Business

As Macon store she worked at closes, she's opening the shop she 'always dreamed of'

New children’s store to have familiar face

Julie Sowell, who managed Chichester’s in Macon for years, is opening her own children’s shop in Ingleside Village.
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Julie Sowell, who managed Chichester’s in Macon for years, is opening her own children’s shop in Ingleside Village.

For anyone who has despaired over losing the children's department at Chichester's, a new children's shop is opening in Macon.

And loyal customers will see a familiar face at the new store.

Julie Sowell, who managed the gift shop for Chichester's for 16 years and was its buyer, is opening Lullaby Baby Boutique in Ingleside Village on March 3. It is expected to be open initially 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday-Saturday.

"We will have pretty much the same (merchandise as at Chichester's), but we're getting new stuff," said Sowell, who will operate the business at 2342 Ingleside Ave. with her daughter, Kati Black.

"I told her 'You're not getting any younger. Do it,' '' said Black, who has three young children who are often "boutique models."

Lullaby Baby will carry clothes and gift items for girls from newborn to age 6 and for boys from newborn to age 4. Monogramming will be available for items bought at the store.

As The Telegraph reported Feb. 7, Chichester's at 3043 Vineville Ave., which opened more than 30 years ago, is expected to close by Wednesday.

"I always dreamed of having my own baby shop, and it's just that the opportunity came up with Chichester's closing," Sowell said. "So I just took the opportunity and ran with it."

She said Chichester's owner Tim Wright "has been totally supportive of all this. He's like 'we do need a baby shop in Macon. It will be a great opportunity.' ... Macon could not do without a baby boutique, and I'm exciting to be doing it."

Her next door neighbor in the Village, is excited to see the shop open.

"This particular new neighbor, I'm very excited about, because I think it's a great fit for this end of the Village," said Cathy Bufford Brantley with Antique Centre. " I think it will be a high-quality business and I think we'll share customers better than if it were some other type of business. ... We're real excited about it and (Sowell) is really nice."

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