Little Black Dog Vintage, an antiques dealer in the Historic Octagon Building in Aurora that leans hard into its reputation as “the cutest little shop in town,” is celebrating its one-year anniversary this weekend.
While the store is relatively new to the business, its owner, Nicole Lawry, certainly is not.
“I’ve been collecting and selling vintage for over 20 years,” she tells the Current. “I love connecting people to previously loved treasures and giving them new life.
“My favorite part of owning a shop is seeing the joy my customers have over finding the perfect item to decorate their home, gift to a friend or loved one or even resell in their own shop.”
Prices in the shop start at 50 cents, and 99% of the items are under $100.
“I specialize in fun and unique smalls, ceramics and pottery, Pyrex and enamelware, mid century decor, vintage toys, old books, small furniture, cool clothing and paper ephemera,” Lawry says. “I even have candles, soaps and home spa items.”
But what really tends to raise customers’ eyebrows is neither Lawry’s inventory nor her prices, but the unique location of her store.
The building is more than 150 years old, but hadn’t been used much in the past 50 years since it was moved to its current location next to the city’s public restrooms at 2nd and Main Street in the heart of Aurora’s historic antique district.
“It is the only remaining part of the original colony hotel, which sadly burned down,” Lawry says. “Though no one knows for certain, the building was likely used as a storage space for the hotel.
“A diary states it even had chickens in it for a while and that band members would go out and smoke in the building after sets.”
While the structure seems small at first glance, Lawry says she regularly hears from customers that it seems bigger on the inside. She also says she is often asked about her limited hours — but she has a good reason for that.
“It’s because I’m a 17-year systemic lupus erythematosus survivor, and I also suffer from fibromyalgia,” she said. “These diseases are chronically painful and unpredictable, so when my body gets too run down, I get very ill and sometimes need to be hospitalized.
“This means I have to keep my hours and days open very limited so I’m getting plenty of rest and recovery time. I make a point to be open every Friday and Saturday, and oftentimes you’ll find me there on a Monday or Tuesday as well.
Lawry says it’s best to check on Instagram @LittleBlackDogVintage for up-to-date information on hours.
Little Black Dog Vintage’s one-year anniversary celebration will include a ribbon cutting, tastings of Aurora’s Pheasant Run Winery, special sales, grab bags and tasty treats from 3 to 5 p.m.
Guests should plan to arrive at 3 p.m. if you want to be in the group ribbon-cutting photo.
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