E. Rummage is located in the Constance Court building, between Spa Jolie and Madison Books.
E. Rummage is located in the Constance Court building, between Spa Jolie and Madison Books.
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Elizabeth Rummage has a penchant for 18th- and 19th-century design, which is on display at her new Madison Park antique shop, all items carefully curated and held to a simple standard: Would she put them in her home?

“People say people aren’t interested in antiques anymore, but I don’t think that’s true,” said Rummage, adding even millennials appreciate good craftsmanship. “A well-made object that’s beautiful will never go out of style.”

Rummage moved to Seattle with her husband in 1980, spending a decade as the Pacific Northwest Ballet’s marketing director before getting into nonprofit consulting.

She worked with Guendolen Carkeek Plestcheeff and her Plestcheeff Institute for Decorative Art, helping to sort and gift pieces from her extensive collection. When Plestcheeff died in 1994, her will was vague, Rummage said, so she was tabbed to help liquidate her estate. Many objects went to the Seattle Art Museum, where there is a Plestcheeff Auditorium in honor of her endowment and longtime support.

Having gained a great appreciation for decorative art, plus a number of calls from people wanting her help with other estates, Rummage said she became a certified appraiser through the International Society of Appraisers.

Rummage retired from appraising a decade ago, when she moved to Madison Park, though she occasionally provided consulting for friends and family.

She’d toyed with the idea of opening an antique store for a long time, she said, and had walked by the old building, formerly owned by Constance Gillespie, on East Madison Street many times. When it sold to the Losh family, and was slated for major renovations and refreshed storefronts, Rummage took a spot between Spa Jolie and Madison Books, which opened in June. E. Rummage has been quietly open since June 26.

“It’s been good,” Rummage said. “People have been very positive and happy that there’s a business open here and that the building has been restored.”

Rummage stocks her shop with objects she finds through estates and at auction. She took a buying trip to New Orleans last year. The decorative art ranges from 18th century to modern.

“I’m very selective of what I’ll take,” she said. “I keep in mind that I wouldn’t have anything in my shop that I wouldn’t have in my home.”

Her older son, Everett, has a podcast, The Age of Napoleon. Rummage also shares an admiration for the French military leader. He can be found featured on a number of items in E. Rummage.

“Napoleon things kind of jump out at me when I see them,” Rummage said.

Fortifying each side of her shop’s entry are wood-carved Prussian cavalrymen, adorned in 18th century uniforms, which Rummage believes were carved in the 19th century and used as store displays. Prior to taking prominent positions in her shop, they had been doing good work startling her when she’d run into them in her basement, she said.

A number of decorative art objects were put in storage when she moved from Capitol Hill to her home in Madison Park, which is a convenient 5-minute walk from her new shop.

On top of running her new business, Rummage is also on the board of directors at the Gage Academy of Art.

People can see what’s new at E. Rummage on Instagram @e.rummageantiques.