What goes around comes around, and no one knows that better than the purveyors of these Queen City treasure troves. Sure, you could spend hours scouring eBay or Etsy for the perfect vintage piece, but why do that when the Queen City offers a wealth of one-of-a-kind items that you can see and touch in person. The best part? These four shops have spent years curating their collections, sourcing items from across the country and across the pond, which means they’ve done all the grunt work so you don’t have to.
Wooden Nickel Antiques
Downtown Cincinnati’s longest-standing antique storefront, Wooden Nickel is a one-stop shop for pieces that give old and new spaces alike a substantial dose of architectural interest. Specializing in antique stained glass, fireplace mantels, chandeliers, and saloon-style bars that hail from the 1880s to early 20th century, Wooden Nickel also offers gothic-style doorways, decorative iron work, and stone remnants salvaged from dilapidated estates. Ask to see the big bar (they’ll know which one) and prepare to be amazed. This shop has been a go-to for Cincinnati restaurants and watering holes looking for one-of-a-kind pieces with a story. Now it’s your turn to bring a piece of history into your home.
1410 Central Pkwy., Over-the-Rhine, (513) 241-2985
Mainly Art Vintage Furnishings
For show-stopping pieces that look straight out of the sets of American TV drama Mad Men or Tom Ford’s film A Single Man, Mainly Art is a must-visit. Co-owned by husband-and-wife-team Mark and Missy Fisk, the Oakley storefront captures the height of design from Mid-Century Modern and ’70s glamour (with a few 1930s Art Deco pieces sprinkled in). Look to them for original, high-quality pieces that will last a lifetime from big names like Eames, Le Corbusier, and George Mulhauser. Mark’s advice? Don’t be afraid to mix styles from different time periods: “People look around [the store] and think our entire house must be completely modern, but it isn’t.” Put simply, he means you can have your antique hutch and your modern chair, too.
3711 Madison Rd., Oakley, (513) 378-8261
Since expanding and moving into its new location in Over-the-Rhine, Bloodline Merchants hasdoubled the inventory of its previous 4,600-square-foot shop on Eastern Avenue in Linwood. Owner Thomas Jackson grew up northwest of London in Newark, where he spent his youth digging for treasures at the International Antiques and Collectors Fair. He still makes routine pilgrimages across the pond to source antiques for the shop, including original Chesterfield sofas, ornate Indian chests, and Mid-Century Modern Danish pieces. Jackson says he’s always been inspired by an item’s heritage, which is partly what attracted him to Bloodline Merchant’s new space in the former Crown Brewing Co. building on East McMicken Avenue. “There’s so much history already here,” he says. “It’s the perfect backdrop to the things we sell.”
131 E. McMicken Ave., Over-the-Rhine, (513) 973-1014
Lentz and Company
Barware galore! Lentz and Company packs a punch of style in a small amount of square footage. Located in the heart of the Gaslight District, this storefront definitely reflects the sometimes oddball personalities who stroll up and down the sidewalk. From the kitschy clocks to psychedelic art and technicolor accessories, it’s hard to know where to direct your attention first. Wherever your gaze falls, make sure to check out the sparkling silver cookie cutters above the kitchen utensils—they’re mementos of owner Leigh Ann Lentz’s grandmother. With everything from quirky hostess gifts to fun tableware, no party is complete without a trip to Lentz and Company.
339 Ludlow Ave., Clifton, (513) 739-0193