LODI — Two self-proclaimed farm-town girls — Christy Ladina and Sally Tolbert — have spent the past three months painting, reorganizing and enhancing the inside of Lodi’s newest antique store: Parkside Peddlers at 121 Wooster St.
Ladina and Tolbert, both of LaGrange, were offered the opportunity to own an antique store in downtown Lodi in January.
“We bought the business formerly known as Village Square Antiques,” Ladina said.
With the business came a few existing dealers who opted to stay with the new owners during the transition period, and a couple of new ones have signed on.
The shop offers unique items, costume jewelry and refurbished/painted furniture.
“My mom has always had an eye for unique items, and I grew up in a house full of antiques,” Ladina said. “I had spent many summers thrifting and garage-saling as a kid.”
Tolbert remembers her daughter telling her about nine years ago that she wanted a job outside of the home. As a stay-at-home mom, Ladina found painting furniture as a great outlet.
“She had been painting furniture at her home, and having success in selling pieces,” Tolbert said.
Ladina is the artist behind the painted furniture, but credits her heritage with her talent.
“I come from one of the most inspirational artists from LaGrange, who also happens to be my grandma Harriet Keller Wise,” Ladina said.
Wise often told Ladina that her “stuff was too good and (she) needed to go into galleries,” Ladina said.
Instead of galleries, Ladina opted to peddle her items around Ohio, but she knew it was time to find a permanent home for her many art projects-turned-furniture.
After a few years of discussing their options, space became available in Lodi, and the rest seemed to fall in place.
Tolbert left her full-time job as an office manager in December and went in with Ladina to open Parkside Peddlers.
“We’ve dreamed up all kinds of wonderful changes, and I can honestly say it has come together better than ever imagined,” Ladina said.
As a way to thank the community, Parkside Peddlers will have a grand reopening. The store will be open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. Dealers at the store will be offering discounts. Original artwork by Wise and Susanne Wise Dotson will be available for purchase.
According to Ladina, many of Lodi’s merchants are joining in the festivities Friday and Saturday. Lodi’s Historical Society will be open for tours and Mayor Robert Geissman will be available 4 to 8 p.m. Friday at the Lodi Town Hall to talk with residents.