THE FIRST CHAPTER
A young antiques dealer makes her mark on the world in her first apartment.
Decorating her first apartment, a young antiques dealer shows you how to make your mark.
YOU MAY REMEMBER THE CREATIVE VALLELY FAMILY FROM OUR MAY/JUNE 2017
ISSUE, when we featured their Southern California home in the story “Gypsy Soul.” Daughter Emily, who sells antiques with her mother, Ann, has a fabulous aesthetic, and when we heard she was striking out on her own and moving into her own apartment, we were delighted to document the results.
“I was so excited to move into my first place,” says Emily. “Before that I was working with decorating my little room in my parents’ house.” The idea of getting to furnish a whole place, especially a kitchen, was thrilling to Emily, who has a collection of vintage Pyrex and cookbooks that were just crying out to be displayed.
Emily has been selling antiques for about two years, with her booth at Magnolia and Willow in Long Beach, California, but, she notes, “We’ve been collecting forever.” Her new apartment is a 1937 gem that is so perfectly suited to Emily it seems to have come from a dream. There’s a
“I WOULD NEVER SUPPORT NEW
TAXIDERMY,” says Emily, who has been vegan for four years and blogs on the subject.
“But my money went to an antiques dealer.” She’d rather keep things out of landfills than quibble too much about leather this or feathers that.
“If you go vintage shopping, you never know what you might discover.”
“MY MOM AND I SPENT THE NIGHT CAMPING OUT before an estate sale to get that peacock chair,” says Emily. On top of the vintage luggage is a Boy Scouts crate. “I collect Boy Scouts and Girls Scouts items.”
black-and-white tiled kitchen with shapely built-in shelves, a living room with stately hardwood floors and a fireplace, and a pink-tiled bathroom. Accordingly, her décor went thematic. “The bathroom has kitchsy knickknacks. The living room and dining room are more refined, a bit more traditional. I love incorporating all decades. I love 1920s, Art Deco and midcentury up until the 1970s,” she says.
While preparing to move out into her nest, Emily “got into the decorating mindset. I probably shopped two months straight for the space, and the apartment got pretty well filled.” She used her vintage connections and hunting savvy. “Magnolia and Willow is my favorite place to shop because
I’m there all the time, and all the dealers have amazing taste. I get
a lot of stuff there.” She also went to
The Vintage Emporium in Long Beach, estate sales, and the Long Beach Antique Market. Her network of antique dealer friends helped out, as, she says, “there is a lot of swapping from garages.”
When she’s not selling vintage, Emily is busy at Street Plant, the Vallelys’ skateboarding company. “I’m an owner, and I also do marketing, merchandising and accounting.”
What’s her advice for anyone who is starting their first home? “Do not rush into decorating all at once,” she says. “I did that, and it put a lot of pressure on me financially and otherwise. It’s better to take your time. You might find something you like in six months. For me, it was easier because if I found something I liked better, I could sell it. Take your time.”
For Emily, shopping vintage is about both the environmental impact and the joy of exploration. “If you go into a store and you already know what you’re going to find, it takes some of the fun out of it. If you go vintage shopping, you never know what you might discover.” Much like life! We wish her the best in her new home.
top: THE SHELVES, from Ikea, are an efficient use of space in a spot just outside the kitchen. A closet door swings out into the area, so Emily can’t put furniture up against it. Emily changes up what is on display seasonally.
left: EMILY IS WEARING a vintage 1970s shift. “I love wearing florals and bright colors.” opposite: BY HER 1920s ARTS AND CRAFTS STYLE SECRETARY DESK, Emily created a wall collage with many nature and outdoor references, including a trusty Girl Scout...
top: EMILY’S VINTAGE-STYLE SOFA IS FROM NOVOGRATZ, available at Walmart. “I think the bead sign truly just came from an old bead store,” she says. As for the shiny side table, “I wanted to incorporate some brass in this room, as I like the texture and...
right: THE “SUPER COMFORTABLE 1970S CHAIR,” Emily says, is from the Salvation Army.
THE PORTRAITS are from the 1960s and were all done by the same female artist.
THE LIVING ROOM BAR IS ART DECO. To the right of it is some special family art—a finger-painting her mom did with her grandfather when she was a child.
“I LOVE THIS HUTCH because it’s not too huge, and a lot of midcentury hutches are enormous,” notes Emily. The hutch holds some of her Franciscan ware and midcentury barware.
[ before ] THE 1970S CANISTER set brings back memories for Emily, who found the set during a trip to Dallas, Texas.