Thursday, November 3, 2011

Heartbreak on Main Street

Photo by Joe Vogel - this building used to be a theatre!
This week marks a sad day in the history of our wonderful little downtown.  That's because on Monday, after six or seven years, the Fond du Lac Antique Mall decided to close up shop.

The only bright spot in this whole thing is that Frannie, the proprietor, didn't close because of lack of interest; it was due to a building dispute of some kind.  It doesn't make it any less sad, but at least it wasn't becuase nobody cared.  On the contrary!

I frequented the antique mall almost from the beginning.  It was a veritable treasure trove of ephemera, and the prices were very reasonable - sometimes almost TOO reasonable!  I could spend hours looking around, and many times I would carve out an afternoon specifically for that purpose.  It's where I began my love affair with old Life magazines.

Some of the most amazing items in my collection were discovered at this magical place.  The one that sticks out the most for me is the Wisconsin Bell folder and six pamphlets, which I found back in June.  Because of that discovery, I was able to make this piece, one of my favorite pieces I've ever done:

"Number, Please" collage/embroidered framed work
One booth had a ton of Good Housekeeping magazines and because of the price (a buck each!), I bought most of them for myself.  It was the only way I could've made this ATC:

Yep, I cut out each of those GH seals
individually!  :D
I've gotten so many wonderful items in Frannie's shop that I couldn't possibly name them all.  And now, to get my antique store fix, I have to travel at least 20 miles to Oshkosh instead of 7 minutes away.  

I can only hope that Frannie finds a way to return to doing what she loves and what she does best.  She will surely be missed.


  1. That is so very sad! I'm sorry, Mel. I hate changes like this. At least you have a downtown. I moved back to my hometown which had 5 blocks of stores. Now we have only a few - Dollar General - not even downtown - a pharmacy, a few food places, a mission store & and 2 odd clothing places.

  2. Oh no! I know this is a real blow for you. It's surprising that an antique all would close, since they are so popular, but now that I think, a couple have closed around here too. Here's hoping you find an alternative nearby. Otherwise email me if you're ever down around Janesville and I'll introduce you to a local place that is a treasure trove.

  3. Aw, darn. I never got to go there. I sure hope your friend can start up somewhere else.

  4. Thanks for the sweet comments, ladies! :D Our downtown will be a sadder place without Frannie. I have no doubt she will return in another venue in the future. :D

    Sherry - I'll have to get down to Janesville! I forget that you're so close to Fondy! :D