Kit Pollard

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Kit Waskom Pollard is a Baltimore Fishbowl contributing writer. She writes Hot Plate every Friday in the Baltimore Fishbowl.

Shopping Report: The Home Stretch

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Santa Key

With the Festival of Lights well underway and Christmas coming mid-week, the annual shopping rush is at its peak. As you scurry around the city to finish shopping, keep your spirits up with events, carols and sales around the region, including:

  • The Village of Cross Keys will remain festive up until the last minute, with carolers and live music on both Saturday, December 20th and Wednesday the 24th.
  • Seasonal magic will also stay alive at The Shops at Kenilworth through Christmas Eve, with Santa and the holiday train garden. On Saturday, December 20th, join Santa for breakfast and a holiday magic show, with proceeds benefiting the Salvation Army. Local musical groups will also perform, on the 20th, 22nd and 23rd.
  • Evenings from the 20th through the 23rd, Falkenhan’s Hardware in Hampden will host the Street Meat Hot Dog Cart and The Local Oyster. Plus, on the 20th, Santa will make an appearance for photos.
  • From now through December 24th, all throws are 20% off at Linens & Lingerie in Ruxton.
  • Take a break from shopping at Belvedere Square to catch a Christmas Eve showing of “Miracle on 34th Street” at The Senator Theatre (show times throughout the day).
  • Complimentary holiday parking in Harbor East will last all week – through Christmas and beyond – making your last-minute shopping excursions a little easier.
  • At Chezelle in Cross Keys, the Spring ’15 Margaret Winters trunk show will be a little ray of sunshine in the midst of the busy Christmas season. Lasting from December 15th through the 30th, it’ll give you a great excuse to think spring, even if just for a moment. Plus, now through the 30th, visit the Chezelle website for a coupon for 50% off any $150 purchase (exclusions listed at the link).

Proprietor: Eye to Eye with Brad Bowers of Bowers & Snyder Opticians

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Bowers & Snyder has been a constant fixture on the Baltimore eye care and eyewear scene since its opening in 1947. Today, Brad Bowers, the son of the company’s founder, works with a team of opticians and eye care specialists at four stores throughout the region, including one in Cross Keys, which opened in 1990.

Here, Bowers discusses what he likes most about his job, good (and useful!) holiday gift recommendations and which celebrities have hit Bowers & Snyder for a bit of eyewear help:

How did you get into the optician business?

I’m second generation – a Bowers. My dad started the company in 1947. I started working with him in 1966 and have been here ever since.

Shopping Report: The More, The Merrier

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Shopping Report

The holiday shopping season continues to sparkle all over the region. This week brings a new batch of sales and events that will keep everyone feeling merry and bright. Here is some of what’s happening around the region this weekend and next week:

• On Saturday, December 13th, celebrate an Annapolitan Christmas as the West Annapolis Shopping District holds its Holiday Magic event, including Santa, horse and carriage rides, caroling and more.

Proprietor: How Florence Sokol Keeps it Classic and Chic at Jones and Jones

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Since it’s opening in 1970, the chicest Baltimore women of all ages have flocked to Jones and Jones for everything from accessories and day dresses to black tie attire.

Owner Florence Sokol has been with the shop for 25 years – but she has been a fan of cutting edge fashion for longer. She and her team put their expertise to work, outfitting their customers in clothing that’s both fashion-forward and accessible.

Here, Sokol shares the story behind Jones and Jones, plus what she loves most in the store now – including what’s hot for the holiday season:

Proprietor: Emilie Blaze’s Perfect Fit–The Little Shoebox

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Emilie Blaze

At The Little Shoebox in Ruxton, owner Emilie Blaze celebrates her love of shoes – especially those that are fun, feminine and different from what’s available at every department store across the country.

Proprietor: Meet The Liza Behind Liza Byrd Boutique

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Known for well-made, brightly-patterned clothes and distinctive ruffled blouses, Liza Byrd Boutique is a favorite among Baltimore’s preppiest residents.

Proprietor: Talking Fine Art with Merritt Miller of Renaissance Fine Arts

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At Renaissance Fine Arts, sisters Merritt Miller and Rachel Rubin showcase a smart and diverse collection of art, including artists that range from regional to international. The gallery, started by their mother in the 1980s, has a constantly evolving collection – pieces sell and are replaced on a regular basis.

The sisters pride themselves on their ability to find art that is exceptional, then bring it back to the Baltimore community. “We’re local and that’s what we’re about,” says Miller. “Finding art nationally and internationally and bringing it here.”

Here, Miller shares the story of the gallery and some of her favorite things about the job:

BFB: How did you get you get started at Renaissance Fine Arts?

Small Business Saturday: Say Hello to These Proprietors Today!

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Today is Small Business Saturday!  Please get out and patronize your favorite local small business.  We are a local small business, too, and we understand how tough it can be to make a small business successful.  Whether it’s a love of fashion, a love of books, a love of art, or some other passion, most small business owners start their own businesses because they care deeply about their product.  We’re grateful that they take on the risk and do what they do, keeping our towns interesting and unique and providing jobs.

Here are some of the faces you’ll see today when you shop Small Business Saturday.  Be sure to say hi from us! Happy shopping.- The Eds. 

Proprietor(s): Merritt Miller and Rachel Rubin of Renaissance Fine Arts

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At Renaissance Fine Arts, sisters Merritt Miller and Rachel Rubin showcase a smart and diverse collection of art, including artists that range from regional to international. The gallery, started by their mother in the 1980s, has a constantly evolving collection – pieces sell and are replaced on a regular basis.

The sisters pride themselves on their ability to find art that is exceptional, then bring it back to the Baltimore community. “We’re local and that’s what we’re about,” says Miller. “Finding art nationally and internationally and bringing it here.”

Here, Miller shares the story of the gallery and some of her favorite things about the job:

BFB: How did you get you get started at Renaissance Fine Arts?

Sassanova Celebrates the Season With A Month of Savings, Giveaways, Treats and More

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Trina Turk Volare Dress at Sassanova.
Trina Turk Volare Dress at Sassanova.

‘Tis the season of sparkle at Sassanova! This holiday, the Harbor East boutique fills it shelves with jewelry, shoes, bags, standout clothes and more, all perfect for the holiday season. Whether you’re seeking a gift for your fun aunt or a new dress for next week’s party, Sassanova is the place to look.

Hammitt duffel bag
Hammitt LAX duffel bag

Throughout the month, don’t miss the festivities taking place at Sassanova on Aliceanna Street, where the gorgeous holiday windows, designed by local artist Joan Cox, won first place in the Harbor East Winter Wonderland Contest.  Here’s a round up, so you can mark you calendar!

Proprietor: Rosanna Sech Tells us What’s Chic at Chic Chic Boutique

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Chic Chic Boutique is a relative newcomer in Cross Keys, opening just last summer. The shop’s owners, Dario and Rosanna Sech, bring years of fashion expertise and European flair to the Village. Originally from Italy, the couple gravitates toward international brands, especially those from Canada, Italy and Greece.

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