WEST MILFORD, N.J. -- Charisma 7 Antiques in downtown Pompton Lakes is bursting with items on a spectrum of value.
Its owners have had an eye for things whose time may have technically passed but which may yet find a new audience.
"My mom chose the name," said owner Jen Fleming of West Milford, who runs the shop that her mom opened in 1983.
"She chose 'seven' for the spiritual sense of the word: she was starting out with a lot of faith."
She said her mom was ahead of the curve with the upcycle movement, trying to find new purposes for old things. Or she'd rescue older items that might not have an obvious use at the time -- like old 78 RPM records, which have since become a collector's item.
They ran Vintage 7 together for decades. Her mom passed away four years ago, and now Fleming is on her own.
But not really.
Fleming explained that she adores the social component of the job:
I meet the most fabulous people. It's a wonderful way to get to know others. It's wonderful, and so much fun.
She said another thing that sets her shop apart is that "we do things very honestly, with integrity, and our reputation is well-established."
She also tries to keep it a fun environment, even for people to come browse and maybe see items from their childhoods. On a related note, she gets a kick out of educating younger folks about now-obsolete items -- from rotary phones to spinning wheels.
Fleming also does estate services and clean outs. And over the years, she's come across a lot of interesting antiques and surprising finds.
One of the two at-least-a-century-old paintings she's found was stuck behind an old oak armoire in Paterson and headed for the landfill before she discovered it.
Another had been cut out of its frame and rolled up, and was wasting away in a trunk. Each is "old and breathtaking," she said.
The store is located at 212 Wanaque Ave.
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