It’s two weeks until opening day for Brittany Calvert’s brand new shop “Tea & Tchotchkes” in Greenport and things are starting to come together nicely.
Calvert and her husband Ken Deeg are realizing their dream of opening a lifestyle store, a place with a “little bit of everything,” stocked with unique items and one-of-a-kind art pieces.
“I’ve been managing retail stores for years,” says Calvert. “I always wanted to have my own store and have just been waiting for the right place and time.”
The “place” is the former East of the Moon location at 120 Front Street, directly across from Mitchell Park, and opening day is April 7.
Calvert and Deeg, who live in Southampton, have transformed the formerly dark interior into a bright and inviting space with a counter made of reclaimed wood, display tables that were once electrical wheels and a unique shelving unit crafted around the trunk of a locust tree.
Shelves are full of an eclectic mix of home decor, plants, clothing and tea-making accessories. There is pottery hand made in Brooklyn, whimsical decorations made in Mexico, and on the walls are fish sculptures, some made in Spain and others in Southampton. Behind the counter is a magnificent driftwood-framed mirror crafted by Deeg.
The couple’s aim is to support other small businesses and causes that are important to them, they said.
“I try to source as much inventory locally or fair trade,” said Calvert. “We will be selling loose organic tea by the ounce that comes from an organic co-op in Florida.” Although they are not a sit-down tea shop, they will be offering samples of tea brewed with spring water and sharing their passion for the medical benefits to drinking herbal teas.
And what about the shop’s name?
“Oh that,” Calvert says with a laugh. “I love going to yard sales and my husband always joked that if I came home with another tchotchke I could open my own store. So the name is a nod to my love of unique things that you don’t see every day.”
Hours have not been officially set, but Calvert says that Tea & Tchotchkes will be open part-time after the April 7 launch and daily after Memorial Day.