To the Nines
FIELD TRIP – August 2012 – Antiques on 9
by Veronique McAree | Photography Amanda Kowalski
The house specialty is European antiques, but mod lamps, mailbox-size clamshells, and chic bed linens are also on view at Antiques on Nine.
The first thing you notice when you enter Antiques on Nine is that it smells as it should—like the attic of an ancient house laced with hints of wood, citrus wax, old books, and newspaper. But no one would confuse this large, bright, airy space for a dark attic. Full of English, Continental, and American furniture, in addition to decorative accessories, lighting, quilts, and architectural elements, the chances are very good that you’ll find something lovely for your home in the 12,000-square-foot space.
Like its name suggests, the shop is located on Route 9 between Wells and Kennebunkport. Beverly Bangs, a native Southerner with great taste and a penchant for furniture, bought the shop 16 years ago from its previous owner. “I was a new full-time resident in Kennebunkport and saw potential for antique and decorative accessories on the coast of Maine,” she explains. “I knew I could make it work.”
Bangs began by curating a selection of English and French antiques culled from sources she had discovered and cultivated for her former antique shop in Atlanta. “I wanted to offer beautiful European furniture and collectibles that customers couldn’t easily find anywhere else in the state,” says Bangs. Though, in recent years, her former focus has given way to what she describes as a more eclectic selection of goods in a range of prices.
Yet to call the sections at Antiques on Nine “eclectic” would be an understatement. In one room, an enormous mantelpiece shares space with a striking oyster-shell lamp and an elegant French dining-room table. Two rooms over, rows of whimsical ceramic piggy banks are propped on the shelves of a rustic kitchen hutch. In the center of the shop, old-school carnival letter lights are cleverly displayed to spell the word sea.
Antiques on Nine sells a mix of high-quality antique and reproduction furniture alongside contemporary home accessories such as Pine Cone Hill bed linens and floor coverings by Dash & Albert Rug Company. Customers will find new bed linens, rugs, pillows, mirrors, and even works of art—the list runs on and on, and it extends well beyond antiques. “We’ve become a destination for collectors plus interior designers, customers with decorating projects on their mind, and even those looking for a small hostess gift,” says Bangs.
Also, if lighting is on your shopping list, Antiques on Nine is the place for you. Bangs is particularly passionate about lamps, and her shop features hundreds of options: antique table lamps, sconces, and chandeliers, along with many of what Bangs calls her “repurposed styles.” Using a local craftsman, Bangs takes all manner of things—from shell vases, vintage tools, or copper jugs—and transforms them into illuminated decorative accessories.
“What I love about this business is the sense of discovery in finding something you’ve never seen before,” she says. “For me, it’s like a never-ending treasure hunt.” Judging from the scores of customers immersed in hunts of their own, the feeling is widely shared. Take a field trip to Antiques on Nine, but plan to a good deal of time perusing the shop. There’s a lot to uncover.
Antiques on Nine: 207-967-0626