Big Style for Bitty Prices
About a year and a half after they opened their first Bits & Pieces store in Stony Point Fashion Park, Jule and Megan Outlaw decided on Carytown as the spot for their second location (3037 W. Cary St.). "We focus on selling the most fashionable pieces for low prices," Jule says, noting that the store offers very few items priced higher than $100. When the Stony Point store opened, it carried accessories exclusively, but a few months later, the owners added apparel, and business took off. Jule adds that he and Megan picked Carytown as their second location to reach shoppers in a high-traffic area.
The new store features pink walls paired with brushed-silver panels and damask stenciling. This contemporary take on feminine style mirrors the inventory, which includes girlish dresses alongside cutting-edge, high-waisted satin skirts.
Jule says his wife works hard to find stylish wardrobe pieces that can fit into any woman's budget. Along with apparel, Bits & Pieces carries shoes, handbags and locally made jewelry. —Megan Marconyak
Open by Appointment
The latest arrival on Carytown's antiques scene is Millstone Antiques, a business that's been selling period American furniture and accessories made before 1840, with an emphasis on Southern items, for more than 50 years. James Stephens bought the Hanover Millstone Antiques business about 25 years ago (it had been in business since 1954) and decided to add a Richmond location about six months ago in a building he owns on Cary Street (3409 W. Cary St., 359-1010).
Stephens says he has far more inventory than fits in either of his stores. If you're looking for furniture, it's best to call and make an appointment to meet with Stephens or his longtime business partner, Suzanne Molinet, because the shop is only open by chance or by appointment. If you're looking for a particular item, Stephens or Molinet can search their entire inventory for you. Stephens notes that just because Millstone Antiques specializes in very old pieces doesn't mean everything's extremely expensive. "Really, now you can buy a 200-year-old piece for what a new reproduction costs." To make an appointment at Millstone Antiques, call the business office at 784-8046. —MM
Sweet Tooth Central
If you're in need of a treat, head to Cary Street's latest sweet shop, Carytown Cupcakes (2820-C W. Cary St., 355-CAKE), and take your pick from eight indulgent cupcake varieties, each made fresh daily.
Diane North and Dawn Schick decided to open the business when North and her husband mentioned that they thought the spot they owned would be perfect for a cupcake shop. Schick had already worked as a personal chef in restaurants and in catering, so she said she'd bake the cakes if the Norths would provide the space. North runs the front of the shop while Schick stays in the back whipping up everyday flavors including vanilla, chocolate, carrot, hummingbird (a cupcake featuring pecans, pineapple, crushed bananas and cream-cheese icing), red velvet and German chocolate, alongside weekly specials such as apple-walnut cupcakes with caramel-cream-cheese icing and peanut-butter cupcakes topped with peanut-butter icing, rolled in chopped peanuts and finished with a dollop of raspberry jelly.
The shop sells cupcakes individually, by the half-dozen and by the dozen, along with special orders (48 hours' notice is requested) and holiday treats such as the spider-web cupcakes they offered for Halloween. North says cupcakes also make a great addition to holiday parties: "Everyone might not like pecan pie, but you can bring a bunch of cupcake flavors, and there's something for everyone." —MM
Coplon's New Home
By late this month, Coplon's — a fashion boutique offering more than 125 high-end lines of women's clothing, shoes and accessories — will be moved into its new home in Cary Court. The new space (3142 W. Cary St., 288-3699) is smaller than its former 9,000-square-foot-plus location in the River Road Shopping Center, but owner Hank Greenberg says all that has been eliminated is unused office and storage space. He adds that the 7,000-square-foot Carytown location offers even more shopping space in a refined yet modern environment.
"The space itself reminds me of the larger boutiques in SoHo," Greenberg says, adding that they have completely renovated the space but kept the exposed-brick walls. "Yet the space will still be elegant and refined."
The main reason for the move was a desire to be in an energetic area of Richmond. "We fell in love with the energy and soul of Carytown," he says. "The space and neighborhood will allow us to do that."
If Coplon's clients are concerned about parking, Greenberg assures guests that it will not be an issue: "There is more parking than people think." He adds that if clients have a hard time finding a parking space, they are welcome to pull up to the back door, and staff will assist. —Bethany Emerson
Carytown is brimming with fresh style potential with the opening of five new salons. Pinup glam meets modern chic at Bombshell Brazilian Waxing & Skincare Studio (10 S. Crenshaw Ave., Suite B, 447-7136), which provides airbrush tanning, waxing for women and men, facials and more. About Salon (15 S. Auburn Ave., 359-1188) offers hair and nail services, facials, and makeup application. Flirt Salon (3407 W. Cary St., 353-5103) is a "salon for changes" with a range of services, including hairstyling, makeup and more. Puns Professional Hair & Nail Care (3521 Ellwood Ave., 358-4141) is a full-service salon named after the owner's wife, Pun. —Erika Elaine Wells