Its the morning of opening day. Its been a whirlwind few months- much of it exciting as my vision for Villavillekula has taken shape. The store looks beautiful. They say it takes a village to raise a child. It also takes a village to open a store! and I want to thank so many people. Thank you to my fiancé Mike who has listened to me countless hours, pitched in (enthusiastically I might add!), and provided valuable feedback on many decisions. His love and support and always believing in me have made all the difference. Thank you to my dear friends Treacy and Mark (lugging, hauling, building and most of all laughing with my best friend) , to the amazing artists and creators of gorgeous products that will be showcased at the store (Maureen, Dina, Lynda, Shelby, Pat, Katrina, Emily), to Lisa Gagen (friend, artist, website expert!), to my family (precious sons Judd and Jake) my sons girlfriend Mallory (her social media expertise) , my mother (Valerie), brother (Steve),sister (Laurie), mother and father in law to be (Maureen and Jerry) and their entire family for always being my cheerleader! To Nancy Schneider (a rock in my life) . Thank you to Laurie from Chestnut Hill Welcome Center and to the many vendors who were amazing in this process. Thank you to my dear friends Karen, Karin, Jean, Desiree and to my customers from Butterflies and Bullfrogs who have remained my friends . So here we go.........next great adventure! Catch me once again.
"I have never tried that before, so I think I should definitely be able to do that."
I always loved Pippi Longstocking from the first time I read it, probably in 2nd grade-ish. The story is so vivid in my mind and my connection to this young girl I have carried with me my entire life. Creative, independent, strong and a girl who forged ahead despite great loss. She loved finding 'things' and looked at the world as a treasure hunter, seeing things that others either didn't see or didn't appreciate as she did. It's funny how full of life and color the story was to me and as I am 'googling' images from the original book, the illustrations were all in black in white. In my mind, it was full color.....and still is.
My nickname as a young girl was "busy Beth" and into adulthood evolved in "Pippi". Always very busy, always onto the next adventure. I began my retail journey 18 years ago with a story I named "Butterflies and Bullfrogs". My vision was creating a resale store that appealed to all the senses. Color, display, imagination, sound, play......but most of all making quality merchandise not only affordable but making resale merchandise preferable. Five years later, I opened a women's store named "At the Chrysalis" where I created a space for women like a 'retreat'. Same idea, providing high-end, quality merchandise for women- affordably. It was an environment like being cocooned.....oriental rugs, crystal lamps, beautiful music, coziness and we all loved it. In time, I combined the two stores and after 18 years sold it this past summer.
Today, I find myself in a new town, new home, both of my precious boys off to college, newly engaged and ready to begin my next adventure with Villavillekula- Pippi's house.
I love color and patterns and art and seeing through a child's eyes. The store will be filled with artistically inspired, creative, quality clothing, gifts, handmade items and toys for girls and boys size newborn - 10 Each item sure to be a very favorite. My mind is exploding with ideas and I am so excited to open the doors to Pippi's home: Villevillekula, llc.