If you’ve seen my workshop studio, Inspired Barn, in magazines, online, or in person, it’s likely pretty obvious where my number-one inspiration comes from- early general stores and mercantiles.
Counters, shelves, cases, drawers and bins filled with neatly arranged and stacked goods, much of which was packaged and labeled with the most excellent design and typography. With over 20 years as a career graphic designer specializing in branding and packaging– that’s definitely my thing.
So imagine my pure delight to happened upon the Monteverde General Merchants store in Sutter Creek, California a couple of years ago. Started in 1898, this store is now a museum of many of the original relics of the past. Most everything is still neatly stacked and stored as a window into Gold Country’s past and remains spectacular inspiration for the present. Much of the store’s merchandise dates back to the early 20th century, with a few current items from the early ’70s that the late Rose Monteverde left on the shelves in hopes of the store one day becoming a museum. If you happen to be in Sutter Creek, simply call the phone number on the sign taped to the front window and a nice gentleman will walk down from his nearby home to open it up for you to explore.I toured this magnificent general store with my husband and my camera and just came across these stored photos the other day. So whether you’re into vintage-inspired graphic design, good ol’ vintage goods, or simply love to organize stuff, I hope you’ll enjoy my personal photo tour of the Monteverde General Store.
Sunbrite Cleanser, stockings, and shoe repair. Double paper roll dispenser No. 1.Counter glass case filled with confections. Union Farm and Garden Tools broom and tool handles display. General store shelves food items. Soap and soap packaging. Canned fruits, mason jars, caps and rings. Cigars, cigar boxes, tobacco goods. Bird food & supplies.The general store scale.Bins, drawers and shelves. Beautiful vintage hardware.The storekeeper’s nook. Handwritten store ledgers. Double paper roll dispenser No. 2. Fuller brand linseed oil barrel. Mooreknit children’s hose.The haberdashery section of the store featuring silk satin tafeta and cotton tatting thread.J&P Coats embroidery and Royal Society crochet cotton threads.Dennison Gummed Labels.The library.Boxes and crates, printed and stenciled.Children’s rubber boots, and shoe thread.Clothing: Men’s dress, work and sleep shirts.Seidlitz Powder.Fontana’s Semolina plain noodles, wide. Schrader’s Insecticide Powder. Roach poison.
Medicinal herbs: Sanicle. Elmo Cucumber Cream. Par, Palmolive, Crystal White, P and G, and 20 Mule Team soaps.Vintage jar examples.Juan de Fuca and Londres cigar boxes Store receipt pad.Notary embosser. Double paper roll dispenser No. 1.Trupak mixed bird food. Shelby hardware hinge.I’m looking forward to visiting again.