Antiques Galore in an Unexpected Place: Florence, Colorado

 

Vintage Pewter Teapots and Silverware Vintage Dress Forms from Florence, CO

Favorite Colorado Town for Vintage & Antiques

Listen closely. I’m about to share one of my favorite Colorado locations to shop for vintage and antique treasures! You’ll need to head south on I-25 and commit to driving about ninety minutes outside the greater Denver metro area. But don’t worry—even if you have to endure construction delays between Castle Rock and Colorado Springs, I promise it will be worth it. Put on your favorite playlist or podcast and prepare to be amazed.

Florence is in eastern Fremont County, sitting on the southern banks of the Arkansas River.  Measuring just over four square miles, the former railroad town features a quaint two-block Main Street, where you’ll find over a dozen antique shops with a wide variety of merchandise to tempt you.

Photo of Vintage Market Window Display in Florence, Colorado Christmas Vintage Terrarium

Vintage Winter Charm

I love going there on a warm summer day and meandering between shops with a cold drink in hand. But my recent November visit was just as relaxing and filled with Holiday cheer. Beautifully decorated shop windows featured winter vignettes overflowing with antique sleds, skates, tree ornaments, yard décor, and seasonal tableware. Some shops glittered with silver and gold accents, while others featured a clean, mid-century style. Colorado Rustic is a favorite look, of course, and the warm feel of vintage wool blankets, plaid shirts, and cozy cabin décor wraps you up like a warm fire on a dark winter night.

Where to Eat in Florence

And I’m happy to report that Florence also boasts plenty of places to eat and drink when you need a break from shopping. You’ll find several coffee shops, Mexican food, steak, sushi, Indian cuisine, and a great little café called Aspen Leaf Café and Bakery. We stopped in for a late lunch of veggie burgers and giant homemade brownies, which gave us the stamina to continue exploring. I came home with several great finds: an oversized antique jar that’s perfect as a vase, a rustic wooden doll bed I’ll use as a display piece, and some perfectly tattered black and white photos to add to my collection.

It’s truly an authentic Colorado experience, and there’s still plenty of time to head south and do some holiday shopping in Florence. As all intrepid antique geeks know, you can’t guarantee.

 


SHOP VINTAGE THIS HOLIDAY SEASON

We’re hosting seven Denver Vintage and Antique Sellers bring you a special Collectors Holiday Market pop-up shop. Each vendor has a special collection of antique treasures. Including Vintage Holiday Decor, Antique Furniture, Fine Art, Antiques, Native American Collectibles, Glassware, and Gifts

Collectors Holiday Market

Friday & Saturday | 11am-3pm
December 6-7 | December 13-14  |  December 20-21
8800 W 14th Avenue in Lakewood

GET DIRECTIONS

How to Create a Spooky Vintage Vignette

Using vintage in your Halloween pumpkin themed party display. Created by Denver Prop Stylist at Plank & Pearl. Halloween party display using vintage candle holders, branches, a crystal cake stand, pumpkins and a creepy old doll head for a whimsically spooky look. Party design styled by Plank & Pearl Denver, CO.

 

Holidays are an especially wonderful time to create a vintage display in your home. An artfully arranged collection of themed items can make the plainest corner come alive with a spirit of nostalgia, whimsy, and humor. And part of the fun is that the vignette is temporary—you gather your supplies, spend an hour (or three!) bringing your vision to life, and then quickly pack it away when the day or season passes.

VINTAGE INSPIRED DISPLAYS ELEVATE THE PRESENTATION

The two Halloween vignettes I’m sharing combine things you might already own—such as a pedestal cake plate, low wooden bowl, etc.—with a few vintage elements you might find at a Denver antique mall or local thrift shop. The first is a larger, more intricate display, spanning the top of an antique wooden buffet. When using a large piece of furniture, it helps to vary the height of your objects to create visual interest.  You can use a few old books, a wooden box, and tall candle holders as elevation “tools.”

 

Halloween Party Buffet Style by Plank & Pearl of Denver, CO.

 

SPOOKY ODDITIES

The vintage tin with a ceramic hand, black cat figurine, and doll’s head come from my personal collection of spooky oddities, gathered over time. It’s always smart to begin searching for unusual pieces several months before you need them since the curating process always takes far more time than anticipated. And don’t forget to add a few natural elements to your design, such as the pumpkins and fruit I grabbed at the grocery store, and the small branches scattered around my backyard. These small touches really ground your vignette in a particular season and time of year.

 

Vintage inspired Halloween cocktail display using vintage barware, faux fur, hand molds, a brass vase and pumpkins on top of a vintage table. Prop styling by Plank & Pearl Denver, CO.

 

The second vignette is the direct result of a lucky find I happened upon as I glanced down at the floor of the crowded furniture area in my local thrift store.  The vintage cement glove mold hands seemed to reach up to me for a big Halloween hug! I love it when a single object inspires a display because it makes the process so much easier. Rather than rearranging your materials a hundred times to discover the focal point, you only need to add a few “appetizers” to your “main dish.”

CHANGE YOUR PERSPECTIVE TO CHECK FOR DEAD SPACE

As you can see, I reused the pumpkins from the first vignette and swapped the large buffet for a small desk tossed with a faux fur for texture. On the base of the glove mold, I placed a decanter of wine, two vintage goblets, and then strung some spider web gauze between the hands. When I think I’m finished, I always walk around the vignette and look at it from different angles. The change in perspective helps me decide if the design is cohesive, tells a story, and creates the desired effect. Be open change: remove a few objects if it seems a bit messy or add something new if you notice a dead space. In this case, I felt I needed the cow skull and container of dried cotton blossoms to further the spooky mood.

If you’re an old hand at designing holiday vignettes, you already know some short-cuts that make the process easier. If you’re just starting out, please know it’s more about trial and error than a special skill handed out at birth. Be willing to play. Trust your eyes. And it always helps to have more materials on hand than you think you’ll use. Put on some great music and free yourself from any limiting expectations. Don’t forget to take a few photos to keep for reference. You’ll love looking at them next year, to help inspire a fresh new vision.

 

Looking to add some vintage style to your next party or event in the Denver area?

HIRE COLEEN

 

Thank You Denver & What’s Next

September Vintage Sale, Denver, CO

I want to send a huge thank you to those of you who visited our final VINTAGE EXTRAVAGANZA sale at Plank & Pearl last weekend! It was wonderful to see some familiar faces, and I truly appreciate those of you who have been attending our sales since last spring! Hopefully, you found some unique treasures at bargain prices!

The three-day sale was busy and fun, and many of our shelves are empty. Most of the vintage sofas and chairs are gone, though we have quite a few of wicker pieces still available. I think the most popular item we sold was vintage glassware, and most of it went home with customers who are planning a wedding, thinking ahead to holiday tables, or just want a set for everyday use at home. They are lovely, indeed!

DENVER POP-UPS COMING SOON

Although we won’t have another giant Plank & Pearl sale again this year (since our inventory is largely sold) we will be offering some pop-up shopping opportunities in November and December that will include other vendors with their own unique vintage and antique merchandise.

ONLINE SHOP + STYLING OPPORTUNITIES

We’ll send an announcement later this month, as well as an introduction to our online shop of curated vintage pieces. And we’d like to remind you that we offer home styling services, party design, and sourcing help for those seeking special vintage furniture, rugs, artwork, and decor for home or office.

GETTING SPOOKY!

Halloween is just around the corner, and we do love spooky vintage decor! Look for our upcoming blog about decorating for the holiday with thrift store finds and DIY projects!

Thanks,

Coleen

 

Six Things to Always Buy at the Thrift Store

Glassware finds at thrift stores

In a previous post, I shared that I have a personal list of things I will never buy at a thrift store, and encouraged you to create one of your own. Knowing that I’m just never going to purchase sheets, shoes, or swimwear gives me more time to hunt for treasures and bargains that I truly love! So today I want to detail six items I believe should always end up in your cart. Each is a household essential you that you will absolutely use, and will save you lots of money, over time.

Baskets-Thrift Store shopping tips

  1. Wicker Baskets. Yes, they seem to crawl out of the woodwork in the lead-up to Easter and spring, but they’re a staple in thrift stores all year long. Many stores have an entire aisle of shelves bursting with every size, shape, and color. I use baskets for home storage in nearly every room and closet of my home, and they make beautiful containers for plants, and for giving gifts. Make sure the one you pick has secure handles, no broken or loose weaving, and is strong/big enough for the use you have in mind. Normally priced between $3.00 and $6.00, it sure beats paying $89.00 for a laundry style basket from West Elm.Thrift Store Vases
  2. Vases. Again, you’ll find an astounding array on thrift store shelves—in glass, wood, metal, stone, and plastic (which I avoid). For just a few dollars each, you can afford a small collection that will work for all of your floral needs. I like to have a few bud vases, an oversized vase for large arrangements, and several clear glass cylinders on hand. If I’m giving a bouquet as a gift, I’ll look for something interesting and unusual that the recipient can keep, reuse, or donate. 
  3. Glassware. We break them. Our family and friends break them. They emerge from the dishwasher with chips or cracks and slip from our hands like oiled fish. But don’t stress about it, because your local thrift store is a goldmine of replacements. A nice set of four Marquis Waterford whiskey/old fashioned tumblers cost over $40.00 on Amazon, but I’ve found the same set for $4.00 at the thrift store. Whether I need extra flutes for a champagne toast, regular old water glasses, or a beautiful set of martini glasses to go with a bottle of nice vodka for a friend’s birthday, I can find them all at a price so low it doesn’t matter if they break.
  4. Picture Frames. It’s true that they’re often thrown together in a bin at the thrift store, and that many will have cracked glass and broken frames. But with some patience (be careful not to get cut) and digging, you’ll unearth some true beauties. Look for new ones in the original packaging, from stores like Pottery Barn, IKEA, and Michael’s. Many people receive lovely frames as gifts, only to donate them back because the style or size just doesn’t work. You can find brand new poster frames for a dorm room, shadow boxes for memorabilia or miniature frames to line a shelf or mantle.
  5. Serving platters. Every year as the holidays roll around, I’ll realize I need an extra platter for serving food. Or maybe two. So I head to the thrift store where a large, oval stoneware platter in a lovely shade of ivory is just waiting for me! Especially if it’s heavy and has no cracks or chips—and costs under $5.00—you can bet I’m going to bring it home. This is the time of year to find those amazing vintage ceramic Turkey platters with the turkey design or sweet china platters with a scalloped edge and delicate florals. I like to keep a small stack of interesting ones to use when I give baked goods as a gift. They’re so much more fun than paper or plastic, and the recipient doesn’t have to worry about returning it—it’s part of the package!Gift Wrap-Thrift Store shopping recommendations
  6. Gift Wrap. You might have guessed by now that I love giving gifts! So you won’t be surprised that I purchase my wrapping paper, bows, tags, and gift bags from the thrift store. When I can find a roll of designer paper for .99 cents that’s brand new and bears a price tag of $15.99, I have to stop myself from doing an embarrassing happy dance in the aisle. And if you want to avoid paper and the waste it creates, look for wooden boxes, fabric, or baskets (yep, baskets again!). 

I have dozens of more examples of items to always buy at the thrift store, which I’ll save and share in the future. But hopefully, these six ideas will get you thinking of more household essentials to look for when you’re cruising the thrift store with an empty cart.

OUR LAST AND FINAL IN-PERSON SALE IS HAPPENING SEPTEMBER 26-28.
SIGN UP BELOW TO GET THE VINTAGE SALE DETAILS!



Are You Afraid of Thrift Stores?

Start By Shopping Thrift Stores One Section At A Time

As a deeply devoted thrift store shopper (for over three decades), I sometimes forget that lots of people actually hate the entire concept of buying used goods in a space that was once home to a run-down grocery store. Many a friend or acquaintance has admired a beautiful piece of art in my home, or the NTW (“new with tags”) designer dress I found for $9.99. They may compliment me on my taste or “good eye,” and even admire how much money I save by thrifting, but then admit that it’s “just not for me.” The reasons always vary, of course, but here are some of the most frequent comments I hear about thrift stores:

  • “It smells funky in there!”
  • “The fluorescent lighting is so garish and bright!”
  • “Everything’s probably dirty and full of germs!”
  • “There’s so much—stuff! How can you even find anything?”
  • “The music they play is so corny and ridiculous!”
  • “The people who shop there are just too weird!”

Do you perhaps share these sentiments? If so, let me gently point out that big shopping malls have the very same issues. They smell like bad pizza and strong perfume, the lighting is harsh, the music is bad, the amount of stuff is overwhelming, and the other shoppers are totally weird. Oh, and the part about germs? Don’t even think about the biohazards of touching an escalator railing or putting your bare feet on the scary carpet in dressing rooms!

Maybe we’re just completely acclimated to shopping malls, and so familiar with the environment that nothing feels scary or outside our comfort zone. If you’ve never (or rarely) shopped in a thrift store, I can see why you might have preconceived ideas and maybe just a little bit of fear. Sometimes, the best way to conquer fear is through “exposure therapy,” which means allowing yourself to experience something new in very small bites until familiarity wraps a protective forcefield around you. So, if you’re intrigued by thrifting, and get the financial and environmental benefits, here are five ideas that may help you get started.

Thrift Stores Can Be Overwhelming

5 things to help you start shopping thrift stores

  1. If you like the “small bite” approach, decide you’ll make a quick stop (no more than fifteen minutes) at your local shop and explore just one area of the store. Maybe you’re interested in books, tableware, or lamps, but have no desire to look at toys, furniture, tools, or jewelry. Simply follow the signs to your chosen category and begin to narrow your focus. If you’re in front of shelves of books, for instance, pick out a recent hardback novel and flip through the pages. Is the cover in good shape? Is it free of pencil marks and highlighted passages? Does it have that addictive smell of paper and ink, rather than cigarette smoke or a damp basement somewhere in Ohio? Is it a book you’d actually like to read, for only a fraction of the retail price? Then go for it! Take it home and congratulate yourself on being a conscious consumer! And when you’re finished, pass the book on to a friend, who may pass it to another friend. 
  2. If the smell of the store bothers you, remind yourself how stuffy and sweaty your local gym is or the closet in your home with all the mucked-up winter boots and old shoes. So many places we frequent during daily life have very specific and individual smells. I’m thinking of the dust and grease of the car repair shop, the strong scent of animals at the veterinarian’s office or the whiff of slightly rancid oil at your favorite burger place. Remember that odors are temporary and unlikely to cause you any lasting harm.  And keep in mind that anything you purchase from a thrift store can (and should!) be cleaned the minute you get it home. Wash or dry clean all pieces of clothing and run plates and glassware through the dishwasher. Large items like a barely used camping tent can be left to air out in the sun and then sprayed with a product like Febreze, leaving it fresh and ready to go.Brand New or Almost New Thrift Store Finds
  3. Just to add some perspective, if you’re out thrifting and find something you like, use your cell phone to log onto eBay, Etsy, or Poshmark and do some quick research. You may be astonished to find that a set of six retro cocktail glasses from the 1960s priced at $1.99 each is selling online for $100.00 or that a good-as-new leather handbag from a brand you don’t know is actually available at Nordstrom for three times the thrift store price. How happy do you feel about your thrifted item now?
  4. Know that it’s a false assumption that thrift store shoppers are either old and lonely, poor and sad. Some of the wealthiest people I know love thrifting, for the thrill of the hunt and to find a bargain. And many shops develop a near cult following of young, hip creatives who are committed to reusing and upcycling as part of a sustainable lifestyle. I’ve had dozens of fascinating conversations at thrift stores, with diverse people from every walk of life. I once helped an art professor on crutches unearth some framed vintage illustrations for his office and discussed the merits of Hawaiian shirts with three teenage girls. I’ve laughed hysterically with a Nigerian family over an entire shelf of tacky, holiday snowglobes and bumped into a neighbor searching for plates to match her mother’s wedding china.Thrift Store Deals Sewing Patterns
  5. Finally, know that it’s perfectly acceptable to embrace the thrifting experience while maintaining your own personal list of “not for me” items. For instance, my list contains the Three Ss, which means I never purchase sheets, shoes, or swimwear. We all have our limits when it comes to pre-owned goods and those are mine! In a future blog, I’ll definitely talk about the things one should always buy at a thrift store, but for now, let me leave you with some wise words from talented actor Orlando Bloom:

“The best way to look stylish on a budget is to try second-hand, bargain hunting and vintage.”

 



Summer Vintage Extravaganza | June 20 & 22

Our June 20th VIP Sale, taking place on the eve of the Summer Solstice (the public sale is on Saturday, June 22), will once again feature some fun, themed rooms with curated collections. We absolutely love themes and think nothing is more fun than creating unique areas that offer an immersive experience. Our March sale was focused on spring treasures for the home and garden, and we filled the rooms with florals, pastel colors, planting pots, vintage gardening décor, tableware, and décor.

To change things up in April, we divided our space into color-coded areas, which included pink, blue, and a mix of black and gold. Our eyes naturally notice harmony and symmetry, so a grouping of items based on color can be a rich sensory experience.

So, we’re really excited to give you a preview of a few themes we’ll be featuring later this week:

Summer Brights Collection at June 20 sale by Plank & Pearl

SUMMER BRIGHTS

You’ll walk into our main room and be greeted by an explosion of color called “Summer Brights.” Here you can explore the colorful side of vintage, from tropical print dresses to home goods, art, and linens.

Americana Vintage for July Fourth at Plank and Pearl Summer Sale

AMERICANA

Moving straight ahead into our warehouse, you’ll enter our “Americana Fourth of July” vignettes, with an abundance of red, white, and blue vintage items, as well as patriotic art and books, and a splash of nautical décor.

Vintage Wicker Wonderland from Plank & Pearl Vintage Summer Sale

WICKER WONDERLAND

Sharing the space is our “Wicker Wonderland” with, wait for it—everything wicker—from Peacock chairs to an assortment of baskets, to side tables and lounge chairs. We hope you’ll be inspired to add some pieces to your patio, sunroom, or front porch.

Summer Camp Vintage for Sale June 20 and 22 at Plank and Pearl

SUMMER CAMP

Finally, our favorite theme might be the “Summer Camp” room, with our version of a backyard tent, as well as retro picnic baskets, blankets, thermoses, camp lanterns, and the right amount of silly kitsch for a light-hearted summer.

JOIN US FOR THE VIP SALE

SUMMER VINTAGE EXTRAVAGANZA

Thursday, June 20, 2019  •  6:00 PM – 9:00 PM
8800 West 14th Avenue  •  Lakewood, CO 80215

We’ll be treating you to sangria, snacks, and the first look at our new finds.

As always, you can purchase your $10 ticket through Eventbrite!

BUY A TICKET

Unable to make the VIP event? That’s okay, join us for the public sale
on Saturday, June 22 from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm.

I CHANGED, AND SO DID MY BUSINESS

 

It’s interesting how often I hear the word “solid” when small business owners talk about their companies, and how things are going.  Here are a few examples:

  • I have a pretty SOLID business plan.
  • We had a SOLID first quarter.
  • Our work has been really SOLID this month.

It’s such a strong and confident word—one that creates images of firm pillars set in concrete or ancient mountain peaks rising out of a stormy sea. And, oh, how I wish I could tell you that in the ten years that I’ve owned Plank & Pearl, I’ve had SOLID reasons to sprinkle the word masterfully into every conversation.

A Fluid Business

But that would be a lie. The truth is that my small, niche business has always been FLUID and subject to change. It’s been built on my single, unchanging passion—but has morphed and shape-shifted significantly several times. I’m much more likely to say:

  • The financial health of my business is, well—FLUID at the moment!
  • My ideas are FLUID and sometimes they spill over and make a mess!
  • My favorite FLUID is coffee!

 

History of Plank & Pearl

But jokes aside, I actually believe that feeling/being fluid can be a strength when changes happen in the market, in your niche, and in your personal life. I started my business selling vintage treasures online through an Etsy shop and on eBay, while I still had children at home. It worked perfectly because I could photograph, list, and ship from home, while cooking dinner and having weird conversations with teenagers. When the college years came along, I had more time to hunt for inventory and create collections. When the collections took over our basement and garage like fast-growing mold, I moved on to vintage markets and pop-up shops—which required me to rent several storage units on a scary, busy road (because it was cheaper). Each time I tried to leave the parking lot and make a left turn toward home, I was taking a gamble the size of a Las Vegas card shark.

And then came the fateful moment when I had enough cool things in dangerous storage units that my oldest daughter decided to incorporate a few into her small, intimate wedding. The second fateful moment occurred at the wedding itself, when a guest in a very tiny dress (I think it was a dress) asked if I rented out my cool things for other weddings. Hmmmm. Other weddings? Is that even a thing?

Turns out it is, indeed, a thing. And I did that thing quite happily for nearly four years, part of those with the help of my gifted friend and business partner, Julie Gordon. We delivered velvet settees to mountain meadows, and chandeliers hanging from antique birdcage stands to remote and rustic barns near the Wyoming border. We polished brass candle holders and hand-washed hundreds of vintage china plates. We had the pleasure of being part of happy, giddy, loving celebrations with wonderful clients, working alongside vendors and colleagues with more creativity and work ethic than any group of professionals I’ve ever known.

Plank and Pearl Vintage Business-Denver Colorado

 

Sounds pretty perfect, right? The slow progression and then sudden growth of a business that began in my kitchen. Pretty solid, right? A nice “here’s how I started my business” story to share over frozen rosé cocktails? Well, yes, I guess. Except for the FLUID principal—or pattern, or whatever it is that made me suddenly aware of some little voices in my head whispering, “Change is coming again, so you better get ready!”

And the changes have arrived, no surprise—for both Julie and for me. We’re both in the very specific chapter of our lives when we take care of elderly parents, are close with our adult children, and have begun to experience small dings to our health like messed up backs from lifting those velvet settees, crabby knee joints, and maybe even the odd kidney stone (yes, it happened to me and it’s a SOLID truth that it hurts more than childbirth!).  And on the sunny side of the street, I have a daughter getting married this summer and another pregnant with our very first grandchild!

Julie and her husband are planning more travel and beginning to explore the volunteer work they want to accomplish when retirement gets closer.

Vintage Sales in Denver Colorado

 

Plank & Pearl Business Changes

Time and energy are truly the hottest commodities around and so Plank & Pearl is evolving one more time. In March, I closed the rental side of the business to return to the foundation of it all, which is retail. I have our wonderful building in Lakewood for one more year, so we’re taking advantage of the large space to hold monthly pop-up shopping events, creative workshops, and new collaborations. It’s still about vintage: finding it, appreciating it, decorating with it, taking care of it, and being part of the necessary movement to reuse, recycle, upcycle, and repair. You’ll still find us at 8800 W. 14th Street, on social media, and through our website (which is currently undergoing changes to reflect our most current business model). We’d love to have you visit, attend an event, or meet us for your favorite FLUID!

Lighter & Brighter for 2018

 

In the life of any small company, so many changes in a year. It’s said that dogs live seven years to every year of ours, and I’m beginning to think that a twelve-month cycle for a wedding rental business can have the same feeling of acceleration!

 

Velvet Sofa Collection

2017 brought a vast array of change, challenges, and successes to Plank & Pearl. Just a year ago we were finishing the remodel of our building and stepping around ladders, paint cans, and sawdust. We hadn’t yet booked summer weddings and didn’t anticipate how busy we’d be August through December. We couldn’t’ imagine we’d buy the extensive vintage inventory of a local rental company that was closing shop. And most surprising of all was how our clients reacted to our fresh supply of beautifully upholstered vintage settees and chairs. The whimsy of tufted velvet in gorgeous gem-tones is in high demand. One bride described her choices as “straight out of a fairytale wedding.”

 

Plank and Pearl Webiste Intro

Our theme for 2018 is “lighter and brighter.” We’re excited to launch our redesigned website, with a brighter design and greater usability for our clients. We’ll be refreshing our inventory with new pieces and parting with older collections that don’t fit our more focused approach to event rentals. And, as always, it’s a brighter day when we get to work with some of Denver’s most talented wedding professionals in treasured Colorado venues.

As the days lengthen little by little, the skies are brighter and spring feels like a true possibility. At Plank & Pearl, our mood is lighter as we anticipate a sweet and festive wedding season—and hope that you are, too!

Interested in incorporating vintage into your wedding or event?
Browse our treasures and create a wishlist
to secure the items for your celebration.

Create A Wishlist

Setting the Table for Thanksgiving


Thanksgiving is the one holiday where a majority of Americans prepare and eat the very same meal on the very same day. Sure, there are endless variations on the stuffing, gravy, vegetables, and sides, but 88% of us will have a turkey, a pumpkin pie, and other traditional foods.

To add to that “sameness,” the media tends to use images of Thanksgiving tables dressed with plates, glassware, and napkins in orange, brown, and other harvest colors. You can almost smell the pumpkin spice latte candle burning in the center, surrounded by faux autumn leaves. Now, there’s nothing wrong with that at all. This brand of décor is appealing, comfortable, and seasonal.

But from a styling point of view, there are so many other options to consider—ones that reflect your personality and design vibe, and a willingness to mix tradition with some bolder choices. Here, we use our blue and white vintage plates with a very proud (and very alive!) turkey in the center. But we add the surprise of pale pink goblets, because there isn’t a rulebook that banishes pastels from a Thanksgiving table.

Personalize Your Thanksgiving Table Decor

If your style is more clean and modern, you might like the retro look of vintage stoneware, retro wine goblets, wood-handled flatware, and a few wooden accent pieces. The great thing about this design is that you can shop your local thrift store for great bargains on these 1970’s pieces and use them throughout the year. And because we’re a boutique rental company, we can’t resist mentioning that renting from collections like ours can be an easy and affordable way to try new styles for your holiday, without having to own, clean, or store all the “stuff!”

Finally, we wanted to showcase a favorite style of ours—mixing formal place settings with an unexpected rustic element. We started with elegant vintage china, silver flatware, and fancy gold-rimmed glassware. To take the predictable style to another level, we placed a porcelain bird on a rusty old food scale and draped it with a metallic gold garland. The result is unexpected and (in our opinion!) quite beautiful.

This year, don’t be shy about setting your table. If you have tableware, linens, or personal objects that are sentimental, quirky, and brimming with your unique personality, bring them to the table for everyone to see!

Want to customize your Thanksgiving table this year? Contact us today or select from our collection to complete your unique holiday tabletop design.

Museum of Mystery Open House

Museum of Mystery Fall Open House

Last week, Plank & Pearl had the honor of hosting a group of Denver wedding and event planners for an Open House to celebrate the end of a busy Colorado wedding season. We wanted to treat these hardworking professionals to an evening of appetizers, drinks, some mingling, and the opportunity to see our newest vintage rental collections.


We held the event in our intimate main-floor venue, which we rent for showers, cocktail parties, seated dinners, and celebrations of all kinds. The space is decorated and furnished completely from our vintage collections, and guests often remark that exploring our venue like visiting a museum.

Speaking of museums, the theme of our party was “Museum of Mystery,” or what is often called a “Cabinet of Curiosity.” What the heck is that you may wonder? Well, before there were any Museums of Natural History full of animal bones, taxidermy, insects, fossils, gems, botanical specimens, weird medical implements and scientific oddities, people who were interested in these things would curate their own collections and display them in special rooms called “cabinets. Historians date the concept all the way back to the 1500’s, and millions of people today take huge pride in showing off their treasured collections from the natural world. It was (and is) a way to try to understand the vast mysteries of the world around us.


Since owner Coleen Hubbard has an ongoing passion for collecting these kinds of objects, the theme was a chance to display many of her favorite finds. (You can see more of her collection in this Cabinet of Curiosities shoot.) It also ties in well with Halloween, which is always a time to celebrate mysteries of all kinds. Throughout the venue, we styled our vignettes with antique photos, vintage books, bones, rocks, apothecary bottles with dried foliage, and a tray of old dental and medical implements. Coleen loves theme parties because they provide endless ways to meld decor, food, and drink into a cohesive experience for guests. When you include the theme in an invitation, it creates a sense of anticipation for guests and gives them an idea of what to wear for the occasion.

Sometimes a bit of “creepy,” especially near Halloween, is just “what the doctor ordered!”


The “Museum” is closed until next year, but we think you’ll like our vintage Christmas style coming soon.

If you missed the party, we invite you to schedule a time to visit us and see what our venue and rental collections have to offer.

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