The buzz downtown is all about the Beehive
Published 7:10 am, Thursday, November 14, 2013
For days, silver balloons completely filled the storefront windows of the Beehive, a new Post Road shop, looking a bit like champagne bubbles rising to the ceiling, and piquing the interest of passersby.
Now, the balloons are gone and the Beehive at 1561 Post Road is open, but the effervescence of the balloons appears to have moved inside.
"We're all about celebration," said Sandra Tobey as she and her golden retriever Hank waited on customers. Tobey herself sparkles, as she points out some of the store's merchandise such as party poppers and wrapping paper.
The shop is an eclectic mix of gifts for babies and toddlers, jewelry, home goods, women's accessories and party items -- all arranged on a way that shows that its new proprietor has a flair for display and marketing. And it seems to be catching on in the few days the store has been open. During the space of 30 minutes three days after the opening, 10 customers came in to peruse the Beehive's offerings.
Tobey does have a background in marketing and advertising, although retailing is new to her. She has worked in marketing and advertising for Gatorade, Adidas and Toyota, and most recently worked for H. Stern in New York City.
It has been a whirlwind year -- literally -- for Tobey and her husband, Chris Halstead, a native of Westport. Two weeks after they moved into their new home in the Fairfield Beach area, Superstorm Sandy hit. The back of their house, including their deck and rear windows, was demolished and it took them several months to get back into their home. And, at the time, they had been married just a few months, with Tobey signing the lease for the Beehive space while they honeymooned in Paris last July. When the space, formerly occupied by Cargo Bay, became available, she jumped on it.
"This space opened and I love this location," she said. "I have wanted to own my own business for ten years."
The Beehive opened within months of her original opening date, despite Sandy. She said she hesitates to call the store a gift shop -- which sounds too old-fashioned to her. But she does hope her customers will want to gift themselves as well as others with the goods in her shop which she said are well designed, well priced "and super up-to-the-minute."
The items displayed in her boutique include candles, barware, women's accessories, jewelry cards and gift wrap, handbags and scarves, among other items.
"I love the spirit of giving and receiving gifts," she said. "I want to help people mark the great moments in life."
The Beehive, 1561 Post Road, is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. For more information, call 203-955-1122 or visit www.facebook.com/thebeehivefairfield