The ClearingHouse consignment store in Greenport is closing, and all Italian Bombay chests and English-style wormwood bookcases must go.
The First Street store, known for its high-end secondhand home furnishings at rock bottom prices, will close sometime by the end of the year, according to its owners, Nick Nicolino and Victoria Collett. The pair announced the closure in September, but have yet to set a final day.
Collett and Nicolino opened a Greenport location, an offshoot of their business which was located in Southampton at the time, on Main Street in 2006. They quickly outgrew that space and soon moved to their current 7,000-square-foot, two-story storefront, garnering a loyal following on the East End along the way.
“We are a very unusual store,” Nicolino said. “It blew people’s minds to come here and see all this stuff.”
Collett is retiring while Nicolino will focus on his new reseller’s network, Resale Revolution.
Most of the merchandise over the years has been collected from second homes on the East End, either those that have recently sold, homeowners who have died, or from residents who simply decided to redecorate.
Collett curates and artfully arranges the items in the store, one of the shop’s appeals. Only the best items are accepted for resale, she said.
“It’s a function of the quality merchandise, the way they display it and their aggressive pricing,” said customer Frank Raphael of Orient Point, who was browsing the store on a recent Friday morning. Raphael noted that he once snagged dining chairs there that were worth about $600 for only $200, and a lovely coffee table for just $25.
Much of the inventory is one-of-a-kind or antique. For example, an oval Civil War-era gold-plated mirror hangs near the doorway and a coffee table fashioned from the stump of a Louisiana Cypress tree is set in the store’s center.
“These pieces come with stories,” Nicolino said. “People are really interested in that.”
Many of the items have been donated over the years, including furnishings for Habitat for Humanity-built homes.
So now, the business partners are in liquidation mode. They said to expect slashed prices and signs around the store stating that no reasonable offer will be refused.
“There’s a lot of great stuff left,” Collett said. “We’re not gone yet.”
Find The ClearingHouse at 414 First Street in Greenport or visit tchx.net.