Jackson County is known as a haven for lovers of all things vintage and antique. Shops offer everything from antique furniture and architectural salvage items to restored housewares and vintage clothing. Here are four stores filled with unique finds:
End of Main Antiques & Home Decor
Rather than going through a dealer, co-owners John Wermuth and Mark Bryant seek out merchandise themselves, regularly going on picking trips throughout the southeast in search of interesting finds for their shop at 482 West Main Street in Sylva. End of Main specializes in mid-century modern furniture and what Wermuth describes as “the funkier items.” Shoppers often spend time in the store, he says, not just browsing the merchandise but enjoying the atmosphere. “People love the personal feel of our business,” says Wermuth. “They hang out, social distancing, of course, and we talk about what’s going on.”
Dixie & Co.
Owner Dixie Mae routinely brings in antiques from local mountain farmsteads and estates as well as locations farther afield. Her shop, located at 630 West Main Street in Sylva (with a second entrance at 635 Mill Street), offers a wide variety of vintage clothing and metaphysical items as well as vintage boots, furniture, home décor and collectibles and cast iron cookware and country primitives. “There is a trend toward antique cast iron cookware,” says Dixie Mae. “We take pride in the time we spend fully restoring it.”
The Front Porch General Store
Located at 27 Church Street, in Dillsboro, The Front Porch offers a wide variety of home goods with a focus on farm and cottage items, antiques, primitives and vintage finds. Locally crafted pieces are also a big draw for customers, according to co-owner Lisa Hoyle. The shop’s ever-changing inventory may include anything from quilts and antique books to a pre-Civil War era mantel and a 1910 Hoosier cupboard. “I love pieces with great history that I can share with customers,” says Hoyle. “Building relationships and finding those special one-of-a-kind pieces that people are looking for is important.”
Habitat for Humanity ReStore
ReStore, located at 1315 West Main Street in Sylva, is an independently owned reuse store operated by local Habitat for Humanity organizations that accept donations and sell home improvement items to the public at a small portion of the retail price. Because all merchandise is donated, shoppers never know what they’ll find from one week to the next. Appliances, furniture and building materials are just some of the items typically available. “We’re a nonprofit, so when people shop in our store, the money they spend stays in Jackson County and goes toward helping people that are living in substandard housing or toward doing repairs for disabled and elderly people,” says ReStore director Debby Westerman.