A Distinctive Shop with a Decidedly Creative Eye for the Unique
Featured Shop – Christine’s, Rye.Since opening her first retail shop nearly 20 years ago, Christine McGill’s store, Christine’s has become a beloved fixture in Rye. Many of her customers have spent hours meandering the ever-changing multi-room shop loaded with furniture, art, home décor, clothing and accessories. Christine works hard to keep her merchandise fresh and her shoppers happy. Although running Christine’s, which is housed in a converted farmhouse and barn located on Washington Road, keeps McGill running constantly from one project to the next, she doesn’t seem to mind. In fact, it’s what she loves most about her job. We were able to catch up with Christine long enough to ask her a few questions about her and her stores.You worked as a successful designer and stylist prior to opening Christine’s. Do you bring that creative background to the way you run your store? Absolutely. I like to say “I visually paint every day.” Finding new ways to combine surprising colors and textures in every corner of the store is what I love the most!Has the way women shop for clothing and accessories changed at all since you opened your first retail shop in 1989? Yes, women are thinking more about piecing together their wardrobe thoughtfully. Women are more label-conscious due to magazines and publicity promoting lines. Women are wearing clothes that are more fun – they are responding to unique and different styles.What items do you think most women ought to purchase for the fall and holiday season? Let’s see, this fall great boots, scarves and multiple-chain necklaces are great for updating a wardrobe. We have a fabulous selection.For the Love of Paper and PoochesSamantha Finigan and Whitney Swaffield love only one thing more than their beloved dogs: great paper goods. Gus & Ruby Letterpress is a stationery and invitation boutique named lovingly after the owners’ adored pet pups. It is the exclusive N.H. retailer for multiple top paper goods lines including Smock, Enormous Champion, Freya Art, Two Trick Pony and Paper Rifle Company. They carry an extensive selection of stationery and greeting cards and they also offer by-appointment custom stationery and invitation services. They also carry seasonal items perfect for gifting, such as unique and colorful desk accessories, soy candles, wrapping paper, calendars and brands such as EmersonMade and Sea Bags. All that and much more makes Gus and Ruby a great destination for a perfect card to make that certain someone smile and for finding that spot-on gift for that doting hostess or paper-loving friend. Visit Gus and Ruby at 29 Congress St. in Portsmouth. For more information go to www.GusandRuby.com or call (603) 319-1717.That Classic French Je Ne Sais Quoi, In Soap FormIf there were ever a person capable of capturing the essence of France, that person would be Mary De Angelis, creator of Earthway Soaps based out of Concord. Growing up in the ’70s Mary fondly remembers her grandmother making soap from scratch on her back porch. Today she has taken the age-old family tradition of soap-making and blossomed it into a full-fledged line of 100 percent organic and vegan personal care products that is designed and packaged to bring a little touch of France to your home. You can find her soaps in a number of scents including peppermint & eucalyptus, juniper berry & fir, lemon verbena and, of course, lavender. The line also includes lavender-scented laundry soap and various perfumes. All Earthway Soap products can be bought online at www.etsy.com/shop/earthwaysoap. Next up for Earthway Soaps – a soon-to-be-released full skincare line, which, once perfected, will offer the luxurious and wrinkle-fighting properties found in the best herbs and oils. For wholesale information and local retailers of Earthway Soaps, call (603) 225-7615.A Family-owned Canvas Company Sails Down the Seacoast into PortsmouthPort Canvas, a 37-year-old canvas bag company based in Kennebunkport, Maine, has recently found a second home on Deer Street in Portsmouth. Port Canvas offers a wide and varied selection of locally and handmade 100-percent cotton canvas bags, ranging from duffels, totes and backpacks to ski and ski boot, stroller, tennis and golf bags, all available in a rainbow of colors and a myriad of sizes. Additionally, these canvas enthusiasts offer in-house monogramming if you’d prefer to customize your selections. To shop the line visit Port Canvas on Deer Street in Portsmouth or online at www.portcanvas.com. For more information, call (800) 333-6788.