Use Your Imagination

REiMAGINE breaths new life into vintage objects

Barbara Arnold

RENEWABLE RESOURCES. REiMAGINE features creative furnishings made from existing objects.
RENEWABLE RESOURCES. REiMAGINE features creative furnishings made from existing objects.

If you like or Pinterest, you’ll love the newly opened REiMAGINE store, 1717 Western Ave., which has the tagline “a fresh take on THINGS.” The prices are reasonable and you can pick up, pay, and go with no shipping. Walking through the store feels like you are walking into someone’s home or Grandmother’s lovely attic.

Amy Boettcher, owner and “imaginer,” shared that she always had a knack for fixing up old furniture – the kind of furniture most people would put on the curb to give away or hide in the basement – and making it look incredible. “REiMAGINE is a store that I started with Rick Moross, family friend and welder, who creates art from utensils and other usable items like coat racks and tables from odd pieces of metal welded together,” she said. “(We) would joke that he and I could look at a pile of rusty metal and find the chicken in it – i.e., what he would re-create – not to mention using a rake head for a cup holder or making a light out of a trash can.” One recent find is a blue bureau; in place of the mirror there is a pegboard from which hangs handmade jewelry, purses, and scarves made by local artists.

Rick learned welding in South Dakota and Texas, where he worked for Caterpillar for 15 years as a welder/fabricator/machinist. “I usually look at what I have to work with first,” he said. “Sometimes, I sketch a design which changes as I work with the metal objects. Any whimsical idea will do. It’s fun to create one-of-a-kind things from my imagination.” To date, he has created flowers, insects such as grasshoppers and ladybugs, and other assorted creatures, all from forks, spoons, and knives. He also has made benches and tables, including one made from the wheel rim of a 1930s Ford truck painted black with a clear glass top that looks like it belongs in a Chicago loft.

Amy added: “I am looking for people that might want to have their handmade goods in the store. I also plan to have artist events featuring Rick and others demonstrating their craft.” In addition, Amy will sell items on consignment or buy your items outright for resale.

REiMAGINE • 1717 Western Ave., Eau Claire • 11am-6pm Thursdays, 11am-5pm Fridays, 10am-2 pm Saturdays, or by appointment • (715) 577-9085 • • •

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