About

In a recent interview, Brandy was asked the following question:

We live in a modern world that tends to take a “throw it away and buy a new one” approach to most things. Your shop, Carver Junk Company, embraces a very different philosophy by specializing in vintage, repurposed, rustic and retro décor and furnishings. What inspired you to open the store? And what is your philosophy when it comes to the value of something old vs. something new?
Here was her answer:
“The decision to open Carver Junk Company was an “impulse purchase” of sorts, but also a great example of life presenting an opportunity we couldn’t refuse. It’s always been on my bucket list to open a local arts and/or crafts store. On the eve of closing on a new house in Carver, MN, Chad and I noticed a For Lease sign in the window of a small brick storefront on the historic main street of our new town. We signed the lease the next day – never having previously discussed opening a junk store.
We believe in shopping local, and being very involved in our local communities, and this allows us to do and encourage both. In addition to that, I’m an habitual refurbish-er. As much as I personally love the before & after, I love showing others that it’s possible to take “junk” and turn it into something very desirable. Of course, there are also the “ooooh”s and “ahhhh”s from those who see and buy our junk – it’s so satisfying to watch someone fall in love with a piece that has narrowly escaped a trip to dumpster heaven. It’s even more satisfying if they’ve seen the before, doubted the possibilities, and then realized the value of refurbishing, recycling, repurposing.
As far as old vs. new – they both have a place in our lives. I’m not sure I’ve developed a clear perspective on when old is BETTER than new, or vice versa. Old things have so much character, such stories behind them. There’s always that “if these walls could talk” sort of allure with older pieces. We actually write down the stories we know on the tags we attach to each item at the shop. I’ve debated writing down the stories I’ve silently made up about the unknown pieces {and of course disclosing that they’re made up}, just for fun – I feel like every piece deserves to have its story told.
Our house is a mix of old and new décor, refurbished and store-bought. It does seem true that things just aren’t made as well as they used to be – whether that’s because of a lack of time, the cost to make things that last, or the economics behind the ability to sell more product if every piece has a shorter lifespan. I have a concern for the future health of our world – which is certainly impacted positively by continuing to reuse and recycle – but for me, this adventure is more about doing something that feels good, that engages us in our local community, and that allows others to share our passion for local, quality goods. “