So, I’ve confessed my love of Anthropologie. But what I must say is the South has a great market of inexpensive goods, similar style, and fun to boot. That is, antiquing.
Southerners may not have a monopoly on the market of antiques, but when I think of the South, I think of an appreciation for beautiful things. We were “recycling” before recycling was cool. What stores like Anthropologie search high and lo to recreate, you can walk into the Flying Phoenix (my favorite, favorite, favorite place for a treasure hunt, and I do mean hunt in Jacksonville) and find the original.
When I couldn’t locate some old-fashioned bowl-style champagne glasses one year, Becky found me a gorgeous set at Southern Crossing. When I’d been searching in vain for just that perfect little table for the entry way nook into my front door, I found just the perfect thing, stashed away, unused at Mamaw’s house. I’ve found some great old brooches at Agora in Athens, GA. When I was a poor little college kid, living in Jackson, TN, I could always count on a trip to the Carriage House Antique Market to lift my spirits. Even if I couldn’t spend my few dollars on anything, they were always welcoming, good for a story, and available to surround me with beautiful things to remind me of home when the white dorm walls and sparse 1970’s furniture got to be a little too institutional. My first gift from Lady when I got my own apartment was a beautiful antique chest, which still sits proudly in my living room, holding blankets, diaries from days gone by, and other treasures.
When we just get right down to it, antiques are really just a symbol of what the best of Southern life has to offer — home, hospitality, and appreciation for beautiful things, old and new alike, and best of all, stories. Stories of those who have gone before, loved an item, cared for it so that it can be enjoyed again.
Living all the way across the country, I still find myself wanting to fill up this old little cottage with Southern charm and hospitality for any visitors that might stop by. Whether that be an open door to the porch, the smell of some homemade good wafting from the open windows, or just a big smile as I take a walk through the neighborhood, I want to spread that Southern charm out here as much as possible. And a house full of antiques is a good place to start.
Where is your favorite place to find treasures? I’ll list a few of the best (according to one of our favorite internet features, Google maps and business reviews) some of our crown Southern cities have to offer, but feel free to add to this guide below in the comments!
Cullman, AL – Southern Accents Architectural Antiques
Dothan, AL – Land of Cotton Antiques
Montgomery, AL – Beckett Antiques
Fayetteville, AR – Sara Kathryn’s Ltd.
Little Rock, AR – Hillcrest Junk Company
Rogers, AR – Lookout Mercantile
Dundee, FL – Southern Comfort Antiques
Tallahassee, FL – Betton Place Antiques
Alpharetta, GA – Queen of Hearts
Atlanta, GA – Southern Comforts Consignments
Frankfort, KY – Old Capitol Antiques
Baton Rouge, LA – The Honeymoon Bungalow Collection
Annapolis, MD – A Aabsolutely Fabulous Antique
Raleigh, NC – Father & Son Antiques
Memphis, TN – Flashback
Austin, TX – Uncommon Objects
Richmond, VA – West End Antiques
South Charleston, WV – Mound Antique Mall