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Sunday, April 26, 2009

"The French Flea" Part 2

This is another post about the new shop I'm going to be selling at here in Anoka, Minnesota. In the previous post I explained a bit about what an Occasional Sale shop is and how it runs, so this posting will be more about before photos as well as a few in the middle of photos. I took a few shots last Thursday when setting up was beginning, so they aren't the best, but will give you a taste of what is yet to come. Julie and Terri are really the gals that originally came up with this vision and they are doing a great job with pulling it together. Julie has been recently working long hours and is seen in many of the painting photos further on in the photos posted. Thanks gals for letting me a part of this great new venture.

I will be selling my vintage redesign jewelry at this shop, as well as misc. smalls. I have posted photos of some of my smalls that I will be selling in the shop for your viewing. I only took photos of my smalls, as many of the other vendors didn't have their items in yet, or weren't displayed. Things will be different for the May 1st opening, so you'll just have to stop in and see it in all of its glory, but here's a sampling for now.

Lani and Julie worked on providing a great postcard for the shop and this is the front of it.

I'm selling lots of silver, cloches, birds eggs, misc. architecture, garden items, etc.

Below is the back side of the postcard Lani and Julie created with more information about the styling of the shop as well as store open dates and times.

This is a shot of the outside of the shop. It is really a great looking shop from the outside, but at the time I took this photo the old sign of the former shop named Pure Bliss was still on the building. I have tried to add the new shop name on top of the old here. Too funny! Just wanted you all in blogger land to be able to see the exterior of the building and know what you'll be looking for when you come to visit me at the new shop. lol Now that is being opptomistic!

Photo of me shown near my area that my jewelry will be set up permanently at the shop. I will be heading in tomorrow to actually get the area set up as I want with props and the beginning of jewelry items. Stuff is piled on the table at this point, but I will plan to share an after photo in the upcoming days of my jewelry area before the sale begins.

Now to the beginning of the shop preparation. Their were a number of plaster areas that needed attending to. Note the before color in this photo was a ivory/rose color and the new color is a nice warm color and quite "French" feeling with the black, and neutrals we're using in this shop.

A view from the middle of the shop looking towards the Main Street in Anoka. We have great side walk viewing windows as you can see. Julie is painting in the lower left corner, and three men are watching. Hmmm! I think there might be a problem here. lol Actually, all three of these guys were involved and helpful with the shop opening, just not in this photo.

There are basically two rooms to the shop, as well as a patio area. The front shop area is a nice size and quite open, so Julie has been working on some great division areas with architectural elements, etc. Julie is shown here painting in the back room area. It has been divided for 1/2 retail space and 1/2 private area for bookkeeping, etc. for the shop.

Two of the vendors are busy painting here. Since this time, the french doors and header have been removed, blocked up, sheet rocked, spackled and painted. This is the area that my jewelry will be showcased in. There was a lot of detail work and cutting in that needed to be done. This is the area of work I helped with as well, since I'm best at detailed painting, but lent my hand in the back room detail work. No photos to prove I was there working, but I was.

It was decided that the green ceiling would have to stay, since time restraints didn't allow for an overhaul on that too. The walls and the flooring would be time consuming enough. Here Terri is shown, as one of the vendors husband is using a hair dryer to hurry up the drying of the spackling that was done.

These two people worked like crazy people and along with Julie did most of the rolling of the large wall areas the night we all painted. This is the room I worked in with detail work around doors, duct work, and pipes. This area will be retail space, as the metal door seen in the right of the photo leads out to the patio area.

Photo is to show the before of the carpet. It was pretty bad, and since it had already been cleaned and still looked bad it was decided it would be painted. The days chosen didn't work into my schedule, so I can't take any credit for how this turned out. It actually looks quite wonderful.

Julie doing her magic with paint on the icky carpeting that was existing.

A nice shot I borrowed off Lani's blog of the completed floor, so you all would see it done. Thanks Lani!


One of the vendors has four of these great French styled chairs.

This is a "Junk Market" style junk re purposing project that I've done for the shop. It is a vintage stamp holder, with glass test tubes and at this time some faux flowers in the test tubes. I actually plan to have live flowers for the opening of the shop, but am waiting for some blooms.

Lots of great neutrals will be hi-lited in the shop. We are working on a French/European theme and black, white, greys and ivories are all great colors for this look.

Another area that was starting to get set up last Thursday.

This is a very cool open back bookcase that I think Lani brought in for sale. A lot of the smalls are items that I've brought in. They were just set here for the time being, as we really haven't gotten to the point where all of the big furniture pieces had been brought in yet.

Some great little French inspired flats.

This beautiful silver dish, real birds nest, faux eggs, moss, wood piece with moss and cloche are being sold at the shop as a vignette altogether. I just love nature and the aspects it can provide to the European and French style.

Check out this cool door! It is original to the building, and I'm wondering why a metal door such as this was used? It adds great ambiance to the overall feeling of this area and where it leads to.


Look at this fabulous brick wall we have in our courtyard. Note the wonderful patina it has. We plan to use this area for a garden inspired area, with lots of great items for your gardens as well as furniture that is appropriate for the outdoors.

This photo is looking back towards the metal door from our building. The courtyard is a wood floor and has wonderful varying brick patinas around three sides of the area. There is a fence and garden gate on the fourth side. Shown in this photo are the four "JunkFest" gals from North Dakota and my best friend, Carolyn. Its the only photo I had of this area, so hopefully I didn't offend anyone with its posting.

Now, get the May 1st and 2nd date written on your calenders and plan to see for yourself this great new shop in Anoka, Minnesota. Be sure to introduce yourself when you stop in if I don't already know you. I'll be there May 1st and again on May 14th. Hope to see you then!


  1. Thanks for the sneak peek Gretchen! I wish you all the best on this exciting venture. I hope to get there sometime in the near future!!

  2. It's looking great, Gretchen! Love the courtyard!

  3. Hi Gretchen! I LOVE your vintage stamp holder re-purpose!!! The store is looking wonderful and so full of potential. We wish you all a ton of wonderful customers and unlimited energy as you fulfill your dreams! Can't wait to see some pictures of opening day!...You gals are so creative! Take Care. Lynette (Junk-fest girl)

  4. Gretchen, I looks simply wonderful! All your hard work and passion will make this a destination shopping experience like no other. Kudos! All the best in the upcoming sales!

  5. Gretchen - I think if you look closely at the picture of us seeing the garden area of your new shop, you can see the drool running down my chin!

    How lucky you girls are to have found such a great store space! I will be coming sometime this summer and will give you a buzz. Have a great time and I look forward to seeing more pics. Best wishes, Andrea

  6. This is exciting, a very impressive place. Can't wait to visit.

  7. I spy with my little eye my Aunt Cass!!! :)

    Your shop is to die for! I hope to stop there the next time that I'm in the area!


  8. wow, you ladies have done a lot to the place! I was just in there today. it look phenomenal!


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