The Window Shopper marvels in Mae’s Emporium

photo by Jade Howard

photo by Jade Howard

[CLICKABLE: see ALL the photos]

NWAFW March 13-16, 2013 The Chancellor Hotel

MAE’S| 352 N West Ave, Fayetteville | 479-575-9626 | fb | insta | email
Photography: Jade Howard [web | insta | email]
Hair: Jenn Harbour of Ultra Salon [web | fb | email]
MUA: Fallon Yockey of Luxe Beauty [ web | fb | insta | email]
Stylist, Writer, Model: Payton Bridewell [web | fb | insta | email]

*window shopper photo by Mallory Berry of MGB Photo

favorite maes

So… you can see that I love Mae’s (let me count the ways). This collage is a mix of outfits from the past year or so, each one contains an element from Mae’s Heirlooms .. Click à here for all things tagged with Mae’s on The Window Shopper.

Mae’s Emporium (or Heirlooms – it’s listed as both on various outlets) is unlike any store I’ve ever been in. It holds the stuff of dreams. The vintage/antique bauble boutique is housed in a room the size of a tin can. It’s very small but packed to the literal brim with sparklers and trifles from almost every era. Jessica Graham, the lady of the shop, opened Mae’s nearly five years ago after a stint of successful trunk shoes. The shop has since become an institution for avid collectors and date-party-bound sorority girls alike. She, along with the two close friends that convinced her to set up shop, is and has always been a vintage jewelry enthusiast. They saw the opportunity to translate their zeal into a completely individual offering for our area. The shop has a short week {w-s 11 to 4ish} but it’s not for a lack of merchandise. At any time, there are pieces from the 1860s to the 1980s and almost every time in between.  Jess loves the history behind each shiny thing and that inspires her to travel far and wide in search of pretties. She tries to stay close to home for most searches, though. She (like most of us) attempts to keep her money in NWA when she can, plus she has two adorable young sons.

In my opinion, what’s extraordinary about Mae’s isn’t just its distinct place our community; it’s the range of items available, the multiple price points (multiple options for $8 to $800, most in the bottom half of that array), and quality wares. A rival just doesn’t really exist anywhere else. Take a gander at the gorgeous, expertly-styled snaps on the store’s instagram, maintained by Jess, of course.

by Jade Howard

I feel like this picture is a perfect representation for what happens each time I stop in Mae’s. I’m like, “I’m here! Make me sparkle!” I feel like I’m bursting in, bull-in-a-china-cabinet style, every time I walk into the teeny shop. Blink and you’ll miss it from the outside, the small space is a veritable treasure trove past the front door. Personally, I have always preferred pretty over practical in a gift, especially from a man. Every holiday that implies gift-giving, I tell Ro (my hubby) that I want something sparkly. He usually delivers. But, I have no qualms buying jewelry for myself. I could complete any ensemble with something fabulous from Mae’s.  I’ve worn my finds all over the place, to my rehearsal dinner, to Razorback games, to events, to work, to everything. Each piece is one of a kind and reminds me of a special time in my life.

Jess, on the origin of her store’s name:

Seven years ago (while I was still doing independent trunk shows) I bought a locket to chop for parts from a dealer in Texas. I unpacked the box of estate spoils to find a handwritten note that warranted a change of heart…the note read;

“I hope that you enjoy this necklace. I have owned it myself for over 25 years and it’s time to pass it on. It belonged to one Ella Mae Prothrow- a gift from her husband, Samuel “Boss” Cain, for her birthday. That would have been in May of 1885- give or take a year or two. Her beloved husband died in a mill accident the very day he gave her this. She wore it every day until she died at the age of 92 and never remarried. Theirs was a great love story I have cherished and I hope you will too. It should be worn and shown- enjoy!”-Fanny B

After such a tale how could I do anything to it but preserve it? Not only does that piece hang in Mae’s under glass, but we took her name as well- and MAE’S it was :)

 

Mae’s is partnering with Lola on the runway Friday night of NWAFW 2013 (3/15). I know I can’t wait…

 

Details:

All jewelry from Mae’s, styled by Jessica Graham & Payton Bridewell

Dresses/Shoes – Payton’s own | Black Dress – Ann Taylor (thrifted) | Floral, White Eyelet, Teal Dresses – Vintage (Cheap Thrills)

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