LYKENS TOWNSHIP - The items may reflect days gone by, but the displays at Primitive Crossroads Craft Barn continue to change.
Stocked with new items and lots of Christmas merchandise, the business will have a holiday open house to showcase two new buildings from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Nov. 26 and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Nov. 27-28.
The shop at 1201 New Washington Road, just south of Melmore in Lykens Township, started with Shaker style furniture crafted by Dwight Weisenhauer as well as braided and rag rugs and craft items ordered or purchased at shows by his wife, Angie. Her mother had a craft shop in Bucyrus, and Angie and the rest of her family learned to be "crafty" as well.
"She told us that she didn't believe in spare time," Angie said. "So we always had to keep busy. When she closed her shop in Bucyrus, we decided to open up here."
That was in the fall 2006, and the shop has expanded. Housed in what was Freewill Baptist Church, built in the 1800s, the land and building had been purchased by the Weisenhauers previously and used to store grain wagons.
"I kicked the wagons out and put stuff in here," she said. "We had to move his stuff to accommodate this stuff."
Customers are asked to call ahead in the winter when the weather is bad to ensure the shop is open. For more information, call (419) 284-3106.
They began carrying furniture, frames and prints, signs and metal wreaths.
Before long, they were "in over our heads," Angie said. The furniture sells quickly, and Dwight said they were overwhelmed with orders that typically take three to four weeks to fill.
Items can be made to order, and he has shipped furniture to Japan and filled orders for customers from Michigan, West Virginia and Canada.
He also creates wooden primitive style picture frames sold individually or surrounding prints as a package. Dwight said he has produced 75 of the frames at a time, if needed, with the help of friends and family.
Angie said they like to diversify their inventory, so they sell a selection of crafts, candles, prints, curtains and braided rugs. Curtains are a big seller at the shop, and there are catalogues from four manufacturers to order from, with delivery in one to six weeks.
There are three braided rug companies Primitive Crossroads uses, and samples are available so customers can see the design, color and quality of the braid.
Since the shop has grown with the amount of merchandise available, they have expanded into two adjacent buildings. Both of the buildings were "found" on other properties as a bargain about to be torn down, purchased by the Weisenhauers, then transported to their site.
"One was being torn down by Lykens; it was red," Angie said. "It was in sad shape on the outside, but inside in good shape, so we re-sided it and replaced the windows. It has a lot of Christmas and a mixture of other themes. We didn't want to go to just one style in a building."
Another building that sits to the side of the property was found by Angie when she went to an antique sale.
"I've put the bath items in there, our lodge theme and garden items in there," she said.
They would like to build another building that would incorporate a wood shop, making it easier for them, by having the furniture made closer to their shop, rather than at their home.
"I never dreamed that it would turn into something like this," Dwight said of the shop.
During the holiday open house, the first 40 customers who spend $40 or more will receive a present. Customers on their mailing list also will receive a gift. Refreshments will be available, including homemade pies and cookies. New customers can sign up for the shop's rewards program, offering 10 percent off a purchase made after they make purchases totaling $100 or more.
Regular store hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. The shop is located four miles south of Melmore, off SR 100, on New Washington Road in Lykens Township in Wyandot County.