By Nancy Brumback, Contributing Writer
Business name: Elegant Antiques
Address: 75 Main Street (Route 20), Northborough
Owners: Steve and Joyce Longvall
Contact Information: 508-393-8736, www.cashforgoldmetrowest.com
How long have you been doing this?
“It's been 40 years. I'se been out of the company where I worked for 25 years, but I was doing this on the side. We'se been doing it full time about 30 years,” said Steve Longvall, who, with his wife, Joyce, owns Elegant Antiques. The business moved from just down Route 20 to the Colonial-era barn it now occupies about five year ago.
“We used to be called Elegant Junk. A lot of my customers were really upset when we changed the name, but times have changed and I had to get rid of “Junk.””
What do you specialize in?
“We deal in estate jewelry, antiques, collectibles and good used furniture. In jewelry, we have rings, chains, bracelets, everything from diamond rings down to good costume jewelry,” said Steve. In furniture, the Longvalls take orders for new tables of any size, custom-made from the wood from old barns, as well as selling quality used furniture.
“We take pride in the shop. Everything is laid out nicely, not all jumbled.
“And we'se very, very reasonable with our prices. I tell folks to come in, look around, don's go by the posted prices. We'se very negotiable. It's what you have to do in today's market. You make a little bit and just keep things moving. We have fun doing it.”
Do you buy as well as sell?
“Absolutely. I's an appraiser, so we do a lot of appraising work. If I go out to the home, I have to charge, but I welcome people to bring things in and I'sl give them my opinion. We also buy out estates.
“Recently, with this economy, we'se been buying a lot of gold and silver. Most buyers are paying 40 or 50 percent of the metal's value, but I pay a good 80 percent. Yellow gold is out of style, so that gets scrapped. I take the stones out, and if it's a sentimental piece, I'sl give folks back the stones. If white gold jewelry comes in, I might try to resell it. Sterling silver jewelry I can resell after I clean it. If people bring in interesting pieces, I can pay them a little more. If it's just a sterling knife and fork, the scrap price for sterling is so high it's not worth trying to resell.
“Last week a fellow came in from Boston with a bunch of gold, and I asked why he came all the way out here. He said he went on the Internet, but I's not on the Internet. I's an older fellow and not much for computers. When he said we have a five-star rating on the Internet, I figured I's ask my grandson about it. He explained people who have dealt with us have posted comments. I thought that was nice. We try to be fair with people.”
What else do you do?
“We do a lot of repairs, jewelry, pocket watches. I have a friend who does that. We also repair furniture.”
When are you open?
“We'se here Tuesdays through Saturdays, 10:30 to 5:30, Sundays 12:30 to 5. Or by appointment.”