Hand-painted one-of-a-kind pieces can be found at Dare to Be Vintage. | Photos: Reba Saldanha
By Meaghan Casey
The saying “everything old is new again” rings true at the Mills at Pulaski, the North Shore’s largest indoor marketplace for antique and vintage items.
Whether it’s retro ornaments or unique gifts for collectors, you’ll be sure to find everything on your list this holiday season as you explore the Mills’ 222,000 square feet of shopping space.
Located at 58 Pulaski St. in Peabody, the Mills features more than 40 antique dealers including Antique Classics, Boston Vintage, Clifton Cache, Cole Mine Antiques, Dare to Be Vintage, J. Martin Furnishings, ModHaus, Never Too Many Books, Redemption Antiques, Rustic Chic, Timely Treasures, Outside the Box Collections, Vestige, Warehouse Provence and more.
The dealers—specializing in vintage finds, refurbished furniture, mid-century furniture and décor, modern reproductions, rustic and primitive décor, gas station memorabilia, estate sales, lighting, jewelry, clothing, art, records, books, toys, archived magazines and more—occupy three four-story former mill buildings sitting on 2.25 acres. Space for each shop ranges from 500 square feet to 30,000 square feet.
Though most of the buildings are filled with independent dealers, the fourth floor of the center building—which has more than 30,000 square feet of open space—is a coop, featuring a variety of vendor booths. It’s the perfect spot for those who love the joy of the hunt. Even walking through each building is like taking a step back in time, since much of the industrial structure of the former manufacturing site remains in place.
“There’s nothing like this anywhere else in New England,” said Antique Classics Owner Jim O’Connell, who was one of the first tenants when the Mills opened in 2012. “Everybody has something different.”
“I love being here,” continued O’Connell, who has a full-time upholsterer on staff to provide custom refurbishing of furniture he picks up at auctions and from dealers. “It has high ceilings, space to display bigger furniture and reasonable rent. Plus, we’re right at the intersections of all the major roads—95, Route 1, 128 and 114.”
Harry Bartlett, owner of Warehouse Provence, moved in to the Mills in June after being in Salem for nearly five years.
“It seems like it’s getting to be a destination spot,” he said. “There’s a lot of foot traffic. It’s becoming more and more popular.”
Bartlett’s inventory is centered on primitive French country pieces. He also offers custom-painted furniture and cabinets using Chalk Paint® —a popular decorative paint with a velvety, matte finish. Bartlett also sells the paint and offers classes in custom painting. While the Mills at Pulaski may no longer be the hidden gem that it once was, expect to find many gems inside every nook and cranny.