The Painted Tree is truly a one-stop-shop experience, perfect for the holidays. I’ve been meaning to share this unique shopping experience with you and now’s the time. As an artist and all-around “DIY maker,” this appeals to me. The focus here is specialty gift items, home decor and boutique clothing–which covers quite a lot of options. What began as one vintage market in Bryant, Arkansas in 2015 has grown into a network of superstores in over a dozen locations across the country bringing together indie artisans and businesses. Even if you don’t consider yourself a “shopper,” this concept is likely to grow on you.
I’m pretty stoked to share with you what I’ve found at the location in The Shops at Hilltop, Virginia Beach. And, of local note, The Shops at Hilltop will be celebrating with an Open House extravaganza that kicks off festivities during every weekend in December thru the 18th! That sounds pretty wicked cool.
My first visit to The Painted Tree was at The Shops at Hilltop here in Virginia Beach. You can literally spend the whole day at this amazing complex of top-of-the-line boutiques and restaurants. And, as I say, you can find just about anything for every kind of taste at The Painted Tree: fashion, pop culture, art, antiques and so much more. I’ll provide here some samples of items that caught my eye and top it off with a video tour.
One of the vendors here, Nancy Harrington, gave me the scoop on what The Painted Tree has to offer. Her business, for example, Selfies to Canvas, will convert pictures from your cell phone and turn them into works on stretched canvas. Nancy spoke about the community of vendors she is so happy to be a part of. In fact, she took me around to point out a few highlights, like Church Mouse fine woodworking as well as K Courage artisan jewelry and fiber art.
“This is the perfect home for an entrepreneur. The Painted Tree is worry-free and so much fun. For the guests coming to shop, we are not just a shopping trip, but a whole shopping experience. Maybe kind of corny, but to coin a phrase, ‘We are Etsy on steroids.’ All the best in one place. You are supporting the small business person and finding treasures you didn’t even know existed! I offer a one-of-a-kind gift for your loved ones, friends or yourself. Any picture on your cell phone can be perfected and transferred to canvas while you shop.”
— Nancy Harrington, Selfies to Canvas
I’m thrilled to know about this amazing shopper’s paradise and look forward to getting to know the whole scene better. I am amazed by all of the talented folks, including artists Isa Sofia Monell, J Glynn Winters, Rachel Jennings and Summer Paradiso, among many others. I’ve already noticed that items get snatched up pretty quickly, making room for new merchandise. Oh, well, I thought I had more time to consider buying that antique phonograph!