Join us every Saturday as we feature a store in the Lake Geneva area! Get the scoop behind the unique shops throughout Walworth County, and find out what makes them stand above the rest.
This week, we stopped into the adorable little shop in downtown Lake Geneva – Chatty Kathy’s. This store features accessories of all kinds – from scarves to hats to headbands and purses! They purchase from organizations that are all about helping other people, so you can feel great about your purchase. And Kathy, the store owner, will live up to the name…you may walk in there a stranger, but you’ll walk out with a new friend (and perhaps a great scarf or two)!
Make sure you stop in BEFORE the end of summer, as she has a big 30% off summer sale…with discounts on summer scarves, wraps, hats and jewelry!
Q: How did your store get its start?
A: My store began when I realized I could no longer handle the stress of my teaching career, which I loved very much and miss terribly. In the back of my mind I always had this “dream” of opening a scarf shop!!! And spending time with people and helping them accessorize. My initial inspiration came from a small boutique in northern Wisconsin while on vacation with my husband. It was like an epiphany, I stood in the middle of the store and cried! My husband asked what was wrong….and I said Oh, Honey nothing is wrong, I want to have a store like this some day! And 2 years, almost to the day of my realization, Chatty Kathy’s was born!
Q: How did you choose the name for your store?
A: The name of the store came with careful consideration…..and was extremely important! I wanted to make a connection with customers, and that I certainly have! I look outside my front window and see people sitting on my red bench outside in front of my store taking pictures all the time! They will comment that they or someone they know is a “Chatty Kathy!” I hear people across the street say “Chatty Kathy’s” we should stop in! I wanted a “charming” look to the shop, and that is what I have! I also wanted people to feel comfortable about allowing me to help them accessorize their wardrobe.
Q: How long has Chatty Kathy’s been open?
A: Chatty Kathy’s opened on October 9, 2014. So I’ve been here almost a year.
Q: What makes Chatty Kathy’s unique?
A: What makes Chatty Kathy’s unique: the shop is tiny, but that is what makes it very special. I only purchase a few of each accessory so you will not meet yourself walking down the street. I also focus on personal service, one of a kind finds, one size fits most sizing, and beautifully handcrafted items.
Q: What kind of items can we find in your store?
A: The treasures you will find at Chatty Kathy’s are the following: beautiful scarves, wraps, ponchos, hats, jewelry, hand bags, tote bags, wine purses, evening bags, head bands, sunglasses and readers, leggings, and a selection of children’s hats, jewelry and hand crafted items.
Q: What is the “must have” item from your store?
A: Must haves at Chatty Kathy’s are the gorgeous scarves and bags I get directly from India through an organization called WINGS, Giving Women Wings To Soar above Poverty. Your purchase helps women artists provide for their families and improve their lives. I love organizations like this and have several of these organizations in my shop. Women helping Women!
Q: What is your favorite part about being a local business in Lake Geneva?
A: I love “chatting” with the wonderful people who stop in to my store. I have had many repeat customers who have told their friends about my shop. I get groups of ladies coming into the shop after they’ve had lunch and they have so much fun trying on all of the unique items that are in the shop. I love to see the smiles on peoples faces when they have selected the perfect gift for a friend or family member or perhaps a little something for themselves.
Q: Any events/specials coming up?
A: I am looking forward to Maxwell Street Days next weekend. It will be fun to put things out on the sidewalk, I will be reducing the prices on my summer stock and there will be some surprises as well. I have always loved coming to Maxwell Street Days as a customer, this will be really fun for me as a shop owner!
Q: Do you offer gift wrapping?
A: We offer free gift wrapping at Chatty Kathy’s, indeed!!
Q: Where (and when) can we find Chatty Kathy’s?
A: Chatty Kathy’s is located on the north end of Broad Street, 510 Broad Street. We are directly across the street from Simple Café and Bakery. There is usually parking available, since we are considered the “quiet” end of Broad Street! We are open Tuesday – Saturday 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, Sunday 10:00 am – 3:00 pm.
Thanks for reading…check back here every Saturday for a NEW “Shop Local Saturday” post, featuring businesses right here in the Lake Geneva area!