You’ll L.O.V.E. this store

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This article was published 20/04/2021 (530 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

“Wow! I’m in awe,” says intrepid entrepreneur Amanda Woodard, when vendors approach her to include their ingenious creations for sale at her newly re-opened shop in the Garden City Shopping Centre.

The knowledgeable businesswoman saw an opportunity and grabbed it when the COVID-19 pandemic dried up all the sale venues for her and fellow craftspeople.

L.O.V.E. is an acronym for ‘Locally Operated Vendor Emporium’ and it offers products created by local seamstresses, woodworkers, and other artists who work in assorted genres.

Photo by Freda Glow L.O.V.E. is a locally operated vendor emporium at Garden City Shopping Centre.

When this reporter visited, I was amazed by the variety, ingenuity and first class-class quality of the attractive displays. From hand-made dog biscuits, mint-chocolate honey, loaves of bannock, to hand-sewn blankets, colourful masks, fun plastic items and a magnificent display of casual clothing, in sizes 2 to 5X. Shoppers are sure to find just the right gift or product they can’t find anywhere else.

Woodard, who sells her items on consignment, says she is now working on a bar code system to keep track of vendor sales. Products are also offered online on the store’s Facebook page.

Most of the clothing and accessories come from her own company.

“I’ve been selling the casual, affordable Style and Sass clothing line for the past six years at hospitals and travelling craft sales,” she says.

She notes that a sister L.O.V.E. store is nearby in the mall, open from Wednesday to Sunday.

This shop offers jewellery, clothing, Tupperware and much more. I have my eye on a plastic pie-saver, which will come in handy at holiday time.

I wander around the area, entertained by what I see. Stuffed animals and faux fur slippers catch my eye and plastic garden stakes that will identify rows of peas, peppers and beans this summer.

“I’m always looking for new and inventive products,” says Woodard, who tries not to duplicate items.

Every Saturday is Animal Rescue Saturday. Humane animal groups bring in dogs and cats for adoption. Money from certain products sold that day are also donated  to help the cause. 

“It’s important to me,” Woodard says.

Woodard is an enthusiastic booster of the Garden City Shopping Centre. She says executives have been supportive and willing to help businesses survive.

“The mall supports the little guy,” she says.

She also believes the organization is good for the neighbourhood and the city.

“It’s an undiscovered diamond.”

She also praises the care that’s taken to make the mall safe for shoppers.

“Workers are always disinfecting door handles and other public areas.”

All COVID-19 protocols are being carefully covered.

You can contact Woodard by email at amanda.woodard2014@hotmail.com or contact the L.O.V.E. shops on Facebook.

Freda Glow is a community correspondent for the North End.

Freda Glow

Freda Glow
North End community correspondent

Freda Glow is a community correspondent for the North End.

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