Text by Katie Ellis
Beth Hubrich has been passionate about antiques from the time she was a young girl going to garage sales with her father. And though the thrill of the hunt was instilled in her at an early age, it wasn’t until years later that she found a way to share that passion with others.
A renovation project to her 100-year-old home in Homewood, Alabama, became the catalyst for both buying and selling her unique vintage wares. “I would come across these really amazing finds, and I would just hate leaving them (even if they didn’t work for me), because I knew they belonged in somebody’s house,” Beth says. “It wouldn’t necessarily work for my house, but in that buying-and-selling process, I realized that I’ve always loved antiques and hunting for antique items. So, I thought maybe I could find things, and people would love to put them in their homes.” And in 2017, Beth opened Mary and Wilma, a shop filled with a beautiful, curated collection of antique and vintage finds.
Though she admittedly didn’t set out to open a shop in the process of updating her home, her passion for unique pieces proved to be one worth sharing. Mary and Wilma was named in honor of her maternal and paternal grandmothers. “Both were amazing women who I loved very much. They were extremely different but wonderful, nonetheless,” Beth says. “Their houses could not have been more different in the way they were decorated. The one thing they both shared was that they always made people feel welcome and like there was always room at the table.”
Beth’s flair for nostalgia fuels her love for unique finds. “When I think about antiques and vintage pieces, there’s so much history and memory,” she says. Part of the beauty in shopping vintage, she shares, is not only the nostalgic memories the items may hold, but the fact that most pieces retain their value. You can find well-made pieces, like her Drexel cane-back sofa, that would be inexpensive to reupholster, “and it becomes more cost effective than purchasing a new sofa,” she says. “The quality and uniqueness—I think there’s value in that. Plus, you’re getting something that is different from what you might see in everyone else’s house. There’s the unique factor!”
Beth’s personal style aesthetic is an eclectic mix, and it’s exactly what you can expect to find at Mary and Wilma. “I love bamboo and rattan, which is definitely having a moment right now. But I also love mid-century [modern] and the clean lines, as well as a great antique,” Beth says. “It’s really fun when you get to mix [styles], and I think that’s a great way for people to showcase their personal style.”