DERRY — The owner of Not Just Curtains has put her curtain up somewhere else, using the funds from her eminent domain sale to relocate from Salem to Derry.
The store was at 28 South Broadway in Salem since Eileen Lloyd bought the property in 2010. The state acquired it via eminent domain this year for $380,000, as part of a road widening project on Route 28 in the Salem Depot area, after an initial offer that was $90,000 less than that.
On Nov. 30, the store marked its grand opening at its new location at 25 East Broadway in Derry. Lloyd said the eminent domain process was painful, but it has worked out in her favor so far.
She said the 5,600-square-foot brick building is larger than her previous location, has an existing tenant, and provides space to include her daughter’s vintage home decor and handmade gift business.
“So the whole eminent domain thing is working out for us in the long run,” Lloyd said.
She bought the building for $295,000 in June and has invested more than $60,000 in renovations and improvements so far, Lloyd said.
“We exposed the brick. We have nice new floors. We did shiplap for the inside walls,” Lloyd said.
They reopened a boarded-up door, installed a new staircase, installed windows that were boarded up, exposed and repaired the original tin ceilings and installed new light fixtures, she said.
After the winter, Lloyd said she plans to do some more exterior improvements such as installing new awnings and signs, as well as some paint work. After that’s done, she hopes to hold a formal ribbon cutting ceremony sometime in April.
The basement space is used by Brunelle Stamps & Coins, which will stay there as Lloyd’s tenant. Lloyd said it’s a mainstay downtown business that mixes well with the types of things she sells in her store.
The remaining 3,800 square feet in the first and second floor is used for Not Just Curtains and her daughter Lauren Lloyd’s business called The Nest Vintage Home.
Lloyd said the about half of the first floor space is shared with The Nest Vintage Home products, which include some vintage repainted and refinished furniture (from the 1980s or older), her daughter’s own line of Fusion mineral furniture paints, some art and handmade gifts sold on consignment such as quilts and area rugs made from repurposed lobster traps.
Lloyd said they intend to broaden their selection of gift items, with a focus on handmade and locally crafted products.
Lauren had been selling her paints and some vintage furniture out of a shop in Pelham, and some antiques through vendor booths in other antique stores. She closed up the Pelham shop to be in the Derry store full time, Lloyd said, but she will still sell antiques at other stores.
She said the new space has also allowed Not Just Curtains to begin offering some more home decor and costume jewelry.
“It did give me the opportunity to kind of reinvent myself,” Lloyd said.
She said the second floor is where they carry their fabrics, with a loft-type space they use as a work room for sewing and cutting shades.
Sales on their opening weekend were very good, Lloyd said, because of the traffic from the holiday parade and Small Business Saturday. And she’s hopeful for what the future holds.