I know I’m a little late for the after-Christmas bargain snarf, but if by some fluke of the time-space continuum you haven’t managed to spend all of your holiday cash yet, read on for the scoop on a few new stores who’d love to help you out with that. Or, you know, read on anyway, even if you’re broker than a two-wheeled tricycle. Payday’s not so far away, is it?
• Rumor has it Alexandra Palombi-Long is a fantastic cook, but she’s also a graduate gemologist and certified appraiser — not to mention possessed of flawless taste, from what I could tell — and is now the owner of Petite Pierre Fine Jewelry in the Ice House Center in Hillcrest (2611 Kavanaugh). It’s a small space, but it’s full of a wide variety of unusual pieces that are both beautiful and interesting — everything from delicate filigree pendants to chunky Native American turquoise. She also carries some estate pieces, and even a few antique miniature perfume bottles from Paris. (Palombi-Long is a native of France — “Pierre” is both a man’s name and a word for “rock,” she said, so the store’s name translates to “Little Rock.”)
• Just across the street, Three Gals and a Lady has opened in a house most recently occupied by a take-out pasta restaurant. It’s got a wide range of merchandise, from shabby-chic antiques and home decor to higher-end baby items.
• Out in the wilds of West Little Rock, the florist shop Garden of Eden (11220 Rodney Parham, in Pleasant Valley Plaza) has changed hands and expanded its merchandise. New owner Donna Fendley took possession on Dec. 1, did a whirlwind renovation and reopened with an open house nine days later. The store is still a full-service florist, but Fendley has added a nice little gift shop up front. A whimsical red fur purse ($64) caught my eye — there’s also a brown version that looks like your grandmother’s old mink stole, complete with sparkly brooch (I mean that as a compliment — it’s actually very fun). I also liked the selection of Paddywax candles in vintage tins ($8), with scents like “Christmas Morning 1953” and “Sugar Cookies 1956.” Fendley said she’s “not looking to reinvent the wheel or anything,” but is trying to stock the store with items you won’t find elsewhere in Little Rock. And if you need something special for your New Year’s Eve pre-resolution calorie binge, check out the Sweet line of handmade chocolates.
n A couple more tidbits, just in case there’s anything at all left in your checking account:
• Tyler and Tyler Booksellers is celebrating its third anniversary with 15 percent off storewide through the end of the month. It’s a small but densely packed store — from what I can tell they don’t waste much space on frou-frou books — and the proprietor is always happy to provide recommendations. The store is in the Vali-Hi shopping center, 4560 JFK Blvd. in North Little Rock.
• Last but not least, the Design Center in the Heights is giving 20 percent off storewide through the end of the month, and Christmas items are 75 percent off until they’re gone. I have my eye on The Thymes’ Frasier Fir soaps ($18 for two, regular price), which smell unbelievably fresh and foresty. If you’re trying to find a way to pry your dead brown Christmas tree out of the desperate hands of the pine-smell-loving obsessive in your family, this just may be it.
Happy New Year!