NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — A new business on Eagle Street will allow local artists and artisans to display and sell their goods.
North Adams native Jennifer Beverly opened Eagle Street Artisans, a consignment style artisan gallery, at 27 Eagle St., the former Molly's Bakery building. The building more recently was the location of the Party Place and a very short-lived art supply store.
"I feel like everything in my life has come full circle and this is where I am supposed to be," Beverly said. "I can do what I love and help others at the same time."
She said there are many artists and artisans in the area that need a hand.
"We don't have anything like this in North Adams and I feel like there are a lot of things that focus on drawing artists in, but we need to help the artisans and artists that are here," Beverly said. "A lot of people here have other jobs and families, and it is not a lot of extra money but that little bit can help fill in the gaps, pay a bill or help their kids play softball or something."
Beverly said she charges those interested in displaying their creations $25 a month and a 15 percent commission. She said it is important to her to keep her fee low.
"I know with smaller-priced items sometimes it is hard to make it worthwhile so I try to keep the prices low so everybody kind of has a chance," Beverly said. "It is too hard if we are all on our own."
She said already she has about 10 artisans signed up to use her space and more people contact her every day. She said many of her clients are from North County.
"I try to bring in people from around here," she said. "Any money that comes in here goes right back into our community. I know how that cycle goes and we need it."
Beverly herself makes organic soaps and beauty products. She added that she also dabbles in sewing. She used to work at Price Chopper on State Road but once it closed, she decided it was time to open up her own shop.
"Everyone kept asking what I was going to do so I thought I would take a go at my own business," she said. "I don't really want to work for another corporation again ... so I started making stuff and getting my stuff in other people's stores more and then this opportunity came up."
She said she used to be involved with the Mountain Goat Artisan Gallery in Williamstown and felt North Adams could use a similar facility.
After 12 years working in retail, she feels one of the most important things is customer service. She said this is a critical part of her new shop.
"I get annoyed when I go to some places because it's so easy to be nice and I don't like it when I am treated poorly as a customer," she said.
She hopes to be able to purchase the building at some point and fill it to the brim with people's creations, and she wants to bring in food and possibly a barista station.
Her plans are to use the front of the building for community workshops.
"I heard from a lot of people that their dream was to come and make stuff at Molly's and I don't want to squash anybody's dream," she said.
The store opened last week with hours of 10 to 7 on Tuesday through Friday and 10 to 5 on Saturday. Beverly can be reached through the store's Facebook page.
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