Desiree Francos presence on 12th Street predates the Astoria Sunday Market, when she was working with her mother. But Franco, a transplant from Beaverton, opened her own shop in early 2012 selling all manner of antiques and collectibles. Eglantines Attic, open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Thursday and Friday and 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday., can be reached on its Facebook and Etsy pages under Eglantines Attic.
What do you do?
I sell vintage and collectable items of just about every kind. I also sell e-cigarettes; I branched out into that. Thats basically what I do here. If you look around, youll see just about everything. I dont specialize in any one type of collectible. A lot of it is my mothers work. Shes been collecting for years and years. I get my stuff mostly through garage sales. Some of it is my sisters items.
How did you get started doing this?
I needed a job; I couldnt find a job in Astoria. I used to be a computer tech in Beaverton, and I decided to move down here with my daughter, who was 9 at the time, and couldnt find a job, so I decided to make one. I had been here before the (Astoria Sunday) Market started 12 years ago. My mother and I had started at this location. There was no sign, but I knew the building was vacant. So I asked around and found the owners name and number and called him, and he was renting.
What is the volume of your business?
In the winter, Ive got to depend on the locals, and I have a lot of repeat customers that come back once every month or so to see what new things I put out. I get a lot of tourists, people from Portland, sometimes Seattle. People in their 20s and 30s seem to be the real big collectors now, as opposed to the older people. I used to be the only person open on the block on Sundays, so I got most of the business. But now with the market here, theres no visibility and I dont get as much business. Its real slow in December. The spring was good last year, and its good this year. The volume drops off about November.
How does the economy and the weather affect your business?
If the weathers too good, I dont get any business. Everybodys rushed out to enjoy it, since it doesnt happen all the time around here. The economy seemed like it was really slow, but now it seems like its picking up. People are more willing to spend money than they were before. The volume we were doing here 12 years ago was much better than it is now. I was probably doing five times the volume, at least, 12 years ago than I am right now. That could just be eBay and other sources. Its hard to say if its just the economy.