Janell Holzwarth was tired of brutal South Dakota winters when she moved to Phoenix. She was equally tired of sitting in big city traffic when she moved to Payson. Now she lives in a cabin in the woods and owns a store to furnish it.
The East Verde Trading Company is the newest addition to the Rim Country Mall and features a wide array of cabin furnishings ranging from log bed frames to lamps made from antlers. Many of the items are handmade by local artisans.
As a student of art, Holzwarth spent many years as an interior designer and has a deep appreciation for aesthetics.
"I majored in art in college, but I really didn't want to teach it, so I started my own gift shop and ran that for eight years," Holzwarth said. "When I moved to Phoenix, I did all the merchandising and display work for Burlington Coat Factory."
A few years later, after relocating to Payson, Holzwarth decided that she wanted to do something to help local builders and artisans, so with her son's encouragement, she opened her store, East Verde Trading Company.
"My son told me, ‘no risk -- no reward,' so I did it," Holzwarth said. "I decided it was time to promote a lot of the builders and artists that live in Payson. Everybody that brings consignment things in here usually does one-of-a-kind things and is available to meet the customer."
Holzwarth wants to make furnishings and accessories available that are unique and not mass-produced.
"Hopefully, people will get the pieces that are not like their neighbor's, not mass-produced, and they'll get the look they want for their home," Holzwarth said.
She said she will be organizing times when customers can come to her store and meet local artists, watch them work or talk to them.
"I'm going to start a ‘meet the artist' night or afternoon," Holzwarth said.
The East Verde Trading Company is inside the Rim Country Mall at 400 E. Highway 260, Suite M.
For more information, call 474-4100.