Business Profile - Anecdote

A fondness for your great grandmother's crystal candlesticks doesn't mean your entire room has to resemble a 1920s parlor. Treasured family heirlooms, one-of-a-kind antiques and even kitchy vintage finds can all fit into a modern home design that fits the owner's needs and style, said Mimi Collins, co-owner of Anecdote in downtown La Grange.

A Hinsdale resident, homeowner and real estate agent, Collins owns the building at 8 W. Burlington Ave. where she opened her first retail venture in October 2019. The idea to open a home decor and design store came after plans for a restaurant to open in the space fell through. Faced with an empty, recently renovated building, Collins tapped into her own interests and the talents of her friends to open Anecdote.

"It's a side hustle for all of us," Collins said of herself and her four co-owners, each of whom brings their own talents and abilities to the team.

Anecdote offers Collins an outlet for her love of vintage shopping and renovation. Collins' son, Conor Scanlon, is a fellow real estate agent, while co-owner Amelia Eaton is a designer. Eaton's husband, Peter Krauss, brings a business acumen to the group, while Danielle Moss handles marketing. Together, they've created a place that hosts an eclectic mix of furniture, accessories, art and gifts to match every shopper's needs, style and budget.

From 15th-century Chinese jarlettes to original paintings by local artists, Anecdote is a carefully curated collection of items old and new, big and small, costly and affordable.

"I love mixing the vintage and the mix of old and new," Collins said.

Customers can stop in to find a unique gift, an accessory that completes a room's look, or find help decorating an entire room or home. They often venture into Anecdote with photos and items that they wish to incorporate into their space, said designer Eaton.

"We're trying to help people find fresh, new pieces," Eaton said. Many of those pieces come from U.S. companies, which can often help shorten the wait time for customers eager to finish their decorating project.

Eaton describes the store's style as warm and comfortable, with plenty of opportunities to add texture and interest to any room through items such as candles, coffee table books, cozy throws and table linens.

The store's name comes from the owners' commitment to helping every customer tell their own tale through the items they choose for their home.

"Every piece has a story," Eaton said, whether it's a generations-old treasure or something bought brand new from Anecdote's collection.

The 2,000-square-foot showroom is filled with furniture and accessories, all arranged in vignettes designed to inspire. But not everything that Anecdote has to offer can fit within its four walls.

"We sell a lot online," Collins said.

The store's virtual showroom was a must during the pandemic and remains a valuable tool as customers search for just the right objects to complete or inspire their decorating project.

- by Sandy Illian Bosch

Author Bio

Sandy Illian Bosch is a contributing writer to The Hinsdalean