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Hubby and I have been busy with a new endeavor over the past month-and-a-half. Our friend Jody decided to open an antiques shop in Royalton, Minnesota. It’s got the cutest name – Rural Origins Antiques. She opened the shop August 6, during Platte River Days.

All of July was spent in preparation, transforming a former grocery store into a light, airy, boutique-y antiques shop. The space seemed enormous at first and Jody wanted to make sure she had enough merchandise to fill it, so she asked if there was anything we’d like to bring in to add to the space. Erik and I thought of a few things – my loom, a Speed Queen sign, an old Red Wing jug, some other odds-and-ends – and brought them in. And then we thought of a few more things, and a few more things. And then Erik started purchasing a antiques for the shop. He was hooked on picking. I was hooked on arranging things and figuring out the book work.

We were enjoying researching each item and trying to divine the appropriate price. Neither of these tasks are as easy as they might sound on the surface, even with the internet. (Did you know that not everything can be found online? Crazy, eh?)

Jody set up her shop so that she could lease space to other antiques dealers. At first we were simply helping to fill space, but over the course of set-up and the opening weekend (surprisingly, we sold stuff!), we decided we wanted to officially try our hand at the antiques business on a part-time basis. We are leasing a space for six months, starting September 1.

We’re excited to figure out how to arrange the space and merchandise our inventory. What’s great about Jody’s store is that her philosophy of merchandising is to create attractive vignettes and not pack too many items into a jumble, so things can easily be examined. The lightness of the store helps this, too. Rural Origins is not your typical dingy, over-crowded antiques store.

The merchandise is moving so fast with this layout that new stuff is constantly being added and items are continually shifted, so it’s always fun to browse. (And I’m saying that as someone who’s been in the shop many, many times since July. I’m never tired of looking at stuff in the shop.)

There are items in the store for every budget and plenty of cute gift ideas. Yes! That’s a blatant advertising pitch. Seriously, stop on in and take a look.

The Rural Origins website is here and it’s Facebook page here. That’s where you’ll find the location.

Now it’s time for me to look up the song “Finiculi, Finicula,” which is played by the music box table Erik picked for sale at the shop. (Have you ever heard of a music box table? Neither had we, until Erik found one.)