by Ayn-Monique Klahre | photography by Eamon Queeney
Just at the edge of Hillsborough Street—beyond downtown and even past the fairgrounds—you’ll find Pigfish Lane Antiques and Interiors. This sprawling indoor antiques market celebrates its one-year anniversary in August, the fruit of a bit of luck and an innate talent. “I grew up with antiques,” says co-owner Lynne Knowles. “My great-aunt was an antiques dealer in the 30s, so my mother always said I had it in my blood.”
Knowles had been dealing antiques for about 25 years, picking through flea markets and selling her wares at other antiques markets. But when her husband Robert, who works in real estate, saw the former home of Wayside Furniture for sale, he suggested she create a market of her own. “I already had all the connections, and I thought that as Raleigh was growing, it would be nice to have another space to find antiques,” she says.
Inside, you’ll find antique and vintage furniture from a span of decades and provenances. Pigfish Lane hosts more than 50 dealers, each of whom curate their own booths according to their specialties and tastes. As you wind through the space, each alcove has its own personality, from solid early American pieces to leggy Mid-Century moderns to artfully distressed French country furniture to estate jewelry and more. There are finds at every price point, for every style, and the inventory changes nearly daily. And there’s The Back Room, where you can find bargains when vendors want to move something along. “Some people start there,” says Knowles. “It’s a very popular spot!”
There are new products as well. “That’s where the ‘and interiors’ comes in,” says Knowles. These include booths with original art—she has two artists who share a studio space on-site, plus pop-up shops from time to time—plus custom framing, upcycled and reupholstered pieces, hand-built rustic furniture and custom pillows, too. Knowles donated a booth to The Green Chair Project, where they sell items selected from their donations to benefit the organization. There are even a few pieces for sale from Wayside—Knowles said they had the space, so why rush them out?—and they’ve kept their iconic sign by the front door.
Knowles has her own booth, too, but has to practice a strict “one in, one out” rule as she uncovers finds from her neighbors. “I just love to find interesting things—that’s why I got into this business.”