Last weekend, after a lovely celebration of our 29th anniversary at Danford’s Marina and Day Spa in Port Jefferson, my husband and I took a trip down to Huntington, where we found a store that held almost every childhood memory that our minds could hold. The little shop, known as Rosie’s Vintage, is located on the winding part of Woodbury Road, north of Jericho Turnpike. For those who love items of yesteryear, this adorable shop is a treasure seeker’s paradise.
As we entered the store, I saw something that literally took my breath away. It was a child’s red shovel, with a snow scene depicted on the blade with the words, “Build a SNOWMAN” in bold white lettering. I had that identical shovel when I was a kid. My sister and I used it to “help” dad shovel the walk. Most of the time, dad sunk our shovel into the new-fallen snow so that we could play outdoors. The clean metal edge was perfect for cutting precision “bricks” for mammoth snow forts.
The entire first room was dedicated to Christmas decorations of varying sizes and shapes. Flocked dancing mini Santa ornaments tripped over each other in a wicker basket, while brightly colored blown glass ornaments glinted and winked in the sunlight on the walls. There were blow-mold plastics, vintage Christmas cards, and a box of 45s which featured records with Christmas stories like Frosty and The Night Before Christmas. It was like I stepped back to the 1960s in Levittown.
Another room off the first had a kitty-corner cabinet that our original Levitt kitchen boasted, complete with Fire King and Pyrex bakeware. My husband pointed out a classic Erector set that stood beside an upright ashtray that appeared to have teleported from the 1950s. It was amazing.
The house where Rosie’s resides is an old house with perfectly creaky floors and all kinds of hidden closets and rooms where kitschy items are beautifully displayed. My husband and I found a china cabinet that held enough Jadeite dinnerware to serve at least six. He had to literally drag me out of the room, because I kept telling him how much my tiny collection at home needed a few more items.
There’s an upstairs in Rosie’s Vintage, which houses yesteryear bar items that caught my husband’s eye. Metal trays with Ballentine, Schlitz, Schaefer and Schmidt’s Beer logos lined the wall to the upper level. Beer signs hung cheerfully on the walls, while glass drink stirrers of opaque white clinked against each other in a leaf-gold tumbler. As I gingerly ran my fingers across the Schaefer Cold Beer clock, my mind traveled back to the North Village Green delicatessen, where I’d seen the sign in my childhood. And yes, I was singing the old commercial jingle, too.
Racks of vintage clothing, jewelry and albums could be found throughout the store. Rosie’s Vintage also had a “dressing room” or “powder room” at the entrance to the store. On the counter of the bathroom lay a box of vintage soaps such as Camay, Palmolive, Safeguard and Dial in wrappers from the 1960s. Even the large green cash register came from at least the 1950s, complete with the bell that “dinged” when a sale was made. It reminded me of days gone by, when Dad took us to Vermont for “penny candy.” The Bennington store boasted an identical cash register. I’ll never forget that “ding.”
Hubby purchased a vintage plug-in Santa, which glowed a deep red in our window for the entire Christmas season. I found an adorable bottle opener from Piel’s, which found its way into my husband’s stocking. There was a coffee mug full of skeleton keys that was perfect for our daughter, who occasionally designs jewelry in her spare time. As I spoke to Rosie, she expressed her gratitude for the publicity she received in the past. Rosie mentioned that she’d sold out of vintage Christmas twice because of the stories that news outlets offered to the public. She said that it’s the best part of her day when people recall their own childhoods from the items found in her store.
Rosie’s Vintage, which won Bethpage Federal Credit Union’s “Best Antique Store” in 2018 and 2019, hopes to be Long Island’s best antique store for 2020 and beyond. If you’re in the neighborhood, watch the winding road and take a visit to this off-beat, kitschy little place that’s just a little slice of heaven and childhood, all wrapped into one perfect package.
Rosie’s Vintage is located at 101 Woodbury Rd. in Huntington. Her website is www.rosiesvintagestore.com. For hours and directions, call 631-549-9100. Happy shopping!
Patty Servidio is an Anton Media Group columnist.