Boulevard’s new seasonal dry goods store on the Plaza has products from various Kansas City-based companies and artists: a limited edition KC cap in Boulevard colors by Baldwin Denim; T-shirts by Bandwagon Merchandise; new posters and coasters by Hammerpress; and handmade jewelry by Scarlett Garnet Jewelry. “All the local stuff I’m really proud of,” Ayres said. “We tried to pick a lot of local people with the same ideals as us.”
With more than a decade of experience in visual merchandising, Ayres said she aims to give the window displays an industrial feel — think “old and repurposed and shiny new,” she said. “It starts with the brewery. I take that feel and add a twist with inspiration from the fashion world.”
Friends with benefits
Ayres’ friends consider her to be one very lucky lady. “When I first got hired, I remember everybody saying, ‘How did you get that job?!’ ” She has worked for Boulevard for less than one year.
A few of her favorite things
It takes Ayres a few moments to choose just one favorite item in the store, but a newly added T-shirt, printed by Kansas City company Bandwagon Merchandise, takes the spot. The earthy-toned T-shirt reads “I Love BLVD” with a beer bottle superimposed over the text. “It’s super fashionable and a T-shirt you’d actually like to wear. It’s not just our logo slapped on a shirt. It’s handcrafted like our beers.”
The Plaza dry goods store has extended its hours to stay open until 9 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, Friday and Saturday during the holiday shopping season.
A ‘brew’ good men
The dry goods store has weekly beer sampling and “meet the brewer” events during happy hour times — around 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Check Boulevard’s Facebook page for more details about this and other promotions.
Like the company’s Irish Ale or ZÔN Belgian-Style Witbier, Boulevard’s Plaza location is seasonal. The store will close in mid-January. That means everything has to go; even the furniture. “If (customers) like a fixture, let us know,” Ayres said. “Most of our furniture came from the brewery basement or a friend of the brewery loaned it to us.” Some of it will be for sale.
Ayres considers Boulevard’s Plaza location a kind of test run. “Part of the reason we did this was just to see what else we could do. So, we’ll see what happens,” she said. “If people like it, we’ll get more merchandise in the gift shop at the brewery and see if more opportunity arises.”