Work is progressing on the second floor of 430 E. Broadway, the building that’s home to The Record Farm and to Bonus Pints.

Building owners Matt Swisher and Katya Swisher plan to open the second floor to businesses by mid-November, and the city has been helping make renovations possible.

On Monday, the Logansport City Council will vote on a $14,500 grant to bring the HVAC and electricity to the second floor.

The city council’s finance committee already approved the grant from County Economic Development Income Tax incentive funding on Sept. 20.

Cass Logansport Economic Development Organization President Bill Cuppy said the couple has already invested about $130,000 into that project.

In August, the Logansport Redevelopment Commission approved $14,125 in façade improvement program money to go toward a new entrance and a staircase from the second floor, giving it a required emergency exit.

The grants are economic support for a project that will put two retail spaces and one service space on the second floor, continuing recent downtown growth. The Swishers have said before that the businesses going on the second floor would attract similar clientele to their businesses.

One of the retailers planning to go into a second-floor shop is Royal Center artist Brett Manning. She announced the business venture in late September and is the first person to publicly confirm the intent to be part of the project.

Manning plans to open a shop called The Lantern, featuring her work and the work of other artists and craftspeople with her aesthetic. That will go from cards and stationery to clothes and hand-dipped incense.

People in the area may be familiar with Manning’s work and its feel. She sells cards, candles and items in The Record Farm, in Legacy Outfitters at 116 S. Sixth St. in Logansport and in Haunted Hills Dark Market at 6342 W. County Road 100 North in western Cass County.

Her work has an eerie feel, and she describes it as dreamlike and intricate, kind of dark but with a sense of innocence. She incorporates the myths and folklore of the United Kingdom, including Celtic and Pagan sources.

“My birthday’s Halloween, so I feel very connected to the spooky season,” Manning said. “So I draw a lot of inspiration from that imagery.”

She said she’s been making art her whole life, but she became professional in 2008 when she began selling at shows and online. Manning went to school for fashion design but became a self-taught artist after.

“I’ve always been more of a visual artist,” she said.

She grew up in Springfield, Illinois, and lived in Chicago before coming to Royal Center six years ago with her husband, Frank Rouch. Springfield was more similar to Indianapolis than to Logansport, but Royal Center hasn’t been hard to adjust to.

“I like living in the country,” she said.

There’s seclusion and nature as she works from home.

“That’s how I thrive,” she said.

Manning looks at her planned retail space as something she curates with work of artists she knows from all over.

The Lantern’s name and logo come from The Hermit tarot card, an older man holding a lamp against the darkness, although for her logo, it’s a young woman. She sees that card as something of introspection and searching, going off on your own and doing your own thing.

“That’s what I hope to do with the items I carry in the store,” she said.

Other items she’ll sell will be clothes, handmade jewelry, tarot cards, oracle cards, purses, book bags, socks and patches. Household items will include her candles, small handmade brooms, tea towels, mugs and coffee and tea supplies.

Manning also plans to sell books that are fantasy, esoteric and kind of occult, and the store will also carry chocolate bars with interesting flavors, like lavender, ginger cardamom, pecan pie and rose.

“It’s not what you’re going to find in regular stores,” she said.

Manning believes there is a market for what she’ll sell in the city.

“There’s some good, weird people in Logansport,” she said.

The space she’ll rent is about a third of the size of Bonus Pints and The Record Farm on the first floor. Although she plans to carry a lot of items, she is aiming for a small, cozy feeling.

“It’s basically an experiment for me,” she said, comparing it to renting studio space.

The shop will be open a couple of days a week, possibly Tuesday through Saturday, with hours similar to Bonus Pints and The Record Farm. Her husband will operate the store most days while she concentrates on internet sales.

Reach James D. Wolf Jr. at james.wolf@pharostribune.com or 574-732-5117

Twitter @JamesDWolfJr

React to this story:

4
2
0
0
0

Trending Video

Recommended for you