New stores open in downtown Montrose amid pandemicJun 29, 2021 06:12AM ● By Mavis Bennett
At Mosaic in Montrose, customers can participate in creative workshops or choose a project off the DIY menu.
Back to business
Leanna and Jordan Johnson were traveling to craft shows and selling their handmade jewelry when the pandemic hit. As more and more shows were canceled, the Montrose couple decided to spend a month in Arizona selling their wares—until those shows were canceled, too.
“We went back and forth on whether to open a business during the pandemic, but we needed those holiday sales,” said Leanna.
They took a chance and opened Mosaic, a boutique shop at 21 N. Cascade Ave., just in time for the holiday season. Mosaic carries vintage clothing and Colorado-made accessories, pottery, bath and body products, home décor and more.
“We were also happy to have a place for our maker friends to sell their goods,” said Leanna. “Our whole concept is to have a creative community [and offer] interactive experiences for people.”
Customers can participate in creative workshops, choose a project off the DIY menu, create their own custom jewelry at the jewelry bar or design their own potted plants at the succulent bar.
Leanna handpicks each piece of vintage clothing. Montrose resident Caroline Carter likes the variety of apparel from coats to dresses—even a ’50s-era fur stole.
“I really enjoy the vintage clothes,” said Carter, 82. “The couches in the seating areas were comfortable and gave customers a sense of ease.”
Mosaic supports local artists by hosting a First Friday reception and displaying their work throughout the month.
TEXAS-THEMED TACOS AND TECHNICAL DRINKS
Since the pandemic started, two eateries moved into the storefront on East Main Street that once belonged to Maggie’s Books and The Vine Market & Bistro.
The Double Barrel Taco Company, 345 E. Main St., is a casual, walk-up-to-order café with a swath of original taco selections that reflect the Texas roots of its owners Ray and Lindsey Blanchard. They also opened Main & Vine next door, a more upscale restaurant and bar that serves crafty comfort food and technical cocktails.
Some of the taco shop’s customer favorites include smoked brisket and creamy slaw, and its open-faced sandwich "TxAF" featuring smoked sausage, jalapeno poppers, charro beans, onion crumble and queso fresco.
At Main & Vine, diners can mix and match from a menu divided into starches, veggies and proteins. Diners can also order from the Sourdough Slider menu, accompanied by a cucumber jalapeno martini or a cenote reposado margarita. The weekend brunch menu is equally eclectic with items such as brisket and waffles and eggs benedicts to please every palate.
FASHIONS FOR ALL
Mauve, 324 E. Main St., is named for owner Lizz Martensen’s favorite color. The longtime Montrose resident bubbled with enthusiasm as she described her three-month-old venture, which sells reasonably priced women’s clothing and accessories for size small to 3XL.
“I’m a plus-size person,” said Martensen. “I wanted to offer a store in Montrose where women of all sizes could shop with their friends.”
That mindset is why customer Patty Southard shops there.
“I shop at Mauve because they have body positivity for real women,” she said. “Trendy, yet classic styles make it fun for any age.”
Mauve started as an online store, which operated for six years until Martensen was ready to open a brick-and-mortar store once the pandemic wound down.
“We were really excited to open the store and see people live and in person,” she said.
The store also features a crafting room for events and workshops, and what Martensen calls The Collective—six spaces that can be leased by individuals or small business owners.
“We call them popups because they can rent a space for a month or longer,” said Martensen.
Currently, The Collective space is leased by a boutique bakery and used book store, in addition to stores selling baby items, hand-painted leggings, local CBD and handmade jewelry.