OELWEIN — From the polished metal ceiling to the gleaming hardwood floors, Savanna DeJong is breathing new life into the building she and her husband Brandon own at 25 E. Charles St. — the corner store across Highway 150 from Subway — after Studio 17 closed in July.
“It just kind of ran its course,” she said. “The girls left, so we tried brainstorming some new ideas, and this is what we came up with.”
DeJong has opened the store to local boutique and hand-crafted goods businesses as Market 25.
“In our way, it was just a nice way to fill space, bring something new and different to downtown and support other small businesses, especially for the holiday season,” DeJong said, though she would like to extend it beyond that. “Our plan is to let it be a long-term ongoing thing as long as we have local interest, people wanting to work and wanting to shop.”
She will continue to operate Savanna’s Massage Therapy in Oelwein out of the back of the shop, a business she has had since May 2005.
“(I’m) still doing (Savanna’s Massage Therapy) 100 percent, then this on top of that, then we all just volunteer our time working different shifts,” she said.
Market 25 is open Thursday 1-7 p.m., Friday 1-6 p.m. and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. after a soft start last Thursday, Nov. 5.
DeJong indicated a “grand opening” this weekend. In view of rising virus cases locally, she could not promise any refreshments. But she invited people to stop in and check it out. A sign on the door says, “Masks are appreciated while shopping.”
Among the offerings are clothing, bags, blankets, crocheted animals, earrings, handmade keychains, all sorts of knick-knacky signs, metalwork, lawn ornaments, mugs and other accessories.
Businesses and offerings, if stated, include:
Smith Specialties from Hazleton, crocheted stuffed toys and earrings made by Diana, Monica, Michelle and Melissa, on Facebook as user SmithCrochetToys.
Little Golden Boutique from Aurora, apparel and home decor curated by Tiffany VandeVorde of Aurora. On Facebook, they are under LittleGoldenBoutique.
Cortney and Mike VanDenHul do woodworking as Corn Fed and Wed, specializing in home decor such as signage, and beanbag or “cornhole” boards. Find them on Etsy and Facebook at cornfedandwed.
Ryan and Ashley Halbur of Independence have Iowa Creations, offering recycled materials art and metal fabrication, www.iowacreations.com.
The Vintage Homestead of Independence offers hand crafted and repurposed decor as well as custom laser engraving, embroidery, vinyl and heat press applications, under the business name on Facebook.
Inspired Rose Creations offers tumblers, key chains, badge reels, phone grips, shirts, and is on Facebook under the business name.
Good Enough Crafts by Lucy and Cassie is on Facebook — with the whole name spelled out run together — and Etsy at GoodEnoughCraftbyLnC.
Friends Alexis and Kayleigh are at LexKayCreations on Facebook.
“A local artist Mandy Betts just brought in three paintings today,” DeJong added, on Thursday.
“We’re always looking to add more vendors to add variety,” DeJong said, emphasizing the variety. She noted she wants to avoid oversaturating on any particular product.
“I own the business and manage the books and we all volunteer time to man shifts to run the store, and I take time away from my job to help when I can,” she said. “We have one sales system, so it all runs in one checkout system.” The system accepts cash, checks, and cards.
Vendor links are also found on the Market 25 Facebook page.