What is it about small towns that makes people use the words, quaint, and charming? Perhaps it is the antiquity and often modest size of what locals claim as their “downtown,” or maybe it is the country-sheik aesthetic that encompasses worn, paint-chipped buildings, or clever store names. Or maybe the worn sidewalks that connect community and businesses on a first-name basis and small-town gossip. These qualities exist because small towns like Mathews County often evade the changes of time. When the fast food restaurant Hardees opened up nearly a decade ago, many Mathews residents had a fit because large corporations were not welcome here. Mom and Pop stores are encouraged to keep the Mathews spirit alive. Whatever it is, downtown Mathews County loves small business owners, especially antique and boutique stores where you can find all the quaint and charming in the world. Here is a list of our favorite boutiques within a couple miles radius of Main Street.
Sibley’s General Store – Mathews County Visitor Information Center
Monday-Saturday, 10am-4pm; Sunday, 12pm-3pm
Sibley’s, or “MCVIC” as the locals call it, is not only the charming visitor center of Mathews County filled with all the information you need to make the most out of your stay in Mathews, but it also holds a consignment of local art, authors, historical perspective of the area, and Chesapeake Bay small town gems. Definitely make a visit to MCVIC when you’re passing through town!
Bay School Community Arts Center
Monday, 9am-1pm; Tuesday-Saturday, 10am-4pm
Bay School is a community hub for locals in Mathews of all ages to celebrate local artists. The gallery is filled with a variety of different art styles that encompass the creativity and natural beauty of life on the Bay. The Bay School offers art, pottery, painting lessons, and so much more!
Roane’s Antiques at The Cottage
“The Cottage” is one of the cutest boutiques you may ever set your eyes on. Small and rustic on the outside, and carefully decorated on the inside, Roane’s offers vintage, antique, and country-inspired furniture and house decor. There is so much novelty packed into one tiny building, and it’s hard to walk out empty handed!
Need a new piece for the dining room or bedroom? Timeless Antiques offers fine furnitures, lamps, and staple pieces that will brighten up your home. This antique store is perfect for finding classic furniture that is still in good shape. Cherry, mahogany, oak, you name it!
Put In Creek Carvings
Monday-Saturday, 10am-4pm; Sunday, 11am-2pm
This art store offers an experience unlike any in Mathews. Put-In-Creek Carvings brings together a collection of artwork from all around the Middle Peninsula. This art store is all about the details — you could get lost in this gallery for an hour and still find the most interesting treasures that have been hand carved, welded, painted, etched, and poured into. We recommend you pay Ben Richardson and his little dog a visit!
Tuesday-Wednesday, 11am-2pm; Thursday, 11am-4pm; Friday, 11am-5pm
Saturday, 10am-4pm; Sunday, 1pm-4pm
Doodlebug’s offers vintage galore! This store is packed with unique gifts and treasures such as rugs, home furnishings, jewelry, bottles, records, clothing, and plenty of vintage items. It is located under the sign called “The Halcyon Building” across from Richardsons.
Tuesday/Wednesday/Sunday, 12pm-4pm; Thursday-Friday, 11am-5pm; Saturday, 9am-6pm
This corky little store has been a go-to for years. It’s Bazaar is the kind of store that you can find a real leather purse, or name-brand item by accident. With little pockets of rooms, this store offers you a random assortment of items that make for perfect thrifting! It’s Bazaar is a consignment store, therefore you can find Mathews-themed items, lots of restored watermen tools such as buoys and nets, and also clothing.
Dilly Dally Emporium
See Facebook for Store Hours
Dilly Dally is in the midst of big changes with a brand new vision for their boutique. If you get a chance to catch them soon, you can take advantage of the 50% liquidation sale on all inventory! Perfect for kids toys, holiday decorations, kitchen and bath items, and unique finds.
Up the road a ways:
Etc. is one of our newer consignment stores in Mathews County, and it has become popular amongst locals for finding that perfect home accent, or furniture piece for your living room or kitchen. Separated by vendors, Etc. gives a little bit of variety for the whole family to find something. We also recommend a stop to the infamous Linda’s Diner — one of Mathews’ oldest restaurants — right next store!
Monday-Saturday, 10am – 5pm
Cattails is an upscale boutique that specializes in elegant, new beach-themed home decor. If you are looking to class up your home to look fresh and modern, we recommend Cattails! You can also find fine jewelry, colorful bay-themed pillows and kitchen items, and great gift-giving options.
Thursday-Saturday, 10am – 4pm
Mermaid’s Crossing joined Mathews just over a year ago, and has quickly taken to the rustic, antique vibe. Aside from the friendly owners inside, one of the most charming elements of Mermaid’s Crossing is the restored building they refinished with log siding. So, all you mermaids going in to town, stop here for some cool vintage items!
Open Wednesday-Sunday, 11am – 4pm
Classic Reflections features a beautiful and classy array of antique furniture and house decor at a fair price. From vanities, to desks, dining room tables and chairs, bedside tables, mirrors, artwork, jewelry, and so much more, there is bound to be a little something there for everyone. This store can be located just a mile past main street next to the 7/11.
The Thrifty Spot
Tuesday-Friday, 9:30am – 2:30pm; Saturday, 9am-1pm
The Thrifty Spot was started by the Mathews High School Special Education Department as a transition program for students to gain life skills and work experience after high school. The Thrifty Spot is engaging with, and giving back to the community while offering great deals on thrift items!
Open year round, 10am – 5pm
Robert and Karen Podd have shared their pottery studio and showroom to the public for over 30 years. The talented couple feature handcrafted tiles, wall decor, drawer handles, bird houses, and kitchenware that is microwave, dishwasher and oven safe. Many of their pieces are inspired by the wildlife of the Chesapeake Bay, and make for a wonderful touch to the family dinner table. Take a tour of their site a little ways from town, or find their pottery sold in galleries, and boutiques across town…