Owner Kim Cochrane said a drastic sales drop over the last year has left her no choice but to shutter the shop at 1243 State St.
"After many sleepless nights I have reached the heart-wrenching decision to close the store at the end of this year," she wrote to Facebook fans Dec. 7.
Cochrane attributes the drop in sales to the opening of a Goodwill store at
1146 State St., just blocks from her store. Since Goodwill's opening, she says has seen a decrease in sales, adding up to roughly $10,000 last year. Prior to the store's opening, Cochrane was close to making a profit for the first time since opening three years ago.
"I can't keep doing this for free," Cochrane said.
Cochrane sells gently used women's clothing, coats, accessories, jewelry, purses, shoes, plus candles and many other great gift ideas. She also offers items handmade by local artists—30 artists in the last three years—including purses, soaps, gourmet brownies and more.
"This has been a place they could come, pick up a little paycheck," Cochrane said.
Goodwill stores feature gently used and new items that are bargains for smart shoppers.
There are more than 2,700 independently owned and operated Goodwill stores in the United States and Canada are independently owned and operated. They offer the basics—jeans, business attire, infant and children’s clothing, housewares and appliances, furniture and more. Some Goodwill stores also operate upscale boutiques and specialty stores that feature name-brand designer fashions, jewelry, wedding gowns, antiques and other amazing finds, according to the website.
"I can thank the mayor of Lemont for allowing Goodwill to move in two blocks from my store," Cochrane told Patch. "It's sad that they let a 'big box' store like that come in here and hurt us little guys."
Lemont Mayor Brian Reaves said he's sad to hear of a local shop closing, but stated that he and the board have no control over what businesses come in, as long as the business is zoned properly and the real estate is open.
Cochrane's customers are so upset about the closing, she said. Cochrane encountered many, including men whose wives have passed away, looking to find new homes for some of their clothing.
"I am so sorry that I live in a town that does not help small businesses. I wish you only the best and I will always support whatever you do," wrote one Facebook fan.
"Your store front and beautiful smiling welcome will be missed! Wishing you continued success with your online consignment Kim," wrote another.
In the days leading up to the store's closing, Cochrane will offer extensive sales.
Through the end of the week, shoppers can take an extra 25 percent off all fur coats, plus an extra 30 percent off all clothing, shoes, boots, belts, jewelry, coats, purses, hats, scarves, and other accessories. Items from local artists excluded.
Cochrane plans to carry on her consignment business online.
"This will keep my overhead down and also opens up our merchandise to a worldwide audience," she wrote to fans. "I am so grateful for your past business and support and hope that we can continue our relationship in the future."
Cochrane hopes to have the website up and running by January 2014. Shoppers are encouraged to follow the Facebook page for updates.
Store hours are:
- Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
- Thursday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
- Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.