Cody Perez, the new owner of Cozy Cottage antique gift shop in Yorktown, has always had an affinity for vintage items.
“I’ve always had fun going to sales and looking for things,” Perez said. “I like the uniqueness of things. It’s fascinating learning about the history of different things. That’s what I like about antiques.”
Cozy Cottage is a primitive, vintage, antiques store on Route 17. Perez bought the shop in the fall of 2018 shortly after retiring from the U.S. Navy. It’s his first foray into the world of business and, so far, he is loving it.
“I am enjoying the customers and the people who also have a passion for antiques,” he said. “It’s fun chatting with them, hearing their stories, and learning new things. It’s exciting to me.”
Roughly 10 antique dealers from throughout Hampton Roads rent booth space from Perez at Cozy Cottage, and he also carries a few items of his own on the shelves.
“I have a lot of families who share booth space,” he said. “Two sisters share a booth as well as a mother and daughter from Smithfield.”
Cozy Cottage specializes in a variety of antique items including furniture; paintings and wall décor; jewelry; dishware and glassware; knickknacks, ceramics and other collectibles; and other miscellaneous products.
“We carry a little bit of everything,” Perez said. “It just depends on what you are looking for. I’ve had someone come in looking for old antique postcards. Over the holidays, people come in looking for glassware. Right now, one of our most popular sellers is repurposed furniture with a farmhouse look. I personally like antique furniture because it serves a purpose and makes for a good conversation piece.”
While his customer base is mostly local, Perez also sees people from Virginia Beach, Suffolk, Fredericksburg, Washington, D.C., and elsewhere walk through his doors to look for antiques.
“I’ve had some people from Florida come in,” he said. “It’s easy to come in and spend a couple of hours here looking around. I think people like looking for items that were built to last and meant to be passed down from generation to generation. They like the longevity of antiques.”
Perez gets a kick out of helping his visitors find the perfect gift and is looking forward to stocking the shelves of Cozy Cottage with more vintage items for all to enjoy.
“The people are by far my favorite part of this job,” Perez said. “Helping someone find something nice and knowing they will walk out of the door happy with it is very rewarding to me.”
Want to go?
7330-H George Washington Memorial Highway, Yorktown
Open Tuesday-Saturday 11 a.m.-5 p.m., Sunday 1-4 p.m.