When I was little, I went through a total fairy phase (didn’t everyone?). I loved the idea of believing that there were pockets of magic in nature just waiting to be found. Obviously, I eventually outgrew the fairy phase, but still find pleasure in magical little things – so you can imagine my delight when I walked into A New Leaf, Gano Street’s own little fairy garden of sorts.
What started out 30 years ago as a flower shop has grown into so much more, a charming gift boutique with something for everyone. The little shop is bursting with cozy sweaters, cute handbags, home decorations, bath and body goods and unique jewelry from local artisans. They also carry Sweenor’s chocolates and other candies and sweets. And for the winter season, they have an upstairs holiday loft, which is full of Christmas decorations, gifts, candles and more.
A New Leaf also still holds to its original roots as a flower shop. They specialize in wedding arrangements, but A New Leaf is an excellent go-to spot for any of your floral needs. I asked the store’s manager, Brie Leddy, for tips on the perfect floral arrangement. “Texture. Different textures, different types of flowers – you don’t want too much of the same flower in the whole arrangement or it’ll end up being boring,” she says.
The whole feel of the shop is like a girly fantasy – the perfect blend of cute shopping and goodies and a dreamy flower garden. There’s even a little alcove greenhouse right off the main floor, where you’ll find goodies for your garden, including a make-your-own-fairy-garden station. They also have an outdoor garden center, where you can get soil and fertilizer, and which currently features Christmas trees and wreaths that the New Leaf team will happily install in your home for you.
A New Leaf is also a non-profit, affiliated with the Providence Center, whose mission is to, as part of their training program, help people who have difficulties getting jobs gain the skills and experience they need to enter or get back into the workforce. The team provides plant maintenance for businesses and learns skills in their greenhouse in floral arrangements and plant care, as well as customer service skills in the store. So you can feel good about yourself when shopping for gifts this season, for every purchase is helping to give back to the community.
The shop also hosts a number of events, like Ladies Nights, where you can host a party for you and your friends in the shop that A New Leaf will arrange. You tell them the date, time and who to invite, and they’ll send out the invites and provide drinks and hors d’oeuvres as you and your friends chat and shop around the store after hours. And the hostess gets 15% off her total purchase. Also, be sure to stop by the store on December 6 for their open house. From 10am to 3pm, you can munch on hors d’oeuvres and browse the store as they offer holiday giveaways, discounts and coupons.
So, whether you’re shopping for holiday gifts or just browsing for fun, exploring this little gem of a shop is a truly charming experience.
135 Gano Street