Family Treasures expands into old Affordable Treasures shop with the addition of Randy’s Rustic Creations


By Paul Myers @PaulM_SGN

EXETER – For some growing their family is one of the great treasures in life, but for Family Treasures growing their family isn’t enough, they had to grow their business too. After opening their first store last year at the old cigar shop on Pine Street Joyce Stewart and her daughter Deborah Wells moved across the street to a larger location. Now they are opening up a second shop on E Street next to the Sun-Gazette office called Family Treasures & Randy’s Rustic Creations.

Husband to Deborah, Randy Wells is ready to furnish his own store with some of his own wood working items and a few items from the Family Treasures shop too. While he was supervising mechanics for Bueno Beverage, he was consistently working on cabinets, rustic scenes and a few bird houses. According to Joyce his work has done pretty well in their store.

Part of the reason his work has done so well is assuredly due to Joyce and Deborah’s experience in the antique and creation selling biz.

“I like the old things and I have a passion for working with people…it’s like collecting. Some people say that collecting is like a disease, you can be treated but you’ll never be cured,” Joyce joked in an interview last year with the Sun-Gazette.

Joyce developed her passion for antiques decades ago, and she’s been lucky enough to make it her living. Between 20 and 25 years Joyce spent her time at her store The Cottage on Mineral King in Visalia, but she has spent 30 years at By the Water Tower Antiques in Exeter. And aside from her stores nearby she has much of her merchandise in a number of other shops throughout Exeter and other communities. But Stewart notes that none of what she does would be possible without the hard work of her family, which is a treasure in and of itself.

“We’ve always worked together as a family we do everything together…that’s why we decided to call this place Family Treasures, it’s always a family effort,” said Joyce while her daughter agreed.

In fact it was Randy who helped customize the rustic counter spaces in  their old shop on the other side of Pine when they were still at the old cigar shop. His work had shown through the counter where folks could see something old that was actually something new. Deborah says that he has a skill in taking new items and dressing them up to look aged or worn.

What some customers might not know is that they are treated to the vast array of antiques because Stewart decided that retirement life was not the life for her. After having either owned stores, or been involved with stores she thought that it was time to hang it up.

“I wasn’t good at retirement; I like what I do a lot, too much to give it up.”

Some of her work is sure to rub off on Randy as he starts to put together his collection of knickknacks for sale. And it seems like he is in it for the long haul as well.

“He better be there for awhile it’s my name on the lease,” Joyce joked.

Albeit he has yet to fill the entire store, work is already underway.

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