‘Corner Shops’ offer diverse specialty inventories

Perusing inventory in The Baby?s Room, one of five businesses in The Corner Shops, owner Diane Claassen said, ?It?s just fun to extend...into different areas.? Malinda Just / Free Press. Click image to enlarge

After being in business with Quilts and Quiltracks Inc. in Hillsboro for three years, Diane Claassen and husband Dwayne are embarking on an additional venture.

The Corner Shops were opened for business Aug. 4 and are physically connected to the Quilts and Quiltracks shop.

?The idea is to be totally separate (businesses),? said Diane Claassen, who owns both businesses. ?It?s just fun to extend, and extend into different areas so we?re not just limited to quilt-related items.?

The Corner Shops consists of five stores that flow together through doorways and also connect to Quilts and Quiltracks.

?It?s more fun to go to shops than to go to a shop,? said Claassen. ?So it?s to create a more interesting and exciting shopping experience.?

Claassen initially thought she would only fill two rooms and let additional people fill the remaining spaces. However, all of her prospects for additional shop owners decided against starting a business, so Claassen decided to fill all the rooms.

?As they (prospective shop owners) considered and changed their minds along the way, it was easy to think, ?That?s OK, I can do this; that?s OK, I can use this room,?? she said. ?So it was easy to fill each room.?

Each room contains a shop filled with unique items. The shops are The Baby?s Room, Tis the Season, Birds and Butter?flies, Fine-aly Fabrics and Brilliant Bargains.

The Baby?s Room

The Baby?s Room offers unique gifts for infants, Claassen said.

?Whenever someone sees a baby coming, they need a few gifts, and they get excited about furnishing the nursery or buying for that sweet little person that?s coming along,? she said.

?It?s simply called The Baby?s Room because it?s whatever you can think of for the baby.?

The store carries items from several clothing lines, including Bunnies By the Bay, which Claassen describes as ?luxurious and wonderfully soft.?

The shop also has items such as hand-painted gowns for mother and baby, toy boxes and themed items.

?It?s just a lot of really sweet ideas?fun to buy, fun to give,? Claassen said. ?They are unique things to really doll up your nursery.?

Tis the Season

Tis the Season contains Christmas items year-round.

?Tis the Season is because we have so much tourist shopping during the summer,? said Claassen. ?When people are shopping and having fun as they?re traveling through the country, they buy for Christmas.?

Claassen said the Christmas-themed shop isn?t just for the tourist, though.

?We (Quilts and Quiltracks) had our first big Christmas season last year, and I?m sure it was because of our increased inventory,? she said.

Tis the Season is stocked with a variety of items, including tree skirts, stockings, Santas, snowmen, angels and nativity sets.

?Just keep checking because there?s always something new and fun,? Claassen said.

Birds and Butterflies

For the home and patio decor enthusiast, Birds and Butterflies contains a variety of items to liven up the home.

?Anything that catches my eye goes in here,? Claassen said.

The shop has outdoor items ranging from locally made, unfinished cedar products, such as arbors and patio tables, to yard children and Perfect Pets.

Home decor items are also available including wreaths and garlands and an animal print line.

Additionally, Claassen said she has plenty of items that work as wedding gifts.

?What I try to have in here is the wedding gift,? she said. ?There are plenty of choices for people who want to pick up a wedding gift.?

Fine-aly Fabrics

Although it won?t be fully stocked until December, Fine-aly Fabrics is the answer to requests Claassen has received for three years.

?It?s called Fine-aly Fabric because for three years people have been asking for fabric,? she said. ?We are finally answering that request with fine fabric.?

Claassen plans to keep the fabric store small with around 50 bolts of fabric and some supplies.

?We?re going to have fabrics specifically for a project, so we?ll be project oriented,? she said.

Classes will also be available through Fine-aly Fabrics beginning in October. They will focus on fusible applique, beginner freezer paper applique, beginner piecing and hand quilting.

?We?ve been asked for classes all along,? Claassen said.

Sign-up sheets for the classes are available at Fine-aly Fabrics. The cost will be $30 for a series of three classes.

Claassen is also starting Block of the Month in January. The cost is to be determined.

Brilliant Bargains

Brilliant Bargains contains discontinued items and items where there are just a few pieces left.

?Everybody likes bargains, and there are some great bargains,? said Claassen.

The Corner Shops and Quilts and Quiltracks are located at 132 and 130 North Main St. in Hillsboro. Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday.

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