Good to Know The Next Big Thing Timeless Traditions

Deborah Bowman Shares Her Favorite Sources for Shopping Vintage

Featured in the July 2018 issue of Better Homes & Gardens, graphic designer and antique hunter Deborah Bowman gives the Insider readers her tips for finding those ever-sought-after diamonds in the rough.

The core of Deborah's aesthetic revolves around midcentury furnishings and all things clean-lined and pared down but, as is the case with many design aficionados, her appreciation is broad and her taste is eclectic.

Photography by: Dane Tashmin

Shop Local

Add unique decor and furniture to your home by shopping Deborah Bowman's favorite local vintage shops. From flea markets to beautiful boutiques, these adorable stores will make your treasure hunting experience one you won't forget. Check out what each store has to offer and why Bowman thinks it's definitely worth a look.

Ohmega Salvage, 2400 & 2403 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94702 | (510)-204-0767

"A west coast institution for anyone renovating a house or garden. Vintage bathtubs, stained glass windows, newell posts, corbels, mantels, architectural elements, andirons, antique tin signs, door knobs and much more, all sold in found condition."

Mid Century Mobler, 1065 Ashby Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94710 | (415)-497-6626

"The largest midcentury furniture dealer in Northern California housed in an immense warehouse filled with row after row of high end, imported Danish modern credenzas, coffee tables, dressers, and sofas from the 1950s and 60s. They also offer re-finishing and re-upholstering services."

Roam Antiques, 1124 Lincoln Avenue, Calistoga, CA 94515 | (707)-942-4508

"European, early-American, and locally sourced antiques. Victorian to rustic and everything in between including wine-making artifacts, farm tables, 19th century crystal glassware, dental cabinets and industrial presses."

Alameda flea market, 3800 Main Street, Alameda, CA 94501. (510)522-7500

"This flea market is HUGE! It happens once a month, and when we're in town and can muster the energy, we go and usually stay for five to six hours."

Rob Delamater Lost Art Salon, 245 South Van Ness, suite 303, San Francisco, CA 94103 | (415)-861-1530

"Gallery focused on significant fine art movements and styles from the late 19th century to the present. Thousands of paintings, drawings, prints, photographs and objects. This place is a treasure trove of vintage art."

Chelsea Antiques, 148 Petaluma Boulevard North, Petaluma, CA 94952 | (707)-763-7686

"A multi-dealer setup where merchandise literally hangs from the rafters. The rustic to industrial inventory constantly changes and includes vintage typewriters, industrial artifacts, architectural elements, tapestries, boats, and furniture from a wide range of periods."

Sienna Antiques, 119 Petaluma Boulevard North, Petaluma, CA 94952 | (707)-763-6088

"A huge building (14,000 square feet) of three floors selling a mix of objects and furniture for the home and garden. From taxidermy to staged displays of chairs, grocery scales, targets, and everything in between either 'well appointed' vintage, from every period, or reproduction."

Shed, 25 North Street, Healdsburg, CA 95448 | (707)-431-7433

"Farm to table, artisan food producers who stock according to season in this location and in their online store. In addition to a restaurant and fermentation bar they sell prepared and packaged foods as well as beautiful basics for the kitchen and pantry. Shed is amazing! It's a fantastic restaurant/gourmet market and housewares store. I pretty much want everything in there!"

Erica Tanov Store, 1827 Fourth Street, Berkeley, CA 94710 | (510)-849-3331

"This store has been around for 24 years and it's one of my favorites. It's the perfect blend of Berkeley bohemian and NYC sophistication. The wide-legged, striped denim pants I'm wearing in the photos are from here and they are at least 15 years old. She recently reissued the same style in different fabrics."

Browse the Web

We know traveling to California for these vintage shops isn't in the cards for everyone, so be sure to check out these online stores for your next decor haul. Whether you're searching for a fabulous pre-loved rug for your dining room or a one-of-a-kind piece of art for your foyer, these shops are at the top of Bowman's must-look list—and BH&G Insider-approved! A curated auction and e-commerce site that accepts live bids and also features timed sales and "buy now" options. It offers a broad range of fine art, design and antiques culled from reputable auction houses. "This is how we find out about upcoming auctions around the country." The Wright auction house is one of the country's most reputable sources for midcentury modern, contemporary, and post-war furniture, design and art. "It can be kind of pricey, but we once scored a portfolio of Josef Albers screen prints here for a fraction of what they're worth." E-marketplace for buying and consigning chic, vintage, and 'pre-loved' furniture, rugs, and artwork at 70 percent off retail. Their "View In My Space" augmented reality app allows buyers to virtually place items in their own house. "Ebay is still a good source but I prefer Chairish. We've bought many pieces from here over the years. Their site and their app is absolutely addictive." "With this site it's best to know what you're looking for but we've gotten really lucky here more than a few times." Schoolhouse Electric carries period, reproduction, and modern lighting, furniture, and hardware as well as clocks, upholstered goods, and bedding. "Great source for reasonably priced, vintage-inspired fixtures and home items."

See Vintage Looks in the Archives