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Local Motif brightens Northgate experience

Tue, 04/04/2017 - 12:11 -- Gayle Nichol
Nicole Mislan

For five years, Local Motif has been nestled in the Northgate Plaza offering a selection of giftware and antiques to Sarnia residents.

Now that winter is giving up its feeble grasp on the area, Local Motif is showing the colours of spring and a very special birthday.

Decked out for the 150th anniversary of Canada’s confederation, owner Nicole Mislan says customers are drawn to the red and white display of national pride in the short months leading up to Canada Day.

Once inside, a leisurely stroll through the bright and airy shop supports the trends toward decorating with beach motif, cottage, garden and nature-brought-indoors.

Nicole says she tries to cater to a broader taste, choosing items that speak to those looking for something a little different.

“I like to say we carry a little bit of the old, yesterday and today.”

She strives to support Canadian manufacturers, and provides and even greater support to local artisans with much of her display space dedicated to locals. Karen Shaw’s “Fat Bottom Girls” line of cards, Jane Neily’s photographs in her “Beachwalk Narratives” and potter Pauline Anderson of Bright’s Grove all have prominent displays at Local Motif, as well as local stain glass and jewelry artists.

In addition to giftware, Nicole partners with her father, Reg Allen, who operates Just-A-Nuff Antiques, to supply refinished antique furniture to the shop. Benches, tables, dressers and display cases from a bygone era deck the shop with classic design and stunning finishes.

A retired school teacher, Reg took his interest in refinishing antiques and has found a niche in the market.

“We sell a lot of antique furniture,” says Nicole. “His pieces don’t last long because the finish is so nice.”

Open Tuesday through Saturday, Nicole says many of her clients head to Local Motif to find a unique birthday or gift item. As they stroll through the shop, the conversation inevitably begins and people connect in the friendly atmosphere.

“This isn’t work,” she says. “I love coming in here. I have lots of friends that I’ve made just from them coming in and looking around.”

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