THE PREPPY PALM'S NEXT BIG BREAKTHROUGH
Next Big Breakthrough
Rose & Chris Adelezzi owners of The Preppy Palm in Avalon,NJ
There is a real palm tree at The Preppy Palm in Avalon – and not as much pink and green as you might expect.
Owner Rose Adelizzi is expanding soon into her third storefront at 25th Street and Dune Drive. She has come a long way from the small cottage shop on the mainland where she sold belts, headbands, belts, watchbands and handbags she made herself. Yes, these were largely pink and green – primary colors in the “preppy” palette as popularized in the 1980s. You remember Fair Isle sweaters, penny loafers, monogrammed everything.
Adelizzi helped make preppy trendy again when she started her in-home production line about eight years ago, using a lot of grosgrain ribbon.
“I was a stay-at-home mom [of five] and I started making things in my house,” Adelizzi said. “I felt funny in the beginning putting a value on it. It started being in demand and I got the shop at Woodland Village,” a cluster of shops on Route 9 in Clermont, across from Cape May Wicker.
In 2007, Preppy Palm outgrew the cottage and moved to a storefront in the heart of Dune Drive’s shopping
district. Adelizzi expanded her offerings to clothing, accessories and gifts that reflect the preppy philosophy.
Just what is “preppy,” you might ask?
“Now, especially in Avalon and Stone Harbor, it’s just a classic way of dressing,” Adelizzi said. “Even if it’s not pink and green, or over-the-top Lilly Pulitzer, it’s just classic.”
Two years after she moved to the island shopping district, Adelizzi expanded to the space next door. Now, her success has her going even farther – spreading The Preppy Palm to yet another storefront. When she breaks through the wall to add the third store in time for spring, Adelizzi hopes to add men’s and food merchandise she hadn’t had space to carry.
Stores in town already meet men’s dressy needs and surfer-wear desires, she said; she plans to offer fashions in between those ends of the spectrum.
“Then we really will have something for everyone,” Adelizzi said.
She’s not kidding. A quick browse through the bright store found furry earmuffs, perfect for wearing while taking a brisk beach walk; Lilly Pulitzer stationary and accessories; Miss Me Jeans, affordable embellished styles; Trollbeads; Tosca totes; trendy Jane Basch personalized jewelry designs; even dog bowls, toys and artwork. In the soon-to-be men’s section, Adelizzi expects to carry Duke & Winston, a Philadelphia-based line.
“It’s very classic, with a younger look,” she said. “It’s not your father’s stiff, preppy look. I believe a lot of women will pick up something for their men, sometimes out of guilt.”
Adelizzi also said the added space will boost the comfort level in her already-friendly shop, where browsing is encouraged – and even men and kids are welcome. For Thanksgiving weekend’s shopping extravaganza, Adelizzi invites shoppers to take a break in her new space – there will be snacks, a big-screen TV and face painter for kids.