Window Shopping Has Taken on New Meaning 

0:00 Window Shopping Has Taken on New Meaning  By Robin Jovanovich    For those businesses considered “non-essential” and required to close their doors to the public until […]

Published April 12, 2020 12:31 AM
4 min read


Window Shopping Has Taken on New Meaning 

By Robin Jovanovich 


For those businesses considered “non-essential” and required to close their doors to the public until the coronavirus runs its course, it is hard times. Many retailers have put signs on their doors and windows alerting shoppers about big sales and abbreviated store hours. Yet, downtown is eerily empty. 


Take a random walk down Purchase Street and you’ll discover that Lola, the fine and longtime women’s fashion boutique, is happy to accommodate requests for private appointments. “We have gloves, masks, and plenty of hand sanitizer and will practice social distancing,” said owner Caroline Schneider. We can also work by phone and text with photos, and I’m happy to make local deliveries on orders.” 


Next door, at LV2BFIT, they are accepting store appointments by phone (584-3717) and encouraging clients to support the store by shopping online at www.LV2BFIT.COM. 


Across the street, Sarza always has the most arresting and eclectic window displays in town. Right now, Sarah Briginshaw’s emporium of South African homewares features decorative basket vessels made from Cyprus textiles grass, wire structure, plastic, and glass beads; a Nguni chair/kitchen stool that can be customized to fit your décor; Mia mélange baskets that can be used as fruit or bread baskets, planters, or laundry baskets; bright and beautiful Namji dolls handmade in Cameroon from beads and wood. “They are known to be good luck or fertility charms,” added Briginshaw. The striking antique Lozi mortars were originally used to pound grain, maize, and legumes for flour but if inverted can be used as stools or tables when inverted. The Minima pendant lights are made of plywood and available in a number of styles. The wallpaper is just one of many options from designer Robin Sprong. 


The pair of 1950s Chinese rose medallion urns at York Antiques will dress and brighten up any entry. We poked around just before the shop had to close and discovered a number of other “finds”, including a Chippendale ball and claw slant-front desk with a fitted interior and fan-covered lid, a pair of Empire-style candlesticks that would distinguish every living or dining room fireplace mantle, and a pair of 1920s Chippendale lowboys. There were also two small, signed, and handsome American still life oil paintings that caught our eye. To reach the shop, email 


There is nothing antique about Nest Inspired Home, but for vintage and contemporary furniture and lighting, it is a great resource. We ran into co-owner Bets Miller and asked about the attractive club chairs in the shop window. Shop Front Design was the one that designed their attractive shop window. She informed us that the chairs and everything else in this sophisticated shop are on sale at 30 percent discounts, so start shopping at While Bets and crew are working from home, they are offering remote design services. Call 523-5254 to set up a FaceTime or virtual appointment. 


Carpet Trends, Rye’s oldest retail establishment, is open — remotely. Owner Rob Rogers informed us that they can measure and install when and if it makes sense. “A lot of our jobs are in empty houses and in those homes where the owners are temporarily away,” he explained. Meanwhile, Margaret Ricketts encourages current and potential clients to visit to review their stock wall and to click on the mill sites listed. “We and the mills will mail samples so that you can continue with your decorating plans.” Call 967-5188 or email for general inquiries or to leave a message for Rob and his team.  


Another longtime family business, Woodrow Jewelersinvites you to shop online ( for unique jewelry, everyday “essentials”, watches, cufflinks, and more. There is no better destination for the perfect Mother’s and Father’s Day gifts. 


At Angela’s, where runway fashion mixes with great everyday women’s clothing and accessories, everything is 30 percent off all spring. If you need one spring fling, make it a floral, advises owner Angela Guitard. With this sale, however, you might as well make it a few. While the shop is temporarily closed, shopping online at is the way to go. 


Love Bella invites you to shop privately — with champagne! — by appointment. Call Sarah at 218-7489. 


One thing that’s kept many Rye spirits up during anxious times is having an independent bookstore. Patrick Corcoran of Arcade Booksellers is glad to report that he’s got most books readers want in stock and that he can order anything he doesn’t have. Orders generally take a day or two and will be ready for curbside pickup. Call 967-0966 or visit  


Pets will not go hungry or unadorned because All Paws Gourmet is open from 11 to 4 Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. Owner Claudia Baker has long offered curbside delivery, so she is a pro at getting orders ready to go. Call 921-1690. 


Your children may have already grown a size since the “on pause” order was mandated, but fear not, Sammy + Nat has everything to outfit ages newborn to 12 straight on through summer. It’s smart to stock up on soft summer tees. At Sammy + Nat, it’s one-stop shopping because the shop also stocks a variety of games, gifts, activities, and puzzles. Visit or leave a message at 305-6558. 


While many of us have done our best to support our local food and drink establishments which remain open — Crisfield’s for the best meat and poultry in the area, and June & Ho, Patisserie Salzburg, and Rye Country Store for pretty much anything else, other than wine — we went the extra mile. We called Bernard Curry of Curry Auto and asked him about trading in a car and what models he recommended we look at. In record speed, we had a deal and new wheels 


When the recession of 2008 occurred and advertising plunged at The Rye Record, I called Bernie and said, “I really want you to start advertising with us. How about a banner ad on the front page?” Over the years that banner, which helped get us through one economic downturn, became a full-page ad in every issue. Thank you, Bernie. By the way, we love the new car.  






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