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Two long-time, family-owned OCC stores 'blending' under one owner

      
Shoppers walk past the Soap Box at 2522 W. Colorado Ave. The store is closed for now, but could reopen before the end of May, sharing inventory and store-window billing with the Holly Leaf, which is relocating there.
Westside Pioneer photo
The Holly Leaf, which has been in the same family for 30 years, is relocating a short distance up the street to 2522 W. Colorado Ave.
       That address has been the home of the Soap Box & More shop, which Linda Edwards started 19 years ago.
       Holly Leaf owner Julie Fabrizio said she is taking over some of the Soap Box inventory; she even plans to keep the name on one of her storefront windows (with Holly Leaf on the other). “We're actually blending the two stores,” she explained.
       The change has not yet taken effect. The Holly Leaf remains open at its current 2514 address (although in moving mode), while the Soap Box is closed for now. Fabrizio is hopeful for a reopening at 2522 before the Territory Days street festival May 28-30.
       Linda Edwards decided to retire after some recent health issues, according to her husband John. He pointed out that her business, which includes high-end
Julie Fabrizio.
Westside Pioneer file photo
soaps and lotions, originated inside his retail shop on the other side of the avenue, at 2511. That business is the Flute Player Gallery, which he has run for 27 years.
       The Holly Leaf is a Christmas-oriented store, founded by Fabrizio's parents, Don (who has passed on) and Alice Beverly. They kept it going for 12 years before handing it off to Julie and her husband Michael 18 years ago. “Mom and Dad grew up on the Westside,” she said. “There's a lot of history with our family on this side of town.”
       The new location has more overall square-footage than 2514, but a slightly smaller selling area. That's because there's a larger back room - a feature that clicked for Fabrizio because of the storage potential. “That's helpful for a store like mine,” she said.
       Both parties in the new arrangement expressed delight. “It's worked out great for both of us,” Edwards said.
       “It's a perfect match,” said Fabrizio, who is also president of the Old Colorado City Associates business group, which represents most merchants in the historic district.
       As a historical reference, from 1950 to 1996, the 2522 space was home to Schoch's Hardware, which was famous for its seemingly chaotic display system and the ability of either Ed or Edna Schoch to pick through the piles to find whatever a customer needed.

Westside Pioneer article
(Posted 4/30/16; Business: Changes)

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