More local products than ever before at downtown shop

April 21, 2011 // 0 Comments

Candle Shop, Burlap-n-Rags, Bow-Dacious among town’s long-term businesses by BETH ALTENA “If we won’t support our economy, who will?” said Meg Frantz, owner of Bow-Dacious, The Candle Shop and Burlaps-n-Rags in downtown Rockford. Frantz, following in the footsteps of her parents, appreciates the subtleties of running a successful business—or two. Frantz took over her mother’s store of 35 years and picked up another five years ago. Among the important issues in keeping a small store going, even in rough times, is trying to support others in business. It’s a philosophy seen throughout downtown, where merchants support each other in a variety of ways and believe continued success for each depends on the success of downtown as a whole. Frantz believes this philosophy is also true of Michigan and our country and that, despite the Internet and global competition, it still is a small world where each of us can make a difference. Between both stores, shoppers can find over 20 lines of products made right here in our home state and 21 more made in the United States. In addition, Frantz tries to support sisters in need overseas, and like the WAR Chest Boutique, offers products made by women around the world trying to escape poverty or worse. Many artisans are also making use of reused items and recycled material as well as handmade products. She showed off the products of a local woman who Frantz met when the woman was an artist in Art in the Park. Another vendor uses handmade beads to create stunning, one-of-a-kind servingware. A shopper in the store testified to the product’s quality. “I bought one like that here two years ago and use it all the time. It gets thrown in the dishwasher along with every thing else and it’s held up wonderfully,” said Nancy Peitz of Dearborn, who describes herself as a frequent Rockford shopper. The story of how Frantz came to be among the shop owners of downtown Rockford is curious. She started out as an aspiring pre-law student, schooled at Michigan State University and Western Michigan University in pre-law. Her first job was in specialty child abuse and neglect at a sexual abuse center. “I went home crying every day,” Frantz said. She left that job. […]