Thursday, October 13, 2016

Dealer Phil Done of The Country Cottage and author of The Ornament Box

We love to feature our creative, savvy, and talented dealer-merchants and thought you would enjoy getting to know them! Meet Phil Done of The Country Cottage, Dealer PNP on Church Street, in our Alpharetta Queen of Hearts.

Phil has been a dealer-merchant at the Queen of Hearts since February 2016 and specializes in European cottage collectibles hand-picked from Hungary, Romania, and France. He says that his favorite part about being a dealer-merchant at the Queen is finding treasures (just like a pirate!) and fluffing the booth. 

A year ago, Phil moved back to the states and married his partner, Piotr. Phil and Piotr sell an array of European pieces. Piotr is from Poland, and they lived in Budapest for a total of ten years. Twice now, they have brought over containers full of European collectibles, including grain sacks, seltzer bottles, vintage teddy bears, dough bowls, pickle jars, demi-johns, and enamelware. Phil attributes their success to personally hand-picking unique pieces. They live in Marietta with their doggie, Roxie.

These are a few of Phil's Favorite Things:

  • European Enamelware (because he loves the bright colors!) 
  • Finding old European teddy bears stuffed with straw, but says that it is hard for him to part with them unless he knows they are going to a good home. 
  • His dog, Roxie and his partner, Piotr. Piotr likes the selling and business part of it, so together they make a great team.
  • An old china cabinet with a bowed glass front that is in his home. It resembles the one his grandmother used to have, and he remembers as a child listening to her tell the stories of all the pretty things behind the glass, which probably started his love of antiques.
  • Palettes of warm gray and off-white 
  • Painted furniture and that "chippy" is still in - you used to not be able to sell anything with a ding or chip in it!
  • Taking old things and find new uses for them. Recently, he was amazed when he saw an old mattress coil turned upside down, lined with sheet music, and transformed into a vase for dried flowers.
  • He also admires the work of many of our dealers at the Queen!

Besides hunting down treasures for his booth, Phil has two other loves: teaching and writing. Originally from California, Phil taught 15 years in California public schools before moving to Europe, which had always been a dream. In Europe, he taught third, fourth and fifth grade for 10 years at the American International School of Budapest, one of the premier international schools in the world. 

In his first two books, 32 Third Graders and One Class Bunny: Life Lessons from Teaching and Close Encounters of the Third-Grade Kind: Thoughts on Teacher-hood, he wrote about the funny and poignant things that happen in the elementary classroom. His third book, The Charms of Miss O'Hara: Tales of Gone With the Wind and the Golden Age of Hollywood from Scarlett's Little Sister, is a biography of film star Ann Rutherford, best known for her role as Carreen O’Hara, youngest sister in Gone With the Wind. Phil's writing has also been featured in Reader's Digest, Real Simple, and The New York Times.

Phil's fourth book, The Ornament Box, with a foreword by classic film star Debbie Reynolds, will be released on October 11, Both Hallmark and Lifetime have expressed interest in adapting it for television. 

The Ornament Box is the story of one family told through its ornaments. As they are unwrapped on Christmas Eve, so too are the family’s relationships, struggles, and secrets. The ornaments tell stories of love and loss: sometimes they are worn and broken— just like us. This is about what unites a family: tradition, holiday, and sickness, and shows us that the eternal spirit of Christmas is not beneath the tree; rather, it is within.  

Meet Phil Done and have him sign a personalized copy of The Ornament Box for you at any of the below times. If you can't make the book signings, The Ornament Box will be on sale at all three of our locations for $16.95 and is a perfect stocking stuffer!

Alpharetta Store, 670 N Main, Alpharetta:
Thursday, November 3     5 to 7 pm
Friday, November 4         1 to 3 pm
Saturday, November 5     1 to 3 pm
Sunday, November 6       1 to 3 pm
Saturday, December 3     3 to 5 pm 

Marietta Store - 2745 Sandy Plains Road, Marietta:
Thursday, Nov 10      6 to 8 pm
Saturday, Nov 12      3 to 5 pm

Check out their Facebook page at

For more information about The Ornament Box, go to, or email your questions to