Bou­tique boun­ti­ful with lo­cal charm

The Kent Island Bay Times - - Bay Calendar - By KRIS­TIAN JAIME [email protected]­es­pub.com

STEVENSVILLE — Just a quick walk from the his­toric Stevensville town cen­ter, Half Full Gift Bou­tique re­cently opened its doors of­fer­ing unique gifts with plenty of lo­cal charm.

Own­ers Sta­cie McGinnes and Lau­rie Mas­troberti of­fi­cially opened the store Oct. 1 at 460 Main St, Suite 108, in Stevensville, with the sim­ple con­cept that a shop could be an in­spir­ing and up­lift­ing place that brings a smile to one’s face.

While McGinnes first had the in­spi­ra­tion for the busi­ness 25 years ago, it was a her close friend­ship with Mas­troberti that has spanned over 10 years to cre­ate a dy­namic and, thus far, suc­cess­ful busi­ness ven­ture.

“We started plan­ning for the shop about a year ago,” said McGinnes. “The name goes back to my dad who passed away five years ago and he was an eter­nal op­ti­mist and taught me to look at life as half full. He knew this was my life dream to have a shop like this.”

Her fa­ther’s in­spi­ra­tion brought about a shop com­plete with gifts in­clud­ing mugs, house­wares, can­dles, clothes for the whole fam­ily, fash­ion ac­ces­sories, me­men­tos, and ar­ti­san soaps that re­flect the quaint cul­ture of the Eastern Shore.

It’s no co­in­ci­dence the prod­ucts they sell also help oth­ers with every pur­chase. Ac­cord­ing to McGinnes, work­ing with other lo­cal and fam­i­ly­owned busi­nesses only adds to the lo­cal fla­vor and qual­ity.

“We want to sup­port our lo­cal or­ga­ni­za­tions and our schools who are try­ing to do good,” con­tin­ued McGinnes. “Many of the com­pa­nies we have in the store are small pro­duc­ers who have a mis­sion and pur­pose be­hind what they do. So many of them give back to or­ga­ni­za­tions to which they are pas­sion­ate. We’re ex­ited to part­ner with them as well.”

For Mas­troberti, the pub­lic’s re­sponse to the shop has been over­whelm­ing and val­i­da­tion their ap­proach was spot on.

“It warms our hearts that every­body seems to be jump­ing on board with us and sup­port­ing our small busi­ness,” said Mas­troberti. “Peo­ple have been won­der­ful and spread the word about the store. It was im­por­tant for us to find com­pa­nies in which we be­lieved. They were up and com­ing busi­nesses and many of them serve a larger pur­pose.”

For ex­am­ple, Love Your Mel­ons gives 50 per­cent of their pro­ceeds to fight­ing pe­di­atric can­cer and is car­ried by the shop. With the hol­i­day sea­son al­ready here, she also pointed out that find­ing the per­fect gift is closer than one might think.

While shop­pers ei­ther flock to the west­ern shore or nearby Delaware, sup­port­ing lo­cal busi­ness is vi­tal to bol­ster­ing Eastern Shore en­trepreneurs.

“We have many dif­fer­ent prod­ucts that should cover all of your needs. From ba­bies to host­ess gifts to fam­ily mem­bers, we have some­thing for every­body and by pur­chas­ing a gift from here, you’re giv­ing back to a larger cause,” said Mas­troberti.

Half Full Gift Bou­tique is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mon­day, Tues­day, Wed­nes­day, and Fri­day; 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thurs­day; and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Satur­day and Sun­day. Sun­day hours con­tinue un­til Christ­mas. The shop can be reached at 443-2493008.

PHOTO BY KRIS­TIAN JAIME

The myr­iad of items in­cludes prod­ucts that help the com­mu­nity with every pur­chase.

COUR­TESY PHOTO

Half Full Gift Bou­tique co-own­ers Lau­rie Mas­troberti, left, and Sta­cie McGinnes, right, re­cently opened their doors.

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