Al Maxim

Boutique breaks the mold on traditional antiques

September 29, 2011 // 0 Comments

City Antiques opens on Bridge Street  by BETH ALTENA “The baby boomer generation everyone has talked about is here and it’s changed everything.” In a field that is about change, City Antiques, now open at 67 Bridge Street, still manages to put a new spin on an age-old but ever evolving profession. The shop is packed to the rafters with items ranging in size, texture, material, price and age, from the old wooden furniture pieces—made in a time when things were built to last—to the glitzy bling of vintage, costume and retro jewelry. Co-owners Al Maxim and Sherri Taylor consider their new Rockford store and their first shop, City Antiques Grand Rapids, at 954 E. Fulton, both eclectic concentrations of whatever treasures they come upon in their estate service business. It means no two visits are ever the same from day to day. City Antiques Rockford opened for business Friday, Sept. 23. Maxim and Taylor consider their industry, their inventory and their two shops “in a constant state of motion.” Maxim said the aging of the baby boomers who are now nearing retirement, changes the tenor of antique shopping. “The baby boomers collected for collectivity. The younger shoppers collect for display-ability,” he said. It makes for a more diverse clientele in antiquing, and both he and Taylor embrace the opportunities the evolving market offers. They are all about change and have put a new, hands-on approach to antique shopping. “We are kid friendly, animal friendly, we don’t believe in putting things behind glass. I don’t like to shop like that and I don’t think other people like to either.” Taylor said. She said it is exciting to follow how tastes and trends change. Often when a mainstream store such as Pottery Barn features a faux antique item, people come in looking for the real thing. “We keep learning every day what types of things will be in demand.” “Every job is like a treasure hunt and we enjoy seeing our customers enjoy their own treasure hunt in the store,” Maxim described. The couple purchases estates—the good, bad and the ugly—and sell the good merchandise through the stores. “No two days are the same,” Taylor said of her profession. Taylor describes evaluating estates of hoarders, properties […]