Opening a store in the midst of a snowstorm wasn’t ideal for Kate Kazlo but she’s more than pleased with the opportunities ahead.
Kazlo opened The Home Market on Tuesday at the Hilldale Shopping Center. The home interior store, located next to Macy’s on the east side of shopping center, is Kazlo’s second store as she has a 2,200 square-foot store in the historic Third Ward in downtown Milwaukee.
Adding a store to Madison was a no-brainer for Kazlo, a Beaver Dam native and 1999 graduate from UW-Madison.
“We had lots of clients from Madison coming to us and it really made sense,” Kazlo said, just an hour after opening the doors to the 1,200-square-foot Madison store for the first time. “There’s so much growth here and I really thought it would be the best place for our second location.”
Kazlo opened her Milwaukee store in 2006 before moving into larger location in the same neighborhood in 2014. Prior to going into business for herself, Kazlo, 38, who is married to a Milwaukee attorney, worked for Shabby Chic, a Chicago-based retail and home furnishings brand. Kazlo spent several years living in Los Angeles and traveling across the country to New York City to manage the company’s retail division.
Her Madison and Milwaukee stores specialize in custom slip-covered and upholstered furniture, unique home accents, bedding and lighting. Her Madison store is across from L’Occitane, a beauty products store; Motherhood Maternity and Anthropologie, a women’s clothing store. It’s also next door to a space that this spring will be home to Pier South, a casual clothing boutique.
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In addition, her store is in a community where homes sales are hot, new apartments are being built and young professionals continue to flock, in part because of continued growth at Epic Systems Corp. in Verona and other high-tech companies.
“I definitely feel there is an opening in this market,” Kazlo said. “We really wanted something with foot traffic. For us it’s really about location so finding the right location and finding the right customer is how we justify (spending) the rent.”
The Madison store will be managed by Taren Mansfield, a UW-Madison graduate who most recently worked as an executive with Target on Madison’s Far West Side.
The store carries over 300 different product lines that includes work from local carpenters to multinational brands, including Juliska, Dash & Albert, Lee Industries, John Robshaw, Pine Cone Hill and John Derian. The business also provides custom furniture, window treatments and design services for both residential and commercial properties.