The Union Recorder


May 2, 2013

Arts and crafts store moves downtown

MILLEDGEVILLE — A distinctive downtown Milledgeville business provides arts and crafts enthusiasts a safe haven where affordability, uniqueness and a quality items rule.

Whimsy Willow, formerly Country Cottage, brings a colorful attitude to North Wayne Street when the doors open Friday.

Owner Cindy Eppich plans to use seasonal flowers and decorations to her advantage.

“We are trying to boost the appearance and the draw to small shops by making it as pretty as we can outside,” she said. “We’re going to have flowers and color to add to the street.”

The owner originally eyed a vacant building closer to Hancock Street before the old Herndon’s Downtown space crossed the radar. Eppich was reluctant about coming farther away from the main downtown drag, but promotional boards at nearby street corners should direct interested patrons Whimsy Willow’s way.

Before the move and name change, the old Country Cottage on North Columbia Street started as a consignment shop. 

Local artists and friends brought products. Eppich noticed the void for crafters to profit off their wares. 

“I’m a long time crafter,” Eppich said. “As a crafter, you never have many options to sell products.” 

The store provides Georgia made jewelry, scarves, bows and fat quarter quilts among other quality artistic pieces. 

The Whimsy Willow owner quickly realized Milledgeville needed classes at a reasonable price also. Eppich began offering art, sewing, quilting and rug making sessions for all ages.

Summer children’s basic sewing, embroidery, oil and simple rug making classes are between $15 to $35 including all supplies. Classes are late afternoon and Saturday.

Leslie Miller from Gray, who creates pen and oil paintings of historical buildings and churches in Georgia, teaches from time to time.

Eppich said the shop is trying to be known as a respected fat quarter quilt boutique. Spreading quilting appreciation and craft skill building opportunities sets Whimsy Willow apart locally.

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