If what they say is true and “there is nothing new under the sun,” it makes sense to look to the past for inspiration instead of jumping on the next trend. We spent a Saturday afternoon checking out the antiquing scene in Regina to test this theory.
The Cat and the Fiddle Antiques 3128 13th Avenue
After close to 30 years of dealing in typical antiques, such as teacups, dishes and collector tins, Linda Simard has shifted her focus. The owner of The Cat and the Fiddle Antiques has begun featuring vintage clothing from the 60s to the 90s in her store. “I’m having fun with vintage clothes. I love dressing the mannequins,” she says. “If you look at old Eaton’s catalogues, you’ll see wrap sweaters that are in style again now. Everything old is new again. Today, everyone dresses so different that you can wear anything you want.”
She notes that hats have become en vogue again. If you’re a hat fan, you’ll love that The Cat and the Fiddle has an entire room dedicated to unique head coverings.
Linda also likes to mix old and new fashion. Next to authentic antiques are new Edwardian-style earrings and handmade hemp soap. You can also find vintage-inspired furniture nobs to spruce up older dressers or cupboards.
Grass Roots Country Store and Antiques 3108 12th Avenue
Nadine Cooper has also been in the antique business for almost 30 years. When she began Grass Roots Country Store and Antiques, she focused on variety, but now she specializes in aviation gifts, furniture and toys. “I was a pilot for 35 years. My husband and I flew all over the USA and Canada. We have a lot of airplane stuff here,” she says.
Nadine says that she sees a lot of men coming in to buy vintage toys. “They don’t bring a woman with them—that way, they can get whatever they want,” she laughs.
From Past Times 1178 Albert Street
When I walked into From Past Times, I was struck by how well-organized the store is. I also liked the tone set by the music, Simon and Garfunkel played on an old turntable. The store is known for its dishes—shelves and shelves of them. It also has a little of everything else, from vintage purses to manual hair clippers to books on antiquing and other topics (including a well-stocked Elvis section.) We found a great present for my partner’s mother in the store, (but we’re not telling you what it is in case she’s reading!) If you’re a bargain hunter, you’ll be interested in the fact that everything in the store is always 20% off, and some items are up to 50% off.
Regina Antique Mall 1175 Rose Street
Boasting more than 100,000 antique collectibles, 28 shops and 21,000 square feet, the Regina Antique Mall is one of the largest antique shops in Canada. If you’re looking for something, it’s probably here. Olde tyme butter churn? Yup. Accordion? Sure. Working street walk light? Absolutely! To be honest, the sheer volume of antiques is a tad overwhelming. If you want to get a real feel for the place, allow yourself several hours to explore.
We ran into Gary Hudy, owner of Krave Collectables, a shop on the second floor. He says what he loves best about antiquing is the people. “They have that same antique mentality—they’re searchers, hunters.” Gary has some eerie stories about reuniting antiques with their family members that will give you goosebumps. We highly recommend you seek him out.
Gary also mentioned that he’s noticing that clientele for antiques is getting younger: the majority of people who come in are 18-40 years old. “I see a lot of university students looking at furniture. I tell them, ‘You could buy furniture somewhere else that will fall apart after a few years, or you could buy well-made furniture here and sell it back to me when you’re done!’”
Photos by Chad Mario