the Vintage Modern shop – vintage, budget chic style for your home & wardrobe

The Vintage Modern shop offers curated, vintage style at budget-friendly prices. It’s like shopping with a team of interior designers without the designer price tag. And you never even have to leave your couch.

vintage home decor

I guess the Twin Cities Really Loves Vintage and Feminism

Women in Business, Vintage home decor, Vintage Style, feminismPamela DeweyComment

Ever have one of those weeks that is super rewarding professionally, but just wipes you out physically and mentally?

Oh good. I’m glad I’m not the only one.

Last week, I participated in two markets, the FeMNist Night Market and the Refind Vintage Market. The number of people that attended these events was awesome. I talked to a lot of different folks about macramé, mid-century style, event planning, sourcing, small business startups, etc.

At the FeMNist Night Market, I met so many talented women, who are doing so many amazing things.

And I was just blown away by all the vintage lovers I met at Refind Vintage Market. There are a lot of people (like me) that love vintage style in the Twin Cities. It did my heart good.

And then in between those markets, I sold and delivered a table and chair set to a lovely family out in Brooklyn Center, MN.

And now this lady, well, she’s TIRED. So please forgive the short blog this week.

I know we've all been there.

I know we've all been there.

But thanks again to everyone that came out to the markets, and be on the lookout for new stock in the next couple weeks. I finally made some room in my house to buy some new pieces.

If there is anything in particular you are looking for, please feel free to reach out via email or social media. I may be able to help you find that perfect vintage piece you’ve been looking for.

Alright, I’m headed back to the couch for some much needed r&r.

Happy Holidays from the Vintage Modern shop!

Vintage home decor, Upcycling, Upcycled furniture, Unique Gift Ideas, Minnesota MakerPamela DeweyComment

Hi friends.

For some of you, your holidays are winding down. For others, the holidays are just about to kick into high gear. I just wanted to take some time out to say, Happy Holidays! And however you choose to celebrate, I hope all your presents are well received, your eggnog boozy and your cookie supply endless.

And for any of you procrastinators, I will be delivering furniture and home décor locally (Twin Cities) up through Saturday the 23rd. That’s right! You’ve still got time to wow your favorite person with some one-of-a-kind furniture or vintage home décor.

And for any of my friends in Iowa, I will be visiting from the 24th-27th, so hit me up if there is a piece you’ve been eyeing in the shop.

Have a safe and wonderful holiday season!

I like to call this one the "exploded view" of the  Black and White Mod Maple Dresser .

I like to call this one the "exploded view" of the Black and White Mod Maple Dresser.

We Want to Celebrate Our 1 Year Anniversary with You!

Home Decor Ideas, Home Design Ideas, macrame home decor, Minneapolis vintage shop, Minneapolis vintage store, Minnesota Makers, Upcycling, Vintage Love, Upcycled furniture, Vintage home decorPamela DeweyComment

Hi friends.

It’s hard to believe, but our digital doors have been open for 1 year today. Woo hoo! Cue the streamers and popping champagne bottles.

Ok. Ok. Now that we’ve all settled down a little bit, I wanted to look back at some of my favorite upcycled furniture and vintage home décor pieces.

Who could forget the Make It Your Family Farmhouse, Upcycled Trestle Table? I was lucky enough to have my dad build me a similar table for my dining room. And then my dad built another beautiful table for the shop, and a very nice family in Chanhassen made it theirs. This table was definitely a labor of love.

The Shoe Collector Curio Cabinet and Upcycled Wood Dresser was one of the first pieces listed in the shop. I love how the copper drawer fronts contrast with the blush pink chalk paint. Oh and the marble paper lined shelves and black and white knobs. If I had a bigger master bedroom, you can bet I would have a piece just like this one. I sold this piece to a very sweet woman who told me her two year old said, “Pretty,” when he saw it.

The Everything is Coming Up Champagne Vintage Carved Dresser is one of my favorites for all the amazing carved details. And I just love how raspberry chalk paint compliments the reds and browns of the wood tone. This dresser sold to a lovely couple who had just moved into a new apartment in St. Paul.

I had some more help on this one! My mother made this Knotty by Nature Vintage Macramé Plant Hanger Curtain back when macramé was first popular. I love it because it is such a unique, well-made piece. And it went to a fellow maker in Minneapolis, so I know it is being well loved.

The moment I saw these marble and brass candlesticks, I knew we needed the pair for the shop. These candlesticks didn’t even make it to the website. I sold these to a customer at the Minne-Mile NightMarket put on by Minneapolis Craft Market in June.

Marble and Brass candlesticks 1a.jpg

 

Please remember to check the site frequently! I will be adding some new pieces that I’m super excited about this week. Also if you are on our email list, please check your inbox tomorrow for a special offer in celebration of our 1 year anniversary. And if you’re not on the email list, anyone who joins this week will also receive our special offer.

Thanks for shopping the Vintage Modern shop! Now let’s get back to that champagne.

 

Why Shopping Vintage is One Way You Can Make a Difference

How to Make a Difference, Buying Vintage is Green, UpcyclingPamela DeweyComment

Hi friends.

I wrote this post before all the events transpired in Charlottesville, Virginia over the weekend, but I wanted to briefly address those acts of terror and intolerance.

I was horrified by the hatred and violence that occurred in Charlottesville, Virginia over the weekend. Emma Goldman said, "The most violent element in society is ignorance." White supremacists, neo-Nazis and other hate groups are not only completely ignorant, but are also incredibly dangerous. And we cannot let hateful speech and actions like this continue. We must denounce this type of intolerance, and we must be vigilant in our denouncement of it. So to all my friends that are people of color, queer, transgender, Jewish, female, and all other the people these ignorant, violent idiots are rallying against, I stand with you and against this type of hatred. 

The rest of the blog was written as a reaction to the federal climate report that was leaked last week.

***

This year has left many of us feeling helpless. There are so many causes that deserve our attention: police brutality, transgender rights, access to birth control, immigration law and let’s not forget—the environment.

Last week, I was reading about the federal climate change report in The New York Times, and it stated, “The average temperature in the United States has risen rapidly and drastically since 1980, and recent decades have been the warmest of the past 1,500 years.” 

So the world is getting warmer, as climate scientists have warned us for quite some time. And we are not doing enough to address it. There are still many that deny that global warming is caused by the actions of people.

I first learned about global warming in elementary school, and that it is caused by pollution. I never questioned my science teacher or the reading we did in our textbooks. I also tend to trust the 97% of the climate scientists that think global warming trends are likely due to human activities.

When I read things like the climate change report and hear about our country stepping back many environmental protections, I too feel a little helpless.

So what can we do to make a difference? Or more specifically, what can you do to help the environment?

You can shop vintage.

I know, I know. That sounds super self-serving. I own a vintage store. You’re absolutely correct.

But the truth is shopping vintage keeps these items out of landfills.

Remember our Stormy Sky Chic Upcycled Wood Dresser? I found that on a curb. It was in terrible shape. It took A LOT of repair work to fix that dresser. But fix it I did, and then a nice woman and her daughter purchased it for her daughter’s apartment.

But if I had not intervened, it is likely that dresser would have ended up in the garbage dump.

And who could forget our Make It Your Family Farmhouse, Upcycled Trestle Table? My dad built this table from boards removed from his family farmhouse. The house is no longer habitable, but the wood is certainly still usable. My dad pulled as much wood as he could out of his old home. He ended up making three tables, and has a fourth in the works, from all the boards he salvaged.

Obviously, not all vintage furniture or home décor is bound for the dumpster. But the truth is, some of it is.

There are plenty of people that don’t have desire, skills or time to rehab these items. And I get it. My life is incredibly busy too. I certainly don’t have the time to save every dresser on the curb.

But each dresser, pile of boards or old blanket that we rescue is one more step towards a healthier, less wasteful world.

We made these  Cabin Chic Upcycled Plaid Valances  from an old blanket. Green decor can look pretty beautiful, huh?

We made these Cabin Chic Upcycled Plaid Valances from an old blanket. Green decor can look pretty beautiful, huh?

And every time you buy vintage, know you are doing your part in helping care for our planet. It is a small thing, but if we all band together and do a lot of small things, it can make a big difference.

Oh and you may just get an awesome brass planter out of the deal. :)

6 Things You Might not Know about the Vintage Modern shop’s Owner (And Only 1 Involves a Paint Tray Down the Pants)

Friday Introductions, Being a Introvert, Vintage LovePamela DeweyComment

Hi friends.

In last week’s blog post, I promised to try to let go of some of my wallflower tendencies.

I've seen a lot of people posting these #FridayIntroductions stories on Instagram lately, so I thought I would try something similar. 

Hiiiiii!!! I’m Pam Dewey. I live in South Minneapolis with my wiener dog, Max. I love reading in my hammock, going to see live music, cooking, writing, shopping vintage and of course, refinishing  furniture.

I'm not well coordinated, and I spill paint, wine and really whatever I’m eating. I run because that is pretty much the only physical activity that I’m not horrible at. Besides bags. But playing bags doesn’t real burn that many calories. Especially if you drink wine while doing it. Which I do.

I own this online vintage store. I am also the boss, the designer, the shopper, the stylist, the marketer and the copywriter. And sometimes the photographer. (I'm getting better?!)

It's me! This is a picture of me in my living room/dining room. You can see my formerly avocado buffet, one of the first pieces I painted, behind me. Photo taken by Rachel Fettig.

It's me! This is a picture of me in my living room/dining room. You can see my formerly avocado buffet, one of the first pieces I painted, behind me. Photo taken by Rachel Fettig.

But I don’t do it all myself. I have help. My parents both lend their expertise, as does my graphic designer friend, Jeni Adkisson and my photographer friend, Rachel Fettig.

So here’s a little refresher on how I ended up opening an online vintage store.

I have loved vintage since my mom started taking me to antique stores when I was about five or six years old. Right away, I loved all the sparkly, costume jewelry at antique stores.

I also loved the old clothing. I love 50s and 60s style clothing, Dior New Look style dresses with nipped waists and the paisleys and the floral prints of the psychedelic era. There was an extended period of time where I wished I was born in 60s, so I could have lived my true life as a flower child. 

As I got a little older, I started to frequent thrift stores. I searched for the clothes to complete my grunge wardrobe along with cute, 50s style cardigans.

I kept thrifting as I moved out on my own and needed furniture and décor to furnish my apartments and then eventually my house.

I wasn’t into interior design at first, fashion was really passion. But when my mom helped me furnish my first solo apartment, I began to understand how pulling a room together is similar to pulling an outfit together. You need a design concept, a little bit of money and a lot of creativity.

And then I moved to NYC and started working as a visual stylist at Saks Fifth Avenue. Not only did I learn a lot more about fashion, but I also learned about interior design.

I learned how to create a statement wall with some peacock feathers and a staple gun, how to build a chandelier out of Frisbees and how to design fabric flowers from muslin and liquid starch. I also met some crazy talented, wonderful people who shared their knowledge with me.

It was wonderful. It was exhausting.

I got burnt out. So I landed in Minnesota, back much closer to my family in Iowa.

I started refinishing furniture, basically sanding and painting vintage furniture to give it new life. I started with an abandoned dresser at my old apartment. I spray painted it silver and added new hardware. It looked brand new.

The next piece I refinished was a vintage buffet I inherited from my grandparents. Sometime in the 60s, my grandma painted it the at-the-time popular avocado green. I painted over the unsightly avocado with black paint. The beautiful lines of the buffet were accentuated with the new, moody dark paint. 

I also decided it was time to go back to school. I enrolled in a Strategic Communication Master’s program, so I could find a new career, hopefully something with writing involved. Along with fashion and design, writing has been my longtime passion.

Last spring while I was deciding on a Capstone project, I had a “(wo)man in the mirror” type of moment. I wrote about that moment here. It was basically a “who-am-I-and what-am-I-doing-with-my-life” type of moment, and it led to me ditch my original project idea. Instead, I decided to write a business plan. A business plan for this business, the Vintage Modern shop.

That is how I wound up creating this website and how you wound up here. And because everyone loves a list these days (me especially), I thought I would share a list of more get-to-know me stories. 

1.     In the 3rd grade, I discovered I loved writing. We were assigned a story prompt (something about adventure), and I had to attach page after page of notebook paper to finish my story. I do write BIG, but I was also like wait, I can just make up a story and have anything I want happen in it? That sounds fabulous. I was hooked.

2.     At one point, I was so into the baggy pants, oversized, thrifted men’s shirts look that my mom was completely fed up. She went to The Buckle (I know all you Midwest kids know what The Buckle is) and came home with bags of clothing. I kept one shirt. My poor mother.

3.     My great grandmother had a large collection of vintage costume jewelry. When she passed, no one in my family really liked the jewelry, except me. I only kept two necklaces and some earrings. This is something I regret to this day. Her jewelry was bright and sparkly and FABULOUS. I should have saved every last piece. I should have channeled Iris Apfel and lived in my big, sparkly truth.

4.     Whenever I write something that I am really passionate about, I lose time. I become so involved in the story or blog or whatever that I look up and suddenly an hour is gone. It is the best feeling. Because I am so happy to be doing what I’m doing that the rest of the world falls away.

5.      I find painting furniture relaxing. I often just throw down a drop cloth in my living room, put on a movie and start painting.

6.     Even though I often paint in the living room, I am an incredibly messy painter. One time I was painting the stairs to my basement, and I didn't think to buy a smaller, stair-size paint tray. I ended knocking into the paint tray, and it went down the back of my pants. That’s right, I had paint go down my pants. Now when I paint, I wear an apron and use a drop cloth. But I still end up spilling paint. Oh well. Life is messy. Better to make yourself happy and worry about cleanup later, right?

Hope you enjoyed learning a little more about me! And thanks to Rachel for taking my picture. Truly, I am a lucky to know so many talented and generous folks.

5 Easy Steps to Hack Your New Home Design Project

Minneapolis vintage shop, Home Design Hacks, Design a Color StoryPamela DeweyComment

Hi friends.

As I’ve mentioned before, I am a bit of a home design nerd. I get really excited about picking out new paint, rugs, light fixtures, and then pulling all these items into a cohesive project. Like my entryway redesign that I did a few months back. Or my living room redesign which is still ongoing.

How do I get started on projects like these? It usually starts with a particular piece of furniture or maybe a paint color. And then I find items that compliment that inspiration piece. I basically build a color story around that item.

Wondering what a color story is? Don’t worry. You’re not alone.

I was talking to my friend and her boyfriend about my booth for the upcoming Minne-Mile NightMarket, and how excited I was about the color story I selected.

And her boyfriend was like, “Wait, what the heck is a color story?”

A color story is basically a set of colors you select to design a home, an event or even a tablescape. This group of colors, or color story, will guide the items you buy for that design project.

By selecting a color story, you are essentially eliminating some options and giving your project a focus. This is incredibly helpful if you are designing an entire home, or say planning how to display merchandise in a 10 X 10 tent.

Using a color story will also prevent your house from looking, like Elsie Larson from A Beautiful Mess quips, “a little bit like a crayon box, or different sets for a quirky girl television show.”

1.      Check out Pinterest and your favorite stores for inspiration.

Pinterest is amazing for planning design projects. You can create a board specifically for the project you’re working on and then pin all your ideas to the board. If you’re using the Pinterest app, you can just pull up your inspiration while you’re out shopping too. Super convenient.

I am diehard Target fan, and if you’ve been paying attention over the last few years, the discount store has really stepped up its home décor game. The Target I frequent has also created an area where home décor is merchandised much like what you would see in a department store. And you better believe this area always has a color story going on.

2.      Pick colors you love, not just what is trendy.

I love design trends just as much as the next gal, but I also know that just because a color is trendy doesn’t necessarily mean it’s for me.

Blush pink is really popular right now, and I admit I am a huge fan. But I’m not going to paint my entire living room blush pink.

I like blush pink, but I don’t like it THAT much.

When I repainted my living room, I painted it black and white. Not only is black and white a classic color palette, but I have also loved this combination since about the third grade. I think it’s pretty safe to say I won’t be changing my mind about black and white anytime soon.

3.      Head to the paint store.

If you are designing a room or a home, I like to start with paint first. It really sets the tone. Plus if you’re buying new furniture it makes more sense to paint the room before you get all your new, beautiful pieces in there. I don’t know about you, but I am an incredibly messy painter.

4.      Let’s go shopping!

As Elsie from A Beautiful Mess suggests, “I like to build my color story like a pyramid, placing the biggest priority (both money and time spent on decisions) on the more permanent ‘bones’of my design first.” In other words, after the room is painted, you should be looking for your sofa, dining room table or headboard, depending on your project.

So head back to your favorite stores and start shopping!

You want to buy the bigger items first and then fill in around those big statement pieces.

5.      Embrace a little color story anarchy.

Not everything you buy has to fit in your color story. Say your color story consists of black, white, gray and blush, but you find these amazing turquoise pillows.

Buy those amazing turquoise pillows! (Especially if said pillows are on sale!)

Being too matchy-matchy can get boring. So don't be afraid to mix in small doses of other colors, especially in things like candles, pillows or other items that are cheap and easy to change out.

Maybe you'll decide down the road the turquoise pillows don't work at all, but then you're only out a few bucks.

But really, I think you'll be happy you bought the turquoise pillows. ;)

This blanket includes all of my color story picks for my booth at the  Minne-Mile NightMarket on June 3rd .

This blanket includes all of my color story picks for my booth at the Minne-Mile NightMarket on June 3rd.

The VM shop's Top 4 Trending Colors for Spring 2017

Top 4 Colors for SpringPamela DeweyComment

Hi friends.

It is officially spring, and it is finally starting to look like it in Minnesota. Tulips are popping up, birds are chirping and the wiener dog manages to find all the muddy spots in the backyard.

Some signs of spring are more welcome than others. (Insert winky face emoji here.)

It also has me feeling like it’s time to breathe some new life in my space. My new sectional arrived, and it is wonderful.

The tufted cushions, the chaise, the mid-century shape, and the color. The mixed grey color will help with the previously mentioned muddy wiener dog.

And I don’t think I’m the only one who feels like freshening up their space. Furniture has been moving out of the store at a pretty good clip the past few weeks.

With that in mind, I am starting to work on some new pieces, and I am thinking about what colors are really inspiring me.

1.     Blush Pink

I am not over this color. It is just so light and pretty. And as soon as I paint it on a piece of furniture it feels instantly transformed into my new favorite piece. Especially when paired with brass hardware. And it just so happens, I just finished an end table in blush pink. With brass pulls. I am kind of in love with the pulls too, I must say. There will be plenty more blush showing up in the Vintage Modern shop.

2.     Grey

At one point, nearly the entire interior of my house was painted grey. It is a fantastic neutral and far more exciting to me, than say beige. (I recently informed my mom that I will NEVER paint anything beige. Haha. Just not my shade.) Grey has so much versatility. It can be moody, serene or warm. Some greys just feel really cozy, like a favorite wool cardigan you might wear on a chilly spring day.

3.     Bright Green

Pantone declared Greenery the color of the year for 2017. Greenery is just what it sounds like, a bright cheery green that resembles the green of plants and trees. I particularly like the idea that, “Greenery is symbolic of new beginnings.” That is exactly what I’m talking about. Spring is nothing if not a time for new beginnings.

4.     Yellow

Yellow just screams spring. It is daffodils, dandelions and the buttery center of daisies. I am seeing different shades of yellow from bright Sunshine Yellow over at Elle Décor to a more pale, buttery yellow over at House Beautiful . Either way, yellow adds warmth and light to a space, like a little ray of sunshine. That’s why we painted our Rocking on Sunshine Upcycled Bentwood Rocking Chair a buttery yellow. We thought it would be perfect to brighten up a nursery or any little nook that needs some warmth.

So those are my top four favorite colors for home décor this spring. Are there some colors that should have made my list? Let me know in the comments below, and I’ll keep that in mind as I’m working on new pieces for the shop. I am always happy to hear from my customers.