Gatherers & Collectors
Jackie Zartarian and Amy Benz turn their keen eye to found objects that make a home new
Two best friends with a love of staging and interior design decided to transform their passion into a business in 2013. Jackie and Amy met about 20 years ago, introduced by their husbands who are longtime friends from high school. Today, both women have daughters in their twenties and their families remain close, both in and out of their store.
The pair brings unique yet cohesive styles and home staging backgrounds to the table. Amy is originally from Buffalo, New York, and Jackie from San Diego, California and the duo followed their husbands to the Cape. The extent of the store’s success was unexpected by the owners, but certainly cherished alongside their close friendship. “I was a stay-at-home mom for years. Jackie and I had been friends forever and raised our girls together. We love to decorate homes, so we thought, ‘Why not make a living out of it and see if it works?’ And it really took off,” Amy explains. “Staging is the catalyst for all of this. We couldn’t find things on the Cape—we couldn’t find lamps or rugs, and we thought we should just open a shop,” adds Jackie.
When Jackie and Amy began rattling off possible names for the new store, Bungalow instantly stuck. “We wanted one word that people would resonate with, not necessarily about the Cape, but a home,” says Amy. Bungalow opened in 2013 and quickly outgrew its first location: a quaint sea captain’s home built in the 1800s in Orleans. In 2015, the two packed up and moved to their current location in Chatham, at 1291 Main Street. While there was a certain nostalgia to the sea captain’s home, the new Chatham location offers a larger space and a bustling atmosphere, and these women have made it completely their own.
The store features consigned pieces and new home furnishings, as well as the new pop-up shop called Cabana with resort wear. Upon entering Bungalow, one is immersed in an earthy, coastal oasis as the door closes upon the outside world. Exposed wooden beams, a driftwood light fixture, modern couches and unique mirrors immediately catch the eye. Cape Cod character, like wooden whale carvings and seashells, is embedded in the style throughout the store, in a calm manner, making visitors completely at ease in this coastal-style oasis. The showroom to the right reveals a long, open space with multiple staged spaces, full of couches, end tables dining sets, lighting and scores of carpets, and more. Each area seems to have its own particular feel, inviting visitors to imagine such beautiful scenes in their own homes. In just the first glance, one is curious to uncover the store in its entirety.
Inspiration comes to these two curators in the art of bringing diverse pieces together. They both emphasize the need to layer old and new consigned pieces to stage a unified look, putting their own spin on coastal style. “We bring in things that we really love that we think are beautiful, regardless of if it matches or if it’s the same genre. We keep evolving and our looks keep evolving. Right now, we both are pretty obsessed with the West Palm Beach look, and try to keep everything clean and crisp, bringing in unexpected things,” says Jackie.
The challenge is in being able to stage the funky consignment pieces, but the talent of these co-owners in designing their showroom is unmatched. “We like to have high and low and old and new. We like mid-century modern, and then we try to keep it pretty authentic to Cape Cod. That’s why we take consignment so we can mix in curated things,” Jackie explains.
New this spring is Bungalow’s resort-wear pop-up. In this section of the store beach dresses, sandals, jewelry, bags and towels are beautifully displayed, switching gears from home furnishings to fashion. Jackie and Amy, shopping lovers themselves, were inspired to appeal to the tourist clientele—not everyone will walk away with a lamp, but visitors can always leave Bungalow with a pair of flip flops or earrings. “Between the two of us, we love to shop for clothes as well and we wanted something for the people that came in the summertime to be able to take away,” explains Amy. In this sense, Bungalow continues to evolve, now offering everything from a new kitchen table to a bright beach bag.
Visitors should take time walking through Bungalow to appreciate the detail that has gone into this store. From paintings and clocks to rugs and unique lighting fixtures, each corner has its treasures to discover. Bungalow is more than a furnishing consignment store; it is a beautifully crafted showroom that displays the creativity that can go into the modern coastal home, inspiring homeowners to curate their own bungalow.