Antiquing Around Town
Anyone who loves clothing that reminds them of a 1950’s musical, furniture that harkens images of their grandparents’ house, and other tangible relics of bygone eras, Salem has no shortage of treasures to spark the nostalgic imagination.
Situated in an area with a strong agricultural history, Salem is also rich with primitive farm equipment like tractor seats, railroad jacks, plows, cultivators, and old milk cans. For creative or inventive types, Salem’s antique shops are the catalyst for restoration projects and reclaimed-materials projects.
There are more great junk stores than could be visited in a day, so here are a few prominent shops that are popular with locals and tourists alike.
Stuart’s Hollywood Collectibles – 2690 Portland Rd NE, Salem, OR 97301
Stuart’s Hollywood Collectibles, a monster of an antique store, is actually a combination of two. The warehouse-sized building located at the intersection of Pine and Portland Rd. houses vintage and antique furniture including buffets, armoirs, curio cabinets, and vanity dressers. If you visit, leave your hoarder friends at home. Their massive collection of trinkets and knick-knacks beg to be taken to a good, cluttered home. And there are dozens of cabinets literally full to the brim with porcelain elves, jewelry boxes, flamingo-clad planters, embroidered picture frames, and ceramic animal figurines of every breed and species. It’s a treasure trove for collectors and gag-gift seekers, and a great place to kill a couple hours on a lazy afternoon in Salem.
Earle Antiques – 129 Commercial St NE, Salem, OR 97301
Earle Antiques is located where Salem’s attractions are largely concentrated – downtown. The conical-roofed turreted stair tower exterior of the building is a blast from the past worth checking out as well. So it’s a bit more convenient than Stuart’s and significantly smaller. The advantage of the smaller size is that merchandise is more carefully and purposefully displayed. If you’re not a hunt-and-peck type, Earle’s might be more up your alley. Every piece is pristine or at least carefully restored with prices clearly marked. Their display counters feature dainty hand-painted tea sets, hobnail glass, gold and silver watches, Native Amercian items, and dishware from every decade. Large pieces like grandfather clocks, China cabinets, bedroom sets, and art pieces can be put on layaway if you’re patient enough to wait. Earle’s prices are very reasonable (especially compared to the sky-high prices on estate items in nearby Portland), which makes it a smart alternative to department stores if you’re looking to snag some rare household items like rugs and dining sets.
Aunt Bee’s House – 2679 Commercial St SE, Salem, OR 97302
Aunt Bee’s House is a bit of a hybrid antique, gift, handmade, and home and garden shop. But it’s a must-see for anyone visiting Salem. Highlighting the best of both new and old worlds, this adorable shop does a fine job of inspiring and offering creative gifts for anyone who’s excited by upcycled and handmade items. Their antiques are anything but forgotten junk. Everything on display has been lovingly cleaned, restored, and displayed according to its style and time period.
Spend the day shopping for antiques while Star Builders general contractor spends theirs upgrading your home with a remodel or addition! Need a place to recharge after all that antiquing? Check out some of Salem’s best restaurants.