Local Creative Characters

October 15, 2013


We have so many creative thinking people in our area. It isn’t just the painters and writers Fairhope is usually known for, but there are all sorts of original and innovative folks who collectively contribute to the fun of living here.
Let me introduce you to two of those people today.
Need a monogram?
This beautiful hardwood custom made monogram measures approximately 18″ tall and can be painted or stained any color.
And this is Gene Havel who creates these beauties. Don’t you think they would be perfect for Christmas gifts? Well, get ready to place several orders because each hand crafted monogram is only $30!

Gene owns G&C Woodcrafters and has been working with wood most of his life. He’s known for his quality wood toys that are sold at the Arts and Crafts Festival in downtown Fairhope every spring. People tell Gene his toys have become treasured family heirlooms that will be passed down to other children in the family someday.

Gene’s wife Cindy helps him choose designs and colors for the puzzles and toys. 
I have one child with a fairly common name, so it’s easy to find custom items for him, but the other has a rarer name. No problem now – Gene can custom make any puzzle or toy just for him. (No matter that he’s 17 years old now . . . hey, better late than never!)
Gene can also make custom picture frames, holiday lawn decor and outdoor furniture.
And on top of being talented in woodworking, he’s a really nice guy to get to know. 
You can find Gene every weekend in his shop at The 181 Market or call him at 251-508-7348.
And speaking of my awesomely interesting sponsor, The 181 Market, now meet Lu Pacolay, owner of the eclectic shop, “The Best of Yesterday.”
It takes talent to search and find the quirky kinds of things your customers want. There’s no hum-drum found here. Every item is some type of vintage artifact that people love.
And here’s a fine example of “quirky.” But you know, now that I think about it, I could come up with several ways to use this lady’s head. Holding my tiara is one idea. You think I’m kidding?
And I love this old school desk. I’ve seen so many of these painted lately that it’s hard to find one in it’s natural wood tones. 
Lu is originally from Pittsburg and is a huge Steeler’s fan. But don’t hold that against her. She loves it here in the sunny South and has found many friends and loyal customers. And if you show up in a Steeler’s shirt, she just may give you a discount. 
This guy is just a deer.
Skipper was the often ignored younger sister of Barbie.
She’s now in therapy along with Jan Brady.
Lu opened her shop in 2009 and it has steadily grown over the years. Stylists and decorators seek her help with finding just the right piece to give that room some “punch!” 

Lu has fabulous deals on gently used furniture and I have heard  she has a heart of gold. When a family recently lost everything in their home due to a fire, Lu loaded up items from her shop, and also collected donations from other vendors at The 181 Market to deliver to the family. 

Stereophonic sound. Hip, man.

You can meet Lu and tour The Best of Yesterday at The 181 Market every Friday and Saturday from 9am – 4pm. Also open the first Sunday of every month from 9am – 2pm.

Join in the fun as The 181 Market hosts trick-or-treat throughout all the shops on Saturday, October 29th from 9am until 4pm. There will be loads of treats for the kids while you’re shopping for treats for you!

Sharing this story with these fine blogs: Savvy Southern Style, Pin Junkie, Alderberry Hill


Leave a Reply

  1. WOW! Overcome with emotion right now! Tears of joy of course!

    Thank you to everyone in my life who have made The Best of Yesterday the best. My family, my co-workers, my friends and especially my awesome customers who I consider friends that I would never have met.

    I will continue to be the best I can be at The Best of Yesterday and when you walk into my shop I know I will hear you say, “Remember when!”

    One more thing, “GO STEELERS!’

  2. That monogram would make a great Christmas gift! Love all the sweet old things. I have one of those old desks just like that one. Mine is in original pristine condition. xo Diana

  3. Thanks for the introduction to these two. I certainly agree I would enjoy a visit. Soon I hope.
    So funny about poor Skipper.

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