The concept of a “treasure hunt” is something that brings mystery and wonder to anyone’s mind. For mother-daughter duo Edie Caldwell and Meredith Shank, treasure hunts have become part of their day-to-day lives. Their love of unique antiques and uncommon finds spurred a partnership and business venture now known as Scout, a sanctuary of goods that praises the archaic and the unusual.
The delicate balance of placing vintage goods in a sleek, contemporary space gives Scout a refreshing look that breaks the dingy and cramped stereotype associated with antique stores. “We wouldn’t sell anything that we wouldn’t want in our own homes,” says Caldwell. Their “unusual goods” are items and objects that can’t be found in your average shop. “Every store has similar pillows and similar scented candles…What’s fun is when you go to a store and no two things are the same. The things we like the most are things other people have never seen before or rarely see,” says Shank.
Don’t be surprised when you walk in and find yourself surrounded by wooden geese that were handcrafted in Japan, a timeworn railroad switch, a disassembled pitchfork or old-fashioned crystalline whisky decanters. “Even though the things we sell are so varied in style and time, it all goes together…It’s eclectic, but it’s curated eclectic,” say Caldwell and Shank.
The enchantment of Scout lies in the fact that once something is sold, it’s gone. New curios are constantly being brought in from anywhere imaginable: Craigslist, junkyards, industrial warehouses or even the middle of the desert, which means the shop is always evolving. “We aren’t creating something new, we’re recycling things that are already there and bringing new life to them,” says Shank. This proves that the everyday ordinary, with an ounce of appreciation and a second chance, can be turned into the extraordinary. Scout, 35 E. Ortega St., 805/730-7333, scout-goods.com.
This story was originally published in the spring 2018 issue of Santa Barbara Seasons Magazine.