Antique Hunting in Bellingham

I’m on a mini-vacay visiting my youngest in Bellingham (WA) and, of course, I had to do a little antiquing while here. I didn’t spend a lot of time in any store as I didn’t want to bore my daughter to tears, but I did find a few things I’m pleased with. No home runs because I did “pay up,” but I still there is a bit of profit to be made and I had a blast!

It’s not often I wax lyrical about a store, but I can’t resist. I’ve mentioned this antique store before but it’s still my hands-down favorite, due in part to its owner. Ral is a friendly, down-to-earth, knowledgable guy ready with a smile and a chat.


And his store, Bellingham Bay Collectibles (314 W Holly St.), is a diamond in the rough. To say it’s jam packed might be an understatement!





But even with just a little time you’ll spot (or unearth) something fabulous. (Loved some of the mid-century pottery on the shelves above.) While the prices are “antique store prices,” Ral is willing to negotiate and if you can pay cash, all the better. He’s also connected to the community in many ways including letting the Western Washington University drama department come in and borrow items to use in plays. In return he gets tickets to the play. So if you’re ever in the area, do pop into Bellingham Bay Collectibles.

On this visit I bought this lovely carved cameo in pin/pendant set in .800 silver.


Lately cameos have been speaking to me! (I bought one on my last vacation a few weeks ago.) Imagine this on a black velvet ribbon.

And I spotted this carved thing. Ral wasn’t quite sure what it was but I felt it was something good, even with a bit of damage.


curiosAfter an hour of online research, I found the answer. Turns out it’s an antique carved coquilla nut, likely a blotting sand (pounce) pot used during Victorian times on the well-appointed desk. Cool, right? [Poop, I just noticed more damage while examining it back in the hotel room. There goes any profit. Well, maybe this will be destined for my curio cubby of interesting bits!]

I also popped into Penny Lane Antique Mall (also worth a visit) and couldn’t resist these vintage painted wood Russian ornaments representing branches of the military.


At Aladdin Antiques (just below Penny Lane) I found one stall offering 50% off everything. Hmmm. I took a good, long look at the costume jewelry she had displayed in one cabinet, but wasn’t finding anything super exciting, but I did like the looks of two vintage compacts.

This gold-tone enamel and rhinestone compact is by the Evans Case Company. They produced compacts from the 1920s-60s. The mirror is broken, but all the little rhinestones and faux pearls are present.


And this one with the baby photo seemed darn unique to me…haven’t been able to find anything out about it yet or find one similar. Any ideas?


So just a few goodies, but it’s always fun to find things further afield. 🙂

How about you? What are you finding these days?

As always, happy hunting,



  1. Given the little time you had, you still managed to unearth a few nice pieces 🙂 The compacts are particularly nice. I wonder if the baby photo one was a custom piece?
    I did some shopping today, nothing extraordinary – some retro bits, a few china pieces, some vintage wall hangings, a wooden box and a handful of old books. Nice things but not sure whether there’ll be a great profit in them 😉 Hopefully someone will like them as I did when I picked them!
    Enjoy your vacation!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Beautiful finds! I do the same thing when I travel – visit every antique store I can find. (As a vintage dealer, even on vacation, I never completely stop working because “hunting” is so fun.) Bellingham has some really fun antique shops! — Marsi

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hunting is addicting! Even when I don’t buy anything I love looking.

      Love your Etsy shop. I’m always tempted to buy vintage typewriters, but the storage and shipping/packing seem too daunting!

      All the best, Karen

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks Karen! The typewriters are my husband’s babies. He loves to tinker with those old machines, and obsessively overpacks them to protect them. I like to find them, buy them, and admire them, but don’t have the patience for the cleanup and packing, haha!

        Liked by 1 person

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