ALTON — New to historic downtown Alton, Aunt Sha’s Cottage Furniture has recently moved into the prominent Mineral Springs Hotel.
Owner Marsha Hawes, affectionately known as Aunt Sha, opened its doors in August in an attempt to offer used and refurbished furniture at reasonable prices. She says her love for old and interesting things and a realization that she would need to continue working past retirement age led her to consider turning that passion into a business.
“I thought it would be nice to do something the rest of my life that I really, really enjoy doing, and I really enjoy doing this,” she said. “I like trying to find the pieces. I like painting them. I love to find the find.”
In a downtrodden economy, spending is something many people avoid, even on things they may find useful or need.
“I try to keep things reasonably priced; I want to make sure that stuff is affordable for everyone,” Hawes said. “Part of the reason I opened is because the economy (is bad) and people are unemployed, but that doesn’t mean that they still don’t need a table and chairs or a dresser. I have dressers starting at $45 … and they are wood. It’s wood, it’s nice, and they’re solid.”
Aunt Sha’s offers more than just furniture. From dishes to lamps to Art Deco cigarette cases, Aunt Sha strives to have something for everyone.
“(I carry) things that people need, but (may not be able to) afford to go out and buy brand new,” Hawes said. “We have lots of odds and ends stuff … things that I have found that I think are really cool.”
Aunt Sha’s Cottage Furniture, 307 E. Broadway in Alton, is open from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays; 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Thursdays; and 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. Sundays.
For information, call (618) 420-1882.