Monthly Archives: September 2012

Bella Rustica Bound

Bella Rustica is all the buzz this week around Southern Accents! Garlan Jr. along with several of our team members will be heading north to Pulaski, Tennessee this weekend… we can hardly wait!

Bella Rustica is a three day, Vintage Barn Marketplace, held on the Milky Way Farm in Pulaski. This annual event is held as a fund raiser for AGAPE. Well over 30 juried vendors will have booths set up in a beautifully restored stone barn on this magnificent estate built in the 1930’s by the candy bar giant Frank Mars. In it’s prime, this 2,800 acre farm was home to over 30 barns, many containing chandeliers, paneled walls and wrought iron detailing. We are taking our truck with hopes of shopping this event. We are also looking forward to touring the estate and taking in all of it’s architectural and historical beauty.

While we are at Bella Rustica we also hope to meet with our friend Gina from The Shabby Creek Cottage. Gina is giving away a $100 gift certificate to Southern Accents! If you haven’t signed up yet, you have till midnight on Wednesday, September 26th to get your name in the pot. Hop on over toGina’s Blog for all the details!

Garlan will be leaving Bella Rustica and traveling on down the road to a house in Tennessee that is scheduled for demolition. Our crew will start tearing out all kinds of treasures from this old home next week. As soon as the truck is full, it will head back South so that we can share our finds with you. We will have doors, wood, and anything else we can salvage from the scheduled demolition along with whatever catches our eye at Bella Rustica.

Make sure that you Like us on Facebook and that you areFollowing Our BLOG so that you will be one of the first to know about our latest finds! We will be posting info and pictures from our trip to Bella Rustica as well as the demolition as early as this weekend! You do not want to miss it!


We consistently have customers stop by the store asking about Dr. Gudger so we thought we would take this opportunity to tell his story.

Garlan Gudger, Sr. was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes at the age of 13. His doctors told him that he would not likely see his 45th birthday. He decided at an early age to prove them wrong. Through his teenage years he fought the disease by being active. He worked out and was heavily involved in sports, playing football into his college years. His theory was that living a disciplined, active, and healthy lifestyle was good medicine. Now 70 years old, he has proved the doctors wrong.

Garlan Sr. has worn many hats in his lifetime. Those who stop by asking about Doc knew him as Dr. Gudger during his tenor as Dean of Wallace State Community College. Many will stop by asking about Coach. Now grown, these men played for him during his early career as a high school football coach. Big G is another name we hear quite often from folks around town who know him from his many years at the store, which got it’s start in 1969 when he began salvaging architectural antiques as a hobby, storing them in his garage. A few years later he opened a small store in North Cullman which has grown into the South’s finest collection of architectural antiques, now run by his son, Garlan Jr. aka Little Gar.

Recent years have seen a decline in Dr. Gudger’s health. The diabetes has taken it’s toll resulting in quite a few surgeries, including one in 2005 that took his leg from the knee down. In 2007 Dr. Gudger underwent a kidney transplant, receiving a donor kidney from Garlan Jr. He’s also had recent bypass surgery as well as eye surgery. It’s been a rough road but one he continues to travel with tenacity and perseverance. He is still a man of discipline, working out 3 times each week at the rehab center. Although his health will no longer allow him to run the store, he pays a daily visit to tell Garlan Jr. and Jeff what they are doing wrong! He stays just long enough for everyone to know that he’s still the boss. If he’s in a good mood, we might get a story or two out of him.

Next time you stop by Southern Accents be sure and ask about Doc, Coach, or Big G. He loves seeing old friends and if you’re fortunate enough to catch him here he just might share one of his tall tales with you!

Check in on Facebook when you visit our store and receive a 10% discount on your purchase of any regular priced items (delivery and woodshop services excluded)!! Simply pull up facebook on your smartphone, show us that you’ve checked in at Southern Accents and save!

Junking Survival Guide

We ran across this picture last week and found it quite humorous, primarily because this could be one of our customers! We have had good folks show up in a Volkswagen and try to figure out how they can use it to transport a door or bathtub. This lead’s us to this week’s question.

Q. I’m ready to go junking. What do I take with me?

A. At the top of our list would be a truck, however, this guy should have taken a bigger truck! Before starting your venture you need to give thought to the notion that although you may not be looking for furniture or large sized items, there’s a good possibility that you will come across a large ‘must have’ item. How will you get it home? You need to be prepared to transport a large item just in case. Making a separate trip later to transport might cause you to decide to walk away from a really great find. You also need to have blankets, rope, and anything you may need to pack and secure your new found treasures.

2) Having cash on hand is a must. The obvious reason being that many sellers may not be set up to accept credit cards and may be hesitant to accept a check. However, the main reason to carry cash is because it is a great bartering tool. Many sellers expect buyers to try and negotiate the price. Offering a cash payment can sometimes get you that discount!

Speaking of discounts… if you have a smartphone and ‘check in’ on Facebook when you enter our store, you can receive a 10% discount on your purchase of any regular priced items (delivery and woodshop services excluded)!! All you have to do is pull up facebook on your smartphone and show us that you’ve checked in at Southern Accents. How easy is that?

3) Other items that can definitely come in handy: measuring tape, magnifying glass, flashlight, calculator, notebook and pen. You may need a magnifying glass to look at small details or inscriptions. When considering large items you need to know if they will fit into your available space before making the purchase. Keeping a notebook or journal is a great way to keep track of information you may gather from a seller. Asking questions and recording any available information could be useful in tracking the history or provenance of an item. This information may also be beneficial if you decide to resell down the road. Log each item along with the name and contact information of the seller, the price paid, and any other important or interesting information you are able to obtain. If the end of the day finds your truck loaded down, you won’t remember where you scored all those hard-to-pass-up treasures!

Taking a little time to plan your trips and being well prepared before embarking on them will lend itself to a fun and successful junking adventure!

Junking 101

The idiom “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” is a phrase often heard in the antique business. Picking through another man’s trash to find that treasure has become a popular past time thanks to cable shows like American Pickers, Pawn Stars, and Storage Wars. We’ve been picking, or junking as it is also known, since 1969.

While many of our customers and newsletter subscribers are seasoned pros, others are just developing an interest in all things old. We are going to dedicate some space in several upcoming newsletters to focus on a few questions that we are commonly asked. We hope to provide some helpful answers as well as pass along a few tips about junking that we have learned over the years.

Q. Where are the best places to junk or pick?

A. That depends on what you are looking for. Flea markets are great. Typically you have a large variety of items available in one location and prices are generally good. Most sellers expect buyers to bargain with them and are willing to do so. Yard sales are a good option but can be very time consuming. You need to do a bit of research ahead of time to map out locations. It takes time to travel from one sale to the next. You also have to sort through a lot of junk and may walk away at the end of the day empty handed. However, a little time and patience can reap some sweet rewards. Estate sales are an option worth looking into but keep in mind that prices will be higher. Most estate sales are managed by estate liquidators who have to be paid for their services. EBay and Craigslist are both popular online avenues especially if you are looking for a very particular item.

Our favorite shopping venue of course is Southern Accents! Although we deal primarily with architectural antiques and salvaged items you’ll also find hoards of interesting picks around our store. Our store, like other antique stores and malls, need to be shopped often. We acquire new inventory on a weekly, if not daily basis. When you come for a visit be prepared to spend some time browsing our showroom, warehouse and lots. You will find treasures tucked away in corners, hanging on walls, sitting in an old coal bucket… they’re here! If you are looking for architectural pieces we have the largest collection in the South. If you are on the hunt for old hardware, salvaged items to use on a fabulous Pinterest project, or unique items that will add charm to your home, office or business decor, pay us a visit. We think you will be pleased, if not surprised, by all we have to offer.

Visit our New Arrivals page to view some of our latest picks!

We’ll be providing more tips in upcoming issues of our newsletter as well as on our blog. In the mean time, if you have a question that you would like to see answered, e-mail it to

A Lesson In History

Webster’s Dictionary defines the word provenance as “the history of ownership of a valued object or work of art”. The value of an item is determined in its simplest form by supply and demand. Knowing the provenance of an antique can certainly add value to the item by making it more desirable. We try, whenever possible, to obtain the provenance of antiques and salvaged items that we acquire. For example, a door knob that we have in our private collection evoked quite a bit of passionate conversation on a recent Facebook post. The door knob (pictured) came from an apartment of John F. Kennedy in New York. Although seemingly evil in appearance, knowing that the hand of JFK grasped this knob makes it an item that we desired to have. There could be other identical door knobs in existence, but being able to trace the history of ownership of this particular knob back to this President makes it priceless to us.

We don’t know the history of all items that we acquire. The sheer volume of architectural pieces that we house make it impossible. Sometimes, the information is just not available, but often we are able to acquire historical information and are thrilled to make it available to our customers. We recently acquired this majestic door (pictured) that once hung in an 1880’s Victorian style manor in Fayetteville, Tennessee. We were able to acquire information on the home as well as the owner.

Just last year we salvaged items from The Gay House, a Queen Anne home in Montgomery, Alabama built in 1899 that was once considered a major architectural attraction in the South. Many in the Montgomery community mourned the loss of The Gay House, but we were able to salvage quite a number of items. Some of which were purchased by customers who had a connection to or held fond memories of the house. The items were valued because of their provenance.

We invite you to plan a trip soon to Southern Accents. Come on by and let us share with you a bit of the fascinating history that we’ve been able to acquire on some of our pieces. Our private collection is always on display at the store. We would love to share the history with you.

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