~ we are a group working as one ~
Chicken Coop Treasures, Inc. has been a long time coming. Many years of different jobs and opportunities has brought me to something that was created out of the necessity to have an income and a desire to have fun. I keep saying over and over … the day that CCT, Inc. isn’t fun anymore is the day that I will come up with plan B.
Many years of retail experience, merged with a desire to surround myself with beautiful objects that tell the story of the small places of my heart, has brought me to Texas Corners in Kalamazoo County with a commitment to create an atmosphere that is unique and drips of exclusivity; yet has roots in where I’ve come from. My mom and dad always taught me that if I wanted something bad enough I could either buy it, make it or figure out how to make it. What I want most in my life right now is positive fun relationships with both my collaborative here at 7922 South 8th Street and the community in which this brick and mortar will call home.
Looking in the chicken coop has always been a great place for me to find treasures. My wish is that you find some treasures as well! Keeping in mind that the relationships that we build from the craziest of places is and should be our most cherished treasures of all.
Hi I’m Mike! I’m ready to volunteer my many years of retail experience in order to help Chicken Coop Treasures, and it’s members, get up and running! I’m sure that I’ll learn as much as I have to offer. My retail history spans from small family owned retail operations to large warehouse operations to home decor and crafts. Don’t be afraid to ask me for help at the coop. If I don’t know the answer to your questions, I will at least know where to go and find them.
I’m taking this opportunity to work for my mom as a great learning experience. I’ve met so many nice people since mom decided to open Chicken Coop Treasures. I have enjoyed the demolition part of the project and also hunting for treasures. I enjoy origami, SCUBA diving and welding; after I graduate I’m hoping to channel my welding skills into a full time career as an under-water welder.
Hi, I’m Cole. I’m sooooo glad I don’t have to detassel again this year. Thank you mom for hiring me. I like all the things that everyone else likes. I think that uranium glass is really cool … not only is it radioactive … it glows under a black light! Don’t believe me? Just ask me to show you. I made a ukulele out of an old table last year; the ultimate repurpose project. Now to learn to play Bohemian Rhapsody.
Having worked many of my early years in an amazing boutique, I developed a love of fashion early on. Having traveled to many countries since then, I have gotten the opportunity to see different fashion trends and styles. It is with this experience and the desire to offer women unique clothing & accessories at reasonable prices that I began Éllodie Clothing Company in 2013. It began as a Pop-Up Shop which allowed us to spend time at some wonderful local businesses. After building a loyal following and under the recommendation of our customers, we decided to become a permanent fixture in the Kalamazoo area. We are very excited to have found our permanent home at Chicken Coop Treasures, Inc.
Come visit this marketplace and you will quickly see why it should be on your destination list.
As a young girl, my parents spent most of our free hours refurbishing homes, treasure seeking for the perfect barn wood, or beautiful bauble from forgotten collections. They surrounded themselves with things that they loved. And each piece didn’t come to us without a unique story or bit of history. At the time, I was too careless to think about the beautiful gift they were building for me. Now, I see this appreciation of design and history each day.
I am a high school Art teacher. Each day I get the opportunity to teach my students to appreciate the beauty around us. And each day, my love of the possibilities of color and style evolves. Whether it be a canvas or a chair, if it sits still for too long, it begs to become a work of art. I have tried many styles, techniques and finishes. Together, my mother and I, have worked on many pieces, from my first mirror, to tables, lamps, upholstered furniture and several kitchen make-overs. And together we’ve been offered the opportunity to become a part of the Chicken Coop Treasures family and share our love of design and giving new life to forgotten treasures. I believe that together, we could instill the passion we have for this wonderful line to those seeking to surround themselves with things they love!
I’ve been in many facets of sales & design throughout my working career, starting out with a major in Fashion Merchandising at WMU. From there it was varied sales jobs in marketing, retail and interior design. A personal love of antiques and all things fashion related, has brought me the greatest pleasure in creating pleasing atmospheres and homes for my clients. That excitement has brought me to Chicken Coop Treasures. If you need some help with your design theme or ideas for a room or home makeover … I’m here to help make that decorating transition smooth and headache free
I’m a lover of everything vintage! As far back as I can remember, my mother was always carting me around the Midwest “junking it” at garage sales, thrift stores, antique shops and estate sales. As I grew, I learned various techniques for remaking and updating older pieces into modern treasures giving me a real appreciation for craftsmanship and quality. My passions lie heavily in working with my hands to give old furniture new life and to combine found pieces in artistic ways.
As an adult, I have lived and traveled overseas in Europe and my passion for older pieces has only grown and now they cover my home – having a special place in my heart for French Provencal and industrial themes. I also hold a degree in fashion marketing, expanding my love for vintage beyond my home furnishings to my closet.
In the future, I hope to find ways to bring old world treasure from all over the world to my hometown here in Michigan while I continue to explore the trove of treasure while living abroad in Paris, France.
My name is Cecilia Root. I’m a jewelry designer based in Kalamazoo, Michigan. I’ve been designing jewelry for over a decade, most of my jewelry is silver but I also work with gold, copper, and other media. I got started in metal smithing by accident. I really blame my old high school friends! Near the end of the summer after my senior year in high school, one of my best friends at the time asked me to check in with her younger sisters, since she was leaving for college and I was staying in town. Her sister was very interested in making jewelry so we started beading together, making craft jewelry. We tried out polymer clay and wire wrapping for a while. I took a class at the art institute in town and found my passion for metal! It followed me into other aspects of my life. It bled into my college education, while working towards my cultural anthropology degree I did a few projects on East African adornment. I then sought out a job in a jewelry store to learn more about metal and stones. And now it’s been over a decade of passion, reading, researching, asking fellow metal smiths for advice and self-taught techniques!
Jack & Dorothy have been family friends for as long as I can remember. They are just good people who love auctions. I bet you’ll love what we’ve brought to CCT from their own personal chicken coop. RB
I’m Kathy Spence and live in Mendon where I grew up. I have been married to my husband Bob for 43 years and we have two children and six grandchildren. We bought a farmhouse and spent a lot of time remodeling it and that’s when I started my love for antiques. I have always loved to go to craft shows and began having shows in our house with things Bob and I made along with some of my friends.
We restored our barn in 2000 and started having a Fall Fest Sale with others that created different ideas and filled the barn with them. I did this for ten years.
I’m retired now after working as a dental assistant for 26 yrs. Now I enjoy working outdoors, going to estate and garage sales. I’m looking forward to being part of the CCT Collaborative.
Denise and Rick Bedell come from a varied background in photography and construction respectively. Denise owned and operated a portrait studio in Portage for 30 years where she was the principle photographer. That artistic background leads her into many different and exciting avenues in which to express her creativity. One of Rick’s many talents is he is an extraordinary woodworker. The combination of the two artistic talents leads to unique and fascinating pieces that will be available through Chicken Coop Treasures.
36 years later I find myself doing what I’ve done most of my life … framing really nice art. The story goes that I dropped a tool on the floor in my studio and it “dented” the mat that it fell on. The wheel from the tool left a little mark and I thought to myself that the mark was desirable. So I started using the wheel from the tool to embellish the mat board of custom framing in my downtown frame shop.
A few years down the road my wife brought home some leather tooling tools from a garage sale; a whole box of them for $5! She wondered if I could use them for something? 36 years later I’ve perfected, in my mind anyway, a unique way to showcase the art of today and days gone by. I hope you will feel the same way too.
When Karen and Scott met, they had very different tastes with decorating. He was very much clean lines, arts and crafts style using fall color palette. She loved the feel and look of oak furniture with an antique flair. Over the years we have come to appreciate the look and feel of mid century which is clean lines and bright colors that reminisce with what could be called antiques. We began collecting kitchen wear, small pieces of furniture and tchotchkes (ˈCHäCHkə/) that reminded us of our childhood. We have found a common ground that inspires our love for things old and old things updated with a current look. We love to go adventuring where we find inspiration and fun items and pieces we can bring new life to that we can now share with others at CCT.
I was born and raised in South Africa. I grew up on a farm surrounded by cattle, horses, crops, mountains, rivers, wildlife and a great family. Despite this rural background, growing up I was fortunate enough to learn about world cultures, business skills, languages, education, arts and the power of creativity. Being surrounded with talented and purposeful driven people helped mold me into the individual I am today. My studies after high school were in Fine Arts, Photography, Nursing (RN), Midwifery, Community Nursing, Psychiatric Nursing, ICU and ER. After 8 years of studies and 15 years in the business world I found myself returning to what I love most: nature and the best job of all .. .being a mother.
I was fortunate to travel extensively and have lived all over the world. I raised my two boys on a coffee plantation in Tanzania where their journey with me started and my journey with nature continued.
I began to realize that the absence of education for the younger generation, not just in general studies, but in health and environmental issues was something that meant a great deal to me. In Tanzania, Zambia, South Africa and USA I joined committees and groups that focus on education and on broadening the vision of the youth. What it mean to love earth and nurturing it while we reap the benefits of it.
I like to think of myself as having a flair of sophistication and as a spiritual nature loving optimist, however, I do have respect for modern technology and realize the important role it has in society.
My boys and I moved to Michigan, USA where I married my husband Tom in 2010. We started a new adventure by creating Blue Valley Lavender Farm in 2014. We’re still at the beginning stages and have 11 varieties and approximately 1300 lavender plants. We are not open to the public yet but I do give you a taste of our wonderful lavender through the homemade soaps, oils, scrubs, flowers and crafts made on the farm. So my journey has brought me full circle back to nature and the amazing things it can offer us.
Vicki Wheat ~I have had many years of buying and selling antiques and was proprietor of a few shops in my hometown. In our last shop, Wendy and I teamed up! It was a cute shop but as times changed we had to rethink that business model. Then Robin came to us with this wonderful opportunity. We are so excited to be part of the Chicken Coop Treasures. We enjoy finding all kinds of items from primitive, to industrial, to shabby . We like mixing it up; we feel you can decorate with old and new and gently used. We also like helping customers find what they are looking for. If you need help in choosing items for your home, we would be happy to get that special piece or accent item that completes your personal look. Be sure to stop in and check us out! I’m certain that there will be something for everyone.
Wendy Barnum ~ I’ve always been interested in interior design and display. My parents owned a hardware store complete with a housewares and gift section, which allowed me to be creative. Each holiday my mom and I decorated the windows and by high school, I was assigned the task. I loved it. That was the beginning of my staging interest. Along the way I began a lifelong passion of collecting antiques and repurposing cast- offs. After retiring from my teaching career, I began rehabbing homes. It was heaven. I had tried the life of a retiree for a short time, but it just wasn’t fulfilling my creative energy.
Then along came Vicki Wheat. Although we had known each other casually, we became fast friends. We found we had so many things in common from our close knit families, each having two daughters, mothers with similar names, and our love of collecting antiques. It was the beginning of a beautiful friendship. Besides weekly trips in search of that elusive item, we have managed several estate sales and our own vintage shop and most recently a pop up vintage market.
I love Pinterest and collecting design books. My current design philosophy is creating a home that is a reflection of the people who live there. It is a place lived in and loved. It is less about a particular style and more about personality. While I love the design aesthetics of Pottery Barn or Anthropologie, I think their vision can be interpreted to create a warm and personal space without being a carbon copy of their design. I look forward to being a part of this collaborative and the opportunity to offer those special pieces that help put a personal stamp on each home.
I am a wife, mother, & grandmother. My passion is creating a beautiful world in which my family can live! My husband and I have collected antiques, mostly cast-offs no one wanted, for the last 32 years. I have restored, refinished, repurposed, and painted pieces we have collected. I have a passion for paint. Through the years I have tried every paint, stain, glaze, & technique I could find. I laugh when people ask, “You painted that?”
I have restored, decorated, & painted 9 different places, some just ‘spaces,’ that we have called home. I love to tell our story with pieces we collect & places we live. When you see me at CCT, Inc., I’ll most likely have a brush in my hand and a smile on my face. Please ask me what I’m painting when you see me in the coop!