Once you open the door to the new Genevieve's location, a cozy bungalow located at 1404 West Main in downtown Blue Springs, your senses go into overdrive.
There is the creative urge; that wants to seek out every nook and cranny of paper goods, jewelry and home décor from local artisans.
Next comes the warm glow that reminds you of your grandma's home – it simply makes you want to kick off your shoes and relax with your new best friends.
Finally, comes a sense of satisfaction, knowing that this new gem is located right in your back yard.
“We want to offer something for everyone,” said Genevieve's owner Pam Wheeler, who was an executive at K&Company, one of the largest scrapbook manufactures in the nation. “We like to think we offer an eclectic mix of vintage furniture, jewelry and home décor. And now that we're in a home, we want to make everyone who comes into the store feel like they are at home.
“We want friends to gather here and feel like they're at a friend's home. We are going to be offering classes in our art studio and weekend art retreats. This is something I've dreamed about, and now, it's about to become a reality.”
Wheeler and her family (her husband Frank is the activities director at Blue Springs High School) have attended Blue Springs Baptist Church for years. Ironically, it is right across the street from her new “home.”
“I've probably parked in front of this house, when we went to church, hundreds of times,” said Wheeler, who is putting the finishing touches on the inside while work crews prepare a new parking lot and design a wood ramp that is wheelchair accessible.
“It's almost like it was meant to be. I can't believe we were able to find this house, and work a deal to purchase it. It's all so exciting.”
The most exciting moment could happen Feb. 4, the proposed date of Genevieve's grand opening.
“We're shooting for Feb. 4, but we're going to need a lot of cooperation from the weather,” she said, casting a quick glance outside to see the crew hard at work on the parking area. “We can't put in the ramp if it's too cold or if it's snowing - and they're calling for that this weekend. If we're a few days late, we can handle it. I just want to let people know that they can call me (816-220-3447) or go to Genevieveshome.com to find out the date.”
Genevieve's first opened its doors in August of 2012. Wheeler was ready to leave the corporate lifestyle that kept her away from her family because of her long hours and travel to the East Coast.
“I'd always wanted a shop like this,” she said, “so I began to save my money.”
When she discovered a location on North Missouri 7, she said goodbye corporate America and hello Blue Springs.
She had a lease at the former location that a hair salon took over so it could expand. That allowed Wheeler to purchase the eight-room, two-story house that fits the Genevieve theme like a glove.
There are several local artists displaying a wide variety of arts and crafts, ranging from jewelry and fine paper products to clothing for adults and children. The kitchen is one of Wheeler's favorite rooms. It's bright and sparkly and offers everything from dinnerware to a whimsical owl measuring cup set.
The upstairs will soon be a craft room and Wheeler's mind is literally exploding with ideas that will make Genevieve's as unique as the woman who inspired it.
“Genevieve is the name of my grandmother and the inspiration for my store and much of my life,” Wheeler said. “As a young girl, I couldn't wait to spend time with my grandparents on their farm in rural Missouri.
“At that time, there were no video games or cell phones. My grandmother and I would pass the time by working on projects. She taught me how to sew, knit, crochet and do counted cross-stitch. We pressed flowers from her garden and made hanging planters. She even taught me how to cook. The passion for all things handmade stayed with me over the years. The cooking – not so much.
I can look back and cherish those memories because it was a time when we could slow down, appreciate life and live in the moment.”
Wheeler has never looked back or questioned her decision to honor Grandma Genevieve with a touching tribute to the woman who inspired a simpler way of life. Genevieve's offers anyone who enters its doors a chance to reflect, relax and create.
It doesn't get much better than that.
Genevieve's will be open Tuesday through Friday from 10 to 5:30 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Genevieve's accepts consignments. Anyone interested can contract Wheeler at 816-220-3447.