Street Fashionista: Romantique Boutique

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Wednesday, June 13th, 2012 at 9:00 AM
Street Fashionista: Romantique Boutique by Leslie McAllister
Leslie McAllister

I have finally found my favorite store in Erie. I am beyond thankful that this dynamic duo has brought their wares closer to the city. This is hands-down the coolest antique store in the Tri-State area. Original, unique, edgy, industrial, romantic, eclectic, special…words fall short, really, so I’ll let the picture do the talking, a visual journey for you.

Who? Joe Brooder and Mickey McKelvey from Romantique Boutique: The Vintage Marketplace

Where? 3406 West Lake Road, (Was originally located in Waterford)

Why Joe & Mickey? Both have been in the business well over 20 years. For Joe, he was always fascinated by the history behind a vintage piece. For Mickey, she was raised in it. Her parents had a bed and breakfast and an antique store when she was growing up so she has been immersed and schooled in it all of her life.
Here’s the “romantique” part: Joe and Mickey met in college (Edinboro University of Pennsylvania). At first, they didn’t like each other, so they went their separate ways (Mickey traveled all over), but they met up again and fell for each other this time, both having taken the vintage path all along. Now, they work off each other, modifying, alternating, distressing, and reworking each hand-picked piece.

They say, “We have different ideas but we are always on the same page.” Their collaborations are over the moon! From cool rustic and romantic necklaces made from vintage keys and broken jewelry (made with love by Mickey) to the really cool distressed and antiqued sale tags that make each piece super special to the bags of vintage buttons, there is something for everyone. Give yourself an hour to walk around; you can circle the place three times and always find something new.

A couple of questions answered:

Coolest pieces in the store? Windmill, industrial coffee tables, renowned mid-century designer Eames stadium seating (3 chairs in a row), 10-foot stained-glass window panels, animal bones, and insanely-cool DIY lighting. Just from meeting Joe, I would say his forte is his industrial lighting fixtures: Deconstructed lamp shades that put the guy in girlie, lights made out of glass globes, bird cages, and French horns...and there must be like 20 fabulous chandeliers hanging all around the store—truly out of sight!

Most rare pieces to find? Old medical instruments and apothecary goods.

Design Inspiration? Anthropologie, Restoration Hardware, an apothecary.

Mickey’s favorite? Ironstone and an armoire from the late 1800s with flowered inlays. “I painted it white then distressed it,” she said, adding that they are the two things she cannot part with; Joe agrees, “the armoire is really special.”

Romantique Boutique is located at 3406 West Lake Road and is open Tuesday – Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Call 440.6850 or find them on Facebook.

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