on stocking books

After only sourcing vintage for years, it has been very exciting to choose a selection of new products to bring into the shop at The West End Garage.  Similar to my approach when buying vintage, I simply buy my favorite new items to stock.  I ask… Is this something I would want in my house?  Is this something I truly love?  Is this something I will be sad to see go?  The answer should be yes!  (Hello, turn of the century oak harvest table pictured below.  I really, really love you!  I will be sad to see you go but you deserve a good home.)

West End Garage April

This approach to buying inventory is something that I have been reminded of lately and have found myself telling others who are just starting out.  I think it is really important to love what you are selling.  Don’t choose it or make it just because you “think” someone else will love it.  Now granted, not everyone will have the same taste as you.  For example, I have a growing collection of old ship captains, ahem.  However, I believe the authenticity of your merchandise will show through when you are passionate about what you are selling.  It’s hard to honestly sell something you don’t believe in.

West End Garage April

With that said we’ve stocked a few choice cookbooks and gardening books to keep in line with the garden to table collection we have at The West End Garage.  I am really excited about the line up. We have Deep-Rooted Wisdom, a new release authored by blogger Augustus Jenkins Farmer.  I am about half way through this book and I’m loving the gardening tips, stories & characters.

Deep Rooted Wisdom

People have asked me how I chose which books to carry.  Well, I initially took the lead from a few tried and true favorites in my own kitchen stack of cookbooks and cocktail books.

Kitchen

The Kinfolk Table has since been added to that stack.  It has quickly become a favorite for two reasons.  One, the photography and stories are beautiful.  Of course I love a good aesthetic!  Two, the recipes are really approachable made with pantry staples that we pretty much always have on hand.  Essentially the book lends new ideas with classic ingredients.

Kinfolk Table in my kitchen

I have been inspired to make many of the soups and stews outlined in The Kinfolk Table.  A few weeks ago I made the Wilted Greens & Potato Soup on page 287.  I hadn’t thought to put kale in soup until this recipe.

Wilted Greens & Potato Soup

  Great idea.  We loved it!

Wilted Greens & Potato Soup Kinfolk Table cookbook

What is your favorite gardening or cookbook?

shop news: west end garage

As the tides change and we settle into life in Cape May, the timing has also allowed me to get back to my roots.

How’s that for puns?

Circa Dee at West End Garage in Cape May, NJ

Once in a while an opportunity comes along that is just so right.  This particular opportunity will allow me to pursue my passion in horticulture coupled with my flair for vintage.  I couldn’t be more ecstatic to share the news that Circa Dee continues to grow under The West End Garage’s roof – an antique tin one at that!

Circa Dee at West End Garage in Cape May, NJ

You can now find us in our new location up front where we’re proudly featuring a garden to table collection. Amongst our very favorite vintage furniture and quirky finds you’ll find succulent gardens, herbal wreaths & topiaries, bitters & other fixings for fantastic cocktails, cookbooks, botanical stationary, garden tools, vases, pots & cloches with much more to come!

Circa Dee at West End Garage in Cape May, NJ

We hope to inspire you to get back to the simple pleasures in life as we currently are…  Growing your own summer cutting garden and arranging fresh flowers.  Harvesting your own vegetables and cooking them for dinner.  Planting your own terrarium and watching it grow.  We’ll offer seasonal merchandise to help make that happen.

Circa Dee at West End Garage in Cape May, NJ

In addition, we’ve been working hard to bring in a selection of sustainable, high quality American Made goods that complement our new garden to table direction.  It has been very empowering to work with so many small, family owned businesses and artists who are experts in their craft.  I am looking forward to sharing these products with you here on the blog and, of course, for sale in the shop.

Circa Dee at West End Garage

I’ve been a fan of The West End Garage since the day the doors opened nearly 5 years ago.  It is Cape May’s most unique shopping destination boasting an eclectic mix of vendors that we’re proud to be a part of.  You never know what you’ll find hidden in that wonderful, old building.  It’s worth the trip!

Circa Dee at West End Garage in Cape May, NJ

The best news of all is that we’re already open for business in our new location.  We’ve been busy bees.  Stop in one weekend this spring or any day this summer!

The West End Garage

484 West Perry St. Cape May, NJ

Here’s to a new chapter in our story…