Collect by Generation at Antique Store Santa Barbara

As a Millenial, I was bewildered to see my baby-boomer-father, watching an old recording of the Andy Griffith show on a Sunday night. In case you don't know, The Andy Griffith Show ran from 1960-1968, directly surrounding the year my father was born, 1962. Why did my corporate-job-working father find refuge in watching old black and white sitcoms?

Nostalgia. We look for it everywhere. In old buildings, old music, in familiar faces and in fashion. We feel a sense of warmth and belonging when we are surrounded by memorabilia that reminds us of our childhood and simpler times. This is why people tend to collect their childhood memories or items that bring the nostalgia of their years growing up.

Let's take a few minutes to review some collectibles and pop culture from these five decades! 


The 1950's shined with post war prosperity, budding icons like Marilyn Monroe and Elvis Presley and space race ambitions. So of course, anything you find at an Antique Store in Santa Barbara that embodies any of these memorabilia, is a sure bet for older Baby Boomers. As Tin Robots boosted into popularity, so did plastic toys. Plastic revolutionized the toy industry and manufacturers were able to incorporate electronics into plastic toys. Sounds like a collector's item!


As well as several social revolutions throughout the marvelous decade of the 1960's, Barbie had a fashion doll revolution. A decade defined by the youth, the 1960's boasted legends like JFK and the Beatles and grew tense with rebellion against the war in Vietnam. Vintage Surfboards, Fantastic Four comic books, and Frisbees are go-to collector's items of this decade.


Welcome to the disco decade which adorned Art Deco lamps, Mid-century Modern and Eames chairs. Hot wheels dominated the 1970's, making for the perfect Gen X collector's item. Risque films, the edgy music of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Michael Jackson opened an entirely new playing field for American entertainment. With these cultural main stays, the 1970's enjoys a wide range of collector's items, still cherished by many generations.


Cold War, Watergate, and economic crisis influenced a frustrated youth in the 1980's. Cinematic classics like E.T., The Breakfast Club and Return of the Jedi, are still popular today. My Little Pony toys seemed to fly off the shelves and Madonna was reined fashion icon. 


The last hurrah of the 20th-Century, the 90's was a relatively peaceful time of prosperity, with the exception of the fall of the Berlin Wall and Rodney King Riots. 

Toy Story figurines were one every kid's dresser as the animated films tools over and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fought for the spotlight. Calvin and Hobs comics will undoubtedly make for fantastic collectibles. 

I hope that you can find refuge in collectibles from the decade you were born in. Taking time to browse collectibles from your era at Antique Center Mall in Santa Barbara is a fantastic way to relive your past. Visit Antique Center Mall for a wide range of collectibles and snag some from your generation! 

chad ratliffe