16
Apr
07

A Store I Love: Country Friends

If you read this blog much, you’ll realize that while I’m crazy about all kinds of design, our own home tends towards the “not new” (I stopped using the word “traditional” during an episode of the Sopranos when Carmella used the term to describe the white leather and chrome-gilded mobster haven she and Tony called home.)

Outdoor Table and Chairs

(Outdoor table and four chairs I have my eye on. $199.00.)

I don’t know why I like what I do. I could try to figure out why old furniture, flowers, lots of color, gardens, cushy chairs, woodstoves, holidays, etc., appeal to me, but I don’t really care. I’m a big fan of metacognition, but over thinking design is one of the easiest ways I know to kill a good look.Fortunately though, there is a store made for people like me: Country Friends. Saying the name embarrasses me, but I’d be lying if I said it isn’t the first place in Indianapolis that I go when I need a perfect “something”—for a gift, to fill a floral container, for the front door, to help set the table.

Bird Bath

(A bronze birdbath we bought for John’s dad. I liked the forked base that makes it easy to relocate.)

Dave, another Friends-o-phile, and I typically make four official pilgrimages a year—Easter time (for spring and summer), early fall (Halloween and Thanksgiving), before Christmas and after Christmas. And then there are a few trips for random gifts or decorative dilemmas.Many people I know won’t go there. John refuses to darken the door. The place is PACKED with stuff, a look and shopping experience that a lot of people don’t enjoy. And there’s no shortage of kitsch, which doesn’t bother me. For whatever reason, I have a healthy respect for kitschy things as long as they’re sincere.

Michael and Sheila

(Michael and Sharon)

Plus the owner Michael, who started the business 22 years ago in Muncie, is a little manic and loud, but I love him. He buys fun stuff constantly and a lot of it, so if you are willing to spend some time you can usually find what you need. The staff is super friendly. They asked about my mom three months after she came to visit one time. I like that in a store.

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8 Responses to “A Store I Love: Country Friends”


  1. April 17, 2007 at 1:38 am

    Troy, I must admit that when Country Friends opened in the Village in Muncie, IN back in the 80s (I was a student at Ball State), I thought, “that place’ll never last”. Who would have known. It truly is a great experience to shop there. I’m always pleased with my finds, and yours too. Can’t wait to see the buffet arrangement. Oh and by the way, “Don’t forget the warehouse.”

  2. 2 Barb
    April 18, 2007 at 1:05 pm

    Oh, and Troy…’tis my favorite as well! I make the trip at least monthly if not more…just to get a feel for the mock dining room and hearth room. Actually, it is about the only place I go…I hate to shop!

  3. April 18, 2007 at 1:14 pm

    For someone who hates to shop you have a great looking home! A testament to CF?

  4. 4 CRYSTAL
    April 18, 2007 at 6:28 pm

    i wanted to say what lovely flowers (the bubblegum tulips and daffodils). I wish i had 1/4 of your skill gardening and the like 🙂

  5. 5 momunderground
    April 23, 2007 at 5:13 pm

    I love the look of that store! I love old stuff, too.

  6. 6 Jim
    October 10, 2007 at 12:31 pm

    My wife Marty and her friend Carol are the decorators at Country Friends and they have been busy the month of Sept. getting ready for the opening. She said it was pretty hard work turning a warehouse into what they knew it should look like especially in the 90 plus heat that month. But they did it !
    Be sure and stop in and introduce yourself to Marty.


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