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DIY: Headboards & Wood slices | Biz marketing tips | Jennifer bertrand’s blank slate advice

VintageKC Home. Fashion. DIY.


Girls Fashion 2014 Garden Guide

Spring 2014 |

Living History

Make a scene in VintageKC every room / Spring 2014 1


Spring 2014 • Volume 2 Issue 4

Features 14 22 30

Vintage Spaces Retro love abounds in a professor/ filmmaker’s Overland Park home 2014 Garden Guide Run to the outdoors and make it yours with our garden inspiration Vintage Fashion The darling, pretty, fun, cool world of girls’ vintage fashion

Columns 05 06 08 44 46


Our Favorite Finds Items of woodland nature Design Book Bought a new house? Jennifer tells us how to design a blank canvas Buy & Sell The key to marketing success? Be awesome. Here’s how. Stores We Love Studio 1404 and As Time Goes By Vintage Memories Heirloom flowers and traditions that last beyond the end of life

Do-it-yourself 10 36 38

DIY Furniture Headboards Renovated Recipes Cool spring picnic lunch DIY Crafts 10 ideas for wood slices

VintageKC / Spring 2014


from the editor


Publisher/Editor Erin Shipps

Comical Change

Fashion Director/Editorial Assistant Calli Green Copy Editor Susan Anderson


ast fall, a Kansas windstorm knocked down a tree in my backyard. Well, half of the tree. The two big, looming elms in our yard weren’t the prettiest when we bought our first home five years ago. A severe Kansas ice storm had stripped them almost bare and they were slowly reaching, making their way back. But inside, the trees had sustained too much damage. They were rotting. And the wind proved too much. It took two large branches from the middle of the tree and shoved them right between our screened porch and our barn-like-in-the-city shed, hitting the other elm on the way down. It wasn’t pretty. We hired a crew to clean up the debris. The torn elm was in such poor shape it had to be removed altogether. And so did the second. Suddenly these trees, which had given us such wonderful memories of swinging, laughing and playing in the shade, were gone. The yard was inexplicably bare (and bright). And I felt sad. Life is like that sometimes. You’re trotting along, trying to do your best and somehow, usually suddenly, you end up standing in your empty backyard watching six men pull plastic bags and trash out of a hole in your rotting tree as they remove it from your property. A family of opossums was to blame for the trash. And it is comical. Had I used an ounce of foresight, I would have kept some of the wood to cut up for future projects, but mostly I just wanted the mess gone. For some great ideas on how to use a fallen tree, turn to page 38 and see what our creative types came up with. I believe that all change is an opportunity, and after this awful winter, I’m excited to get out into my barren backyard and make something new of it. Turn to page 22 for this year’s garden guide, full of tons of inspiration! With the multitude of changes that can occur in life, it’s always a good idea to remember to have fun. When we stepped into Steve and Mary Pruitt’s house, I rekindled my love affair with mid-century pieces, and how genuinely happy they make me. Steve and Mary make me happy, too. Check out their house on page 14. And what could be more fun than jumping and laughing children? Our girls fashion spread in this issue will be sure to make you smile (page 30). We’ve got great advice from marketing strategy for small businesses to room design tips for new home buyers from our favorite columnists and a spring picnic lunch beckoning you to eat in the great outdoors. Even if you happen to have recently lost all your shade trees. One bright spot (ok, my entire yard is now technically a VKC bright spot) is no trees means fewer braver-than-lions “tree rats” (some people call them squirrels) will be invading my vintagekc tomato plants this year. They’ve all sought assylum in the nieghbor’s giant pin oak. She’s really happy about it.

Contributors Kim Antisdel Jennifer Bertrand Michael Fry James Fry Courtney Jenkins Jamie Kaczmarczyk Megan Kapple Jenni Koch Audrey Kuether Abbie Marshall Amy McCarter Kristen Paulson Angie Snow Teede Stipich Deborah Vogler Quinn White

P hotography William and Jill DiMartino Layne Haley Photography Kelly Hutchinson

VintageKC volume 2, issue 4 is published quarterly by Erin Shipps in Overland Park, KS. Copyright 2014, Erin Shipps. All rights reserved. Reproduction in part or in whole without written permission of the publisher is strictly prohibited. Printed in the U.S.A. DIY: HeaDboarDs & WooD slIces | bIz marketInG tIps | JennIFer bertranD’s blank slate aDvIce

VintageKC Home. Fashion. DIY.

Spring 2014 |

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Girls Fashion 2014 Garden Guide

lIvInG HIstorY

make a scene in VintageKC every room / Spring 2014

On the Cover


An Overland Park home steals the scene in every retro-inspired room. Photo by William and Jill DiMartino

Enter to Win!

our favorite Etsy finds

One reader will win a set of four brown stamped coasters from The Tulle Box. To enter, mention VintageKC on Facebook/Twitter and tell us your favorite Etsy find. #vintagekcgives Woodgrain Hand Stamped Coasters are stamped by hand in Kansas City. Pick a mixed color set or a single color. Options include Emerald Green, Cayenne Red, Dazzling Blue, Sepia, and Jet Black. Free shipping for local orders. thetullebox.

This adorable stuffed deer is made of brown corduroy with cream accents. Marked R. Dakin & Co., it was imported in 1959. Well-loved condition. Measures 6x3.5x6in tall. Local pickup available.

Woodland Wonderful Designed by Vera Neumann, this “Woodland� pattern dinner plate was made by Mikasa. Vintage cast iron eagle figurine with a hook for hanging. Measures approximately 11x7x5.5in. Could be used as a candle holder/cover, or a tree hanging garden decor. Local pick up can be arranged.

Created using scanned in images from vintage magazines and old textures, this moose is a one of a kind piece of art. Available in 8x10in, 11x14in and 5x7in.

This sweet little bee, cut from an antique 19th century dictionary, is sealed under glass-like resin and sits atop a black vintage button. Ring size six and up.

Coyote is a full-bodied unisex fragrance made from 100 percent natural botanical extracts, with notes of bay, patchouli, orange, neroli, wood and musk.

All of these local Kansas City shops can be found on, an online retailer.

VintageKC / Spring 2014


design book


Blank Slates Ever wonder what an HGTV Design Star winner would say about designing your space? Lucky you, we’ve got one! By Jennifer Bertrand


ello, everyone! Wowzahs, are you ready for spring or what? Just remember all of that cold reminds you that you’re alive and wakes you up! And if anything, it’s been so cold that you’ve had time to stare at rooms in your house and think of brilliant ideas on how to enhance them! This column I wanted to discuss what happens when you have a blank slate in a home (even if it’s not all white). Your “blank slate” basically means you can push your home design where you want it to go, but you don’t even know where to begin. It could be that you just bought a house, or it could be that you’ve completely changed your style. For example, I had a friend who stopped having people over because she wasn’t a fan of her old European style. She was now feeling not proud of her home,

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practicalowl/flickr. Image slightly altered, used under a CC license.

and she didn’t even know where to begin on how to evolve style. First, do your typical thing that everyone under the sun is doing — start a pinterest page and a house notebook. You don’t have to know why you like photos. But after you pin a certain amount of images, more than likely you’ll start to see specific elements repeat — like white cabinets, or lots of natural wood or whatever! Then in your “house notebook,” start a list of goals for the house. Do a page for each room. This will help keep your thoughts organized. It will also give you a base camp for any contractor invoices, paint color selections and so on. No longer will you have to rummage in drawers or look at old paint cans to have answers! Second, don’t feel rushed. It never hurts to live in a space before you spend money on it. Design is a thoughtful process.

Sometimes it’s nice to see how light affects the space to know what colors you will want to paint. And most importantly, you may even want to redefine the rooms. Our dining room has become my office because we were honest with ourselves that entertaining people one time a year didn’t warrant wasting a whole room. Now it’s a space that I use every single day, and I love it. I’m up among the action in our house and I get natural light, which I didn’t get in the basement. Third, know that your old stuff may need to be switched out. If it’s a new house, think of it like finding the right hair cut for your face shape. Same goes for furniture and accessories for your home. Something that may have been perfect for your old house may not be the right fit for your new house. If it’s evolving your home style, then write a list saying what you have to keep and what

design book , lot a ys sa at th y sa to me r Fo e. or m is Remember less cite. Lu es lov d an ir ha nk pi s ha o wh rl gi e th because I’m you would be willing to sell or change out. This will help you understand what you have to make work due to budgets, heirlooms, etc. Also, next to that item, write if it can be recovered, painted or addressed in some new fresh way. I am a huge fan of the new Amy Howard lacquered paints sold in the West Bottoms. I would use them for lamps, chandeliers, dressers, front doors, kitchen handles and so on. It’s an easy way to give a happy and super shiny look to any piece of furniture or accessory. I just painted a pagoda shelf tower with them to use in my office to store paint decks and client notebooks. The Amy Howard paint line also has a zinc finish which is beautiful, a finish that can authentically age mirrors,

a chalk paint finish and more. You can find those at Restoration Emporium. Fourth, remember less is more. For me to say that says a lot, because I’m the girl who has pink hair and loves Lucite. But remember, sometimes when we don’t know what to do with design, we keep putting stuff on the walls and buying more stuff. Instead of buying lots of small inexpensive things, you want to save up and buy the appropriate size and quality item for a space. Finally, if you keep putting off making changes or starting, you will never get anywhere! Start with a master plan and baby step one room at a time. Stop buying small things and save up for whatever you really need and remember it’s suppose to be

fun. If it’s not fun, you may need to bring in someone to bounce ideas off of and give you the confidence to guide you along the way. There are a lot of fabulous designers in Kansas City, and a lot of them will do small consultation jobs to get you started. Happy designing!


Jennifer Bertrand is the winner of HGTV’s show “Design Star” season three, and cohost of “Real Life Design” on She resides in Weatherby Lake, MO, with her lovely English husband, Chris, and her happy son, Winston. She has big plans in life to conquer the design world … again. Email pics and questions to Jennifer Instagram hgtvdesignstarjenniferbertrand Facebook Jennifer Oldham Bertrand Twitter jblovedesign

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VintageKC / Spring 2014


buy & sell







Let’s talk business: How to engage people with what you’re doing, online and on-street. By Michael and James Fry


o matter whether you are a vintage shop owner, antique booth dealer or online seller, your business only works when you reach your customers and they buy your wares. You can have the coolest shop in the world or the best selection of the rarest finds, but if you don’t connect with the customers and give them a reason to buy from you, then all you have is an expensive collecting hobby. So then the question becomes: How do you connect? How do you engage your customers? How do you market yourself and your shop (online or on-street) so that you stand apart and draw buyers? The answer, in a word: marketing. By marketing, we don’t just mean billboards, ads and social media (although it does include that); we mean every single thing that represents you and your shop to the public. On his blog (, Seth Godin defines marketing as, “the name we use to describe the promise a company makes, the story it tells, the authentic way it delivers on that promise.” What are you promising? How are you delivering? If you are not delivering what you are promising, then what needs to change? The NO. 1 way to market your shop is to be ... awesome. Excellence is in short supply these days. When you consistently deliver an experience beyond customers’ expectations, they take notice. They come back. They buy. Being better doesn’t have to be expensive, but it does mean being purposeful. Our friends, Dave and Gail, who each have a booth at the River Market Antique Mall, understand excellence, and their booths stand out. They have a standard for what

8 VintageKC / Spring 2014

goes in their booths, they maintain a unifying look and feel, and they constantly update and refresh their booths. For the online seller, excellence means quality photos and detailed descriptions. Pay attention to lighting and photo backgrounds. One of the Brown Button regulars was telling us that he likes to find items on Ebay that have poor descriptions and even worse photos. He buys them at a bargain, and then relists them on Ebay with professional photos. He can usually sell the same item for two to three times what he bought it for, all because he operates with excellence. Most people understand that marketing a business in the 21st century means having an online presence. However, just having a basic website and posting links once a week on your shop Facebook page won’t get much traction with your customer base. To engage customers online, you must be engaging. You must post great content that is worthy of being shared. One of the brands that we admire online is In addition to their website, they sell on Ebay and Etsy and post to Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. There are several things worth noting about Industrial Artifacts’ online presence. First, they and their products are remarkable (see excellence, above). Secondly, they have a consistent brand feel across all of the websites that they use to engage customers. You will see the company logo and colors everywhere. Thirdly, and perhaps most importantly, their content is interesting and worth sharing. They have social media momentum and will continue to attract customers because they have an online presence worth following.

An often overlooked, but significant, part of marketing is customer care. In these days of Angie’s List and Yelp, an unhappy customer can do a lot of damage to your reputation. We don’t believe that the customer is always right, and we know that you can’t make everyone happy all the time, but a policy of caring for your customer, interacting with integrity and solving problems will take you far. For the vintage shop owner, customer care includes proactively assisting customers and answering questions, having an inviting atmosphere, and plain old fashioned friendliness. Online sellers need honest descriptions, timely shipping and detailed refund/exchange policies. Putting customer needs above profitability will ultimately put profit where you need it to be. There are so many incredible vintage sellers in Kansas City. From the West Bottoms to the suburban antique malls you can see pieces of this engagement marketing in play. For your shop/booth/online store, take time to ask yourself: What are you promising? How are you delivering? What do you need to change?


Michael and James Fry are brothers and owners of Brown Button Estate Sales. Brown Button will speak as part of VKC’s Small Business Academy. Sign up to receive more info at small-business-academy. Website Email Facebook Brown Button Pinterest theebrownbutton Twitter brown_button

buy & sell He said . . He said

How do you share vintage with your family?

I love old black and white movies. Getting cozy on the couch with my wife, a bowl of popcorn and a movie from the pre-Technicolor era is my idea of a good time. I love everything from the big classics like “Citizen Kane” and “Casablanca” to the Sunday night Disney movies of my childhood like “The Shaggy Dog” and “The Absent-Minded Professor.” Created in a time before computers and special effects, these motion pictures required great writing and engaging stories. Great films, such as Hitchcock’s “Psycho,” used the audience’s imagination to make it that much more thrilling. I will round out the old b&w list with “Dr. Strangelove,” “To Kill a Mockingbird,” and my personal favorite, “It’s a Wonderful Life.” Corny, you say? Maybe, but I’ll take a little idealized sappiness verses 98 percent of the movies out today.


This past season, my wife and I have found a great deal of enjoyment reading out loud together. Our vintage fiction of choice recently has been the “Little House” series by Laura Ingalls Wilder. We’ve been on a slow and steady hunt for each of the books in the series. We’re especially fond of the original 1950s copies with the Garth Williams illustrations. The books are quite refreshing in their focus of family values and togetherness. I think that is one of the reasons I’m so drawn to the stories. Living in our current cell phone society, it’s quite enjoyable to read about a family that spends so much purposeful time together. The books are also fascinating to read just on a historical level, learning about how homesteaders lived in the 1800s. Of course, our reading time would not be complete without a roaring fire and a hot cup of Roasterie coffee.


VintageKC / Spring 2014


diy furniture

8 Ideas for

Head boards Doors, mantels, dresser tops, book pages — when it comes to the bedroom, the sky’s the limit!

Curvy & Cute

I come across old, sad, unuseful dressers all the time — ones that are in shambles with all the drawers missing, yet have somehow survived with their tops in one piece. So why not salvage that good, solid piece of wood and turn it into something beautiful again? That is exactly what I did to make this twin headboard. I simply pried the sucker off the dresser, gave it a good scrubbing, painted it grey, distressed to my liking and then hand painted a whimsical "hello." To add some color

and texture, I took some scrap fabric and a bird stencil and cut out a few to place along the bottom. I used Mod Podge to adhere and seal the birds in place. I then got some heavy duty hanging eyelets and placed them equidistant on the back of the headboard for easy mounting to a wall. The beauty of this easy DIY headboard is that it can be placed at your desired height and when you’re sick of the painted finished, it can simply be sanded down and refinished! - Abbie Marshall,

Picture Perfect

My husband and I made our headboard from an upcycled vintage door. The door was removed from a home in Brookside to be replaced with a new door. The door and window company was going to toss this one, so we rescued it. Molding was attached, and in the windows we've placed black and white photos from our travels. - Johnna Perry,

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diy furniture

Stack & Layer This headboard was a birthday gift for my wife a couple years ago, and has since become one of my most-loved pieces. It is covered in a smattering of real vintage book pages, carefully selected and placed for cohesiveness and beauty. To DIY this: Adhere pages to a headboard, and then treat with a poly protectant to minimize tearing or ripping later on. Purchase a similar version in the etsy shop below. - Joey Williams,

Mantel Mojo

I first painted this mantel, and then in the opening, I covered a piece of plywood with cotton batting and muslin. I attached that to the back of the mantel, and my husband drilled holes for mounting to the wall. - Winnie Curtis, Lawrence

VintageKC / Spring 2014 11

diy furniture

Upholstery Update This headboard came as a part of a vintage bedroom set I bought on Craigslist. While it has nice curves, the woven center with oval cutouts wasn’t doing anything for me. I painted the outter edge with CeCe Caldwell’s Pittsburgh Gray chalk clay paint. Then I stapled a layer of batting followed by a layer of second-hand sale remnant fabric, and finished with upholstery trim from Hobby Lobby. - Erin, VintageKC

Thrifty Revamp My husband and I found this screen at Savers for $50. It was dark brown and dated. We sanded, primed and spray painted it to give height to our existing headboard. - Kim Antisdel, interior designer

As Time Goes By

• Antiques • Collectibles • Vintage Home Décor

Proudly stocking Mother Earth Paints! Custom painting & paint classes


Greenwood, MO 64034 Visit Greenwood’s 7 Shops As Time Goes By in Greenwood

12 VintageKC / Spring 2014

6015 Johnson Drive Mission, Kansas 66202 Hours: Mon-Sat 10am-6pm 913-333-0026

diy furniture

f lickr faves

In addition to the obvious inspiration of Pinterest, try perusing for more ideas, like these!

Vintage Shabby We love the simple painted wood for this headboard. But it’s adorableness is furthered by the monogram, garland and vintage painted Homeco ship. photo: aquaowl/flickr used under a CC license

Button Up Upholstery doesn’t have to be complicated with this easy DIY tufted headboard. Check out the Flickr stream for more photos of the DIY process. photo: Jeremy Wilburn/flickr used under a CC license

Comfort By Design by Deb Vogler, Interior Designer

ElEVatE your housE to a homE 14111 W. 95th st., lenexa, Ks 913-522-2860

VintageKC / Spring 2014 13

vintage spaces



It’s all fun and games — and pretend household inhabitants — in the Overland Park home of a professor and filmmaker, and his retro-loving wife. By Kim Antisdel | Photos by William and Jill DiMartino


hen Stephen and Mary Pruitt moved to their new Overland Park home in 2001, they had one goal: find a way to hate it less. The UMKC professor and his wife have been married for 31 years and share a very specific love for a mid-century modern aesthetic. Moving into a home built in 1993 didn’t exactly fulfill their greatest visual desires. Thankfully, one Christmas tree would change it all.

14 VintageKC / Spring 2014

Details of the Pruitt’s midcentury-loving home.

Stephen and Mary Pruitt

vintage spaces

The beautiful art collection in the Pruitt’s piano room has been loaned to museums. Their dog (at right) has not. But she’s cute.

VintageKC / Spring 2014 15

When their two daughters, Becky and Barri, moved away for college, Stephen had a décor epiphany. It was no longer necessary to have a real tree in the home for the Christmas season. The sense of freedom went straight to his head, and he made a decision. “I decided to get a fake tree,” Stephen said. “But the requirement was, if we were going to go fake, we’re gonna go really fake.” Stephen called on his inner 21-year-old, visiting an antique store in Indianapolis one time with his aunt, where he purchased his first mid-century masterpiece, a set of cobalt blue bottles. The experience resonated with him and has never left. So it was no surprise that

16 VintageKC / Spring 2014

vintage spaces

Opposite page: A cool mid-century lounge took over the Pruitt’s 1993-built home, with a working television, bright curtains and every detail in its place. This page: The dining room is painted Flamingo Pink from the 1950s, and features fun midcentury place settings.

VintageKC / Spring 2014 17

vintage spaces

Top and above left: Stephen and Mary’s bedroom features his parents’ refinished bedroom set and a perfectly matched table they found at Good JuJu. Above and right: A guest bedroom is strictly mid-century with blond wood, floral patterns and an original desk pad complete with Frank Sinatra’s picture. Opposite page: A fictitious little boy’s room showcases mid-century toys.

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the Christmas tree he chose would be a huge, tacky (in the best way possible) aluminum Christmas tree. “That first year, we just had one,” Stephen said. “Then it grew to eight. Then 30. We became obsessed. We have blue trees, black trees, you name it. We even lent them to Powell Gardens several years ago for one of their arboretum displays.” But Christmas trees are just the tip of the antique iceberg for Stephen. As you walk through the Pruitt home, you begin to feel as if you’re living in another era. Each piece that adorns the home is in amazing and original condition, even if it means it takes longer to find. For example, the Heywood Wakefield buffet in the kitchen looks as beautiful as the day it was made, but it took Stephen more than two years to find it at Retro Inferno. On the living room coffee table, the cover of an original 1950s magazine touts what to do in case of an atomic bomb. The fiber glass lamp shades near the couch look like they’ve just been unwrapped from a lifetime of bubble paper and placed in this living room just for today. Stephen doesn’t stop at furniture and accessories, though. His penchant for beautiful and original pieces is most reflected in his favorite subject: art. Since 1989, the couple have collected numerous pieces ranging from paint to charcoal to photography. They have even generously loaned out portion of the collection to museums over the years to allow others to view their beauty. Of course, the storyteller in Stephen occasionally takes over, and he is known for trying to locate the actual artists of his pieces. For one contemporary painting, Stephen was able to track down the artist after some digging. When he did locate her, he asked a question that had been on his mind. “The painting seemed very dark to me,” Stephen recalled. “So when I found the artist, I asked her about it. She said she had indeed been in a dark time in her life, and that fact obviously came through in the painting. I was right!” The crown jewel of Stephen’s massive art collection is a small photograph placed in his kitchen, where he can walk by it daily. The black and white 4”x5” photograph from 1950 is by Frederick Sommer and is entitled “Circumnavigation of the Blood.” Though many friends assured Stephen he would never be able to afford the piece, he was determined and it ultimately became a part of his sterling collection. All of this attention to detail and authenticity stems from Stephen, who is also a filmmaker (Never2Late Studios), wanting his home to tell a story.

lamps to love Every good mid-century home has great lamps. Here are some of our favorites from the Pruitt house!

VintageKC / Spring 2014 19

vintage spaces

“Clara’s” room is filled with pieces from 1860-1901. The Pruitt’s invented her character as a way to give life and story to the room and their love of late 19th century ephemera. Pieces include tribute shadow boxes made with human hair and fish scales, and a large Murphey bed.

And the story is communicated through the pieces he and Mary seek out. In fact, the narrative is of the utmost importance to the Pruitt home. “I don’t just buy something antique because I think it’s pretty or interesting or from the mid-century era,” Stephen said. “We work within a set of limitations as to what goes into this house.” So what are the requirements for the pieces in the Pruitt home? When Stephen and Mary are asked this question, they smile at each

20 VintageKC / Spring 2014

other quickly and inevitably decide to let us in on the secret. There are actually two fictitious families living in the home with them. “This all came to pass because our daughter’s friend made a good point. When we would show people a piece, we would use the term ‘her’ a lot,” Mary explained. “Like, this is ‘her’ radio, or ‘her’ dishes in the dining room. We decided we should actually decide who ‘her’ is.” Eventually, the family decided together that the fictitious Clara, who is

named after Mary’s grandmother, is a Victorian seamstress who lives in the bedroom at the top of the stairs. Consequently, every object in the room comes from 1860-1901 and tells Clara’s story. Her intricately constructed dress from 1870 hangs on a mannequin and has never been worn. The heavy drapes that surround the windows are from 1890. Framed in a large shadow box is a wreath with bits of a woman’s hair woven into it, which was a common art practice in the 1800s. The room is a collection in every sense of the word, and no piece goes in that doesn’t contribute to Clara’s story — even if Stephen has to improvise every now and again. “Mary and I found an ear horn from this period that didn’t really make sense for Clara, but we loved the piece,” Stephen explained. “So we decided the ear horn belonged to her father, and now it can go in this room. Problem solved!” With the exception of the Victorian room, the home is mainly made up of mid-century pieces, which are attributed to Clara’s granddaughter and her family. And just like with Clara’s room, each piece in the house contributes to the family’s narrative and timeline. Even the dining room wall is painted Pink Flamingo, a color from the archives of the 1950s. For Stephen, it is these fictitious families that make the difference between a cohesive collection and a smattering of random objects. Stephen’s wife and Boob Tube The 1950s television in children joke that he is a the Pruitt family room was found at an frustrated curator living Antique Mall in Columbia, MO. And of course, it works. in a professor’s body, and Reflections The mirror in the Pruitt livhe has to agree. ing room is from 1958 and was a Retro “I simply want to live Inferno find surrounded by a museum Heirlooms The furniture in Stephen and quality collection, ” he Mary’s bedroom are the only pieces in the house that are refinished, due to shrugged. “If you have the condition they were in when they something from every time acquired them. The furniture was Mary’s period, then it becomes an parents’, and she has a deep emotional antique mall. That’s fun to attachment to the set. visit, but I wouldn’t want to Game Time When Stephen and Mary host parties, people love playing live there.” “Mystery Date” and “Careers” — board Stephen and Mary’s games very popular in the 1950s. dedication to recreating the past has begun to pay off dividends in their future. They have fused their love for unique pieces together with their passion for cinema. Several pieces from their home have made appearances in both of their completed movies, “Works in Progress” and “Terminal.” Their newest cinematic endeavor, “Dust,” might even feature a woman who is a collector. The Pruitt’s home has come a long way since 2001, and though they aren’t searching for as many pieces as they have in the past, Stephen and Mary know their eye will never stop wandering. “What we’re really doing here is creating an environment,” Stephen said, “and I view that environment as a part of my art, whether it’s for my house or for one of my movies. I’m just always creating.”

Stephen and Mary’s Fantastic Finds


Kim is a writer, interior designer and sales rep. She is also a complete klutz that can crank out a killer cartwheel on demand. Her favorite place to write is curled up on the couch, with her weiner dog and two cats fighting for a spot on her lap.

Ask a Pro

Deb V ogler

Do you have any tips on merging a modern aesthetic with a passion for vintage? - Brown Button Estate Sales


absolutely love this look. Mixing modern and vintage is very in right now. It couldn’t be a better time to find inspiration and pieces all around us. Some people may have 20th century legacy furniture (better known as hand-me-downs) that they would like to showcase. Or you may love to hunt and scour estate sales, flea markets, etc., for that one perfect vintage fabric, wallpaper or accessory. When combining the two, establishing a dominant style is key. It will help tremendously in avoiding a cluttered look and an all-out war where there is clearly no winner. You want the two styles to complement each other rather than clash. It really is true that opposites attract. Don’t be afraid to pair a modern sofa or chair with a vintage fabric. Geometrics played a huge part in mid-century textiles. Take a vintage headboard and style it with a fabulous Eames fabric. By the same token, you can let similar elements of both eras rest side-by-side for a polished look. Add modern chairs (think ghost chairs) to a worn and weathered farm table. Hang a flat-screen TV above that 1950s bar cabinet. Lighting is the most important element when designing/ decorating any room. There are so many mid-century lamps to be had out there right now — everything from sleek and sexy to downright kitschie, and they all make for a great look and great conversation. Put a new/contemporary shade on a vintage lamp. Or better yet, strip the old shade off completely and showcase the wire form of the shade. Not only does it provide a lot of light but a lot of look — quite industrial. Clean lines. This can be achieved in so many ways. Combine a sleek new faucet wall-mounted over a farm sink. You can warm up the sleek, clean lines of mid-century modern by creating a backdrop of rustic wood floors or a simple trim around windows and doors. Color. This is definitely one of the very few times you will ever hear me say you may want to think about painting your walls white. It is the perfect canvas for highlighting those killer textile patterns and colors of both the vintage and modern periods.


Deb Vogler has been creating her own brand of Comfort by Design for more than 15 years. She deals with all aspects of design, from budgeting, to floor plans (renovation or new construction), to furniture, to color at her full-scale design firm. Have a designing question for Deb? Send it to

VintageKC / Spring 2014 21

garden guide

For the Love of the Garden

From a small city backyard to an expansive country setting, get back to nature with inspiration from two of our favorite gardens, filled with vintage and DIY pieces. Photos by William and Jill DiMartino

Photos from the garden of Teede Stipich

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garden guide


Photos from the garden of Teede Stipich

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Your Garden, Your Art Gallery By Teede Stipich, excerpted from Gardeners Connect


eauty is in the eye of the beholder. There are no right ways or wrong ways when it comes to incorporating art in your yard. The only thing I try to avoid is the number of pieces I will have to bring inside for the winter. Ideally, I would like to leave most of it out in the environment. This not only cuts down on my trips to the basement, but it makes an interesting winterscape to view from my windows that also overlook the garden. Several years ago, I tore all the grass out of my small backyard and installed pathways and beds. This allowed me to turn my backyard into an outdoor art gallery. If you are a hands-on do-it-yourselfer, there are classes you can take to experiment making things. Gardeners Connect member Steve Hess offers classes in hypertufa. I have taken classes in welding and casting at Johnson County Community College. You might check out other local community colleges and art schools. Red Cedar Garden Center offers classes in yard art. The Clay Guild in Waldo offers pottery classes. It’s an opportunity to make something fanciful for your patio or yard. If you tend to be a “shopper,” there are numerous venues to encourage the “creative artist” in you. Thrift stores, garage sales and art fairs are some of my favorite venues. A fairly easy piece of art to make is an inexpensive glass totem. I buy several pieces of vintage glass at thrift stores and stack them on top of each other. Epoxy glue will help them in place. You can start with a rebar pole and build from the ground up. For photos and inspiration, go online to see what others have created. Remember, when decorating your outdoor art gallery, the sky is the limit — literally. Go high and low. I put an old blue wooden chair up in a tree. Behind the tree is my privacy fence lined with colorful wine bottles. When the sun hits the fence, it is like a stained glass mosaic. I have lined the top of my detached garage with 21 birdhouses. Most of them were purchased on sale at a huge dicount at summer’s end. I found an art student on Craigslist who was eager to make some extra summer money. He painted murals on the side of my garage underneath pieces of Haitian metal art I collect. Utilize all your spaces. What to do with empty picture frames? Collect all sizes, shapes and colors. Hang them on a bare fence or up in trees. I put mine together with dowels and ribbons, mobile style and hung it high in a tree. They are ever changing “natural pictures” depending on the changes in the yard. I’ve tucked mirrors and stained glass pieces into green settings. I found an old-fashioned sampler that said, “The Flowers of all the Tomorrows are in the Seeds of Today.” I had it reframed, and it hangs on an outside wall facing the garden. I have scrounged flea markets for old plates, platters and cups. They hang all over the back of my house facing the garden. If I lose one in a windstorm, I’m not devastated. I, like many women, love shoes. I went to a thrift store and bought a whole family of shoes: wingtips for dad, sneakers for mom, pink Barbie boots for sis and miniature sturdy work boots for brother. In subsequent years, I added faux alligator pumps for a visiting aunt. I planted them with annuals and perennials and set a pair under each patio chair. Tree stumps are wonderful natural pillars to place art on. With the advent of LED lights, you can highlight certain areas of your garden. If it all seems confusing or overwhelming on how to get started, start with a theme. It may be as simple as collecting unusual stepping stones, bowling balls or kites. Because I am not a painter or photographer, I purchased an allweather photographical canvas to adorn a space on the back fence. I think the key to successful yard art is: Think outside the box, and have fun. Nothing is off limits. It’s your outside art gallery. Plant it with things that please you.

Teede Stipich is a master gardener of greater Kansas City and member of Gardeners Connect.

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garden guide

Photos from the garden of Maurice and Leanna Holdgraf

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Bringing the Garden In An easy guide to cutting, arranging and choosing the perfect container for your homegrown blooms. Floral Design by Jenni Koch Photography by Kelly Hutchinson


hoose a container. This will help determine how many flowers you need to avoid overcutting. Pitchers, urns, pots, boxes (you might need a liner) or tin cans are all great options that you probably already have on hand. Clean the vessel and fill with fresh, cool water and flower food (see homemade recipe, at right).

Trim away foliage. Anything that will fall below the water line needs to be removed to help decrease microbial growth that can rot flowers. Also, remove any unnecessary leaves as they increase the rate of dehydration. Cut stems. Use a sharp knife or floral snips to cut stems at an approximate 45-degree angle. Design. Begin placing larger stems in the container and rotate it as you work until reaching

Simple, early summer arrangement of mixed pink peonies and white anemones, placed in an antique mercury urn.

Lavender is a charming addition to your home décor! Stems should be cut just above the leaves when the flower buds are about to open and have good color. This is when they are the most fragrant. Tie them into bundles and hang upside down in a dry, dark place. They will take a few weeks to dry!

desired fullness. Ideally, you want your flower height to be no more than 1-1/2 times your container height. Add in any foliage to make it fuller and give it a little extra life. There are no rights or wrongs to colors. Play with different flowers and styles to create something that’s truly your own! How to Keep Cut Flowers Fresh • Use cool fresh water • Use flower food • Keep vase water clean and free of debris • Keep them cool and out of direct sunlight

Homemade Flower Food Effective and easy-to-make preservative that uses products you have around the house. 1 teaspoon sugar 1 teaspoon household bleach 2 teaspoons lemon or lime juice 1 quart lukewarm water

Summer bouquet of dark purple lisianthus, dianthus, sweetheart roses, ranunculus, dusty miller and limonium in a large ceramic pot.

Jenni is a local floral designer and owner of Wild Hill Flowers. She and her husband, Charlie, live in Spring Hill, KS, with their sweet and active 2-year-old daughter, Katie. Check out her store at

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28 VintageKC / Winter 2013

Photos this page and left from the gardens of Maurice and Leanna Holdgraf

Grow Wild

Give wildflowers a try with these species, which grow wild in Missouri. Order these and more at


Sun-Med Shade

Full Sun

Bluebells Mertensia virginica

Queen of the Prairie Filipendula rubra

Indian Paintbrush Castilleja coccinea

Spring Beauty Claytonia virginica

Cardinal Flower Lobelia cardinalis

Fremont’s Leather Flower Clematis fremontii

Bluebells, Spring Beauty, Queen of the Prairie, Cardinal Flower: tgpotterfield/flickr. Indian Paintbrush: jmtimages/flickr. Fremont’s Leather Flower: jacki-dee/flickr. Images used under a Creative Commons license.

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vintage fashion

girls just want

to have fun l’s enthueeter than a little gir s there anything sw match ink vintage clothes siasm for life? We th om irit of the young. Fr perfectly with the sp ing in yth er ev d an ky, cool, pretty to cute, spun they embody. these littles and all between, we adore find, but kids can be hard to Vintage clothing for ke us) and . If you’re lucky (li keep your eyes open sale, don’t ure trove at an estate come across a treas you’ll see never know when pinch pennies. You afraid to ask ain. Also, don’t be items like these ag thes not on ey have any kids clo boutique stores if th s in adult make their big buck display. While they s in storage. often have kid item clothing, they will


30 VintageKC / Spring 2014

Photos Layne Haley Photography | Hair Lotus Beauty | Styling Calli Green | Producer Erin Shipps

vintage fashion

jane lula

joanna On Lula, Joanna and Jane: All handmade vintage dresses from Brown Button estate sale.

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vintage fashion

jaslene 32 VintageKC / Spring 2014

On Jaslene: Glasses, Vintage Vogue; shirt, Vintage Vogue; belts, Xhilaration, Target; jeggings, Circo, Target.

vintage fashion

On Camdyn: Handmade vintage dress from Brown Button estate sale.

camdyn VintageKC / Spring 2014 33

vintage fashion



willow 34 VintageKC / Spring 2014


isabel On Ehler: Handmade vintage dress, Brown Button estate sale; cardigan, Just One You Made by Carter’s, Target; headband, Bizzy Diva. On Soha: Leopard shirt, Vintage Vogue; tank top and jeans from model’s closet. On Willow: Handmade vintage shirt, Brown Button estate sale; jeggings, CR ITG, Target; handmade poncho sweater, Vintage Vogue; hair bow, Target. On Mya: Vintage Lacoste dress, Vintage Vogue; vest, Vintage Vogue; shirt, model’s closet; leggings and hair bows, Target. On Isabel: Shirt, Vintage Vogue; bandana, Party City; jeans, model’s closet.

VintageKC / Spring 2014 35

renovated recipes

Spring Picnic

Welcome spring with a fresh take on a picnic lunch. By Courtney Jenkins

Courtney is part of a cute little family of four (including twin sons Parker and Eli) residing in Kansas City, MO. She’s owns a local natural solid body company called Milk and Honey Naturals (

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pring is my favorite time to sit down with a cool refreshing cocktail and snack on light chilled treats. These are three of my newest recipe restoration creations that are the perfect addition to any spring menu. The vintage recipes Beverage: The juice of four grapefruits (when pressing the fruit be careful that the juice does not come in contact with the rind), one teacup sugar, bottle and cork. Add to spring water. (“The Times Cook Book, No. 2 – 1905”) Celery Sandwiches: Two cups chopped celery, two tablespoons chopped walnuts, two tablespoons chopped olives, a quarter cup mayonnaise dressing. Spread between slices of thin buttered bread. (“The International Jewish Cookbook – 1919”) Cream Salad Dressing: Made by mixing sour cream with enough vinegar, pepper and salt to season the salad palatably. (“Miss Corson’s Practical American Cookery – 1886”)

renovated recipes

The Renovated Recipes Pink Grapefruit and Fresh Mint Margaritas

Creamy Cilantro Vinaigrette servings Approx. 6

servings Approx. 6

Ingredients 5 large pink grapefruits, room temperature 15 fresh mint leaves 2 oz. orange triple sec 8 oz. tequila 1/3 c. agave nectar 1/2 c. sugar Directions Cut one grapefruit into wedges and place sugar on a small plate. Juice the other four grapefruits into a large pitcher. Add agave nectar and stir well. Tear mint leaves and add them to the pitcher, then add the triple sec and tequila. Add ice and give it a good stir. Take a wedge of sliced grapefruit and run it around the edge of the glass, then dip into the sugar. Fill up and enjoy!

Chicken, Celery and Olive Salad Sandwiches servings Approx. 6

Ingredients 1 c. celery, diced 2 T. black olives, chopped 2 T. walnuts, chopped 1 c. cooked chicken, diced 1 t. spicy brown mustard 2 t. shallot, minced 2 T. fresh dill, chopped 1/4 c. mayonaise Salt and pepper to taste Whole wheat bread

Ingredients 1/2 c. olive oil 3 T. red wine vinegar 2 T. sour cream 1/2 t. salt 1/2 t. spicy brown mustard 2 T agave nectar 1 T. fresh cilantro, chopped 1 clove garlic, minced Dash black pepper Directions Whisk everything together until well combined. Chill in the refrigerator for 6 hours to let the flavors develop, then serve!

Directions Mix all of the ingredients together and spread onto bread to make sandwiches.

WeDDing | PersOnal | event FlOWers

Jenni Koch, Owner/Designer 913-486-6178

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vintage crafts

Slice of


If a tree fell down in the woods and no one was around to hear it, would you cut it up and use it around your house in a fun attempt to bring the outdoors in? We totally would.

“Full of eclectic style, wood and metal mix with a decorative bulb and colorful cord to create a one-of-a-kind wall sconce. A porcelain light socket and basic lamp kit turns this wood slice into unique decorative lighting perfect for any room in your home.� Jamie from Kolorize

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“I decided to add a little bit of glamour to my rustic wood slice with some gold leaf. I used vinyl stick on letters directly on the wood, applied the gold leaf on top and then carefully removed the letters when everything was dry.” Megan from Homemade Ginger

“To make these rustic shelves, I cut off about 1/3 of each slice and added a metal L bracket to the bottom. I lacquered them to help seal the wood, but you could also paint them a solid color or paint a fun design or pattern. Use drywall anchors if added support is needed.” Abbie from Ecolectic

Woodworking Tips

As fresh-cut wood slices dry, they crack. Seal them with a wood stabilizer like Pentacryl or Wood Juice. To keep bark on a slice, cut the wood during the winter. Wood that has been outside, especially in the cold, should be brought to room temperature before soaking in or brushing on the stabilizer. After treatment, dry the wood evenly, making sure it is exposed to air on all sides. Let the wood dry naturally; do not heat or use a fan.

Locally Crafted Chalk Enhanced Paint from Robin Hammond of Junkfest Studios

So soft, so smooth & so easy to use! AVAILABLE NOW AT: Studio 1404 1222 W. 12th St., West Bottoms reChic Boutique and Decor 6015 Johnson Dr., Mission, KS As Time Goes By 605 W. Main Greenwood, MO Liberty Antique Mall 1005 N. State Rt. 291 Liberty, MO For more info and retailers:

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vintage crafts “I decided to turn my wood piece into a simple, earthy tealight candle holder. This centerpiece would work well for an intimate Fall dinner party, Thanksgiving gathering or even a rustic wedding.” Audrey from Oh So Lovely

“Inspired by Anthropologie, I made my wood slice into a mirror simply by using wood glue and nailing a vintage western young boys belt as a strap for hanging.” Amy from Buffalo Roam

Sentimental Journey ANTIQUE MALL

Rndas foristheedWondinerfullCy Spooiltted oHonme Fi

14,000 square feet of antiques and collectibles

OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK! Monday-Saturday 10-6 • Sunday 12-5 913-768-8088 • 907 S. Chestnut, Olathe

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200 N. Madison (58 Hwy), Raymore, MO 816-318-9009 Wednesday - Saturday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

vintage crafts “I am always looking for a neat way to display my favorite scented candles, so I used these two cross-sections as a foundation. I glued some buttons and vintage game pieces on the birch slice, and knitted a coaster out of twine to frame the candles.” Quinn from Ktog “I used vintage decorative stakes from an old garden gate, spray painted them with a metallic sheen (they were a bit rusty) and drilled them into the wood to create a jewelry display.” Angie from MoVi Modern Vintage Mobile Boutique shopMoVi

One block west Antiques & Collectibles 20 S. Gold St., Paola, KS Open M-F 10-6 & Sat 10-5 913-294-8499

913-209-9479 6009 Johnson Dr. Mission, KS

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vintage crafts

“My 3-year-old son is obsessed with space, but he had yet to learn about constellations. Now he looks at this on his wall and learns. He even knew the Big Dipper by the time we saw the Sesame Street show at the planetarium! He also loves to read and dance to music, so this saying from Voltaire was the perfect complement. To make the perfect quote, first space our your words by character on a piece of paper. Then measure equidistant lines, and draw them with a pencil across your surface. Next, use a stencil and align each letter with the line you’ve drawn. Trace the letters with pencil and then go over them with a paint pen. Erase the pencil lines, and you’re done!” Erin, editor VintageKC Magazine Secret hanger trick: Use a pop can top to hang art inexpensively. Attach the pop top wtih a nail, bend it slightly away from the back of the art and hang it on another nail using the other hole in the can top.

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vintage crafts di Nicole Photo gra Bran by ph to y o h

“I originally envisioned this as being a momentous embroidery challenge. I was amazed at how easy it actually is to stitch on wood! Depending on your access to a wood pile and a few key tools, this can be a quick and easy project.” Kristen from Hey Paul Studios woodsliceembroidery


For more great ideas, visit our Pinterest page:


And while you’re there, check out all the fun stuff we’ve pinned — everything from offices to kitchens, from weddings to fashion, from lights to do-it-yourself projects. If it’s vintage or awesome or funny or helpful, we’re pinning it. Come join us!

Help us out!

Are you crafty and have a store or blog? We’d love to see if you’ve got what it takes to be on our panel of creative experts. Do you have a craft idea you’d like to see our locals tackle? Are you just the chatty type? However you roll, just drop us a line at

Westport on Broadway ANTIQUES

Now Presenting

Silver-Schnauzer ANTIQUES

Antiques, collectibles and fine vintage furnishings

In the heart of Historic Westport Discover the past, invest in the future Tues-Sat 10-5 • Sun 10-3 4045 Broadway, KCMO 816-931-7999

Antiques | Needlework | Estate Sales | Art Gallery 10912 W. Winner Road, Independence 800-256-3029 | 816-336-1595

VintageKC / Spring 2014 43

stores we love

As Time Goes By Greenwood

Nestled in the small, rural town of Greenwood, we consider this store a beautiful — and fun — hidden gem! VKC: How long have you been into vintage? Kris: Since my early 20s. VKC: What got you started? Kris: I was very frugal (think broke college kid) and filled my first apartment with mid-century furniture I’d inherited from my grandmother. Blonde furniture with avocado upholstery ... yum! VKC: When did you decide to open your own business and why? Kris: Four years ago the owners of As Time Goes By were relocating and asked if we’d be interested. We thought how hard can this be? While it’s a lot of work, it’s way more fun than I’d ever imagined! VKC: What advice do you have for amateur pickers? Kris: Buy what you like, unique items are always popular, and look at pieces with a creative eye. Can it be used for a different purpose? VKC: What are your favorite pieces to buy? Kris: Furniture with character, vintage light fixtures, crusty metal pieces like tool boxes, ceiling tin tiles, outdoor furniture, buckets and anything unusual. VKC: What is your favorite furniture refinishing technique right now? Kris: We now carry a line of chalk enhanced paints, Mother Earth Paints, that has become wildly popular. It paints any surface smoothly and we have more than 20 colors. I’m currently coveting shades of blue finished with a dark wax. VKC: How do you choose vendors for your store? Kris: I call it, “choosing team players with diversified junque.” VKC: How would you describe the style of the items in your store?

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Kris: Eclectic and reasonably priced. We have two floors ranging from primitives to retro, painted and unpainted furniture, a great man cave with old tools and fishing gear, windows, architectural pieces, and a lot of crusty goodness piled outside. VKC: Describe your favorite pieces in your own home, the ones you could never sell. Kris: I have a harvest table my husband made from reclaimed oak and an upright piano my kids learned to play when they were young. VKC: What is the biggest item you’ve ever sold? The most expensive? Kris: This piece also qualifies as the heaviest. It was a tremendous, exquisitely painted buffet (by Studio 1404) that sold within two hours. VKC: What is your business philosophy? Kris: Keep it light-hearted and inviting; work hard, but make it look easy; and show customers they’re appreciated. VKC: What experience do you hope your customers have in your store? Kris: A fabulous experience! I want each visitor to love our store and return regularly! VKC: Why do you continue to do what you do? Kris: I’ve met some amazing people, and have had some amazing experiences. I never knew owning an antique store would be so much fun and the people so warm and genuine. I love it! VKC: What other stores do you love? Kris: My six Greenwood neighbors, Studio1404 (West Bottoms), Sentimental Journey (Olathe), Timeless Treasures (Claycomo), and Lawrence Antique Mall.

stores we love

Studio 1404 West Bottoms

A fast-growing store in the West Bottoms, 1404 features locally crafted paint and tons of inspiration! VKC: How long have you been into vintage? Amanda: As long as I can remember! Shopping garage sales and antique stores with my grandparents as a child was one of my favorite things to do. VKC: What got you started? Amanda: My husband, Brian, and I purchased an antique dresser for $10 at an estate sale in 2008. We painted it, sold it on Craigslist, and never stopped. VKC: When did you decide to open your own business and why? Amanda: We had been vendors at other stores for about a year and a half and loved what we were doing. We had dreamed of opening our own store and learned that our space would be available in April 2013. It was meant to be! VKC: What advice do you have for amateur pickers? Amanda: Buy what speaks to you. Whether you’re buying things to furnish your own home or to sell, you can’t go wrong buying things you love. VKC: What are your favorite pieces to buy? Amanda: Beautiful, ornate furniture made in the 1920s. The more detail, the better. I also have a soft spot for vintage kitchen items and anything found in a barn. VKC: What is your favorite furniture refinishing technique right now? Amanda: We’ve been using and selling Mother Earth Paints for about six months. We’ll never use anything else. The coverage is amazing and the colors are simply beautiful! VKC: How do you select vendors for your store? Amanda: We look for kind, friendly, creative people with a passion for picking and painting.

VKC: How would you describe the style of the items in your store? Amanda: We’re probably best known for Shabby Chic, but offer retro, farmhouse and industrial as well. VKC: Describe your favorite pieces in your own home, the ones you couldn’t bear to sell. Amanda: There are so many! At the top of my list would be the sixpiece mid-century modern credenza and dresser set that belonged to my grandparents. It’s the only MCM furniture in our home and it’s the perfect storage solution in my home office/studio. VKC: What is your business philosophy? Amanda: You get what you give. VKC: What experience do you want customers to have in your store? Amanda: We hope each shopper finds something that makes them happy. Whether it’s a beautiful piece of furniture for their home, something that brings back a childhood memory, or a new friend! VKC: Why do you continue to do what you do? Amanda: We wouldn’t dream of doing anything else! We’re surrounded by beautiful things and wonderful people every day. VKC: What else do you want people to know about your store? Amanda: In addition to First Friday weekends, we’re open every Saturday 10-5 and by appointment. We also offer Mother Earth painting workshops several times each month. VKC: What other stores do you love? Amanda: As Time Goes By (Greenwood), Genevieve’s (Blue Springs), Charm (Martin City), and any store in the West Bottoms!

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vintage memories



By Quinn White

One woman takes a tradition from her childhood and passes it to the next generation, with respect and heirloom flowers.


n addition to the very tangible revival occurring outside in spring, the season awakens something inside the human spirit. It causes a stirring that we nearly forgot existed. For Barb Schoen, this transition — from the long, dead Minnesota winters of her childhood — is highlighted by the enduring memory of her mother’s meticulous tending of her lilacs, lilies of the valley and peonies, that began each spring. “Mom would spend hours in the garden. She lined it with rocks that she spray painted to look just like she wanted them,” Barb remembered. “She was the original ‘DIYer.’ She would get an idea of what she wanted something to look like and figure out a way to do it on her own.” Each year, Barb and her six siblings would gather the flowers their mother had labored over, wrap the plant ends with wet paper towels, and place them in a sandwich bag. They would carry these spring treasures to the bus stop and wait for the bus to take them to the cemetery. “I never met my grandparents, so this is the way that I got to know them,” Barb said. “Mom would tell stories about her mom and dad as we visited.” The family would offer the cherished blossoms to these bygone relatives who they were learning to love with each story that was told. “This taught me that cemeteries are not scary, but places where you can go to share memories and talk to loved ones,” Barb said. These experiences were formative for Barb, and they instilled in her a great appreciation for the lives that have gone before her and the ways that people are united through a common story. She has carried this tradition into adulthood. With her own children, she adorns the graves of loved ones each spring, reviving through story the personalities that are no longer embodied. She also led a group of women in the celebration of their shared friend, Colleen. “Colleen has been gone for 14 years,” Barb said. “We visit her on her birthday, but we don’t just bring flowers; we bring everything we need for a tea party. We put out a quilt and share memories of her. We laugh and we cry, and this brings us closer to her and closer together.” As Barb’s own parents reached the end of their lives, it was important to her that she honor them and convene with them in the same way. Before moving her parents into an assisted living home, she made sure that she and her siblings salvaged the bulbs and seeds from her mother’s garden. She planted these in her own garden, and she now shadows the motions of her mother’s careful hand when the sun kindles the numbness of the passing winter. They bloom each spring, in the same way that they did when she was a child. On her mother’s “first Mother’s Day in heaven,” as Barb refers to it, she and her siblings had brunch at Ft. Snelling National Cemetery, read from their mother’s prayer books and said the Rosary together. On this day and all visits since, she and her family share stories like the ones her mother used to tell. They laugh, they cry, and they draw nearer to one another. She brings with her the tangible sign that the memories of her parents still stir within her, and that she holds her mother and father near. She leaves this symbol at their resting place and reminds them both that they are to share this gift that they first shared with her.


Photos from top: Barb Schoen’s parents; lilacs from her garden; her sister Trish reads from their mother’s prayer book; and her brother Bob sharing memories at Ft. Snelling National Cemetery.

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upcoming events

Featuring More than 250 vendors, amazing shopping, beauty, health & wellness products and services.

New for 2014!

Vintage & Handcrafted Marketplace Sponsored by Restoration Emporium

Overland Park Convention Center May 30 - June 1 Friday 5 - 10 p.m. Saturday 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Sunday 11 a.m. - 4 p.m.


Sponsor for the Just for Her Event

We will be giving away tickets to the event on our Facebook page. Watch for details!




Consignment Furniture Estate Sales

New and gently used furniture and accessories


Mention this ad and receive 10% off one item at regular price!

Open 7 days a week! 8722 Santa Fe Drive, Overland Park, KS • 913-381-5800

Hallbrook Estate Sale March 20-22

Profile for VintageKC Magazine

0204 VintageKC Spring 2014  

Home. Fashion. DIY.

0204 VintageKC Spring 2014  

Home. Fashion. DIY.

Profile for vintagekc