When new downtown Howell shop owner Katelyn Lyders stepped into wholesale home marketplace AmericasMart Atlanta, she felt like she was in heaven.
"There were hundreds of vendors and it was one of the best experiences I've had," Lyders, 24, of Brighton Township, said.
She stocked up on antique and one-of-a-kind furniture, home accent pieces and other home decor from vendors at the Atlanta market.
Her finds there are among a wide range of old and new home decor and gift items she will be selling at Sage and Slate, which she plans to open this spring at 120 S. Walnut St.
"My thing, I'm obsessed with antiques and found stuff," Lyders said. "Our style is classic and traditional meets farmhouse rustic."
When it opens, the new shop will sell both old and new home products, including some from created by local artists and craftspeople.
The approximately 1,000-square foot shop is located in the former Rose Cottage Flower Shop, which closed a couple years ago.
Lyders said she is excited to utilize her degree in interior design from the College of Creative Studies in Detroit to run the shop and give customers design advice.
"Our big goal is to be a place for people to see how we have things staged and styled in the store to inspire them to do it at home," she said. "I was always changing my own house and I've found my niche ... neutral colors on the walls and things that are timeless, and then I bring in seasonal pieces."
Many of the pieces of furniture she will sell are antiques, some dating back centuries.
An 18th-century French table and 19th-century Irish table will be for sale and also double as display space.
Lyders said most of the store's inventory will be accent pieces and small items.
Pillows, rugs, vases, candle sticks, kitchenware blankets and art prints are among a variety of items to be featured in the shop. They are also considering selling faux flowers and women's clothing.
Store manager Kelsey Halonen, 27, of Howell, said they want to feature products created by local artists and artisans.
"We've been reaching out through different social media outlets, finding people who do unique one-of-a-kind items," Halonen said. "There are people from Howell we're talking to now who do watercolor paintings, sign painting and hand-sewn pillows."
She said she would like to connect with more artists and artisans from Howell and the surrounding area.
Lyders said she plans to sell prints of her own black and white photographs. She has a degree in photography and takes black and white photos of architecture, farm life and landscapes.
"I grew up on a farm with horse, pigs, alpacas, donkeys, about 200 animals," Lyders said. "It will be nice to sell my own artwork because I've never done it before."
She said she named the shop Sage and Slate because they are her favorite colors.
"Green and gray are my favorites, something more natural and something more metallic," she said.
She said she likes downtown Howell because it has a good retail environment, and she thinks her shop will bring something different to the mix of retail establishments downtown.
"We also want to get the community involved by participating in charity and social events," she said. "The Humane Society is a love of mine and in the future we also want to do classes here, like painting classes."
Howell Downtown Development Authority Director Cathleen Edgerly said the shop will be a good addition to downtown's retail mix.
"Having one-of-a-kind, funky home furnishings and decor definitely compliments what we already have down here," Edgerly said. "There are other decor stores, but when they all compliment each other, it makes downtown a destination for people shopping for unique home decor, which really benefits everybody."