Painted Peacock Is a North Auburn Gem
"Mom, she's doing it again!"
These words echoed through Shawna Bakey's childhood.
As a girl, Bakey regularly emptied the contents of the small bedroom she shared with her sister and completely redecorated.
"It drove my sister crazy," Baker laughed.
But the challenge inspired in Bakey a life-long love of taking old objects and making them beautiful again, and turning a small space into an oasis.
That's how she ended up as owner of the Painted Peacock.
If you haven't yet wandered inside the Painted Peacock at Highway 49 and Dry Creek Road, you may not know about all of the treasures -- and decorative peacocks -- to be found beyond its doors.
There's vintage glassware and handmade soap, tablecloths and framed art, rocking chairs that have been turned into planters and wine barrels that have new life as bathroom vanities.
In every nook there's more to see.
"We re-purpose, upcycle and restore everything," Bakey said. "All the things that would otherwise go to the dump, we give new life."
Like a family
By "we" Bakey is referring to herself and five other members of the co-op -- who are, she said, like siblings to her now.
"We all have our own talents to contribute," Bakey said. "No matter your taste, you'll find something here because we're all different . . . We're the epitome of eclectic."
They also try to keep everything local, buying original items from flea markets, yard sales and estate sales.
In fact, the Painted Peacock is currently carrying a secretary from the 1800s that was found in pieces in the back of a local barn.
"It was just a pile of wood," Bakey said. "We put it all back together."
As much as she loves restoring rusty and dusty treasures, Bakey said her favorite part of the job is meeting the customers.
"When we put so much love, time and energy into a piece, it's rewarding to know that they love it as much as we do," she said.
Customers -- and their children -- also love searching for Penelope the Peacock. Each week Penelope is hidden in a new location, and each month the customers who find Penelope are entered into a drawing to win a $25 gift certificate.
Bakey and partner-in-antiques, Roberta Forbes, chatted fondly about some of their favorite moments with customers:
After searching for more than an hour with her friends, one customer finally found Penelope right under her nose and cried tears of joy.
Another time, a regular customer's young son who searches the store feverishly every time he returns with his mom, finally won the gift certificate -- and gave it to his little sister.
"It was the sweetest thing," Forbes said.
What's in a name?
Bakey knew she wanted to have an animal in the name of her store just so she could have customers play hide-and-seek while shopping, but she couldn't decide which animal. She threw the question out to her friends on Facebook. They suggested names like "Pig Pen" and "Hen House" but none of those stuck.
Finally, someone suggested the Painted Peacock, and Bakey knew right away she had a winner. Male peacocks are beautiful and showy and everything she wanted her store to be.
And according to her customers, Bakey has succeeded.
"One day a woman came in and said, 'I've had a really horrible day, and this place always makes me feel better,'" Bakey said. "It doesn't get much better than that."
Gold Country Vintage Road
This August, the Painted Peacock, located at 4025 Grass Valley Hwy, will celebrate its second anniversary and participate in the Gold Country Vintage Road, which is a tour that includes local vintage shops as well as restaurants. For more information, call 530.878.5997 or visit Gold Country Vintage Road.