JunqueGypsy @ Etsy.com

Create your own video slideshow at animoto.com.

My blog followers will attest that this is the first time I've ever done a promotional write-up for a vintage shop. When you see Leonda's shop, JunqueGypsy, you may also ask "why?"...a few pics are a little dark & some blurry, and the items aren't "staged" like Etsy might like them to in the "Etsy-way"...BUT if you look at the items themselves you'll see the quirky, eccentric, fun nostalgic mix you get from her shop and the passion that this woman gives in her collection...my video doesn't do it justice.

It all started 30 years ago when Leonda first "absconded" (nice way to say, ripped off, stole, took without permission) with a wide collar swing 50's classic black "Donnybrook Original" coat from the high school drama department.

Since then over a dozen different countries, the thrill of the "hunt" and "discovery" is the same from a foreign bazaar or a local flea market. Her fondest "hunt" was a local dumpster diving incident with a friend holding her by her ankles as she braved filth, disease & dignity for an antique watering can.

The entrepreneur side has always been there since childhood. Her grandparents, Mammaw & Pappaw, were true Kentucky hill people. She remembers their house always nice & tidy, but on closer inspection, all the knick knacks & such had price tags on. People would come by regularly and have private shopping tours...and on weekends, they set up a table at the local flea market.

Before she opened her Etsy shop, Leonda had accumulated a huge collection of stuffed animal toys, but when her husband complained to "get rid of those typhoid toys" she immediately placed in a trunk in the basement and 30 years later after a career in teaching, she rediscovered them and also rediscovered herself & her passion in a "vintage" business. When in her first antique show, a woman ran up and grabbed one of the stuffed animals, squealing, "Billy! It's Billy". Turns out her mother had thrown her favorite stuffed friend out decades ago.

Not only is Leonda having fun digging out her vintage wares, researching the history, and on occasion, hearing "the rest of the story" from their purchasers...BUT she is part of a cherished few who DON'T think that Wal Mart or the urban mall are all that great. In a society where we don't think twice about throwing away "stuff"...or people. It's nice to know there are people who value things for their iconic beauty & their personal history to people

Please visit the JunqueGypsy and have fun remembering :D


Autumn said...

Neato! Nice write-up.

Ellen said...

hi autumn..so glad you liked it..i was thrilled to meet leonda and to finanly get this story on my blog.

funny..i sent her a preview of the video by email...she says she's in some backward techno boonie part of the country and it took her half an hour to download the 3 min. video...but she has it now and is forcing friends, relatives and innocent bystanders to watch :D ..only kidding, but i can imagine her doing that....NOW I"M SCARED i hope she'll like the write-up.

Leonda said...


Nancy said...

Thanks for the review! She really has a neat site and loves finding all kind of vintage and unusual items. (We knew she swiped the coat from the play props! LOL ) Glad she had the opportunity to retire so she could fulfill her true passion-treasure hunting!

Aloquin said...

Very cool! I've used animoto before, and like them very much. Great job!

Tanya said...

LOVE it! Inspire us all to find some JUNQUE ..... and discover the GYPSY within!

Ellen said...

i don't think it was JUST because we were poor art students, talking to leonda brought back all those wonderful times with my friends when we spent most of the day finding treasures at the flea market..going to "ming's" (the cheapest & most delicious chinese joint in town) for the luncheon special... and sharing our treasure hunt adventures & techniques over hot green tea & fortune cookies :D ...all costing $5 plus whatever our treasures cost which weren't much more than $5.

Leonda said...

Hey, Ellen! Just wanted to update and let you know that high speed internet has just arrived here!
My techno-void swamp has made it to the 20th century! (Cell phones still don't work here, though, so I haven't completely caught up!)

Ellen said...

hi leonda...YEAH! 21st century finally here...that loosening of your groins & tidy-whities is "FREEDOM" nipping at your butt...enjoy lovely lady.

could you do me a favor...tell everyone you can to visit my blog and enter my "end-of-year" giveaway...only have one entry so far...i have a hell of a lot more things to giveaway...pass the word!!!