Special sale will benefit Unity Shoppe
An estate sale of artwork, antiques, jewelry, furniture and more once belonging to Barbara Tellefson, Unity Shoppe founder and beloved community member, will take place from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sept. 25 and 26 at her historic home, La Casa Nichita, 679 Mission Canyon Road.
Ms. Tellefson, who was also the United Shoppe operations director, died in 2020 at the age of 84.
According to her obituary in the News-Press, “Barbara’s singular focus and half century of devotion to the Santa Barbara County community was in a league of its own which, in the days since her passing, has been confirmed by the scores of well-wishers describing her as ‘Saint Barbara’ and an ‘unstoppable force for good.’
“Like other famed celebrities calling Santa Barbara and Montecito home, Kenny Loggins was a loyal friend and supporter of Barbara and Unity Shoppe for decades, saying he would be ‘forever changed by her incredible determination, which aided over one million people during her lifetime.’ ”
Proceeds from the Sept. 25-26 sale will go directly to the Barbara Tellefson Fund to further Unity Shoppe’s mission.
“We see it as a sentimental way for us to share Barbara’s collection with the community she loved while raising money for the organization she founded and poured her heart and soul into for more than 50 years,” said Tom Reed, Unity’s executive director. “Among her last requests was for Unity Shoppe to be as free and clear of debt as possible, and this is one way we are able to honor that wish.”
Unity Shoppe is a nonprofit dedicated to providing the basic necessities of life and occupational skills training to Santa Barbara’s most vulnerable populations during times of temporary crisis while encouraging self-sufficiency and independence. All programming and services are offered at no cost to qualifying clients without regard to political affiliation, religious belief or ethnicity.
“For decades, Barbara enjoyed going to estate sales and collectors to amass an amazing assortment of toys, musical instruments, furniture and curios,” said Pat Hitchcock, donor relations chair. “She has left these treasures for Unity to sell with the proceeds going toward the furtherance of Unity’s mission to help those less-fortunate in our midst with basic necessities such as food and clothing.
“As a human rights champion, Barbara believed in showing respect and dignity to people from every walk of life. She stood up for those in need, regardless of their background. Her unique belongings reflect her belief in diversity, and we are honored that she left them to Unity to help continue her legacy.”
Mr. Reed added, “Barbara Tellefson was a truly unique individual. Her heart for the less fortunate prompted her to identify with how it felt to be on the receiving end of charity. Unity Shoppe was the fulfillment of her dream to help those struggling in life to find hope and confidence. At the same time, she was the quintessential shopper!
“Her eye for the whimsical, the unusual and the hidden treasure created a collection people of all ages will enjoy seeing — and coming home with. Barbara’s legacy continues as this estate sale will help Unity become sustainable for future generations.”