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New crafts store mixes urban, rural items

Shop offers handmade works of local vendors

STERLING – Annette Briseno is often coming up with ways to make new handcrafted items.

“My wheel is always running,” she said.

For instance, she makes leg warmers for dogs out of socks.

“I’m a crafty person,” Briseno, 41, said. “What I can’t make, I figure out.”

Now she’s opened a store called Towne & Country where she and other creative people can sell their items. It features about 15 local crafters.

A grand opening with giveaways and refreshments will be held March 16.

The store was so named because it offers a mix of unique, urban items such as hipster bags and tutus, with more rural items such as milk soaps from Muller’s Lane Farm in Rock Falls and handmade candles.

Dawn Hand, 37, of Sterling, is a friend of Briseno’s. She helps run the store.

“Around here, we have a lot of people who are so crafty and they have shows, but they don’t have anywhere they can show it all the time,” Hand said.

The store will also carry rings, necklaces, earrings and bracelets, and other items that make nice, inexpensive gifts, Briseno said.

“We’ll be the home of $5 jewelry, Briseno said.

The store sells many items in honor of breast cancer and autism awareness, such as signs that read, “I wear pink for my sister.”

Briseno, a 1990 Sterling High School graduate, and her husband, Tomas Briseno, have three children: Patrick, 20, Jaime, 14, and Juan, 13.

Check it out

Towne & Country, opened Feb. 9 at 1814 Locust St. in Sterling. The store is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday.

Call 815-441-1418 or find the store on Facebook for more information.

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