Shopping for French antiques at High Point Market. Traveling to North Carolina to source antique goods from all over the world for Chateau Sonoma.
I want to start off by saying, this week was a bit of a mix of emotions - part of me excited to visit High Point Market, but most of me was so very sad, worried, and concerned about all of my friends in Sonoma.
Over the past couple of years, I have carved a little piece of my heart out for Sonoma. I was welcomed with open arms by so. many. businesswomen in the area. I was mentored and supported in ways that I didn't know was possible to be by other women.
I currently work for Chateau Sonoma and also helped A Savvy Event start A Savvy Lifestyle. Many of my best memories are on the Sonoma square. Just thinking about all that they have been through this week brings tears to my eyes.
I woke up Monday morning to a text from Sarah, owner of Chateau Sonoma. She said there was a fire in Sonoma and there may be evacuations, but that I could still go to North Carolina, and she would try to make it out the following day. I don't think anyone realized the severity of the fires at this point.
So I headed to High Point, North Carolina, picked up my rental car and planned to go to the market the following morning.
Unfortunately, it was that night that we all became aware of just how bad these fires were. They weren't going to be put out anytime soon, and overnight, thousands of people's lives had been changed. I felt a bit weird traveling and shopping for the store while so many were being displaced from their homes, but I was there nonetheless, so I figured I'd make the best of it and purchase as many beautiful things that I could find. I guess there's always beauty to be found even in the darkest of times.
I was equipped with my market pass and a good night's sleep, but I was a bit nervous because I had never been on a buying trip before, and I wasn't exactly sure what Sarah was looking for for the store. She gave me a list of antique shops to visit, but that was about it. I didn't want to be too bothersome by calling her constantly, so I put on my big girl pants and began to shop.
The market had not yet fully commenced, but we purposefully planned an early visit so that we could shop the antiques before the masses got there. My first stop was at a place called Golden Oldies. It was a warehouse full of wonder. Hundreds of dough bowls. Furnishings old and new. Garden fixtures. Fire pits. Antiques from all over the world, all compiled in one ginormous building. I was completely overwhelmed at first, but after a few hours, I hit my stride.
I began marking things as sold: giant iron fire pits, dolly tubs (which I learned were named this because English women used to be referred to as dolly's, and these bins were used for the laundry), dough bowls with mirrors placed inside, coffee tables, and so much more. The folks at Golden Oldies were New Yorkers with a casual attitude. There was nothing yuppy about them, and they took great care of me. They showed me so much kindness, and I am thankful for that, especially because I truly felt like a country bumpkin displaced from her farm.
I was lucky enough to purchase a few things for myself as well: beautiful vintage bells for Christmas, a few dough bowls, a giant metal cup rack, among other things.
The following day I visited a place called Schwung Home which was absolutely incredible. Unlike Golden Oldies which was a pure treasure hunt, this place was designed like a fine furniture store, but filled with antiques. In the center of the warehouse, there was a bar where you could sit and work, enjoy champagne or café, and munch on fresh French fare. It was a delight because there is seemingly nowhere to eat in High Point (I found one Starbucks the entire time I was there).
I was able to FaceTime with Sarah while I was there, and we walked through the store together. I felt like she was right there with me, and now I had the hang of tagging and pulling items for the shop. We picked up beautiful vintage leather coffee tables and benches, a lovely dining table, a series of amazing light fixtures, and lots more. I can't wait for it to be delivered to the shop!
I made it home the next afternoon, and I was so thankful for the opportunity to buy for the store and visit the market. I would love to open a shop someday, so to be able to learn from Sarah was invaluable. I just got news that the fires in Sonoma are now contained, although it will be awhile before they are out, to know they aren't growing any more is very comforting. If you would like to help the victims of the fire, here is a link to donate, also please visit this webpage for more donation options (non-monetary), as well as volunteer information.