Stacy Davidson opened about 18 years ago in Traders Cove in Port Jefferson as a store that specialized in locating discontinued flatware and in china, stemware and silver. She moved to historic (and treny) East Main Street two years later and hasn’t looked back, and now her "finds" include jewelry, clothing, accessories and gifts.
A member of the Economic Development Council (EDC), Davidson is enthusiastic about promoting the businesses of Port Jefferson. She pointed out that the EDC developed its own guide to opening a business in Port Jefferson that you can see by clicking here.
She’s also involved in charity, promoting an in the Spring and around the holidays.
We asked Davidson a few questions about her store and any advice she had for someone who is thinking about occupying one of the currently empty shops in the village with their own small business.
How did you get started in business?
I had a business degree and background. When I was in my 20's I started a mail order business matching china glass and table wear patterns, working from home, and raising my two children. But, I always wanted a shop. When my two children were in high school I opened my first shop in Port Jefferson in Traders Cove in 1994 bringing my dinnerware inventory and adding antiques and gifts. I moved to the beautiful building on East Main Street two years after, and have been here since 1996.
Are you a boutique or an antique store?
Both. Five years ago the shop underwent a metamorphosis adding boutique new clothing and vintage clothing. I also added designer and new bags, trendy jewelry and personal accessories to the vintage jewelry and bags, home decor, lighting, antiques and gifts I already had been known for.
What is the biggest challenge you face?
Trying to resist all the tantalizing antique and new items that I find for my shop, and my customers bring to me but do not have room for. If you have been in my shop you know I have little resistance.
I want to buy my wife something special for her birthday/Christmas/Chanukah to go with a nice outfit. Something different. What do you suggest from your store?
I have a complete line of unique and many one-of-a-kind, accessories. Once talking with you, using my expertise, we would choose the perfect present. Many of my clients return just to tell me how much joy the gift they purchased gave the recipient.
If I were to open a small business in Port Jefferson what advice could you give me from the challenges and successes you have experienced so far?
To have reasonable expectations. Do not expect the number of people that visit Port Jefferson, to equal people who will be a customer.
What was the last book you read cover to cover and how did you like it?
Memoirs of a Geisha. Yes, I enjoyed it.
Which is cooler: East Main Street or Main Street? (Be honest.)
They each have their pluses. What makes East Main Street cooler is so many of our shops are environmentally friendly. When you shop my vintage items, you are also helping the environment. Many of my new items are eco-friendly as well. A customer of mine suggested changing the name of our street to Eco-Friendly Way!
What one question do you wish I'd asked that I didn't? And how would you answer it?
What is the best part of having a shop in Port Jefferson? I love meeting all the wonderful people from all over the country as well as from all over the world, and have them shop in my store. Three women who were showing their independent film at the Staller Center, spent two hours in my shop, purchasing items for themselves, and their homes in LA. In addition I have my local customers and residents I see on a regular basis, that are loyal customers.
Do you know a local business owner who should be featured in our next 'Meet the Owner'? Email email@example.com.