JUSTIN USED HIS SKILLS AS A JACK-OF-ALL-TRADES TO TURN inexpensive AND BROKEN ANTIQUES INTO treasures.
Rhonda didn’t always love antiques. Her passion for them evolved over time. “My brother and I were raised on a sprawling farm in Oklahoma,” she says. “My grandmother loved yard sales and thrift shops, and she liked to take me along with her.”
While furnishing their home, Rhonda and Justin visited endless antiques shops and flea markets. Many of the items they purchased needed to be “rescued and repurposed,” as Rhonda puts it. She used her artistic knowledge, and Justin used his skills as a jack-of-all-trades to turn inexpensive and broken items into treasures they now proudly display in their house.
Once their home was fully furnished, they didn’t stop visiting antiques shops and turning old, unloved items into useful decorations. Instead of placing the items in their rooms, however, they began to offer them for sale for others to enjoy.
“We started out selling small projects at yard sales,” Rhonda explains. Then, four years ago in Milford, New Hampshire, Robin, the owner of an eclectic shop called Robin’s Egg, offered Rhonda a small space to sell her creations. The business has done so well that Rhonda recently opened a second location in a similar shop, Twin Elm Farm in Peterborough.
One piece that was originally destined for sale still hangs on the wall of the Gatcheks’ living room. It’s a small cabinet door with three antique doorknobs on it. “It was one of my very first projects,” Rhonda says. “The colors were so beautiful, I couldn’t part with it.”
The beauty of the door is real, but it’s also symbolic of the truth of Alexander Graham Bell’s words. When the door of Justin’s active-duty military career closed, another opened—not only for him, but also for Rhonda.
Rhonda is thrilled with her new life. “It’s amazing,” she concludes. “What I rolled my eyes at as a child is now my passion—and my job!”