Shout It Out

Featured Shop – Liv’n Out Loud• Hampstead Tell it like it is. It’s a new year and, although I am a writer who cringes at “first person,” I for the sake of underscoring this article will regress for one issue and insert a voice. Why? Because I, like millions of other women, have important things to say and need to opine without fear. Thanks to Alyson Bruu and Kristine Fichera founders of Liv’n Out Loud! Clothing Company, based in Hampstead, we are all finding our voice. Typical everyday sayings that we perhaps all mumble to ourselves are being validated on T-shirts across the country. I caught up with Kristine:

You both gave up corporate careers to start the company more than five years ago. How have you been able to float above radar? It’s about empowering women. It’s about saying, feel good about yourself no matter what. Typically we try to take care of everyone else but ourselves; we’re not ‘living out loud’ and we need to. So, we started the Liv’n Out Loud! Clothing Company to empower women to live their lives to the fullest.

What is your best seller? It happened by accident. Both our mothers had cancer so we printed up a few tees for them, not meant to be for market or mass consumption, but they read, ‘Hey cancer, you picked the wrong broad,’ and sadly it is one of our biggest sellers.

What does Liv’n Out Loud mean? To love yourself and start living out loud. Whatever it is in your head that you think you were meant to do, do it. If you’re not living out loud, you are just not living. It doesn’t mean do wild things; it means be true to yourself, live an authentic life.

Liv’n Out Loud! has captured the buzz of Hollywood. I noticed on your Web site that Alec Baldwin, Helen Mirren and Robin Roberts are among some of the celebrities wearing your tees. Anyone else? We’re working on it. Does the Governor count?

So What’s New?Yes, You Can Go Back

When entering The Brick Store, Rte. 302, Bath, be prepared to skip down memory lane. This golden nugget is America’s oldest continuously operated general store, dating back to 1790. Savor the smells of smoked cheeses and sip a cup of steaming hot cocoa as you stroll down the aisles stocked with necessities and nostalgia. Big, round candy jars brim with sweets. “There are a few penny candies, like the Tootsie Rolls, but the Root Beer Barrels, Mary Janes and Buttons are now five cents,” says Nancy Lusby, who owns the landmark with her husband Mike. Note to Sarah Palin: “You can see Vermont from here.”

Visit or call (800) 964-2074

Come In from the Cold

Green Angel Cottage, 10 School St., Peterborough, is a safe haven for shoppers looking to pamper themselves, others and even their pets. Newly opened by Tammy Woodard, the cottage — which is painted in soothing creams, sages and browns — offers a retreat from the ordinary. Lots of lovely herbal teas and tea accessories, silky lotions, soothing locally made remedies for muscle aches and pains and lavender sleep pillows are just a few tempting finds. The dainty handmade vintage baby clothes will have you wishing for a nice hope chest. Look for clever hostess gifts and displays. Don’t worry about the snow on your boots; Tammy’s putting in a new floor in the spring.

Visit or call (877) 233-3351

Invest In Futures!Great Northern Bogg’n Co., 190 Reservoir Dr., Weare, is home to “The New England Baby Bogg’n Classic,” a beautifully handcrafted wooden baby sled. It’s made of solid white ash and an absolute must-have for young families. Classic and sturdy, these sledding beauties come in several designs and are stamped and numbered. “They come with a lifetime guarantee,” says owner/woodworker Wes Parsons, a juried member of the League of N.H. Craftsmen. “I always say today’s happiness is tomorrow’s heirlooms.” Each sled is meticulously made and intended for use over generations. Parsons will personalize sleds on request.

Visit or call (877) 455-2644

Get Blown AwayWhen you walk into Zimmermanns, 2760 White Mtn. Hwy., North Conway, and catch sight of the hottest names in outdoor wear including North Face (Cryptic collection has arrived!), Oakley, Patagonia and DC, to name a few. Located inside the Eastern Slope Inn, this is Zimmermanns’ first winter season in town and third location (Nashua is the headquarters and there’s a shop in Hanover). Look for some outlet prices on skies and bindings for as low as $100 as well as outdoor gear and camping equipment.

See or call (603) 888-2155

Categories: Arts & Shopping