New store brings a splash of the Carribean to Fraser
December 4, 2007
Fraser’s shopping center is getting a dose of Caribbean flare.
Fraser resident Cheryl Key has partnered with two longtime friends, Cindy Lavoie and Tracey Lamb, to open up The Seven Sisters, an eclectic, clothing and home decor store that dabbles in hand-made accessories, pottery, jewelry and lingerie.
Key, who lived in St. Thomas with her husband Gary for three years, said she’s been talking with her friends for years about opening a store in Fraser. Lavoie and Lamb own a store in St. Thomas called El Mundo Caribe, and carry their own line of clothing called Lamma Capes.
About two months ago, the trio decided to buy the space next to Radioshack and offer the line, plus other items, to the Fraser Valley community.
As Key talks of the handmade items in her store, she touches the cashmere scarves, the woolly hats and sweater, and delights in their softness. She walks to each wall, painted in burnt orange terra-cotta, and points out the various items ” lacy camisole tops, Santa Barbara pottery, handmade rugs and textiles, pillow covers and place settings ” all from Peru.
The Chulucanas pottery is one of her favorites, she said ” each piece was wrapped in mango leaves, and the smell of mangoes is faint yet distinctive.
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“Right now, we have a little bit of everything, from all over,” Key said, her blue eyes shining.
It is two days before the store’s grand opening, and although Key says she’s been working nonstop with little sleep, she looks tireless. She is wearing a sky blue, light cotton blouse with flare sleeves, a Lamma Capes piece, and a chunky, blue bracelet that looks a lot like the jewelry displayed in the store’s case, alongside the African butterfly hairclips and other sequined accessories.
Preparing the store for its opening was no small task. Key and friends spent the last two months ripping out carpet, painting the walls, cleaning, scrubbing and decorating. She has averaged about four hours of sleep per night, but isn’t complaining.
Although she doesn’t plan on giving up her job with Winter Park Travel, she said, opening a store has been a dream for a long time ” she even had the name already picked out. The Seven Sisters is her favorite constellation, and the logo depicts a blend of ocean and stars.
The store’s grand opening is Wednesday, from 3 to 8 p.m., and happens to be Key’s 46th birthday.
“It’s a nice birthday present for me. But don’t buy me a gift ” buy something nice for yourself,” she joked.
Although Seven Sisters isn’t solely a women’s clothing store, it is one of the few stores in Grand County that offers clothing for women, including popular lines such as Scala, Arinne and Shop Therapy. Key said she also plans to offer more men’s clothing in the future.
“We don’t have anything like it in the whole county. It’s nice to be able to go and buy a shirt that’s for locals ” not a T-shirt or a fleece ” but things that are affordable,” she said.
And with so many residents flying south for vacations, Seven Sisters will be a shop where they can find the clothing they need in warmer climates, such as khaki shorts and sundresses, Key pointed out.
“I think it’ll be fun for the community, something that’s needed.”
– To reach Stephanie Miller, call (970) 887-3334, ext. 19601 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.