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The Nostalgia Broker | Local vintage shop owner Amber Dodson finds joy in helping people buy back pieces of their childhood

by Nicci McCarty, contributing writer | September 2, 2023 at 10:45 p.m. | Updated September 5, 2023 at 9:24 a.m.

Local entrepreneur and self-described "nostalgia broker" Amber Dodson is in the business of brightening people's lives with pieces of the past -- whether it be a favorite childhood lunch box, a coveted retro toy or a sweet leather jacket. But not so long she cared for people in a different way.

During the height of COVID-19, Amber worked as a nurse on the cardiac floor at CHRISTUS St. Michael Hospital.

The pandemic affected us all in some way or another and front-line workers took the brunt of it.

She felt depleted.

"I became a nurse because I wanted to help people. I loved the patient care. I was there to hold people's hands and to truly care for them," Amber said. But like many in the field, she needed a change and decided to take some time off and dedicate herself to being a stay-at-home mom.



One day, Amber's neighbor asked if she wanted some of her vintage wear, and to her surprise, it was her entire closet.

Since that day, Amber has accumulated a lot of retro items. Between the donated pieces and those she has purchased through the years, she decided to open an online store specializing in vintage clothes, games and toys called Nostalgia Vintage Sundry.

Although her store is online, Amber often participates in local trade shows and festivals.

Nostalgia evokes happiness so she feels she is still helping people, albeit in a different way.

She recalls a time she found an old lunch box from kindergarten.

"When I got it ... just the feeling you get when you first open it up ... all the emotions."

Amber says jokingly she calls herself a nostalgia broker, sending out little packages of happiness.

Most of the clothes are donated and tend to come with stories attached.

"People tell me the stories from the items, and I pass them along to my customers. 'This guy wore this jacket in a rock band in the 70s.'" She says her favorite part is interacting with people and hearing their stories.

Nostalgia Vintage Sundry is still going strong three years later, shipping all over the United States.

Amber tends to get most of her orders from New York, Los Angeles, Portland and Austin.

"I've sold to movie studios and it's always exciting to hear what sets these items will be used for."

Amber hopes to grow her online store even more and wishes to specialize more in being a broker to movie studios.

"I'm building up clients right now who have requests. It's fun to watch old movies and get a feel for the fashion they are looking for."

She also hopes to get her herbalist license in the near future and help others in that way as well. As for right now, she is enjoying helping others buy back their childhoods.



In addition to her vintage venture, Amber also co-owns Ascension Modern Massage Therapy with Jared Tucker, which opened last year.

"Jared is a massage therapist; we also have a counselor, too."

They are looking to expand their office and currently have a room available.



You can find Amber's shop on Ebay at

She can also be found on etsy, and depop.

Ascension Modern Massage Therapy is at 204 McCartney Blvd. Texarkana, Texas. Their hours of operation are from Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

In addition to being a writer, lifelong Texarkana resident Nicci McCarty is a photographer, songwriter and musician. She performs both solo and with her band, Brain Panic.

Print Headline: The Nostalgia Broker | Local vintage shop owner Amber Dodson finds joy in helping people buy back pieces of their childhood


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