MEDINA, Ohio — For those who want to set a vintage holiday table this year, there are places to find elegance that isn’t expensive.
Two Northeast Ohio shops also allow customers to practice another time-honored holiday tradition — giving to others.
“The great thing is that all the money raised stays within Medina County,” said Stephanie Furey, manager of the Life’s Treasures thrift shop, which raises funds for HMC Hospice of Medina County.
The shop, at 317 S. Court St. in downtown Medina, should be seeing a lot of green as the white stuff comes down.
Vintage tableware and other items are “hot this year,” Furey said, especially with people in their 20s.
According to Angel Kiefer, whom Furey described as the shop’s vintage expert “extraordinaire,” that category covers mid-century items from the 1950s through the ‘70s.
It can also encompass items from the ‘30s and ‘40s, Kiefer added.
For those in Generations Z and X, the items provide a retro look. For Baby Boomers, it means memories from their own childhoods.
“It’s nostalgic walking through,” commented Joanne Guay, one of the shop’s designers responsible for the merchandise displays.
The shop, which covers almost 14,000 square feet, offers high-end resale items, from clothing to furniture, appliances and home décor.
A centerpiece is their table settings, particularly around the holiday season.
Furey said they display their items “like a department store.”
With different donations coming in all the time, it’s a challenge to put together an appealing array, Guay said, but it’s one she enjoys.
One set on display is an eight-setting Royal Majestic collection with a holly border design. At other shops, or online, a set like this would go for double or triple the price, Guay said.
One website showed replacement Royal Majestic plates at $15.99 each. The whole set at Life’s Treasures is priced at $75.
The shop’s displays provide decorating ideas for customers, Guay noted. One customer decided, “I’ll buy the table and everything on it.”
One reason that Life’s Treasures can offer such a top-notch inventory at a bargain price is its generous donors, Furey said, who often give family heirlooms when they are downsizing.
Others who do not have money to donate to HMC Hospice bring in their prized possessions for future sale to benefit the organization, Kiefer said.
HMC Hospice provides end-of-life care in private homes, assisted living and nursing homes, in hospitals and in its own homelike inpatient locations. It also offers grief services for families, adults and children.
During November, Life’s Treasures is offering its fall and Thanksgiving items for 50 percent off.
Special sales are offered throughout the week, and the last Thursday of the month is Thrifty Thursday, with items 50 percent off.
Life’s Treasures is open weekdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Information is at https://www.hospicewr.org/resale-shop.
Thriftique Showroom, at 5055 Richmond Road in Bedford Heights, not only offers a wide array of quality merchandise, it also supports the National Council of Jewish Women/Cleveland (NCJW/CLE) in its efforts to benefit numerous causes.
“It’s so much fun to do it here,” manager Abbe Froimson said of the many table displays at the shop, which was founded in 1936. “And the money goes back to the community.”
Froimson prefers to describe the items as “classic,” such as an English bone china set currently on display. The price tag on the set is $125.
Froimson said that if you purchased similar items new, it would cost hundreds of dollars.
Of course, Thriftique has many items for Hanukkah, the eight-day Festival of Lights that begins Dec. 18. In addition to the formal dinnerware, the shop offers menorahs in many styles, along with everything from a dreidel dish to utensils to shape latkes.
Leslie Resik, a volunteer at the store, said her mother was a “stickler” for setting the table with real china. “She would never use paper.”
It’s a tradition she follows herself. “I try to set a different table every holiday.”
Thriftique has a loyal customer base that visits to search among the treasures that change weekly, from furniture to clothing and jewelry, Resik said.
They are not always aware of all the good their money does, she said.
Many of the NCJW programs center on literacy, including stocking and repairing Little Free Libraries throughout the area. The organization supports libraries and book clubs in under-served schools.
The members work with area hospitals to assist victims of domestic abuse by providing clothing and other needed items.
“It gives them dignity,” Resik said.
The council also manages Livespecial.com, a resource for individuals with special needs and their families.
As a progressive organization, NCJW-CLE advocates for women’s reproductive rights and voter registration, through legislative breakfasts and lectures. Thriftique is one of the major fundraisers for these projects.
“We improve life for individuals and families,” Resik said.
Thriftique is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.
Information is at www.thriftiqueshowroom.com.