Nestled between vineyards and farm stands along Route 25 on Long Island's North Fork, you'll find antique shops galore. Some are filled to the brim with old treasures (don't be afraid to dig), while others offer a carefully curated selection. Here are five best bets from west to east:
1. Material Objects
1291 Main Rd., Jamesport
INFO 631-779-2753, mazurandco.com
Owner John Mazur restored the old farmhouse on his scenic Jamesport property himself in 2009 and built a large barn to match, a fitting venue for an antique shop.
The inventory consists of old and reclaimed items that -- like the farmhouse that shelters them -- have been given a second chance at life. "It's about reinventing what its use was and turning it into something new," Mazur says.
New pieces arrive weekly from as far as Europe and South America. Prices start around $50 and can go up to $20,000. Items worth browsing include rustic 14-foot farmhouse tables ($3,000) and a 12-foot boat from 1951 that was rescued from the Finger Lakes region ($12,000).
2. Jamesport Red Barn
1576 Main Rd. Jamesport
"It's shabby-chic," Gloria Suttmeier, 79, says of the Jamesport Red Barn, a group store she manages. It's filled with antiques, vintage home goods and collectibles.
The large barn is divided into rooms, each with items from a different seller. Popular items include nautical decor, garden accessories, jewelry and wicker furniture. Suttmeier says many people are drawn to this type of shopping because the economy is down, and they're in search of good deals. For others, it's a nostalgic experience.
"A lot of people come looking for things that their moms or grandmothers had," she says.
3. Antiques & Old Lace
31935 Main Rd., Cutchogue
The 4,000-square-foot shop that Gene Mott and his wife, Patricia, built 36 years ago is crammed with interesting items.
"I could have been in this store for hours," says Lauren Cioffi-Brachio, 23, of Centereach, who spent a day antiquing on the East End. She was particularly drawn to the store's collection of classic books, and snagged a first edition of "All Quiet on the Western Front" by Erich Maria Remarque for $35.
You'll find wood carvings, fine dishware, wall clocks, vintage tins, jewelry and thousands of other items, ranging from inexpensive (Cioffi-Brachio also bought a vintage leather strap bracelet for $5) to high-end (a late 1800s marble table "on sale" for $15,000).
In the summer, the shop is open by chance or appointment -- call 631-379-0205 before you go.
45395 Main Rd., Southold
INFO 631-765-2379, jandavisantiques.com
Doll collector Jan Davis has been repairing broken and worn dolls with her husband, Walter Davis, for more than 30 years. "It's a lost art," Davis says. "It takes a lot of artistic skill -- we sculpt fingers and toes, put eyeballs back together -- all sorts of interesting things." The couple fixes Steiff stuffed animals and teddy bears, too.
Their workshop doubles as an antique store, specializing in all sorts of dolls, stuffed animals and toys. They also sell silver, pottery and furniture.
5. Treasure Exchange Antiques
54325 Route 25, Southold
This brightly lit, well-organized shop sells high quality home decor, pottery, local paintings, fine jewelry, kitchen goods and small furniture. There's a section for kids, too.
Many items are consigned by local families. Some are more than 80 years old, and Southold Historical Society volunteers who run the shop like to pass the stories along.
"We tell customers as much as we can about each item," says co-chair Judith Phinney. Standout items include a brass clock from 1920 ($495), an old oak wash stand with a marble top and backsplash ($375) and a cut-glass bowl from the 1930s ($125).
Consignments in good condition are accepted on Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.