FARGO — Cari Luchau had a front-row seat to the revitalization of downtown Fargo as co-owner of c.lizzy's, a jewelry and fine arts business she runs with her mother, Liz Walberg. They first opened a retail location on First Avenue North in 2005 and later moved to 410 Broadway, where they did business until closing in November 2017 in order to spend more time with family.
"We were downtown during the total resurgence. And we’re very grateful because it got us involved in a lot of things that I didn’t know I’d be interested in and ended up loving — the whole downtown development process," she said.
Luchau hopes to see that revitalization move west along First Avenue to her new location at 2109 First Ave. N. After taking a year off to build their online business and attend more craft and fine art shows, Luchau said they're ready to reconnect with their local customers through monthly pop-up events at their studio. Their first will be held 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Feb 27, 28 and March 1.
"We're feeling that renaissance vibe in this location, too," she said, pointing to businesses like Drekker Brewing Co.'s Brewhalla location that opened nearby last year.
Luchau said their new business model focusing on online sales and attending craft shows has allowed them to be more creative with their merchandise, which they make by hand in their studio.
"Margins in wholesale are really tight. It’s one reason we went back to selling online and started doing arts and craft shows again. It also gave Mom more creative freedom, too. So, instead of reproducing the same things all the time, there is just more freedom in doing artwork," she said.
The new studio affords more space for production, shipping and pop-up events.
"One of the things we missed was seeing our regular customers. We weren’t able to have this many pop-ups in our old studio space because of size constraints. This is something we’re anxious to get back to — once-a-month popups for our local and regional markets. That will be a big change and a nice change," she said.
IF YOU GO:
What: c.lizzy's Pop-up Shop
Where: 2109 First Ave. N., Suite A. The building has an OK Tire symbol on the side facing First Avenue.
When: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Feb. 27, 28 and March 1
Online: Shop online at www.clizzys.com