Old Eagle shop has a new look | VailDaily.com

Old Eagle shop has a new look

Connie Steiert
Special to the DailyKym Manula now owns the Strawberry Patch in downtown Eagle.

EAGLE – The Strawberry Patch, in downtown Eagle, has been there longer than many an Eagle resident. But even old-timers will be hard-pressed to recognize the charming gift-and-flower shop that now occupies the space at 233 Broadway.Kym Manula, the new owner, has only owned the Strawberry Patch since October, but already she has provided a fresh focus, a tempting new array of gift lines, and infused the store with a fun, upbeat atmosphere and funky new treats that make this store a delight to explore. The reinvigorated floral shop offers striking gifts, unusual interior decorating items, baby clothes, locally-made jewelry and, right now, a Santa’s workshop full of Christmas items -as well as beautiful flowers.”I’m trying to create a huge variety,” Manula says. “Anybody can come in and find a gift for anybody.”Take the new line of baby items prominently displayed in the front of the store. Manula says there aren’t too many places in Eagle to shop for baby gifts.

New mothers, grandparents and well-wishers can now select from an assortment of terry cloth cover-ups with duck or hippo hoods for infants; puppet towels and soft blankets by Mullins Kids; sweet, pastel jackets for toddlers; and plump bees and fuzzy, fat cat stuffed toys by Unipak.Then, there’s the new ‘tween’ section, filled with fun items that are – like most of what the Strawberry Patch’ sells colorful and a bit sassy.There are bright lip glosses and brilliant eye glitter by Magic Eye Fashion, jewelry designed just for this energetic age group, and funky room decor, such as fuzzy Pom Pom Curtains. Tweens can even “grow” their own toy mate, with the Strawberry Patch’s “Grow a Boyfriend” and “Grow a Prince” line.”We try to carry things that are affordable that they can purchase for little gifts for each other,” says Manula.The store has expanded to include a few interior decorating items as well, including Western leather-and-wood chairs and benches; rustic and Victorian-style lamps; super cozy throws in beaded fabrics or patterned Denali fleeces. Scattered among all these wonderful goodies, are unusual and captivating gift items, such as funky reading glasses, splashy handbags and totes, and lines of locally-crafted jewelry, including beaded bracelets by Ashley Dawkins, or appetite-stone jewelry by Linda Barca.

Too busy to shop? The Strawberry Patch now offers a line of pre-prepared gift baskets for adults or children, filled with fun items, like gourmet cocoas and mugs for an adult, or Pom Pom Curtains and eye glitter for a tween.”People won’t need to go to Wal-Mart for their little gifts; they can come here,” Manula declares.Of course, the Strawberry Patch still carries a lovely array of fresh flowers and bouquets that have been the mainstay of the Strawberry Patch for years, and will make up floral arrangements to order. Manula admits this is her first foray into the floral/retail business arena, but couldn’t resist when she spied the ‘for sale’ sign hanging in the Strawberry Patch’s window a few months ago. After talking with former owner, Mary Lou Girard, she became convinced the store’s business would coincide perfectly with her summer trail and riding businesses, Spraddle Ranch and the Rocking Triple J Ranch.”I’m real busy in the summer, and flower shops are typically busy from November to May,” Manula explains. The store is also close to her Eagle home, and her kids’ schools.The Strawberry Patch has been around for 24 years. But since purchasing the store, Manula has overhauled the interior, replacing the carpet, painting the walls, installing a shiny new, corrugated service desk, and ordering a store full of new merchandise. Already, Manula has had to hire two, full-time employees to help her keep up.

“It’s very different from what it was two months ago,” Manula assures. Vail Colorado

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