Christmas Open House 2018

Hand Collected Vintage, Authentic Christmas all year.
Three hours of carrying up from the basement.
One hour of moving it from the dining room to the garage.
One hour packing two cars.
Two friends who filled their vehicles as well.
Eight friends who worked for six hours, then four friends who worked another two hours.
Five workers for the day.
163 cupcakes were devoured.
The best Christmas Open House! So many vintage-lovin’ friends came, brought food donations, and so many authentic vintage treasures went home ….

And a partridge in a pear tree 🙂

Thank you my friends for loving on my Vintage Christmas Store <3

Bungee Queen

Dear Bungee Corporation,

I love bungee cords. There are two buckets full in my truck and one in my car. The bungees are assorted colors and lengths. Honestly, I don’t think I’ve ever met a bungee cord I didn’t love 😉

For the past seven years I’ve been a junker. Bungee cords have allowed me to pack, haul, strap to and bring home treasures that would never have fit on their own. Shame on me for not keeping all the pictures from my adventures. You would have been amazed at how much I’ve made happen with the help of your bungee cords! I love to say, “I bungee cord the bungee cord!”

So, if in the future you are looking for example of how junkers can use bungee cords……look no further. I am your Bungee Queen.


Joyce (the I’ve got a bungee cord that will make that fit!)

Tutt Tutt I Smell Mold; Said My Hubby

Let’s start with a little back story. When our boys were little we all used to watch “Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree.” As we all know Pooh loves honey, and as he wanders the Hundred Acre Woods, he ends up at Rabbit’s house. Rabbit has honey! And Pooh keeps saying “tutt tutt, I smell honey” until Rabbit shares it with him. In case you need to know the end of the story 🙂 Pooh gets trapped, tries to get out and makes a mess of Rabbit’s house. Christopher Robin shows up and saves the day! Who doesn’t love a happy Winnie the Pooh story. 🙂

Up to the current moment…..Tutt Tutt I smell…..has become a common line at our house. I smell dinner, I smell a new car, I smell skunk, I smell too many athletic shoes in the mudroom (hahaha – parents of athletic boys and their gear will understand this!)….

Monday afternoon I headed south to pick through a barn. There were so many great treasures there, and so I loaded the truck up (used a lot of bungee cords too!), and took the beautiful backroads home. Arriving home I pulled the truck up on the drive anxious to show my hubby all the great treasures.

He comes walking out to the truck, drops the tailgate, grabs this old trunk……stops in place, looks at me and said…Tutt Tutt I smell mold.

Ok, it might have had to be one of those “you had to be there things”….but I could not stop laughing.

And all was right that night…..beautiful sky, backroads, barn treasures, truck full and a great memory laugh with my hubby.

Tutt Tutt friends….I smell Memories 🙂

My very own (I can use it!) Sander ;0

I’m not handy. At all. I struggle with getting handles off dressers, drawers put back in, and don’t even think about letting me us a power tool! (OY VEY). Fortunately for me my hubby is super handy (lucky me, right!). Because he’s so handy he has all kinds of tools. Which, I will now confess to you that I’m not allowed to use. Apparently I’ve misused and broken some of them (ok, on several occasions and, I guess they are expensive to replace!).

My toolbox has one screw driver, a paint can opener, scissors and a pencil that I number dresser drawers with. Well, here is my exciting news !! I know own a sander. A really cool DeWalt sander. I’ve used it twice already. AND – this is the cool part….I can change the sandpaper all by myself ;0

The sander joined my extensive (hahaha) collection because of my sweet, super handy, unbelievably gifted, upcycling friend, Deb (Tickled Pink Furnishings – you can find her goodies at Pinky’s Place in Grand Rapids and Flat River Cottage in Lowell, Michigan)

After pestering her for probably a year about her projects I bought the same sander and sandpaper she uses. Which totally means my treasures are going to be fabulous <3 And now I have a tool with a power cord in my collection (hahahahaha) Thanks to DeWalt for making a sander that is unhandy friendly!

Grand Haven Chamber of Commerce


What a thrill, and honor,, it was to be on a panel about social media with these super talented ladies this morning!


Let’s start at the beginning…..last week Mary, from the Chamber, sent me an email.  She was asking if I would be willing to share how I use social media at the store.  And she included these ladies as part of the panel.  (This is like being a big dog on the porch ;0).

Obviously I said yes!!  And I am thankful she asked, and that I said yes.  It was great fun to chat with Stefanie (Visit Grand Haven)  and Melanie (Chamber) and to meet Michelle (Seven Steps Up).  They each shared suggestions and ideas that I took notes on!

OK, let’s start way back at the beginning….I’ve only been using social media for six years.  My first account was Facebook.  It was a birthday gift from Amber (I Do Signs).  She had created an account for Vintage Green and gave it to me as a gift.  To be honest, I wasn’t sure I would ever do anything with it.  (And I’ve always kidded around that if I ever had social media it would end up being a picture of me sans clothing and with a beer ;0)…….so fast forward……to a Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Youtube and this blog!! (no pictures sans clothing have appeared, but there have been wine in picture ;0)

When the advertising for this came out – we were described as Gurus!!  I actually did a screen shot and sent that to my family with all kinds of laughing faces.  Funny to think I might be considered a guru.  I consider myself a work in progress, I’m not afraid to ask anyone everything about social media, and I’m willing to spend a considerable amount of time trying to figure things out.  Another thing is most social media apps come with analytics that help track who are your customers, when are they on, what posts get the most attraction.  They do the math for you ;0

What I did share with the group this morning… media only works if you know: your brand, your story, your message, what you want to achieve, why are you posting….and continually assessing what is working for your business.

In closing….for those of you who knew I shied away from social media in the past……I hope you are smiling at how far I have came ;0   (Special thanks to Sterling Warners for creating this blog page – and then patiently training me !!)


Vintage GREEN….yes, that means the bulk of my vintage is GREEN. Of course, the word is a double dip these days. Green is to recycle, reuse and repurpose. My store is doing both! Finding great treasures that can be reused 🙂

At least once a week a customer asks me…… “What is your favorite color?” OR “What is your fascination with green.” When the favorite color question is asked….it’s fun to answer yellow or orange or purple….something that isn’t a big color in the store. My fascination…..I love the color green. I can be anywhere – and from a field away see the one green item!

Several years ago I bought my first green car ;0 My house has lots of green. (My husband loves blue….so I have had to do the nasty compromise and so our house is a mixture of blues, greens and whites – I love the cottage/farmhouse look). I literally wear something green every day. It probably would not surprise you to know all my earrings are green too ;0

My favorite green is sage….but I really do not discriminate against any shade!

Last month I finally am able to carry my own store t-shirts and baseball tees. I’m super excited to have green clothing with the store name on it. It is even more exciting when one of you purchases it. And then to have you send me the pic of you wearing it……makes my heart smile 😉

So, if you are like me…..and #greenisyourjam…..let me know!! (And, if you want a tee – I ship!)

(Tee photo courtesy of the designer….my dear friend, Amber

It’s Like Retro…..No, it IS Retro

This past weekend I was selling at a market. One of my customers pointed at this pitcher and said to her friend, “hey, look at that pitcher, it’s like retro!”……to which I explained it IS retro.

Everything that comes to my store is Vintage. It’s not made in China or reproduced. Each item is hunted for, found, washed, glued, fixed, repaired, painted and loved on. Not one item comes from another country or arrives in a box.

Which means what you find in my store may not be available the next time you come in…..or you may not be able to have two of the same item. It’s all unique. And all handpicked.

That’s my favorite part of the store….the hunt 🙂 finding a treasure that I think you may love and enjoy. And remember…..Vintage Green offers one-of-a-kind, authentic, vintage treasures 🙂

Jean’s Minnie House

Last week I had the opportunity to fall in love with my friend Jean’s Minnie House.

It is the darlingest little she-shed in her back yard. As I was gushing all over it she told me that …..her husband had built it for her, they used scraps, pieces, reused, repurposed, recycled it all. Jean’s extra touches, a piece of ribbon there, a strip of lace, twinkle lights, numbered drawers…….and are just pure eye candy.

You walk the path to get to the Minnie House. It is surrounded by flower gardens and a patio set. As I walked around it the window boxes and shutters were like sprinkles on a cake.

Jean also told me her Mom’s name was Minnie. (So so so very sweet)

Brace yourself though….you are going to want a Minnie House. Thank you, Jean, for sharing with me.

(And you need to know my pictures absolutely do not do justice to this sweet yard and Minnie House).

Feeling Big Time

While I was hatching, plotting and planning opening my dream store I spoke with all my business-owner friends. What are hidden costs, what is the key to surviving, what do you wish someone had told you, what would you do differently…….and if you know me; you know I asked all kinds of questions and wrote them in my notebook!

One of the hidden costs is how you package a purchase for a customer. The bag and the wrapping. Do you use ribbons? All upfront costs. So I did what I could afford first. Online, and at the grocery store, I bought plain brown bags. Then I wrote thank you on each bag (in green, of course!). At an estate sale I found boxes of old sewing patterns; super easy to use that as wrapping. That idea actually turned out really well! I love reusing the patterns.

But as my business feet have become more stable I started getting the itch for my next investment step. (May 1, 2017 will mark the two-year opening of Vintage Green.) My sight has been on getting real bags. Thanks to my store neighbor friends, VerDuins, they helped me find what I was looking for AND at a price I could afford. Yesterday I picked them up. I am super, way, crazy, over-the-top excited about having my OWN store bags.

So, hurry in to the store, buy something so I can put it in a bag for you! And …..I might just be wet-eyed <3