You wouldn’t catch me anywhere near a mall yesterday, and like many, the relentless ambush of my email box by retailers of all stripes had me sick of shopping before I’d even served my Thanksgiving turkey. Nevertheless, a certain 23-year-old daughter wanted to go shopping, and I was able to combine two virtues — walking and shopping local — into a pleasant little stroll into Montclair Center. The lovely weather continues today, and I heartily recommend the walk/shop combo.
Our first stop was Little Cricket Antiques at 416 Bloomfield Ave. in Montclair. It’s a jolly, beautifully-curated selection of antique furniture, decorative pieces (carnival chalkware, left, 30 percent off this weekend) and estate jewelry — the likes of which I guarantee you wouldn’t see at any mall.
Then I checked out two more antiques stores across the street on Glenridge Ave. — Blackbird Lane, where I picked up a faux Persian lamb black jacket for $35, and Jerry’s Antiques, where a couple was admiring a painting Jerry said had belonged to Marlene Deitrich, although he then had to explain just who Marlene Deitrich was. If you heard a more interesting conversation at the mall yesterday, be sure to leave it in the comments.
Finally I ambled onto Church Street itself, poking into Anthropologie, and winding up at Montclair Beadworks, where they’re heavily discounting everything for a planned Dec. 31 denouement. I picked up two lovely handmade necklaces, reduced $25 to $18 — one for myself and one for a friend — before finding my way across the street to Chez Renee, where they were offering 50 percent on certain items and 20 percent on almost everything else, and succumbed to the charms of a hammered silver link belt for $90 — discounted to $72.
Today is also Small Business Saturday, an American-Express engineered event to celebrate and encourage shopping at small businesses — but none of the businesses I asked about it had registered or knew how it worked. Too bad, because I’d have liked to have brought the price of the belt down to $47.
I would have loved to have capped off a day of local shopping with an indie film at the Clairidge, but the bedbug situation being what it is, we splurged for the $15 seats at Essex Screen to watch “Hugo 3D” — the Scorsese film set in 1930’s Paris, which, as I tweeted last night, is “chocolate, inside a snow globe, hidden in a nesting Russian doll in an old Parisian flea market. Must see.”
If you went shopping yesterday, where did you go? And did you find magic — or madness?