We get pretty excited about finding new places and shops, but we don't know that we have ever been as excited as we were to hear about the opening of Antique Avenue on Ottawa Street. We had asked some friends if they had any suggestions for great flea markets (Jacklyn is in the market for a tapestry and some other furniture pieces). Our friend Sarah showed us an article in The Spectator and we quickly made plans to visit early Saturday morning.
Owners Tom Watson and his business partner Adam Hughes purchased the entire lot of collectibles from one person. It is difficult to articulate just how incredible it all is. The gentleman known only as Darryl had been hoarding over the course of 30 years; he would buy out complete collections from people all over Ontario from estate sales, yard sales, auctions and the like. "I was blown away. There was so much stuff and it wasn't on display," Tom said, "There was no way I could go through everything." Imagine a two story farmhouse, two storage facilities, buses and trailers filled to the brim and you'll get an idea of how large this collection is. After making their best guess they bought everything for $100,000. With the help of Tom's mother and their friends they have just started uncovering and categorizing all of Darryl's treasures. "The shop owners on Ottawa Street have been really friendly," Tom explained, "Patrick from Decades has been over here helping out."
It's not often that we're speechless, but we genuinely could not fathom how one person could collect all of this. It's a vintage lover's dream. We started imagining country kitchens and discussing how we could re-do portions of our homes. These antique irons peaked our interest, its hard to believe this is what women used back in the day. We felt like we went back in time.
We love to use old mason jars as flower vases and to hold things like sewing materials and cotton balls. There are hundreds and more to be un-boxed. It's quite overwhelming. They also had gorgeous vintage milk jars. You remember the post on the beautiful ones Jacklyn recently purchased.
Probably the most exciting thing we were shown by Tom and Adam were these Eaton's cards. When you held this wooden viewing contraption to your eyes, and brought the postcard closer to your face the photos were supposed to be 3D. It reminds us of one of our favorite childhood school videos.
Anything you are looking for you are likely to find here. We adore this vintage Singer sewing machine. We also stumbled across amazing first edition books as well as etiquette books tucked away in boxes in the back (future posts on these to come). If your willing to hunt, they have tons of treasures that have yet to be unpacked. Stephanie found 1940s and 50s editions of Canadian Homes & Gardens and Good Housekeeping. They were in perfect condition with charming illustrated covers. Plus there was a whole box of 1950s editions of Life Magazine. Très cool.
If you don't already have plans this weekend, you must check out Antique Avenue. Take our word for it, and bring a lunch. You'll be there a long while. The best part is they are open everyday.
329 Ottawa St. N