Home Decor

Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days is an antique show and flea market event filled with goods from different places and times. It can be intimidating for beginner shoppers to navigate the lingo. To help you ease into the weekend, we compiled a list of the most popular words you might hear at our show to help you make the best decisions possible while shopping at Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days.

Antique vs. Vintage These are arguably two of the most used words you will hear at our event. So what is the difference between antique and vintage? Antiques are considered to be a piece of furniture, work of art or collectible object that is 100 years old or more. Vintage is similar but is aged at 25 years or older.

Smalls People often use the word "smalls" to describe small vintage or antique home decor items and accessories. Other worse to describe these little items of value are knicknacks, baubles and Tchotchkes.

Collectible Any item that is regarded to have value or interest for collectors is considered to be a collectible. Collectibles are often times worth more money than they were originally sold for.

Primitive To be considered a primitive, an item must be hand made, and utilitarian - think wooden bowls, spoons and such. These items were often made by untrained people. Primitives are generally very old and usually older than 100 years and therefore considered antique.

Folk art Folk art is antique or contemporary art made by hand by craftsmen, not artists. Folk art is similar to primitive but can be It is expressive and often colorful. Hand made picture frames, wooden toys, and cigar boxes are some examples of items considered to be folk art.

Upcycled This is a fairly new term used to describe a form of recycling. Up-cycled tend to be pieces of low value that are changed and become a product of higher quality and thus value. Jack-o-lanterns made from old gas cans are a great example of an upcycled item.

Art Deco A style of visual arts, architecture and design that first appeared in France just before World War I. Art Deco features bold geometric shapes and patterns accented by high shine gold or chrome and the colors navy or black. The movie Great Gatsby is a great example of the art deco style.

Mid Century Mod This type of decor is having major come back thanks to shows such as MadMen. This style from the 50's and 60's is sleek and simple. The furniture often features bright colors, gold metal, laminate tops, narrow or hairpin legs and is usually made out of walnut or teak.

Chinoiserie -This European interpretation and imitation of Chinese and East Asian art is often found featured on beautiful pieces of furniture and porcelain. Beautiful vases and screens are often mediums for this type of art.

These are just a few of the words you will hear falling from the lips of our vendors and shoppers during your trip to Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days and we hope you find the knowledge helpful. While we are happy to provide this information we'd be remiss if we didn't tell you that the secret to learning the most about the goods at our show is to ask the vendors. Vendors are a treasure trove of information and are more than happy to share their knowledge with the shoppers! Make sure to stop and ask about that interesting piece that catches your eye during the show. You might just get a little lesson in history and you will definitely walk away with a great story and maybe a new treasure!

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You never know where life will take you. I bet our featured vendor never thought that would she'd find herself living in the little town of Oronoco, MN where she traveled every year from Iowa to shop and sell antiques! Meet Kathy, our latest shopper/vendor featured in the series.

Kathy, you have a very unique Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days experience in that you have been a vendor and a shopper and now you have a home in Oronoco! Your daughter remembers coming up to the show from Iowa as a child to spend the weekend helping at your booth. Tell us a little bit about your history with the show. 
Early on  Steve and I innocently started thrifting and buying our household items used. It's what we could afford. We also found it was a lot more interesting to shop that way than to buy new. Along with our daughter Jessica, the three of us took adventures whenever we had free weekends. When we would take day trips or vacations we were always veering off the route for an auction, antique store, flea market, you name it. 

During the 1990's we set up at several antique shows in Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota and Missouri. It was a time when many people were buying, selling and collecting antiques. Oronoco had a reputation as a profitable and fun market for vendors and buyers of all types. Over the years we had such a diverse, but like minded clientele. Decorators, designers, artists, artisans, and collectors of all types. Steve and I developed our individual tastes. Jessica had a great eye for the visual appeal of anything we picked up. Over the years she stashed some great textiles, arts and crafts pottery, fiestaware, and other eclectic finds she now decorates her home with. 

One of the hardest things about being a vendor would be deciding what to keep and what to sell. What are some of your favorite "keeps" over the years?
The things I cannot part with are; early Americana Folk Arts and crafts and individual quality work with age. Quilts and textiles of all sorts that bring color and creativity to our space.  

What advice to you have for shoppers at Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days? My tip for buyers: It is not offensive to ask a dealer what their best price is on an item. For me, the more my customers bought from me and the more they repeated business each year, the better the bargains were....

I mentioned you had a unique experience with Gold Rush, part of that is you now have a home in Oronoco.  We are so happy to have you! Tell us a little bit about what brought you to our little town. Jessica married, and was educated as a nurse. Her and Adam (also a nurse) came to Rochester to work in the Mayo health system. They have three young daughters (our grandchildren) and built a home in Oronoco. Steve and I are now approaching 60, winding down our "real work" and our life goal is now to be in our grandaughter's lives as much as possible. When a special old house by the river in Oronoco came back on the market, I twisted Steve's arm sight unseen to buy it...I had admired that home every time I came to Oronoco. Now it was less than a mile to visit our grandkids!

We are so happy to have Kathy as a long-time shopper of Downtown Ornooco Gold Rush Days and a new citizen of Oronoco!

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We are very excited to introduce our latest vendors in our spotlight series. Long time shoppers at Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days and also veteran vendors, this couple always bring a large variety of amazing "junk" to pick from. Take it from me, I bought 2 tables from them last year! Meet Cheryl and Woody of Junk Devotion.

Tell us a little bit about Junk Devotion.
It’s funny, sometimes we don’t even remember when this adventure started! It just sort of evolved over the past 12 plus years. Over the years we have inherited and appreciated various pieces of furniture, photos, dishware, etc. from family members. We then started seeing trash to treasure segments on TV and in magazines and suddenly we were hooked. We started picking up miscellaneous pieces that had been discarded by others and suddenly we had a garage full of goodness waiting for transformation. We love to take formerly loved (or trash to some) pieces and transform them to treasures that can be used in the home and garden. We’re particularly drawn to galvanized and industrial pieces once used on farms, since we both have farming in our backgrounds.

You are a husband and wife team correct? Do you have similar style and taste? Tell us a little bit about that dynamic. 
We are a husband and wife team, Cheryl and Woody Woodward, from Pine Island, MN. There aren’t many teams like us in the junking world, so we feel fortunate to share our love and hobby of junking. Our tastes are similar, but not always the same. We both appreciate a beautiful piece of wood and great metal pieces. Usually Cheryl can be found painting furniture behind the garage; while Woody can be found in front of the garage building rustic pieces of furniture. Occasionally we collaborate to discuss details and color combinations. Sometimes we agree to disagree on how a piece is put

When you are picking how do you decide what to keep and what to sell?
After all this time we get as much joy out of selling a great piece to someone who really appreciates it as we do in keeping it for ourselves. We’ve realized we can’t keep everything, so sometimes we use a piece in our home for a while, then pass it on. That’s the joy in junking, there are always more great pieces out there!

Where do you get your creative inspiration from?
Our inspiration comes from television, magazines, social media and other junkers. The crazy thing with junking is that we can see someone else’s idea and put our own twist on it because many pieces are one of a kind. Sometimes two pieces just magically fit together and we surprise ourselves!

It looks like you've been to a few markets already this season, what seems to be hot right now? What are the trends?
The trends are still the farmhouse look with painted furniture, metals and beautiful woods. Many shoppers are also looking for raw junk to accessorize their decorating.

How many years have you been setting up in Oronoco? What keeps you coming back year after year?
This will be our eighth year at DOGR. We were shoppers there for 20+ years and it’s fun to be on the selling side of it now. The conversations we have with shoppers are priceless! Sometimes we teach people the origin of a piece of junk and other times we learn from the shoppers. Every year we renew old friendships and create new ones. It’s all about the connections and it’s a whole other family for us.

Do you have any favorite food vendors that you look forward to visiting at DOGR each year?
We usually bring our own food so we don’t spend all our profits, but we do treat ourselves to the homemade ice cream sandwiches every day!

What can we look forward to seeing in your booth at Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days this year? 
We will have a huge load of farm galvanized junk to decorate the home and garden. We’ll also have plenty of “raw” junk for anyone who wants to do some creating of their own.

We are so excited to have you back in August. Until then, where can we find you and your work?
We have the Rescued Relics Pop-Up Sale scheduled for July 27 at the LTS Brewing Company in Rochester. We’ll join forces with two other vendors for this one day sale, complete with beer tasting and food trucks.

Make sure to stop by and say "HI" to Cheryl and Woody during Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days August 16-18! In the meantime, learn more about them and their work by visiting their facebook page https://www.facebook.com/Junk-Devotion-115984551792958/?ref=br_rs

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The Farmhouse style is IN and not going anywhere. This is largely thanks to hot celebrity designers like Joanna and Chip Gaines. Sure, you could run to your local Target and check out their merchandise - and you should because it is awesome - but you can also make the look your own by shopping for unique pieces at a flea market such as our beloved Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days.

So, exactly what should you be looking for in Farmhouse decor at a flea market? Here are the items that make our list and are in abundance at Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days.

  • Chippy furniture
  • Hand-scraped wooden tool boxes or bowls
  • Ironstone crocks
  • Enameled bowls
  • Egg baskets
  • Milk glass
  • Reclaimed barn wood
  • Ladders

Join us the 3rd weekend in August as the tiny river town of Oronoco happily overflows with vendors and shoppers during one of the most anticipated antique and flea market events of the year. You are sure to leave Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days with fabulous pieces that express your personal farmhouse style.

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