Find It All at Heartland Antiques

IMG_1471By Jon DeStefano


If you are looking for the best in high-end antiques and collectibles you can find it in Florence, the antique capital of Colorado, at Elsie and Keith Ore’s Heartland Antiques and Gifts. In this elegant shop you will find not only a great selection of the finest antiques, collectibles, and gifts but also a pleasant and welcoming environment created by its owners. A great antique shop doesn’t just happen with a stroke of luck. It happens when preparation meets opportunity.


The preparation began many years ago. Elsie was raised with antiques from the time she was a child and her parents bought and sold them regularly. She was going  to auctions with them since she was nine years old.  She was immersed in the culture.


In the late 1970’s she started her first antique and art store in Owensboro, Kentucky. She moved out to Colorado and married Keith who was working with a Denver water company and then six years ago when Keith retired they moved to Florence, Colorado. Over the years she had an antique business in Hampden Street Antiques and also Brass Armadillo and the Elizabeth Carriage Shops.


IMG_1477The opportunity came some time later. On a trip to New Mexico they stopped in Florence because they had seen it advertised in the Mountain States Collector so they decided to stop and check it out. They found a place they thought would make a great antique shop. The following week they came back and signed the lease.


They decided to do a very high quality antique store with fine beautiful antique furniture,  a wide assortment of home decor, a great lighting collection featuring beautiful lamps, original art, jewelry, a lot of western goods including a buffalo head and an ox, enough clothing that Elsie has begun a new boutique just down the street. Visitors will also find seasonal custom floral pieces.


We were here in Florence six months,” Elsie said, “when we reopened the other side for the first time since twenty years ago, almost doubling the space we had and allowing us to take so much out of storage.


She continues, “Having your own store is a great experience. You have so much more to offer customers. You are not so limited in space or in the size of antiques you are offering.”  Another advantage of having your own store Elsie notes is you can consistently provide high-end quality goods and service to customers.


When you walk in the store you are greeted first by great primitives and exquisite French country antique furniture.  Hanging on the walls are original paintings of American Indian Jim Redhawk, subjects including buffaloes, Indian life, teepees and nature. In front of them are a number of antique jewelry cases filled with beautiful turquoise. Everywhere you are surrounded by elegance.


The best part is Keith and Elsie. Friendly, warm and knowledgeable, Keith is the mayor of Florence and Elsie his First Lady. They live in the 1900 square foot residence above the store which is very convenient but not the only reason they love their life and antique business in Florence. Elsie concludes, “The town is great. It is truly the antique capitol of Colorado, you have all the shops and restaurants and best of all are the people, they’re great people and good friends.”


They say you can find it all in Florence. You can. Elsie and Keith did.

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