Cozy Stylish Chic opens its doors for business!
After several months of tirelessly working on our first brick and mortar storefront (really, the building was built in 1928 and is actual brick and mortar!), we’ve finally opened the doors – right in the heart of Old Town Pasadena. Situated on the northeast corner of Dayton and De Lacey, we are proud to call such well-known high-end design retailers such as Farrow & Ball, Roche Bobois, and Design Within Reach as neighbors. The former two moved into the area within the last year and Design Within Reach being the storefront that started the migration of design and home furnishing stores to the area over 8 years ago. As a matter of fact, yesterday I received the newest issue of Pasadena Magazine and there was a nice write up on the west end of the Green Street corridor quickly becoming Pasadena’s newest design district. Naturally, Cozy Stylish Chic was also included as one of the go-to establishments for stylish design!
Although it may seem as though I am the newcomer to the block, in actuality I have probably been here the longest. My family purchased the building in 1994 when I had an entirely different occupation – that of a clothing designer. I worked in the loft, perched above what is now the work peninsula until 2004, at which time the construction of the apartment building next door and subsequent damage to our building resulted in my family’s company having to relocate in order to undergo major repairs. After all repairs were complete, the entire building was leased to Salon Sessions, which still occupies the building today and with whom Cozy Stylish Chic shares bathrooms and common area.
The Building: Before and After
Several people who have visited me in the shop have asked if A) have I done this (a retail store) before (the answer is no) and B) if I had to do much to the space before I moved in. All are curious as to how the space looked before we moved in, so I thought it would be fun to give a quick peek into the before and after. Above is an after shot, but here goes with the before shots.
Where once sat a trash dumpster…
now sits our front entrance and main vignette. To the left of the photo below are a pair of glass doors, where until 12 years ago was an overhead roll-up garage door. Interesting story— every now and then and occasionally on New Year’s Eve I would roll up that door and my friends and I would drive our cars into the building. Parking is not allowed on the street on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, as Pasadena’s annual Rose Parade is held every New Year’s Day and runs through Colorado Blvd., just a block and a half north of the building. The streets south of Colorado Blvd are closed to traffic and are used as the parade’s staging area. Where I would once park my car now is a display of Miele appliances, where I can demonstrate how the appliances operate as well as serve customers lattes and cappuccinos from the latest in-wall coffee system and bake cookies from the speed oven.
Most people I know document the process of their renovation and give occasional progress updates with a big reveal at the end, but I am an impatient one, and discussing what seemed to be the slow-as-molasses process would have put me over the edge. Looking back, I don’t know how I maintained my sanity, setting up office every day via my personal hot-spot and working to the tune of drills, hammers, and mariachi music for as long as I did!
Anyone who has met me knows that I love to tell a story, especially if history and a good laugh is involved. I’ll cover the history and save the good laugh for another time – I have a few. So… this is a photo of our first site visit, when I decided to take over the space almost a year ago to date. Seated is the landlord (who also happens to be my dad and biggest cheerleader in business and life in general) It was an eye opening day, but that is how I usually work best – knowing I have a blank slate to work with. After having worked in the building for 10 years it was surreal to return back 11 years later knowing that soon again I would be occupying the building.
More before, during and afters:
An interesting fact— the “cyc wall” above was part of the Salon Sessions photo studio and where portions of the first few seasons of America’s Top Model were filmed. See the glass doors on the far end of the photo above? That is where once was one of two overhead roll-up doors in the building. In the foreground is where I parked my car…
Even though at the time it didn’t seem like it, it was quite a transformation. Removing the anti-graffiti film, taking down the dark grey walls, lightening up the stained concrete floors, and opening up the windows now brings in loads of natural light and renewed life and energy. When I last occupied the building there were still bars on the windows, as the southern end of Old Town wasn’t exactly the safest part of town – especially at night. Obviously, the neighborhood has evolved quite a bit since then.
In the past it has been a carriage house, paint warehouse, produce market, wood shop, wholesale clothing office/warehouse, and hair salon. So as I reflect on the building’s past, it will be interesting to see what kind of history Cozy Stylish Chic can make as a fine furnishings and home decor store. Stop by if you’re in the area – Cozy Stylish Chic is located at 89 West Dayton Street in Old Town Pasadena.
I’ll be back writing about more on the store transformation as well as highlighting some of the fabulous Cozy Stylish Chic vendors, so stay tuned!