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House in downtown Adams makes cozy venue for multi-dealer antique shop

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ADAMS — Antique stores that can lure customers back year after year usually have an intangible charm.

On Oct. 25, Nana Rose antique shop owner Paula A. Biazzo noticed that an old two-story house downtown was for sale. The next day, she bought the house at 16 E. Church St., which she saw as the perfect spot to move her shop from the South Jefferson Plaza off Route 11. Exhibiting 13 rooms stocked with antiques, the 19th-century house has been open for a little more than a week. Nine of its rooms are rented to antique dealers who sold their wares at the former location with Mrs. Biazzo.

“I’ve always admired and loved this house, and when I found out it was for sale, I knew it would fit my business perfectly,” she said.

With its wooden floors, fireplace and kitchen that will be used as a tearoom for visitors, the house shows off antique decor in a natural way that normal spaces can’t, she said. It also has the aura of one’s grandmother’s house; Nana Rose, she said, was the nickname her children gave her grandmother Rose Purpura. Rose and her husband, Joseph, were entrepreneurs who owned several businesses in Sackets Harbor and Watertown.

“So many people say, ‘Oh, my gosh! This is my grandmother’s house!’ I think everyone has one, a place you go for inner family traditions,” Mrs. Biazzo said. “My grandmother used to have a lot of unique things at her house, like bobblehead turtles. I love it when people come in and feel like they could sleep here overnight.”

For diehard antique collectors, it isn’t just about discovering what they’re looking for.

“It’s about the hunt!” said Melissa T. Craighead, 57, an avid antiquarian from Pulaski who made a shopping trip north Tuesday with her daughter and grandson.

The lifelong antique collector’s eyes sparkled with admiration as she passed from room to room, searching for a large wooden butter bowl. Her daughter and grandson waited in the car while she scoured the rooms.

“It’s a beautiful house that’s been kept true to form,” she said. “The fact that you can come into a room and see what things are going to look like — it’s phenomenal. There aren’t many places around like this.”

Other customers visit the store with a different kind of mission, Mrs. Biazzo said. They want to liven up rooms in their homes but often find accomplishing that a challenge.

“You can take an old piece of furniture and give your kitchen an old, primitive look by throwing it on a table,” she said. “Ultra-modern spaces sometimes only need a piece of old furniture to lend an antique look.”

Her sister from Chaumont, former Adams resident Maria R. White, regularly stops by to help arrange rooms in the house. Mrs. White said her sister’s passion for the business is highly contagious.

“She’s like an Energizer bunny who’s always sucking me in to do things,” she said. “She’ll say, ‘Maybe we should do this.’ And then I’m in — it gets me every time.”

Nana Rose is open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday. For more information, call 232-2206 or visit www.nanarosehomedecor.com.

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