February 16, 2022

clare’s perfect day: antiquing in palm beach

One of the most common questions I am asked (via DM, comments, and even a few by email(!)) is whether or not I have a guide to South Florida. Well ladies, I do now!

One thing I will say about Florida: I don’t think you can do better antiquing anywhere in the US. I’ve yet to go antiquing in France (bucket list tingz) but I honestly imagine that Palm Beach might just rival that. I’m not quite sure what makes antiquing in Florida so great, but I’d imagine it has to do with an aging community (read: more estate sales than usual) combined with Palm Beach’s own eclectic design history.

Here’s how I spend a typical day in South Florida.

• Wake up in Delray Beach. Head to The Seagate for the best coffee in town. Sit outside with your coffee and a pastry as you wait for The Snappy Turtle to open up across the street. If you’re lucky, my Aunty Caroline will be the one opening up shop. Tell her I said hi.

• Stuff your bag with clothing, accessories and home goods from Snappy and jump in your car to head north to West Palm. Here are your stops:

World Thrift – $. Say hello to the best thrift store in the United States. My dad is going to be SO upset I’m spilling the tea to those who don’t know about it yet. Just…. go. And remember that Wednesday is senior citizens day. So, bring mom or grandma along (or, if you’re one of my 10% of followers who is above 50, IT’S YOUR LUCKY DAY!) if you want to snag that 50% off.

Goodwill – $. Hit or miss. Keep your eye out for good sets of glassware in the home goods section.

Kofski Antiques – $$$. If you’re looking to buy some secondhand furniture like chairs, sofas, or beds, this is your place. You’ll find high quality and unique pieces here. Prices are not particularly cheap, but that depends on where your interests lie. I think I paid $400 for the two ottomans pictured in the gallery above. If I had those custom designed brand new, they’d be in the 1-2K range.

Devonshire of Palm Beach – $$$$. This place is simply magical. The first time I walked in, I teared up. They do a fabulous job of collecting antiques and handmade items from around the world (Europe in particular) and display them in the most exquisite ways. Prices are high, but you can make out with a bowl or placemat set for under $50.

Authentic Provence – $$$$. French antiques for the home and garden. This place is incredibly beautiful. I have never seen prices so high in my life, but there’s definitely a market considering the items are so rare and gorgeous. It’s worth it to see how thoughtfully curated the store is!

Churchill Galleries – $$$$. This is my family’s absolute favorite Palm Beach shop. It has a collection of eclectic home pieces like antique chinoiserie and handmade lampshades. The best part? They have an outlet, called the annex, located at 3638 S. Dixie Hwy, West Palm Beach ($$$). We’ve bought daybeds, bureaus, and loads of ginger jars from the annex!

Palm Beach Home Style – $$$. Head to this adorable shop if you’re looking for anything rattan, especially dining chairs and tables! Staff is very kind and helpful, and the display is super inspiring!

Mecox – $$$. This is a great store with a mix of old and new interior design products and decor. We love to visit the neighboring Mecox floral to stroll through the plantings and see the orchids – definitely worth a trip.

• The West Palm Beach Antiques Fair – $$. This place is great for furniture, prints, paintings, and trinkets. Take a look at the website to see if the fair coincides with your travel dates. I like to keep my eyes peeled for sailor shell boxes and ginger jars. You can haggle if you see fit. If you want to sip stuff home, most sellers have contacts who will help you arrange something like that.

And you didn’t think I’d leave you on your own to find refreshments, did you?!

If you get hungry for lunch, definitely check out Havana for Cuban sandwiches. It’s very legit and absolutely delicious. Notable mentions: media sandwich Cubano o de lechon for lunch, dulce de leche for dessert, cortadito to help keep your head on a swivel for deals and steals!

To celebrate all of your new finds, make sure you cross the bridge to the island to celebrate with drinks at the Breakers Seafood Bar, where clownfish actually swim under you at the bar and the drinks are spectacular! (Pro tip: walk in like you own the place – people are ultra fancy but there’s no reason you can’t fit in if you hold your head high and smile! I know I get intimidated by five star places, but you deserve a seat at the bar as much as anyone! Heck, you spent your day sweating on the front lines fighting old ladies for wicker baskets! You deserve an expensive martini!)

Now, head back to Delray for dinner.

Did you make a reservation? Great! Here are my faves:

Elisabetta’s – amazing Italian food, two stories. See if they can seat you on the balcony to overlook the ave. Great for bigger parties.

Lionfish – Honestly, I’ve never planned a trip to Florida ahead of time enough to nab a reservation here so I’ve never been. It’s supposed to be great – if you do go, let me know how you like it! (that reminds me. I’m going to make a resi for march)

Vic and Angelo’s – good Italian restaurant, nice ambiance!

Park Tavern – Stands the test of time. A must try!

Oh no! You forgot to make a reservation?! Don’t feel bad. We can’t do it all. Here’s a few places I’ve been able to walk into and enjoyed:

Tramonti – old school Italian, fancy, great people watching

Sundy House – romantic, tables set amidst a jungle environment, good key lime pie martini

The Office – if it’s later at night, I usually can snag a seat for two. American food, pretty basic but yummy and a nice fun environment.

And say for whatever reason you need to take your great aunt Connie out to dinner where she can actually hear you talk (what – does this sound like it’s coming from a personal experience?!), 50 Ocean above Boston’s is probably your best bet.

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2/16/2022

I’m Clare. Welcome to my world & website! I’m a designer, content creator, and artist obsessed with making everything around me beautiful. I hope my site inspires you to do the same! 

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