Hello! Today we’re excited to catch up with one of our wonderful newer Stars & Splendid dealers, Michelle Kunigisky of Michelle Kunigisky Designs and Busy Bee Quilt Designs. Stop by her space–she’s Splendid dealer #3.
Meet Michelle–here’s a fun interview for you and some photos of her space!
How did you get into vintage?
I became fascinated with vintage items as a kid visiting my grandparents in central Pennsylvania. We went to auctions with our lawn chairs and bought lunch from the Mennonite ladies who sold fresh baked goods from their table as the auctioneer emptied a house of its contents, one box or item at a time. I loved the thrill of it all and each treasure I collected was a memory of the fun day spent with my grandma and grandpa!
How long have you been a dealer? Do you work alone?
I have been a dealer for about 18 years. I like to work with my friend Rich or my mom, Birdie. We are good at knowing what each other likes and we tend to move at the same pace. Working with them makes everything more fun.
What would you say your specialty as a dealer is?
I love vintage linens and dishes. I would say those three are my specialties but then, I love a lot of categories.
What is your dream vintage score?
Italian Ex Votos, which are ornate heart shaped, silver offerings, are an ultimate score for my personal collection. I found a close second recently when I came upon a detailed metal statue of Mary on a wooden pedestal from a monastery in Switzerland. It is a treasure that makes me happy every time I see it!
Any vintage shopping tips?
When shopping for vintage items, never pass on something you truly love. There have been several pieces I walked past only to pine over them for years. Also, it pays to check your favorite shops regularly as you never know what will show up!
Do you collect some specific things for your own home?
I collect cream McCoy pottery, vintage fabric and monogrammed silver for my own home when I find pieces that speak to me.
How do you like to unwind?
Reading is how I usually unwind but hanging out with friends is the very best.
What are some of your favorites place to eat, visit or shop in Portland?
A couple of my favorite places to eat in Portland are Por Que No on SE Hawthorne or Screen Door on E Burnside. Screen Door’s fried chicken and their green tomatoes are the best! Ink & Peat has amazing gifts, jewelery and beautiful floral arrangements–it is a favorite shop where I always find the perfect gift and a lot of inspiration.
What is your idea of a perfect summer day?
My perfect summer day is having a cookout with all of my family at my mom and dad’s house. The food is always delicious and being with the people I love is my idea of perfect.