The Beat on the Street

Shop Local

The Twisted Magnolia is an outlet for independent makers

Step into the quaint storefront of The Twisted Magnolia at 3148 W. Cary St., and it’s chockablock with an eclectic collection of clothing and home decor items. Owner Julie Parker Miller, who opened the boutique last fall, previously owned a custom furniture business, but she felt that a focus on women’s fashion would better serve her new location in Carytown.

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Each piece of clothing is hand-selected by Miller, who then limits her order to two of each size. “When we sell out of that item, that’s it — I don’t reorder,” she says. “So it is a true boutique experience. You won’t find this clothing anywhere else.” In addition to apparel, the store showcases handcrafted home decor and gift items from local vendors, including bath products, drinkware, textiles, comestibles and more. The store also offers custom monogramming services.

“We carry products made with love by local people that you probably wouldn’t know about otherwise, like the hand-knit washcloths that your neighbor’s grandmother makes,” Miller says. “That’s the beauty of Carytown — no two shops are the same.” She adds that her Cary Court storefront has already garnered regular customers, and she looks forward to expanding the shop’s reach.

Don’t Look Back, Look Forward

The former taco restaurant building is demolished to make way for new construction

Big changes are coming to 2929 W. Cary St., the vacant building that most recently housed the restaurants Don’t Look Back and Buon Giorno Pizzeria. A fire in one of the apartments above Don’t Look Back in July 2017 caused the taco restaurant to close. Real estate broker and developer Lewis Little purchased the building last August with plans to build a new establishment for commercial use. The original building was demolished last month, and construction will begin this fall on a two-story structure that will include a roughly 2,500-square-foot retail space on the ground floor, according to Peter Vick, senior vice president of Divaris Real Estate Inc.

“The ground floor space can be used as a restaurant or by a dry retail user,” Vick says. “We have had a lot of interest from restaurant users and believe the space will most likely be used as a restaurant. The prime Cary-town location is a popular draw.”

Richmond BizSense reported in December that a pair of two-bedroom apartments is planned for the second level of the building. In the meantime, Don’t Look Back has opened new locations in the former Triple Lounge space at 3306 W. Broad St. as well as at 7524 Forest Hill Ave.

Inside Out

Pride Inside (704-458-0433), a dedicated space for businesses that cater to the LGBTQ+ community, began offering doula and massage services late last year at their 3026-A W. Cary St. location. Local massage therapist Jesse Waller (above) has set up shop alongside clinical social worker Sarah Charbonneau and clinical psychologist Lisa Griffin, who founded Pride Inside.

“Since our passion is supporting whole humans their internal systems and the external systems in which they’re embedded it is important that we model this philosophy as we build our own interdisciplinary team,” Griffin says. She adds that Pride Inside will soon expand to include workshops on topics designed to support mind-body connectivity, relationship and communication skills, and financial health.

Fire Away

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it — just add a new twist. This appears to be the theme behind the January opening of Fire & Hops Pizza Co. (804-416-5345) at 1 N. Belmont Ave., the space formerly occupied by wood-fired pizza restaurant Stuzzi. In addition to a selection of personal pizzas, the neighborhood eatery offers tacos, sliders, pasta, craft beer, wine and cocktails on its diverse menu.

“Our goal is to offer a high-quality variety of menu items while focusing on hospitality at the same time,” says co-owner Joe Conigliaro. Fire & Hops is open for lunch and dinner Tuesday through Sunday.


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