I went on a search for new glasses yesterday, and my journey took me to the McIntosh and Watts warehouse on Walkley Road in Ottawa. I have loved this particular store for years; I bought fine china, glasses, lamps, knickknacks, watches, cutlery, candles and hand painted curio at this store.
A trip to its annual warehouse sale is my Boxing Day. It’s not just shopping; it’s an event.
Sure, there are lots of stores that sell kitschy stuff at discounted prices. Homesense and Winners are unbeatable for the bargoon. And, of course, there are kitchen wholesalers like Jordache and C.A. Paradis which offer an array of wonderful things for the kitchen.
But you can’t beat M&W for style.
A couple of years ago, we stumbled upon the most gorgeous lamps made of pewter, crystal and wood, topped off with lovely cream and patterned silk lampshades. They looked like something from the drawing-room of a smart New York apartment; in fact, the lamps were imported from New York and were selling at astonishingly reasonable prices.
What I love about the store is that everything is wonderful quality, from its line of Bunnykins to its discounted and discontinued Denby lines. And there are many curiosities in the stores, silly board games, disco watches, even Bradford Exchange collectibles.
There is something for everyone.
So I was saddened to see that the warehouse is closing this May, as are most of the other McIntosh and Watts stores in Ottawa. I’m assuming that they’re having trouble competing with the big box and department stores.
Another family owned store begins its slide into oblivion.
I will miss this store, its sales and its over-the-top Christmas angels. I am sad that my daughter won’t be registering there when she finally decides to marry. It would have been a great experience.
It’s the end of an era, as they say.
On behalf of china-lovers everywhere, thanks Rob and family. Your kind will not be by this way again.