Miranda Gould Contributing Writer
An old, red building stands tall and proud in the heart of New Sharon. It is located right on the corner of Route 2 and Water Street, next to the Sandy River Farm Supply store. Deb Kendall has owned the building for around 23 years. Although the building wasn’t always a thrift store, the three story building has now become an important factor in Kendall’s life. In the 1860’s the building used to be a boot and shoe shop that was powered by the nearby Sandy River with a water wheel. Now, upon entering Kendall’s New Sharon Thrift, you are greeted with the same antique charm that existed in the 1800’s, with original wooden floors, rustic windows, and the fully intact water wheel that once powered the building.
From various furniture items to cookware, jewelry, and other knick-knacks, the store is brimming with both beautifully new and old affordable items.
“I’ve always wanted a thrift store,” said Kendall. She has always enjoyed spending her time thrifting wherever she goes. “I’m on the road a lot…I kind of know the spots now. I’ve always been a thrift store shopper,” said Kendall.
Although the store is located outside of Farmington, Kendall hopes to extend her business to the college community. “I think I have a lot of really good stuff here,” said Kendall, “Something for everyone.” She has three giant rooms filled with copious amounts of affordable furniture and other household items that would be perfect for college students moving in to, or living in, college apartments around town. She gets quite a few regulars, and sees people of all ages enter her store, but thus far has yet for someone to not be excited about something she has to offer.
Kendall’s favorite items to pick up and sell are lamps and mirrors. Although mirrors are cheap to make, new ones are expensive to buy, and for half the quality. Kendall takes pride in picking up beautifully crafted mirrors that she can sell for an affordable price.
Another popular item in her store right now are miniature stools. “A lot of people like to buy them to put their plants on. Plants are really popular right now,” said Kendall.
Kendall likes to keep her items vintage, including shutters she has displayed on her front porch. “I don’t like to mess with anything too much…such as these shutters, if I were to paint them, then I would have to sell them for more,” said Kendall, “I like to sell things affordably and let people get creative on their own.”
As styles fade in and out, each item serves different purposes to different people at different times. “When people ask me what something is, I like to tell them it’s whatever you want it to be!”
As of right now the New Sharon Thrift is only open on Saturdays, for Kendall feels her life is too busy at this point in time to religiously keep it open every day. In the future, she hopes to solely focus on her store and be open more days a week. “Sometimes if I’m doing something in the store I’ll open up for a couple hours,” said Kendall. If someone can’t catch the store open at a good time, she is reachable through messaging on her Facebook page, New Sharon Thrift, where she is more than willing to accommodate those who would like to check out her store on 4 Water Street in New Sharon on their own time.
Kendall is willing to extend the offer to anyone who would like to stop by her store, if they mention having read this article, that they are qualified to receive five dollars off any purchase at New Sharon Thrift.