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Customers, vendors tout variety at Emily's Attic

Photo by Jason A. Smith
Rachel Rector (right) pointed out designs on a decorative T-shirt, for her mother, Cindy. The pair said the variety at the store Emily's Attic, has made them loyal customers for several years.

Photo by Jason A. Smith Rachel Rector (right) pointed out designs on a decorative T-shirt, for her mother, Cindy. The pair said the variety at the store Emily's Attic, has made them loyal customers for several years.

Cindy Rector came to Emily's Attic in McDonough in search of a pink T-shirt bearing the slogan, "Georgia Girls Love Their Country Boys," for her daughter, Rachel. The mother said she has supported the Attic since its opening seven years ago, because of the selection of items found at the store on the city's Square.

"You never know what you're going to find," said Cindy Rector, 47, of McDonough. "We come here a pretty good bit. We like to come up here to eat lunch, and then hit the shops."

Rachel Rector, 19, of McDonough chimed in with a smile, as she admired the new T-shirt.

"They have different stuff every time we come in here," she said. "They have new stuff all the time."

Rhonda Fowler has worked as a vendor at Emily's Attic, located at 3 Keys Ferry St., in McDonough, for 14 months, selling vintage home decor and jewelry. She agreed with Summerson, that the selection of items at the business attracts attention from the public.

"We have so many vendors, that everybody has their own merchandise and their own take on what to offer, said Fowler. "You don't have to go to so many different shops. You've got all of it under one roof."

In addition to providing a place for customers to feed their shopping cravings, vendors at Emily's Attic also work with representatives from other local businesses when the opportunity arises. One such individual is Bob Knowles, owner of the Blumen Trio floral shop on the Square, who visited the Attic recently to pick up displays for his establishment.

"The people here in McDonough, all the different merchants, we are all working together," said Knowles, 53. "We're all trying to help each other. They just happened to have some displays that they thought I could use. We're all friends, and we're just trying to make it work."

Kimberley Benefield and Amy Stewart came from Jackson to browse the shelves at Emily's Attic. Benefield said the two come to the store once or twice a month, as part of their excursions to the Square.

"We come and eat lunch here, and we always come here to see what kind of trinkets they have," she said. "They rearrange quite often. It seems like every time we come in here, it's something different."

Bob Summerson is a vendor at Emily's Attic, selling new, vintage and antique household items with his wife, Laura. The couple also assists with sales for others, who work at the interior decorating and antique shop.

"We operate as a co-op," explained Summerson, 72. "We have 12 vendors in here, and we all work two days a month. We work to handle everybody else's booths. It gives us time to go out and shop estate sales and auctions."

Other items at the Attic include paintings, furniture, dishware, teapots and clothing.

Summerson acknowledged the business has been affected a downturn in the economy, but added that customers have adjusted their buying habits, to continue purchasing items at the store.

"We've been slower in the last year and a half," he said. "I think we're selling more smaller items, than larger items, and we're actually doing more cash business than credit-card business. We have such a variety of vendors here, that there's a little something for almost everybody," he said. "The variety has really been [the] thing that has helped us, and kept us more on an even keel than most businesses."