Vintage furniture redesigned to be appreciated, loved | News

Drew Delvaux has an eye for design.

He also knows a thing or two about furniture.

So it seems appropriate that Delvaux is the owner of River City Relics of Yankton — a business he opened in 2018.

“I’ve always had a passion for re-creating a beautiful home and I started painting furniture about three years ago, and selling furniture primarily online,” Delvaux said. “The business just grew and grew, so we opened our first store in 2018. We quickly outgrew it, so we expanded to this place, and brought in a lot more home decor. It’s just been constantly evolving.”

Delvaux offers furniture — both new and redesigned. The redesigned furniture, he said, is high quality.

“It has to be heirloom quality. So it has to be solid wood, hardwoods. It has to be structurally sound and I like things with a little bit of flair. Something that has a unique design element to it,” Delvaux said. “Even with things that are a little more plain, that’s where we can have fun with paint and design and add that to it, but I like to find pieces that already have a lot of unique character.”

To find those pieces, Delvaux said he’ll go treasure hunting and “get as much cool furniture” as he can. He also has pickers who will go a 300-mile radius to buy furniture, as well as people who contact him through Facebook.

In addition to furniture, River City Relics also has home decor, seasonal accents, floral, candles and a paint line.

“That’s kind of been my primary focus with this space, is just creating a beautiful space for people to visualize how their home could look,” Devaux said.

River City Relics now offers custom furniture painting as well, Delvaux said.

“People can bring us their furniture and (we) paint it for them,” Delvaux said, adding that he also can assist people with their own projects. “I help them design it and get them set up with the products that they need.”

Delvaux also teaches a two-part furniture painting class. The first portion is a demonstration; the second is a hands-on project to practice techniques.

Delvaux said he tells his class that designing furniture is a trial and error process, Delvaux said.

“I tell people … your design should flexible,” Delvaux said. “As you work through the process, things are going to change. And that’s part of the fun.”

Delvaux said when designs furniture, sometimes he can envision what he wants to to do immediately. Other times, it takes time.

“Sometimes you have to sit with a piece for awhile and it will kind of speak to you,” Delvaux said. “Usually the more detailed design is something I have to sit with for awhile and then it evolves.”

Either way, Delvaux said he enjoys what he does, especially because he gets the chance to update furniture so it can be loved and appreciated.

“A big focus is trying to change people’s minds on vintage furniture, and bringing the understanding that just because it’s used or old, doesn’t mean it can’t be beautiful and valued,” Delvaux said.

River City Relics was the featured photo page for Saturday, April 13. For more photos, check out the Living page via print or ePaper. 

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