One of the things I love most in life is shopping flea markets.  There is something exciting about looking for a hidden treasures amongst piles of dirty, dusty and cast-off relics.

Shopping flea markets isn’t something I’ve done all my life, I’ve only been treasure hunting for about the last 6 or 7 years.  In that time I think I have become pretty savvy at vintage shopping, partly because I’ve taken the time read about, study and research the craft.

If you love flea market shopping and want to learn how to find the best collectibles and vintage pieces, I have 5 books I recommend you read.  All of these books are filled with valuable tips on what to look , how to tell if an item has value and they highlight the best flea markets around the country.



Because I’m a big fan of Better Homes and Gardens books, Flea Market Decorating was the first ‘thrifting’ book I purchased.  Included in this book is a state-by-state listing of flea markets and antique fairs and well as tips on refurbishing your vintage finds. There is also loads of decorating ideas using real room settings with actual vintage items. The cover alone should entice you!






I stumbled upon Flea Market Secrets in a thrift store and gave it my usual flip through to get a feel for the images.  One of the best things about this book are the 10 Golden Rules of shopping flea markets that the author outlines.  The rules are tried-and-true and things you’ll want to employ no matter where you shop.  I also like that there are chapters dedicated to different types of items like glass, furniture, textiles and jewelry.  Each chapter give you in-depth information on what types of items to buy, what to pass up and how to care for your treasures.  You’ll also find the authors favorite flea markets around the world from Paris to Round Top, Texas.







I remember when Lara Spencer first announced that she was writing a book of thrifting–I was so excited.  I’m a big fan of Lara’s, have watched all  her HGTV shows and love her design (and fashion) style.  Her book, I Break For Yard Sales is one of the best out there and I love the fact that it combines flea market and thrifting tips with great design advice and inspiration.  Page after page Lara shares her passion form shopping yard sales, thrift stores, estate sales and flea markets.  You’ll learn her bargain hunting secrets and get insight from appraisers on what to look for when shopping.



You gotta love that Lara isn’t above dumpster diving for a treasure!





Lara’s second book, Flea Market Fabulous expands upon her flea market shopping tips by showcasing nine rooms that have been decorated with thrifted pieces. The book walks you through the entire process of decorating with vintage finds, from creating a design plan to building a mood board.  I also love the room illustrations and before and after photos of the DIY transformations Lara and her team pull off.








And finally, my list of inspirational flea market shopping books would not be complete without Eddie Ross’ amazing book Modern Mix.  When you want to take you flea market and antique shopping to the next level, this is the book that will guide you.  Throughout the 8 chapters of the book you’ll find beautiful images of chic interiors, table settings, bars and parties created using vintage pieces.  And along with sharing his secrets to shopping, Eddie will teach you how to expertly combine colors and pattern, mix old and new & curate a high and low mix within your decor.

“Modern Mix cracks the code to navigating thrift shops, yard sales and flea markets with confidence.”






And of course I had to share a few of my flea market shopping tips with you:

  1. Have a list of items you’re looking for but be flexible.  Shopping flea markets can be overwhelming and you can easily get side-tracked so it’s a good idea to have a list of ‘must have’ items to keep you focused.
  2. Let your creativity flow.  Whenever I’m out treasure hunting, I always stop and think about an item I’m interested in.  I think about the different ways I could use it in my decor or how I could transform it into something else.  Many of the items you’ll find shopping won’t be a perfect fit but with a little creativity and work they can be become real gems.
  3. If you love it, buy it.  We’ve all been there–spotting an item but then giving it too much thought and passing it by.  Then we have buyers regret and go back hoping the piece is still there but sadly it’s not.  I learned early in the game that if you love it and it fits your budget and needs then get it.
  4. Negotiate.  Flea market and vintage shop dealers are used to bargaining so don’t be afraid to negotiate the price.  And remember the more items you buy from one dealer, the better your bargaining strength.

For even more flea market shopping tips, read my 10 Tips for Shopping Flea Markets Like a Pro post.

Happy hunting friends.

Shelly Signature

**this post contains affiliate links

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I’ve been shopping flea markets and antique stores for years now and have learned quiet a bit over that time. When I first started shopping for vintage I really didn’t know what I was doing or what to look for in items.  I simply shopped and bought pieces that I was attracted to.  Since then, I shop both for personal decor and also for items that I can resell in my Etsy shop and new Instagram shop, The Vintage Box.

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Here are 10 tips that I’ve learned over the years that will help you go from a novice flea market shopper to a pro. 


  • Research flea markets and antique stores before you travel to a new city.  Online reviews and Facebook photos will tell you a lot about a shop and help you pick the places with the most items and best selection.  And don’t pass up those small cities you pass along the way because they often have antique stores filled with items that haven’t been picked over.
  • If you love it, buy it or at least put it in your bag!  I’ve walked away from items before telling myself that I’ll come back to look at it when I finish walking the entire market or store.  Of course when I return the item has been snagged by someone else.  If you see something you like, put it in your cart or bag and consider it as you continue to shop.  If you decide not to purchase it, let the vendor or the store cashier know when you’re paying and they can put the item back on the shelf.  


  • Trust your gut. This goes along with pt. #2 above.  Just like most things in life, you gut will tell you if an item is meant to be or not. If you have an immediate reaction to an item than most likely the piece is something that you’d love having in your home or would be able to sell.  
  • Engage in a conversation with the vendor BEFORE asking for a deal.  Taking the time to engage in idle conversation and show interest in the sellers booth and wares will set the tone for price negotiations.  If I’m alone shopping I always make eye contact with the seller, compliment them on their items and ask a question or two to break the ice.  If my husband is with me, that’s his job so I can spend time looking.  
  • Group items from one vendor or booth together and request the seller’s best price.  The more you buy the better the deal you’ll get from the seller.  And when asking for prices always ask ‘Is this the best price you can offer?” instead of  “what kind of discount can you give me?”.  You want the vendor to feel they have control when negotiating so how you ask for a better price matters.

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  • Don’t discount an item if some of the parts and pieces are missing.  Jars without lids can be used for vases, you can mix and match linens and related items like milk glass or brass can be sold in groupings so look at the value instead of the flaw.
  • If you’re looking for a particular type of item, ask vendors who carry similar pieces because you never know what they may have in storage or can bring to the next market.
  • Check the quality of each prices before you buy it.  There are usually no returns or exchanges at antique stores and flea markets so know what you’re buying before you lay down your money.  Look for hair-line cracks, sturdiness of furniture and makers marks which will help you assess the quality of a piece.


  • Shop early for the best selection.  This is especially true at flea markets which tend to attract a large number of people early in the day.  If you’re looking for highly collectible pieces, you want to shop early before items are picked over and sold.
  • Shop late for the best prices.  Shopping late in the day and on the last day of the sale will often yield you the best prices.  Vendors don’t want to pack things up and take them back home so they are much more likely to offer discounted prices at the end of the day or end of a show.

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You can find lots of amazing items at flea markets and antique stores so use these tips to help you snag some great bargain the next time you head out to shop.

Want to know what essentials you need to carry when thrifting?  Check out my post Thrift Shopping 101.


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Happy Monday!

I hope everyone had a great weekend.  My weekend flew by and although I didn’t get everything checked off on my list, I did spend a lot of time in the garage sorting through stuff getting ready for a big Upscale Yard Sale that will be taking place in two weeks.  If you live in Atlanta or the surrounding area, you’ll want to mark your calendar for this one ’cause it’s gonna be great.  More details at the end of this post.
Since my mind is in a SALE mode, I thought I’d bring you a fun post today all about Etsy.  If you’re not familiar with Etsy, it’s an on-line marketplace full of the best handmade & vintage goods and supplies for making things. (more…)

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Top of the morning to everyone.  I hope you had a good weekend!
I spent a good chunk of my weekend thrifting at a few local haunts and made a trip to Scott Antique Market to see what goodies I could find there.  I didn’t attend Scott last month so I was excited for the show this month.  One of my favorite vendors at the show brings boxes and boxes of items he purchases from estate sales, auctions and antique dealers.  His usual set-up consist of about 20+ tables loaded with stuff, some good and some on the “junk” side.  Looking through his tables is always an experience and most times I come away with a few good pieces.  I buy most of my milk glass from him and he always has piles and piles of vintage jewelry which is a draw for me.
Whenever I go to Scott to shop “my guy” as I affectionately call him, I go on Thursday, the first day the show opens. His stuff sells fast and there is always a crowd.  I’ll make sure to take photos of his space next month and show you the madness.
Anyhow, here’s a look-see at what I picked up from Scott’s and a few other spots around town.
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I found this old scale and couldn’t resist. $8.00!
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These vintage McLaughlin Milk glass bottles were a great find at only $3.00 each.  I’ve seen these selling on-line for as much as $40.00 a piece.
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I adore vintage jewelry!
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I’ve wanted to start collecting ironstone and was thrilled to find this piece for $5.00.   I feel a new obsession collection starting to build.
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 Aren’t these woven knobs cute?  “My guy” sold me these for .50 each.
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This was probably my best buy from Scotts.  These unfinished oval frames which measured 48″ x 32″ were $5.00 a piece.  Image the mirror, chalkboard, corkboard options!
 After making my purchases at Scott’s I made the rounds and snapped a few photos of things that caught my eye.
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 Love this mid-century modern lamp at the Parker Kennedy booth.  David and Lance always have a stunning booth filled with incredible pieces.
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This gorgeous chest is also a Parker Kennedy piece.  That hardware is to die for!
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 I loved this tabletop vignette.
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 A stunning piece of furniture!
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Arched top shutters…so beautiful. I would use these pieces inside a home as décor.
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 This Grandmother clock was fabulous.
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Another pretty piece of furniture. The mirrored back and scalloped detailing really gave this piece its uniqueness.
After Scott’s I stopped at my one of my favorite flea markets and found a few things…
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  I’ve had great luck selling the other scales I’ve come across in my Etsy shop so this one will be headed there as soon as I clean it up a bit. This one is large and a really beauty.
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I also found this Mottaheda Pinecone Finial( turned lamp) for $14.00.  This baby is solid brass and gorgeous.  I spotted the finial selling on-line for $200!
I’m so fortunate that Atlanta and the surrounding suburbs have lots of antique stores, thrift shops and flea markets to shop at.  A few days before Scott’s my friend Dorothy and I made a trip to visit Antique Traditions and on the way there we spotted church thrift store.  Of course we had to make a U-turn and pop in for a visit.
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 I picked up this beautiful blue glass bowl for $2.00 and the slate blue egg cups for .25 each.
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And this original oil painting was $4.00.
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I also found a pair of ornate wall plaques with a mirrored center .  These pieces hang vertically and will look great flanking a larger mirror.
And finally, I found what is likely to be one of my most favorite pieces ever at an auction I attended last week.
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This stunning cuckoo clock made my heart flutter.  I love the detailing and the old world charm it has.  I was told by someone at the auction to get it appraised but what I know so far is that it is a Schneider Black Forest Cuckoo Clock, maybe worth in the hundreds!
All in all, the past few days have resulted in some of my best thrifting finds.   I love the thrill of the hunt and coming home with a few things to keep or sell in my shops is always good!

XO Shelly

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Whenever I get the chance to drop in to a new flea market I do.  While we were in Louisville over the weekend I popped into what appeared to be a run down market only to be surprised by the bargains that awaited me!


Isn’t this marbleized cobalt blue ice bucket chic?!  And for only $15.00!


I have a love for milk glass and was thrilled to find this lidded jar for only $8.00.  I love the scroll pattern and the lid handle.



This brass planter was the bargain of the day.  It’s super heavy, has really cool handles and bun feet and it was $6.00!!!!  Yeah me!


A vintage glass dyers has been on my shopping list for a while now and I was doing the happy dance because this beauty only cost me $15.00.



And finally another  addition to my handbag collection.  This sleek black clutch with a bright red lining was, wait for it…..$5.00!!!


This is why I love to thrift!

If you’re in or near Louisville plan a visit to:

J Town Mall of Vendors
10000 Taylorsville Road
Louisville, KY 40299

I’ll be back tomorrow with a little DIY project I know you’ll love.

XO Shelly

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Happy Friday!
Just wanted to pop in today and give you a peek at a beautiful piece I found while attending Scott Antique Market yesterday.  A woman standing next to me asked if she could look at it and after turning it over replied “that’s a good find”.  I did a little research and all I know for now is that it is a piece of La Cartuja De Sevilla porcelain.
I only spent about two hours at the market before I was overcome by an allergy attack and had to leave but I did find a few other good items and will be back Monday to share all my treasures. If you’re shopping this weekend, I hope you find some goodies too!


Check in tomorrow for a bit of inspiration and weekend reads!

XO Shelly

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Warning…this is an image heavy post but it’s all good stuff!

Despite lots of design projects, crafting and family visiting in February, I was able to sneak in a few shopping trips to some of my favorite and one new shopping destination.  Here is was I saw and bought.

I did go to the Scott Antique Market and was once again wowed but the incredible selection of furniture, textiles and vintage pieces available.

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A beautiful mirrored cabinet ideal as a nightstand!
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I  really liked this desk…the finish, the shelves and the hardware!
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Adorable grain sack tote bags!
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This massive entertainment unit is handmade right here in the US of A!  Stunning.
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While the antler look is not my style, I can really appreciate the artistry that goes in to creating a design around them.  These large antlers were used to create a fun centerpiece.
{Sarah, how about this a the foundation to a holiday centerpiece?  I can see the creative wheels in your head turning.  Coming to an Etsy shop near you???}
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Yet another fabulous ottoman style from one of the vendors.  Scott is becoming a great resource for unique and well-priced custom ottomans.
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I see vintage beverage crates all the time but this vendor had a huge selection of crates from bottling companies that I’ve never heard of before.  Most of these were priced between $20 and $50.
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This sign was plucked from an old diner and was pretty awesome. In the right farm-house style kitchen this would look great.

Mid-month I  finally made it to a vintage shop/flea market that I’ve wanted to go to for a while.  Here’s what I saw…


Framed needlepoint art.  I admire anyone who can needlepoint like this.
A vintage wool blanket.
 Beautiful gold-rimmed plates.
 This vintage pail was glammed up a bit with a burlap label.  So cute!  I didn’t buy this pail but I did buy some plain ones for $2.00 each that I plan to decorate myself.
   I thought this old cigar mold would be pretty cool in an art studio or craft space to hold markers or colored pencils.
 Vintage pie tins turned into unique mirror frames.
 I am so loving this idea of using an old candelabra globe as a mini cloche.  I’ve always passed these up when shopping but now they are being added to my shopping list!
 I bought these egg cups!
I’m on the hunt of vintage clocks and one of these made it home with me.
 Loved this metal feed pail.  I can think of a hundred ways to decorate with it each season.
 I so wanted this antique chest with all of its amazing hardware but no go!

Next up was one of my favorite flea markets, which I kindly refer to as a dive.  This place is filled to the rafters with stuff,  a lot of good pieces and lots of junk.  The dealers at this shop are always bringing in new items so every time I go it’s an adventure.

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This hand-painted table was a great deal at $125 and didn’t last long.  It sold before I left the store.
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I’m coming across lots of handcrafted art lately and really loved these yarn flowers.  These would be a fun addition to a girls room or as part of a gallery wall.
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I have a thing for mirrors and loved this round beauty.
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This was a large original oil painting that would look great at a beach property or lake house.
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Incredible string and nail art.  I remember making these as a kid but nothing this elaborate.  I think this would look awesome in a study or man’s office.
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Such amazing chairs.  I could see these painted a fun, vibrant color with an upholstered seat.  They were already sold!

A finally I made a quick trip through Ikea.  I was happy to see that their new catalog is out and that the store is undergoing lots of vignette changes.  There were a few new items in the store but I’ve heard that most of the new pieces and new vignettes will be unveiled next week. Oh darn, I guess I’ll have to make another trip.

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The new catalog.  If you get yours by mail it should be arriving very soon.
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I posted a picture of this pillow on Instagram (@confettistyle) and shared the incredible price…$9.99!
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Love this coconut palm leaf basket.  It almost looked like a short animal skin.
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A pretty fab chair for a breakfast area or as an accent chair.
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I don’t need a desk lamp but loved the sleek style of this one.
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I can never pass up a piece that offers lots of versatility. Such a bargain at $14.99.
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I have a slight obsession with the paper napkins from Ikea and couldn’t resist these striped beauties. $1.49 a pack.
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These smoke gray goblets were stunning and at only $5.99 each a few had to come home with me.
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This black and ivory pillow cover is only $10.00.   It is a great weight and the pattern is so fresh and bold.
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For those of you that don’t know, Ikea has a fabric department where you cut your own fabric.  All the fabrics are $8.99 a yard and they have a variety of patterns to choose from.  The dots above are oil cloth and would be great to use as a tablecloth or upholstery fabric for kitchen chairs.
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This was a pretty cool abstract print.  I loved the black, off-white and green color combo.
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They have lots of traditional patterns too.  Bold plaids, mini stripes and wider awning stripes.  All of these fabrics could be used for stylish curtain panels.
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Some fun florals.
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There is lots of color being added to the lighting department.  The paper lanterns would be great in a young girls room, nursery or in a casual sunroom.
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Classic drum shades with a splash of color.
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And finally some striped baskets that could be used as planters, magazine baskets or for toy storage.

All in all, February was a good shopping month.  Scott Antique market is just a week away and the fun starts all over again.

Have a great weekend and if shopping is on your list, I hope you find something great.

XO Shelly

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So, did you have a great weekend? Mine was awesome!  I got lots of work done, had some much-needed down time and loved watching the Super Bowl!
Beyoncé was fabulous and my favorite commercials were the Dodge Ram commercial about farmers, the Budweiser commercial with the Clydesdale and the Doritos commercial with the little girl and her dad.
Today I wanted to share photos of a new vintage shop I recently visited but first I have to give you a bit of background…
Have you ever met someone and wondered why your paths crossed? I have. Take Kenya for example. Last year I attended a workshop at Anthropologie with my friend Tina. I was one of the first to arrive and sat at the end of one table. As more people arrived they sat at various places around the tables leaving several spots near me vacant. Two more people showed up and took the seats next to me and Tina. During the course of the workshop the four of us chatted a bit and share a bit about our professions and hobbies. Come to find out that all of us love vintage and love to shop flea markets, estate sales, garage sales and thrift stores. Come to find out that Kenya loves vintage so much that she was planning to open a little shop in a barn in Senoia, GA, outside Atlanta. As we all chatted it was clear to me that our paths crossed for a reason.
Before we parted ways, I gave Kenya one of my business cards. She was interested in looking at some of my handmade jewelry which I sell on my Etsy shop, and wanted to keep in touch. Kenya and I talked a few times in November of last year and one of the things we discussed was putting some of my jewelry pieces in her soon to be shop. As Kenya and I got to know each other, I thought again that our paths were meant to cross!
Kenya opened her shop, Greenhouse Barn in December last year and it was a big success. I had plans to get some of my pieces in the shop for the opening but my feature in Country Living Magazine and my holiday design work kept me too busy to make it happen. Well, fast forward to last week when I took a little drive to the Greenhouse Barn to see Kenya’s dream shop and to discuss plans for selling some of my pieces in the store. I was blown away at what a cute little shop the Greenhouse Barn is.
The barn is located one block off the main street in Senoia, GA, about an hour and 15 minutes outside Atlanta. Senoia is known not only as being a quaint little southern town but also because it is where the show The Walking Dead is filmed. Greenhouse Barn is a rustic little red barn that sits behind a historic Inn and is filled with lots of vintage wares ranging  from furniture and accessories to salvaged and reclaimed pieces. And oh is it a charming little shop!
Enjoy the virtual shopping tour…
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Greenhouse sits on a pretty piece of property and the charm starts on the outside.

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Loved these slated tiles!

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 This mailbox was super large and so cool!

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The view looking into the shop from the front door.

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I’m proud to say that some of my jewelry and other handcrafted pieces will be available for sale at Greenhouse by mid February. 
Thanks Kenya, I’m so glad our paths crossed!
For those of you living in Atlanta, I hope you’ll plan a trip to Greenhouse and for those of you that don’t, stop by and Like the Greenhouse Facebook page and stay connected that way!
GreenHouse Barn
252 Seavy Street,
Senoia, GA
Open Thur., Fri., Sat. 10:00-5:00

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