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Hinsdale, Illinois |

Published Sept. 15, 2011                                                      

Proprietors make Hinsdale their
new home

Boutiques, piano gallery, interior design and spice shop bring fresh looks to downtown

By Ken Knutson

   Hinsdale’s business district has welcomed the arrival of several merchants in recent months, two of which will open in October.
   Here’s an overview of who’s new and what they have in store for customers eager to shop locally.

Jolie Boutique

   Since Jolie Boutique opened its doors at 49 S. Washington St. in March, shoppers have been discovering the assortment of clothing, shoes, jewelry, accessories and gift items inside.
   Owner Rebecca Joers, a 20-year veteran of the retail marketplace, said the operative word for her newest store is “eclectic.”
   “We try and find that item that you’re not going to find anywhere else,” she said.
   That translates into clothing with a lot of attention to detail and merchandise closely tied to the approaching season. The line of Frazier Fir candles and other scented items, for example, are a big hit around the holidays.
   “We have a full line of camis and leggings and lots of scarves and hats,” Joers noted.
   Fur-trimmed and animal print fashion is trendy right now, she said, and the shop carries styles designed for ages 20 through 80.
   Joers said she appreciated the warm welcome she received from neighboring shops when she opened and said response from customers has been gratifying.
   “We’re looking forward to a great holiday season,” she said.

Steinway Piano Gallery

   One step into the Steinway Piano Gallery at 120 S. Washington St. and a visitor can almost imagine one’s favorite pianist performing at one of the handsome instruments.
   Steinway, which moved into the space in July, has quickly struck a chord with the community, according to sales manager Diane Duncan.
   “We’ve already found homes for 20 pieces,” she said.
   That success along with the abundant natural light thanks to a corner location are factors that have compelled the gallery to extend its stay there.
   “We originally thought that this would be a temporary location. But then we kind of thought, ‘Huh, this is a nice place,’ ” Duncan said.
   The gallery is factory-owned, which means it offers the largest selection of Steinway pianos anywhere in the Midwest.
   In addition to Steinway & Sons high-end models, Duncan said the company’s Boston and Essex lines are priced for the wider market.
   The store has an area set aside for recitals and has reached out to the area’s school and private music teachers to collaborate on programs. It also hosts educational programs on topics such as piano construction, care and maintenance.
   Later this month, Steinway artist Ramsey Lewis will perform as part of an grand opening celebration.
   “We want to do some cooperative efforts and encourage folks because music is such a huge part of life,” Duncan said. “We’ve had such a nice reception. Everyone that comes in says they like the fact that we’re here.”

QT Apparel Gifts & Accessories

   QT Apparel Gifts & Accessories opened last spring, and owner Susie Azzarello said people are slowly discovering her at 16 W. Hinsdale Ave.
   “We say we’re between the barbershop and Hartley’s (Cycle Shoppe),” Azzarello said.
   From a Boogie Monster Dance Kit for tots to costume jewelry and home office adornments for more mature customers, QT serves a broad market.
   Azzarello said Hinsdale was the perfect setting for her venture.
   “We wanted to be a boutique-type store, and Hinsdale has a lot of boutiques,” she said.
   Azzarello said she endeavors to make sure the inventory stays fresh.
   “We try to have things that you won’t see all over the place,” she said. “We don’t have a dozen of everything.”
   Among her special offerings are Miche Bags, which feature changeable covers. QT also does custom embroidery, monogramming and personalized T-shirts.
   In the evening, the store hosts ladies nights, benefits and wine-tastings, and Azzarello often partners with other businesses for the events.
   “I don’t just sell my stuff. I invite other vendors, too,” said Azzarello.

Savory Spice Shop

   David Trout, co-owner of Savory Spice Shop, said visitors to the soon-to-open store at 42 S. Washington St. can expect to have a stimulating experience
   “We’re a merchant of more than 400 dried herbs and spices. We have 140 hand-blended seasonings,” Trout said. “We encourage our customers to really experience our spices. They can smell and taste them on the spot. We have taster jars next to all the spices. We’re very sensory oriented.”
   Patrons should also be enchanted by the ability to control their portions, he said.
   “One of the things that were excited about is that we’re going to be able to offer customers special quantities. They don’t have to buy too much. They can buy exactly what they need,” he said.
   In addition, Savory Spice sells premium extracts, grinders, mortars and pestles, and microplanes. Trout also said he plans to host demonstrations on topics such as familiarizing the community with different kinds of curries.
   “We’ve got something for everyone on the shelves, from the weekend grillmaster to the more adventurous palate,” he said. “We’re there as guides. You want to make chicken for dinner? We try to find something to suit to your taste.”
   Trout said Hinsdale offered the kind of setting they were seeking and said they’ve heard from residents eager for the shop’s opening, tentatively set for early October.
   “We were looking for a community that was really supportive,” he said. “We really like the hometown feel.”

Trumeau Design & Decor

   Hinsdaleans and local area homeowners soon will have a new source for interior style assistance.
   Trumeau Design & Decor head designer Greta VanWestrienen said the showroom at 19 W. Chicago Ave. will be set up like a village avenue with “storefronts” lining the way.
   “We just wanted to do a more intimate boutique-type kind of feel,” she said.
   The firm’s services include custom upholstery, high-end furniture, wallpaper and accessories. But owner Carmine Cerasi said window treatments are one of his hallmarks.
   “They’re all done in-house. They’re all custom. That’s what we’re really known for,” Cerasi said.
   With a large parking lot behind the store, residents can look forward to Trumeau tent sales and other events, VanWestrienen said.
   Cerasi said the target opening date is Oct. 1, which can’t come soon enough for him.
   “I’m really anxious to get the doors open,” he said. “We’re looking forward to showcasing our talents and bringing a lot to the community.”





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