Photos: Explore Night and Day Vintage (and be rewarded at the end of the tour)
Night and Day Vintage smells like cinnamon, and it looks like a scene inside Alice's imagination. For those who enjoy retro deco without an empty-bank-account echo, it might as well be Wonderland. Located one block west of Broadway on 11th Avenue, Night and Day has an interior that leans heavily toward history while also featuring a rotating roster of very current local artists and their handcrafts on its creatively decorated walls. The store is just over a month old and owes its brick-and-mortar existence to co-owners who both started their vintage vocations with stints on Etsy.
Anna Duarte and Amy Bates-Nelson have long shared a love of antiques and collectibles, but it wasn't until April 10 that they began to share a business. The two met at the regular Horseshoe Craft and Flea Market at 46th and Tennyson, where they quickly bonded over their interests in cookware, mid-century modern decor and old-school fashion. The sheer number of pieces stashed and stored in their basements alone convinced the two that a business could be viable: Ninety percent of Night and Day's contents already belonged to its owners.
"I started collecting as a kid going to flea markets, and I noticed immediately that when you start collecting, you collect everything you love," Duarte says. Once they decided to launch a physical store, the name and the space came together quickly. "These are things we find value in, too, so why not share them?"
On their visit to a friend in the Golden Triangle, the women noticed the 39 West 11th Avenue space, called the landlord and signed the deal in a total span of twenty minutes. "We made this crazy wishlist of everything we wanted in a place -- bay windows, wood floors, southern exposure, great part of town -- and we got 90 percent of it immediately," says Duarte, who'd previously worked as a bookkeeper. Her partner, Bates-Nelson, still works part-time in human resources at her father's engineering firm. "From there, all we had do to is fill it."
The store's inventory is split between both owners' collections: Antique library cubbies house Bates-Nelson's handmade notecards, all decorated with photos and clippings from old magazines and personal collections. Racks of clothing line the walls, along with rows of colorful shoes to accompany them. In stock right now are more than six vintage globes in various sizes, an antique wooden piano, a working accordion, multiple typewriters and several sets of furniture and cookware in conditions fit for a modern Macy's.
Although the owners can't trace the full lineage of each piece, the entire collection came to them from other Denver outlets -- yard sales, estate sales, word of mouth, friends, their landlady and, occasionally, people who visit the store. The two created the shop with affordability in mind, meaning that prices start around $3, average around $20 and move upward to a maximum price around $350. And customers have appreciated their efforts to keep prices low.
"They told us they could come in here and feel like they could actually afford to buy something, which is exactly what we want," Duarte says. "We think everyone should be able to buy a piece of history."
In the coming months, Night and Day's owners plan to open the store's bottom floor to arts and craft lessons as they move toward a grand opening on August 18. The event will feature live music from local alt-country crooners Christopher McGarry (of Chris McGarry and the Insomniacs) and Jessica Thomas (of Crow Jane Jewelry).
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