The Brightside: CottageCopia
FRUITLAND, Md. – Little tiny treasures are hidden away in a backyard cottage in Fruitland and you can shop there just like a normal thrift store.
“This was a potting shed, this whole property was a garden that I gardened with my dear friend,” Noel Brown, the owner of the shed, said.
That shed is now CottageCopia, Noel’s own little antique store right in her backyard. And she’s no stranger to antiques.
“I’ve been in and out of antique malls for about 20 years, obviously that has some advantages, the first being, someone is there 8 hours a day 7 days a week manning the store, and the second is heat and air conditioning,” she said.
But as the pandemic shut down stores across the country, including antique stores, Noel says she had to make a change.
“My husband said why don’t you move it home, move it all in the shed, and we did that,” she said.
And so CottageCopia was born, a small backyard shop that packs as much punch as a brick and mortar antique store.
“They can find just about anything, it’s constantly changing, lots of vintage jewelry, glassware, clothing, any special little thing, I try to always have something to share, even if it’s just an old mayonnaise jar or herbs from the garden,” Noel said.
All of the items found by Noel and then placed in there to find it’s new home.
“It’s been a lot of happiness for me, during the pandemic just being able to be outside and being able to putter in a really creative way was a very positive thing for me,” Noel said.
Noel says the majority of her customers are people that she knows or who found out about the small treasure through friends or family and then make appointments to shop with her. But when you shop with Noel, she makes sure it’s a personal experience, and she’ll go out of her way to make sure her customers walk away with what you wanted.
“I have one lady that makes beautiful framed vignettes with old rhinestone earrings and rhinestone pins, so I’ll gather those together for her. I have another beautiful lady is looking for a blue flower pot, so I’m on the lookout for one of those,” she said.
And even with a small space and a small amount of customers right now, Noel says it’s her own little dream.
“I think it’s good to have a dream, even if it’s a small dream, doesn’t have to be some big giant thing to feel wonderful, so whatever your little dream is, then try to find a way to make that work,” she said.
If you’re interested in shopping there, you can reach out to Noel on Facebook by searching “CottageCopia” to set up a time to swing by.