Antique shop owner doesn’t let past get old

Gail Lacinski enjoys lifelong pastime at her Elizabeth store, Prickly Pear

Geraldine Smith
Special to Colorado Community Media
Posted 8/26/19

She approached the crowded barn beside the old farmhouse where clusters of hunters surrounded many of the items like predators surround their prey. Working her way through the crowds to the coveted …

This item is available in full to subscribers.

Please log in to continue

Username
Password
Log in

Don't have an ID?


Print subscribers

If you're a print subscriber, but do not yet have an online account, click here to create one.

Non-subscribers

Click here to see your options for becoming a subscriber.

If you made a voluntary contribution of $25 or more in Nov. 2018-2019, but do not yet have an online account, click here to create one at no additional charge. VIP Digital Access Includes access to all websites


Our print publications are advertiser supported. For those wishing to access our content online, we have implemented a small charge so we may continue to provide our valued readers and community with unique, high quality local content. Thank you for supporting your local newspaper.

Antique shop owner doesn’t let past get old

Gail Lacinski enjoys lifelong pastime at her Elizabeth store, Prickly Pear

Posted

She approached the crowded barn beside the old farmhouse where clusters of hunters surrounded many of the items like predators surround their prey. Working her way through the crowds to the coveted prize on the back wall, her focus never wavered and victory was hers. The antique dresser would soon fill the vacant space she had reserved for it in her antique shop.

Gail Lacinski, the owner of Prickly Pear Antiques in Elizabeth, has been in just that position more than once as an intrepid hunter of antiques.

Lacinski says it feels as though she has been collecting antiques all of her life because her mother was adventurous and they would travel all over buying antiques. As her mother’s intrepid partner in these exploits taking them to flea markets and auctions, she rode in the bed of the truck at times holding down new finds. The question arises: What was holding down Gail?

Antiques were in her blood and she continued to collect and collect even after she was married. In time, the accumulation prompted her husband to suggest a retail solution, and so began Gail’s 15-year career in retail. Prickly Pear Antiques, though not her first venture, is certainly her favorite because of her enthusiasm for Elizabeth and its residents.

Gail has lived in Colorado since she was 4 years old, living most of that time in Golden and then Evergreen after she married. Evergreen’s cold and snow eventually took its toll, partly because she had horses but the weather precluded her spending quality time with them. When they inherited a home with room for the horses, it was an easy decision to downsize and move because their children were now on their own.

She clarifies, “We visited Elizabeth during a Christmas event and we fell in love with the city. Elizabeth was where I wanted my shop and I feel right at home because all of the other merchants and have been so welcoming and helpful.”

All the support she received facilitated the realization of her vision to blend the old with the new and create a shop where she would want to shop because she loves to decorate.

“I like the farmhouse look and always have,” she acknowledges, “and I wanted to be different and have a mix of old and new. My inventory is more primitive than others in town.”

While most of her rustic farmhouse stock comes from barns, old houses and estate sales in Missouri where she often travels with friends who share her passion, she is always on the hunt. Much to the dismay of her husband, at times she will insist on stopping at auctions or sales anytime they travel. Her husband, Joe, will explain patiently, “We will never get there at this rate.” So, most of the time when they travel, he goes fishing and she haunts antique sales in small towns.

She may actively pursue the old and rustic but she still strives to offer the new and rustic. Some of that new is made for Gail by family members including her son-in-law who creates unique jewelry from silverware and her brother-in-law who is responsible for the beautiful cutting boards that could double as wall hangings.

Touring the store with Gail, she points out different creative uses for some of her items and identifies other obscure objects from a distant era. Her enthusiasm is contagious as she suggests creating a fountain from an old child-sized bathtub as a basin for one of her antique hand pumps. Continuing through the shop, her innovative ideas are apparent as she points out an old ammunition canister doubling as a receptacle for a floral arrangement, dried gourds promoted as possible birdhouses and antique lanterns endorsed for string lighting.

Catching the repurpose bug from Gail, her customers can find the most unique uses for the old items she carries. Tammy Siewert from Mountain Man Nut and Fruit across the street pops in to return extra faucet heads she won’t need for her faucet head earring display she is creating at home.

Tammy’s enthusiasm is transparent when she declares, “Gail’s shop is so enchanting.”

Finding new uses for familiar objects is exciting, but if a customer is looking for items to use just as they were intended, Gail has a chicken incubator, a selection of butter churns and dairy cow identification tags chains whose popularity mystifies Gail.

Other products that customers can use just as they were intended are Prickly Pear Syrup, Prickly Pear Honey, Prickly Pear Jam and seasonal candles. As the Facebook page says, Prickly Pear Antiques offers a unique collection of shabby, rustic, farm-related antiques, home décor, and more.

The only thing prickly here is in the name that Joe suggested when he spotted a prickly pear cactus on a hike.

For more information on Prickly Pear Antiques, located at 244 Main St. in Elizabeth, call 303-646-1505 or write pricklypearcolo@gmail.com.

Comments

Our Papers

Ad blocker detected

We have noticed you are using an ad blocking plugin in your browser.

The revenue we receive from our advertisers helps make this site possible. We request you whitelist our site.