Monday, September 21, 2015

Deadline Looms for 2016 Cochran's Guide

One week left before we submit Cochran's 27th annual travel-size map guide to the printer. If you're in the five western states, WA to AZ and you've been considering including your shop or event in the next Guide, this is your last chance! Click on PARTICIPATE on this website for all the info you need. Or call 866-585-6162 or email Your ad will be in print AND on the website all year. The Guide promotes:
  • Shops and Malls
  • Individual Dealers in Co-ops already in the Guide
  • Antique and Vintage Events
  • Online Businesses

Thursday, September 17, 2015

The Collaboration Concept

What I like about antique and vintage stores is that most of them seem to find collaborating rather than competing does much more for the bottom line. The more stores there are in a downtown district, for instance, the more likely a shopper will pull off the freeway, brave downtown traffic, park and tour all the shops.

(The Cochran's Guide encourages that spirit of cooperation by offering free display ads to groups of shops.)

An example: events like the Shop Hop mentioned in our previous post bring people downtown, where they can stop somewhere for coffee or dinner, do some extended, relaxed browsing, and stimulate the local economy.

In Junction City, OR, ten stores are collaborating on a Girlz Night Out sales, drawings and other surprises. Time and Again Collectibles and Gifts at 177 W Sixth Ave will sweeten the deal with a Syrup Tasting of new flavors for all the waffle fiends out there. Ten stores are involved, a great evening's stroll with the girls (I'm sure they'll let in guys, too).

Tomorrow night in Phoenix, Pearly Mae's Resale and Home Again Furnishings and Antiques, neighbors at 4314 and 4302 N. 7th Ave., are having a Happy Hour Sale tomorrow, Sept 18, with both stores open until 8pm.  (Home Again is continuing their sale through the weekend.)

We contribute by promoting events like this, as well as in-store sales, on our Facebook page. If your store is in the Guide, and you're having your own sale, or a community event like Girlz Night, the Happy Hour or Shop Hop, we hope you'll let us know so we can help you toot your horn!

Photos: 1) something new from something old, a spoon bracelet by Spoon Candy, at Time & Again in Junction City, OR.
2) Gorgeously ornate wrought iron patio set at Home Again in Phoenix.
3) Tropical seating ensemble at Pearly Mae's Resale in Phoenix.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

A trend we hope will go viral: the Shop Hop!

Nineteen antique stores and boutiques in Central California, from Ripon to Turlock, are sponsoring an Antiques and Boutiques Shop Hop Friday and Saturday, October 2 and 3, to encourage shoppers to come out and support locally-owned stores.

First you pick up a "passport" and then you get a "stamp" at each of the stores you visit. Snacks and beverages will be available to keep up your stamina. If you get all 19 stamps and turn in your passport at your last stop, you get a chance to win a gift basket. It's the first time the group has tried this scheme, and I'm eager to see  how it turns out. Organizing it required a lot of creativity, effort and cooperation.

Shop Hops, wine walks, holiday open house events, and other festive occasions encourage store owners to work together, create a little excitement in the neighborhood and remind people how lucky they are to still have locally-owned businesses to support. We are surrounded with strip malls, big box stores and chain stores that reflect nothing of local color and character. And when we patronize them, our money only enriches the Waltons and their ilk, it does nothing to support our own communities.

Several of these 19 stores appear in Cochran's Guide, so you can use our maps to help you find them. Click Contents in the menu above and select each town from our Table of Contents.
• Magpie Antiques and All Things Inspiring in Ripon,
• Antique Avenue in Manteca,
• Antique Warehouse in Salida,
• Antique Emporium and Crow Trading in Modesto,
• Main Street Antiques and Trinkets to Treasures in Turlock.

Bravo to the individuals who put these events together —I wish you great success!

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Operators are standing by

We're in the home stretch here at Cochran's, winding up production on the 2016 Collector's Guide. The new edition will have some expanded coverage in Oregon and Northern California, and of course we're continuing the new glossy color section. There is still space for more stores and shows, for one more week.

Option 1: Do-it-yourselfers can get the rate information by simply clicking the PARTICIPATE button above, and selecting whether you have a store, an event, a service or internet business, or an association of several stores. A map of our entire five-state coverage pops up; select your state to see rate info for everything from entry-level descriptive paragraph/map to full page color (actually a twofer: an ad in the color section and another in your geographical section of the book). A button below the rates takes you to an instruction page with dimensions for our quarter-page, half-page and full-page display ads. You can then prepare a camera-ready ad, email it to us as a pdf, include a storefront photo (which comes free if you buy a display ad) and the descriptive paragraph (also free) and you're good to go! We'll do the mapping and get a proof back to you pronto.

Option 2: you can email us at or call (866) 585-6162 and we'll email you a rate sheet. Our operator will happily give you all the details, take the information for your descriptive paragraph or help you compose it. We can design a display ad for you too, even put in photo(s) if you have some on your Facebook page or website you like.

But please, don't send us any copy or photos by snail mail, it would not get to Cochran's in time.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

A Day's-Worth of Browsing at Niles Antique Faire

One of the oldest antique street fairs in California is hosted the last Sunday of every August by the Niles Main Street Association in Fremont. The 51st Annual Antique Faire and Flea Market is set for August 30, opening at 6am and continuing until 4pm. More than 200 vendors will line the Boulevard, which is also the home of the famed Niles antique row. More than 80,000 visitors will enjoy browsing to the tune of live music by Big Sandy and His Fly Rite Boys —if you go, plan on spending the whole day! Admission is free.

There'll be special sales inside the stores, too. Check it out on Facebook at Niles Antique Faire

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

A Little Sweet Romance

I've been finding some delightful antique and vintage eye candy on Facebook and various websites. Today the Internet took me to South End Antique and Collectible Mall's Facebook page. Guess I'm in a mood for romantic feminine touches, and I found plenty to like in the bedroom setting on their cover photo and this sweet fainting couch. South End's bright, well-composed photos were a pleasure to look at.

I could swear I smelled roses and lavender when I looked at these photos. Amazing how it lifts the mood. Soft lighting, filmy draperies, floral tapestry, pink coverlets and throws...I'm not a pink kind of person, but here it's just perfect.

Want a romance in your daily grind? South End Antiques and Collectibles Mall is in an old pickle factory on Hwy 99E in Aurora, OR, a popular destination for antique, vintage and collectibles shoppers.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

MCM Vintage, a promising start in Chico

Last week a couple of dealers who had space in another large mall in downtown Chico, CA struck out on their own and opened a new multi-dealer store in town, calling it MCM Vintage. It's always exciting to watch these new beginnings, from the grunge work of repairs, hookups and refurbishings on the building, to the erection of the sign identifying your business and welcoming the new dealers as they unpack their merchandise and set up their displays.

MCM Vintage is going with a mid-20th-century theme, sometimes referred to as "Mid-Mod." Sleek Danish Modern furniture and décor such as colorful and fancifully shaped glass. Fun and innovative Steampunk objects. Rugs with geometric designs. Lots of kitchenalia like the gadgets Mom taught cooked with, often much better quality than the Chinese-made appliances available today. And, an MCM specialty, a collection of old vinyl records so large they call that part of the store the Wax Museum. If you grew up in the 50s and 60s you're bound to get a sweet nostalgic rush when you walk into the store, or visit their Facebook page.