Manayunk’s Little Apple Boutique

Photos courtesy of Courtney Apple Photography
Click here for an online tour of the Little Apple on Facebook

A fresh face on Manayunk’s Main Street, Molly Cygan’s The Little Applev

A fresh face on Manayunk’s Main Street, Molly Cygan’s The Little Apple

A little piece of the O.C. has landed on Manayunk’s Main Street! Entrepreneur and Southern California native Molly Cygan opened The Little Apple boutique in February with an Etsy meets Anthropologie feel to the charming, and now popular, shop. Cygan, a 2006 Berkeley grad who boasts an art history degree, was inspired years ago by her boarding school days at Exeter Academy in New Hampshire. “The seeds were definitely planted when I was at boarding school at Exeter. Here we were-lots of young kids in a small town with disposable cash—but nowhere to spend it. I was determined when I went back for my five year reunion (at Exeter) to start looking into opening a little boutique. And, of course, when I returned the downtown was packed with great shops-so clearly a few other people had the same idea! So, I kind of gave it up at that time but still wanted to pursue opening my own shop when the time was just right,” explained Cygan.

That time came last fall. After Berkeley, Cygan lived in New York City briefly before moving to Philadelphia this past October with her fiancé, who is in medical school at Drexel. (They will be tying the knot at her parent’s house in Cal July 3rd.) It was then that she started to rethink the idea of her own storefront. “I started to check out some spaces around the city and nothing seemed to be a fit. Then, some of my fiancé’s friends suggested that I look into Manayunk and that’s when I found this space on Craig’s List. It needed some serious TLC but I could see the potential,” said Cygan.

The long, bright 900 square foot boutique is directly across from La Colombe coffee and down the corner from the new Saxby’s. It has old world charm accented by Cygan’s terrific sense of style that includes kitschy pick me ups—a fish stapler—to serious home décor accents—a preppy footstool by Main Line designer Chairloom (chairloom.net). The Little Apple boasts a vintage tin ceiling that Cygan had painted white, stain glass accents and gorgeous, original hard wood floors.

The Little Apple is a marvelous retail start-up in Manayunk where you'll find new, vintage and repurposed home goods, unique gifts and cards.

The Little Apple is a marvelous retail start-up in Manayunk where you'll find new, vintage and repurposed home goods, unique gifts and cards.

Cygan’s research found the building was built around the civil war and was once a cigar shop with the owner’s home above. Among the shops eclectic and fun mix of items are Lucia Candles, Louella Press stationery, jewelry from local Etsy artist Tree and Kimble, and vintage seltzer bottles. “I feel like the store has something for everyone and I try to find something new to bring in weekly—accessories, kitchen and entertaining accents, hostess gifts. And, my products are affordable, which I think is really important to shoppers these days,” said Cygan.

Once Cygan secured the Manayunk store front, she purchased, and admittedly devoured, Retail for Dummies and sought out advice from key business advisors—who encouraged her to jump start her brand on Twitter and Facebook immediately. “That same night I opened my Twitter account it was instantaneous feedback and interest. And the Facebook page has been active and growing—I am meeting a lot of people through it and they are walking through the door here. Social media is my main source of marketing—and it’s been amazing,” said Cygan.

Shop online with The Little Apple’s online store: http://thelittleapple.bigcartel.com

Shop online with The Little Apple’s online store.

With her pending nuptials about a month away, Molly was inspired to begin a collection of bridal gifts and accents at Little Apple, including the line of flower pins and hairpieces (very SJP!) part of the Etsy store, Cultivar. A recent AML Etsy Phavorite, Cultivar’s line is made from reclaimed fabric and recycled beads. A customer came across the selection of artist Katie’s Reims pins and commissioned her one-of-a-kind bridal hairpiece from Reim. Cygan is considering expanding to a bridal registry for her customers.

For those who can’t make it to Manayunk but want to browse and shop online, Cygan recently launched an online store with her product line (thelittleapple.bigcartel.com) and is developing her website. “There seems to be so much going on in Manayunk right now. Saxby’s just moved in a few stores down and there’s a lot of new retail surrounding me, so I think this is a great space. And, I’m staying open late to accommodate the people who come to Manayunk to dine out after work and need to grab a gift, or who are looking to shop while they are here. It’s a great feeling and I am having a lot of fun with my store,” enthused Cygan.

More Info on The Little Apple

Online Store: thelittleapple.bigcartel.com

Publisher’s Product Pick: Adorable Rose Petal Cake Servers!

Address: 4353 Main Street, Manayunk

Phone: 267-335-4968

Store Hours: Wed through Sat 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., Sunday Noon to 5 p.m.

Facebook: The Little Apple

Twitter: TheLilAppleStor

Website: www.thelittleapplestore.com

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1 Comments For This Post

  1. Deborah Smith Ford Says:

    Hi, I am the author of the children’s book The Little Apple. I would love to see your merchandise. Maybe I could visit or at least my book!!! :)

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