CARROLLWOOD — After more than two decades working on national brands like Toyota and Marriott, Jen Carreno decided she was ready to pursue her own vision for a brand.
Combining her affinity for style, technology and antiques, the vision for a modern vintage market was born.
Her store, Rare Hues, is set to open in spring. The store will be at 10005 N Dale Mabry Highway, in the Publix Shopping Center in Carrollwood.
"It's been a lifelong dream. The timing is right and I'm excited," said Carreno, a former advertising and marketing executive in Tampa Bay.
"Bringing antiquing to the 21st century" is how she explained the concept behind her store.
The 10,000 square-foot market will feature various vignette shopping areas. Each will be different and feature antiques and merchandise especially curated for Rare Hues from dealers and craftsmen.
Instead of an overwhelming hodgepodge that can be found at many antique markets, Rare Hues will be a more streamlined shopping experience. Each vignette will be designed to tell a story while showcasing the antique pieces.
The store will feature mostly home decor, furniture, vintage jewelry and art from a variety of periods, including primitive, architecture and salvage, along with mid-century modern. Two areas in the market will be devoted to art galleries featuring local artists.
"You'll feel like you're in a well-merchandised market," Carreno said.
She hopes Rare Hues gives more opportunity to other small business owners.
"People who make larger pieces, it's sometimes very hard to ship because of the prices," she said. "I wanted to give them a brick and mortar solution for showcasing and selling their work."
Carreno, 40, lives in Carrollwood with her husband, Juan, and their young children. Appreciating antiques is a favorite pastime for the entire family. They often go antiquing while on vacation.
"I love the history of antiques," Carreno said. "And having things to pass on to my children is nice. Having that meaning behind something is so much more special than something that's just disposable."
She also hopes to create a family-friendly atmosphere at Rare Hues. In addition to shopping for one-of-a-kind antiques, patrons can also relax a bit while at the store. Cafe tables will be placed throughout the market and Carreno is working on finding a local company to partner with for serving coffee and tea.
After researching various locations, she decided to keep her shop close to home.
"St. Pete is full of antique stores, but we don't have a lot of that here in Tampa," Carreno said. "We live here. We wanted to give back to our community and give them a place to hang out and shop."
To learn more about Rare Hues, visit rarehues.com, check out their Facebook page or follow @Rarehues on Twitter.
Chicken favorite now in Town 'N Country
Northwest Tampa residents now have another option when they get a fried chicken craving. A new Popeyes has opened at 8315 W Hillsborough Ave.
The restaurant, which is among the company's redesigned "Louisiana Kitchen" restaurants, officially opened Sunday.
Launched 40 years ago in New Orleans, Popeyes is known for its Cajun flair menu. Though chicken and biscuits are its staple, the restaurant also serves up New Orleans favorites like jambalaya and red beans and rice.
The chain began rolling out its Louisiana Kitchen redesign restaurant in 2012. The Town 'N Country restaurant features sleek, modern decor and promotes a more sit-down-and-dine environment.
There are more than two dozen Popeyes locations in the Tampa Bay area.
Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen is open 10:30 a.m. to midnight daily. Visit popeyes.com.