Antique store a labor of love for former prosecutor
THIBODAUX, La. (AP) — After a career in the legal profession, some of that as a Lafourche Parish prosecutor, Diana Sanders has found a new calling.
Sanders opened an antique store, Back In The Day, 825 Jackson St., Thibodaux, in July 2018 essentially as a hobby in her retirement.
While opening a business may not sound as relaxing, as say golfing or shuffleboard, Sanders said it’s a perfect fit for her.
“This is a piece of cake for me,” Sanders said. “I was an attorney for 44 years. I did public defender work, and I was a prosecutor for 16 years, so it was very stressful. This is stress-free, I don’t stress over anything.”
Sanders started out in the antiques business while she was still working as a prosecutor, setting up booths at local flea markets to sell and buy her wares.
The small shop is now filled with items that Sanders hopes evokes a sense of nostalgia in her customers. There are large assortments of old toys and relics from a bygone era of the oil and gas business like oil cans and gas cans from years gone by.
Perhaps counter intuitively, Sanders said she has more men who come into her shop than women and keeps about half of her floor space to cater to them.
“They’re looking for old license plates, old farm equipment, old tools,” Sanders said. “This whole side (of the store) has a lot of old things, tool boxes, fishing lures, trains, things like that.”
Sanders said she would rather sell items familiar to her customers that bring back fond memories of childhood, rather than going for the high-dollar-value antiques.
But that doesn’t mean she sells junk.
“I don’t like plastic. I don’t like anything past about 1990,” she said. “I try to get things from the ’50s, ‘60s and ’70s, and I’ve even had things from the late 1800s and early 1900s. But those things are getting very hard to find.”
But find them she will. Sanders said her favorite part of her new endeavor is not selling things but looking for them.
“It’s more about the hunt than anything else,” she said. “Even when I was little, I always collected. I used to go find old Coke bottles. I’d look for them, I’d dig for them. The selling end of it is boring to me, but you have to do it.”
Sanders said she often buys things from customers who walk through her front door looking to sell. As a result, she has no shortage of inventory, with five storage units full of antiques waiting their turn.
And she wouldn’t have it any other way.
“If it wasn’t fun for me, I wouldn’t be doing it,” Sanders said. “And as soon as it becomes work and not fun, I’m out of here. But I love it, I really do.”
Back In The Day is open Thursday through Saturday from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.
Information from: The Courier, http://www.houmatoday.com