Stuffed with history
Silver Springs Antiques to open Saturday

By JENNIFER McBRIDE - Daily News

Dec. 9, 2015

Owners Mitchell Granados and Emily Walczak sit in one of the rooms displaying a collection of antiques Tuesday Afternoon at Silver Springs Antiques in Germantown. The store is scheduled to open Saturday.
John Ehlke/Daily News

The building that houses Silver Springs Antiques has its share of history — and the inventory is quite historic, too.

The store offers furniture, jewelry, glassware, vintage clothing, home furnishings, linens, signs, lanterns and more. Co-owners Mitchell Granados and Emily Walczak, both of Germantown, will host a grand opening celebration with door prizes and refreshments at the Germantown store at 10 a.m. Saturday.

Everything in their inventory is antique or vintage, they said. They are not — Granados and Walczak are both 17 years old. They take online classes and “we’re ambitious,” Walczak said as to why they can start a business at such a young age.

A few interesting finds include a sofa with lion heads carved into the arms. Granados said there are also two “stunning” candle holders from the early 1900s from Wisconsin’s first funeral home.

“I like that there is always something to learn about it — you can never know enough,” Granados said. “There are so many items in the world — the history.”

Cedarburg Auction & Estate Sales Owner Tarq Durante mentored the young couple.

“The antique industry has changed so much,” he said. “Now the word ‘antique’ is loosely used — antique should be 100 years old.”

He said Granados and Walczak know what to look for.

The couple ran sales at one of his buildings and “if they had any questions they’d come to me and pretty soon they started doing their own,” Durante said. “The more young people in the business the better it is. I look over my audience and they are all 60 or older.”

The two often buy out homes that are downsizing. They take in items on consignment, too.

The building that houses Silver Springs Antiques has a unique past. It was once a salon and, about 40 years ago, it was a police station, Walczak said. “You go in the basement and it has jail cells.”

Though the basement isn’t open to customers, the showroom is large and the building was just what they were looking for.

“We had the idea for a while,” Walczak said of starting the business. “It was a great deal and perfect opportunity — we were looking for the perfect venue.” So they “just signed the lease and it wasn’t planned.”

About a month later the store is ready to go and there is room to expand if needed. Granados and Walczak will be the only employees.

“They are two of the most honest kids I know and they should do very well,” Durante said. “They have a love and excitement of old things and they’ve come a long way in a short time.”

The three are still working together as “advice is free,” Durante joked. “The harder I try to get out of this business and retire the harder it gets,” he said. “Antique dealers never retire.”

The couple is excited to begin their journey in the business.

“We have items here that you will never find anywhere else, we have great prices and new inventory so it’s a fresh store every time you come in,” Granados said. Walczak seconds that.

“We try to always have new inventory and when you walk to the store it will never be the same,” she said.

Visit the store at W161 N11629 Church St. in Germantown.

Reach editor Jennifer McBride at jmcbride@conleynet.com